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I am doing some long range shooting with my .22-250. To get a 500 yard shot I have to shoot the length of my pond. A hill rises up beyond the pond probably 50 feet of vertical. The nearest house in possible line of fire is probably 1/2 mile from there. I would think that at 500 yards my 50 grain bullet is pretty well out of gas and dropping at such an angle that it would not hit the water and skip far down range. Also not sure that angle after impact would be high enough to clear back stop. This is probably a physics question but it's been too ling for me to try to figure it out. Just want to be safe.
 

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If your backed with a hill you should be OK. The 250 has such a high velocity it fragments bullets pretty easily. If the house is 1/2 mile past the 500 yrd I would say decent. Preferably one mile from the shooter. Any larger gun I would have to see the size if the hill.
 

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If you're flinging Varmint type bullets you "should" be OK if it hits anything your side of the hill. Some Target types and especially FMJ bullets can hold themselves together fairly well upon impact at times and possibly could go the distance, whistling all the way there. I'm an old timer and still hold to the "if in doubt, don't" school of thought
 

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Are you just worried about accidentally hitting the water? If you have a 50' high bank I am thinking chances are you could hit that everytime...:lol:

In reality a 50 grain .22 bullet zeroed for 200 yards will be 31 inches low (give or take depending on the exact bullet) at 500 yards. If you are zeroed for 500 all the better....If the bank is 50 feet high a target placed 5 foot up from the water level should work fine.

As for richocets keep in mind the angle of incident is equal to the angle of reflection. Obviously there are variables including bullet drop and ripples on the surface that will slightly affect this. Bottom line is the greater the height difference between the muzzle and water's surface the greater the angle for the bullet coming off from the water.
 

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With a house in the 1/2 mile down range direction I'd be putting my bullets into a safe backstop. When a bullet ricochets off water or a sloped bank it will be deflected off it's original course. How often have we read about errant bullets causing problems?

There is a current high profile case in WI where a younger kid shot at a squirrel in a tree with his bow. An arrow went off & hit a young girl. She came close to dying & once tracked down they are looking at serious charges for the shooter. That's a pile of trouble none of us need.
 

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Without doing the physics math (fizzix sux) I'd be really hard pressed to think that any bullet - after travelling close to five (5) football fields -is going to ricochet off water (or anything else) and THEN jump five (5) stories high to impact objects a half mile away.

I get the safety thing (I'm uber-safe due to the industry and location I work in), but if your scenario is close to accurate, you should be okay.

As with anything, though..................engage at your own risk.
 

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I wouldn't be any more concerned about shooting over water vs land. Bullets commonly skip when they hit the ground as well so I doubt water would be any more or less. I was surprised by this but commonly saw it in the military with tracers.
 

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So, your target is PAST the water a number of feet above the water line correct? Perhaps put the target 10 feet up the hill. That would give you 120 INCHES of overkill as far as hitting the water goes but would liave 40 FEET above the target. How far have you zeroed the rufle in at BEFORE shooting over the weater?
 

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Sounds safe enough but what if you have a discharge with the barrel pointing up at say 45 Degs? It happens...Anytime you are pointing a barrel in the direction of a residence you are taking a risk however small, it still exists. Not trying to sound like an alarmist but this is one reason that rifles are not allowed in the shotgun zone for deer. A rifle has the capability to send a bullet miles in some cases. I usually try to think worst case because in my experience if something can go wrong it will.
 

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I wouldn't be any more concerned about shooting over water vs land. Bullets commonly skip when they hit the ground as well so I doubt water would be any more or less. I was surprised by this but commonly saw it in the military with tracers.

You are right, bullets will skip if the angle is low when they hit just about anything that they don't penetrate.

Heck, even with a .22 you can get two or three skippers on prairie dog hunts so, you have to make sure that no cattle or ranches are anywhere out behind those little rodents.
 
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