22LR Survival Rifle Cartridge

I have said that if I hear one more person say that the 22 Long Rifle is the best all ’round prepper/survival cartridge,  I would challenge them to a duel at 50 paces (my 100 yd pace count is 64 paces). I get an AR chambered in .223/5.56 (basically a heavier 22 going really fast) and they would get a 22LR and their choice of semi or bolt-action rifle. From the low ready, go!


Most folks who are into preparedness and survival aren’t planning for getting stranded in a national forest and having to “survive” their way back to civilization shooting rabbits for sustenance. According to a study conducted about preppers, most are waiting for a financial collapse. In my view, a severe financial collapse entails much bigger varmints to contend with. Even natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina had it’s varmints. That means self-defense.

First we will talk combat pistol distances. I use the term combat pistol because if you are using a pistol for self-defense, you are in close quarters combat. Inside of 25 meters is the realistic limit for pistol combat. Most altercations occur much closer in the 7-10 meter range. The exception being a transition from a dry or malfunctioning long gun/carbine to a pistol out of necessity. My carbine is my primary weapon if I have a choice but it’s not always practical or legal so sometimes my pistol is my primary.

At 10 yards a 40 grain 22LR out of a 20 inch barreled rifle has a velocity of about 1200 feet per second (fps) and about 135 foot pounds of energy. Keep in mind that out of a pistol things are dramatically less due to the decreased velocity associated with shorter barrels. For example, out of a revolver with a 2″ barrel, the bullet will be about 850 fps and 70 foot pounds of energy and I’m being generous. The maximum practical effective range of the 22LR is (if you push it) 150yds.

Continue reading on Spotter Up

Photos courtesy of Spotter Up