Official Montana Hunting Safety Course Link to Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

Hello, hunter! Montana's online hunting course has moved. Click here to go to the latest version of the Today's Hunter in Montana course—the official hunting safety course of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.

The following course material is for reference only. Please go to the new course to complete your Montana certification.


A rifle is aimed. This requires sight alignment. There are many types of sights. You must become familiar with the type on your firearm so that you can sight in your target quickly, smoothly, and accurately.

Types of sights for firearms

Sight alignment is the process of lining up rear and front sights. The sight picture is the image you see when the sights are aligned correctly with the target. To ensure that the bullet will travel to the target in your sight, it’s necessary to sight-in your rifle.

Open sight Aperture sight Telescopic sight with a crosshair reticle Telescopic sight with a dot reticle
With an open sight, you line up the target with the blade or bead of the front sight within the notch of the rear sight.

With an aperture sight, you line up the target so that the front sight is within the rear peephole. With a telescopic sight with a crosshair reticle, you line up the target with the crosshairs of the sight. With a telescopic sight with a dot reticle, you line up the target with the dot of the sight. The dot must be centered.

RememberYour bullet should hit the target at your point of aim. But many factors come into play when the bullet is traveling, such as gravity, air resistance, humidity, velocity, and mass. The only way to learn to judge the effect of these factors on your accuracy is by practicing your marksmanship.

Montana Fish, Wildlife,
& Parks
White-tailed deer tracks
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Official hunting safety course for Montana hunters last modified: November 16, 2011
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