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  • Always unload guns before crossing fences or other obstacles or before negotiating rough terrain.
  • Cross wire fences close to a fence post to prevent damage to the fence.
  • After unloading it, place the gun on the other side of the fence or obstacle to be crossed, with the muzzle pointed away from you and your crossing point. Cross the fence on the other side of the post that is behind the butt of the gun. Then retrieve your gun.
  • Pull a gun toward you by the butt—never by the muzzle.
  • If two people are crossing, one person gives the other person both guns, crosses first, and then receives the unloaded guns from the other hunter.
One hunter crossing fence
Two hunters crossing fence

Safe Fence Crossing

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Video Transcript


Fence crossing.

On screen: ONE PERSON

First alone.


At some point when you’re out hunting, you may reach a fence that you have to cross. Just make sure that you do it safe—and here’s how. Start by unloading your firearm. I like to remove my cap and place it on the the muzzle to protect anything from entering the barrel. Then lay the firearm, with the muzzle covered, flat on the ground on the other side of the fence so the muzzle is always pointed away from you. Cross the fence safely without damaging the fence. Once you have crossed the fence, keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, reload, and check the safety once again.

On screen: TWO PEOPLE


For two people crossing a fence. First, unload your firearms. The first person to cross the fence first hands their firearm to the second person, making sure both muzzles are pointed up. The second person then hands the firearms over the fence to the first person. The second person then crosses the fence safely. Remember not to damage the fence. Then, facing away from each other, they reload their firearms, check the safety once again, and continue their hunt.