The Best Survival Rifle – Why the Ruger 10/22 should be #1 on your list!

A lot of so-called gun experts, and dipshits working for gun magazines who have never actually fired a rifle in their lives, try to dismiss the effectiveness of adding the Ruger 10/22 to your survival stockpile of weaponry. Don’t listen to them; they are in most cases liberal journalists hired to pose as gun people – they don’t have the first clue about firearms or shooting, and they’re even stupider when it comes to survival.

Sure they know how to spin a fancy article, especially when they steal their facts and figures from sites like this, but make no mistake, they are clueless!

Is the Ruger 10/22 one of the Best Survival Rifles you can Own?

What’s the best rifle for survival?

This is a highly debated question and one that usually stirs up some heated debate. I’m not going to sit here and debate whether the Ruger 10/22 is the best rifle for survival, but I will try to make a case why it should be part of any survival-related stockpile of firearms.

While there’s no “perfect” survival rifle, I think the .22 rifle is probably one of the best survival guns that you can own. Now I know I’m going to get some comments that totally disagree with what I’m about to say, but there are a number of reasons that a .22 should be at the top of your list of survival guns.

Affordability and Aftermarket Accessories

Ruger 10/22 Options

To begin with, the .22LR Rifle is one of the most affordable and versatile firearms in the world. For me, it’s all about getting the biggest bang for your buck; the .22 allows you to do just that. If you’re on a strict budget, the ability to buy multiple rifles, instead of one that might fail with time, just makes more sense.

When it comes to the Ruger 10/22, you will not find another .22 caliber firearm that is more affordable, reliable and has the ability to take on so many aftermarket accessories. You can find 25, 30, 50, and even 110-round magazines just about anywhere for these, and besides the AR15, there is no other firearm that you can customize the Ruger 10/22 rifle.

The Ammo is Still Dirt Cheap

.22 Long Rifle ammo is the most common type of ammunition in the world. It’s super cheap, widely available, and can be used in both rifles and pistols. If you’re low on cash and need to stock up on ammo, this is a good type of rifle to start out with.

If you’re out in the field, you can carry thousands of rounds of .22 caliber ammo; try to do that with any other caliber.

When the SHIT hits the Fan, you want a common rifle and a common caliber.

Since this is an article about survival applications of a firearm, we are going to touch on something that most so-called experts fail to cover: the ability to find supplies during a long-term survival situation.

Ruger 10/22

With over 7 million Ruger 10/22s being sold to the public, there is a good chance that even during a long-term disaster you are going to be able to find supplies for your Ruger. Add to that the fact that the .22 is most sold caliber of bullets in the world and you have yourself one more reason to stockpile some 10/22 rifles.

Hunting and Self-Defense

The 10/22 is often thought of as nothing more than a target gun, but the .22 LR is great for hunting small to mid-size game, and with the right shot you can take down just about anything. In fact, it’s a very popular firearm with poachers who routinely use it to take down large game.

I know a ton of people who use a .22 bolt action rifle as their main hunting weapon. Many of them, because they have the skills to do so, routinely take down big game with it.

Here is a great little video from the Traditional Bowhunting And Wilderness Podcast talking about why everyone should own a Ruger 10/22

Which .22 Rifle Should you Buy?

There are a lot of really good rifles out there, but if I could only choose one, it would be the Ruger 10/22 and here’s why:

  1. The Ruger 10/22 is probably the most popular rifle on the market. If the SHTF, having this gun could come in handy if you have to barter for parts. It’s going to be a lot easier to find parts for guns that are popular.
  2. It’s also an easy gun to work on. If your gun breaks, you not only want one that is easy to find parts for but one that will be easy to put back together.
  3. There Cheap. For under $200 you can buy a brand new Ruger. I suggest buying a couple, that way you can swap parts in an emergency.
  4. Because of their popularity, there’s a huge aftermarket. It’s very easy to find extra magazines, add-ons, and scopes specifically made for the Ruger. One Caveat here is that some of the aftermarket magazines are complete garbage and made with crappy plastic parts so make sure you do your research.
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27 Comments

  1. Wow. Such hate for the .22LR around here, yet none of the haters are willing to stand at the business end of the gun and take a round.

  2. Need help! I am a mom of 3. My husband recently passed and I want my boys to learn how to handle a gun. I am looking for an easy rifle to teach my boys (8 and 6) how to shoot. My daughter shoots occasionally but she would benefit from practice. My entire family owns guns but I have never felt the desire. I shot with my brother, for my first time this weekend, and actually enjoyed it. I’m not looking to take down any game or survival just learning. I shot a .22, .410, and some kind of Rueger pistol. I liked all 3 as they had barely and recoil. Would these (minus pistol) be a good firearm to teach kids? I don’t want a bruise the next day from a .12 gauge! Thanks!

    • Sorry for your lose. Look at the various Ruger 10/22 rifles. Your kids will love shooting them, as will you. Take care.

    • KC:what’s your location. I live in Utah and am a qualified instructor. If you were interested, when I take the wife and kids out to shoot: you and yours are more than welcome to tag along and learn the basics. We shoot AR15s, various handguns, shotguns, .22 rifles and bows. The more the merrier!

  3. I own a Ruger 10/22 Compact. I seem to have misplaced the original 10 round clip. But was wondering, will this rifle fire BOTH .22 & .22LR ammo? I have not fired it since I was a kid and have forgotten. thanks

    • I recently purchased a 10/22 and I had the same question regarding which ammo was acceptable. I contacted Sturm-Ruger and was told to use ONLY .22LR ammo in it. Enjoy good shooting with it!

  4. I would choose an AR-7, because it’s a .22 (obviously), it can be dissassembled and stored in the stock (so you can store it in a backpack or duffel bag), it weighs 2.5 lbs., and it floats in water (so if you drop it in a river by accident, you won’t lose it underwater), unlike other rifles which can sink in water. When I go hunting, I plan on using an AR-7 (or AR-7 varient) rifle.

  5. I am an old man and have enjoyed reading the reasoning that has gone into your decisions for the choices you have made. In my situation, I have come to the conclusion my best course of action is to escape and evade. My choice of weapons consists of a Ruger 10/22 takedown model I recently purchased after trading my cz 452 because of its limited firepower,,,,a Ruger GP100 stainless 357 magnum and a SW 2213 stainless 22 as a backup. Many think a 357 is not enough gun for bear etc. but my ammunition selection is Heavy loaded Cor Bon, and Extreme Shock Fangface. If you are not familiar with the Extreme Shock ammunition it might be worth your time to look up their site. You will see examples of 450 lb Russian boars shot with a 32 sw,,,one shot kills with a 9 mm, 38 spl. etc. It is a very wicked round that will take out a nervous system very effectively. On their site you will see also a sub sonic 308 that opens an entry channel into gelatin 7 inches in diameter. On the 22, I have a Nikon SBC bullet compensating scope and it makes a 22 with that scope a 300 yd gun instead of a 50-100 yd. I hit 12 inch target at 300 yds every night that I practice. Nikon has software indicating the sight point at different yardages that is right on the money. Its free, Spot On technology. I figured if you had to set a course and walk a thousand miles without being detected, how much ammunition can you carry. I can’t carry 500 rds of 223,,,can carry 4000 rds though of 22. As far as knives go, I use a Glock and will be getting the best, a Bussee. Although I have had some training in survival in the military,,,, My biggest problem, is crossing streams and rivers. Came to the conclusion a small company out of Alaska,,,Alpaca rafts would be the best, one model 4.5 lbs. Sure enjoyed reading all the posts and the thinking that went into them…best of luck to all of you….I’m not asking anyone to agree with my selection, its what I use and I respect what you use.

  6. In my state, Arizona, we have some of the loosest gun laws in the country, but you are FORBIDDEN to hunt any game bigger than waterfowl with a 22lr. It is excellent for small game, but as considered by many including our state game department, inappopriate to use on a larger animal for a number of reasons.

    • Umm we are talking survival and you are worried about state gun laws? You can easily take most game with a 22LR if you are a reasonable shot. Thats all you need to know. The reason for that law was because idiots were taking pot shots with their 22 at everything that moves and wounding animals.

    • Barrel is somewhat fragile.It floats loaded and also floats when parts in buttstock.Only seen 7 round mags.It is LIGHT weight!Great if going to hang around water.Otherwise I would get sturdier 10/22 or marlin.

  7. for survival hunting situation, .22 lr is the most versatile i think for me. You can carry a lot of ammo with you without much weight.you can take even big games butyou just have to use more ammo for a humane kill.then you will get to live longer because you have a lot of ammunition with you to hunt with when moving and evading. But in a survival scenario there will always be bad people with guns ready to attck and take what you have and this is where the big back up guns come in.

  8. Wow. So many people are not going to survive! As for bows. Don’t make me laugh. Modern bows are more technical than guns. You can’t simply fashion an arrow and shoot it in a modern crossbow or compound bow. Crossbows are extremely bulky and quite heavy and it takes forever to load and shoot. (I have an Excalibur recurve) How you going to shoot a bow if you are injured or weak? If you miss and hit the dirt or a rock you might as well throw the arrow away. Bows are medium to large game weapons. The most plentiful game is small game. So is your survival situation a weekend or months maybe years? Semi automatic and lever action? LOL Both complicated and therefore prone to breakage. Nope. Single or bolt is the only option. Finally ammo. If you had to choose only one it’s 22LR. It’s really a no brainer. You can easily carry hundreds of rounds quite capable of killing most prey. Try that with a shotgun or a 308! Also 22LR is fairly quiet and light and can be easily silenced if need be. (I would urge you to get a proper silencer) If you thinking survival; you have to consider there are no stores, no electricity, no gun smiths and that the most plentiful game on the planet is small game. Now if you have a family I would recommend you consider a good light compact rifle (bolt action) maybe 223. This is not the survival weapon. It’s the give to your wife or son weapon when you go out hunting. The general idea with this weapon is you don’t carry anywhere near as much ammo as the survival weapon and if it’s 223 it’s highly likely you can scavenge military ammo along the way.(modern bolts can safely fire nato 223). It should be a compact rifle. You may need long range backup when you make contact with other “humans”.

    • I partly agree with your comment. But lets get really super real. Bring any 22 you want bolt/semi/lever/single shot because if your using that as your primary source of food getting you’re in trouble. My advice learn to trap and snare, how much time you think you will have to go hunting for food? A snare/trap you can trap small to large game fish etc etc. Indian fish traps work great in low rivers. Also learn what plants are edible/medicinal for the area you are in. I personally have a large family, 4 kids and a wife so if I went and shot 2 squirrels they would still be hungry. But if I shot 2 squirrels my trap/snare netted me a rabbit and my wife and kids picked some edible plants we could have a meal.

  9. I like my Sig522
    I agree the 22LR is all you need for your survival needs and for a hand gun a 9mm or 38 are two ammo that will be easier to find.

  10. Yes the Ruger 10/22 can be a very useful weapon for survival, against mob attacks, I would use the CCI stinger ammo with this weapon, if I were looking for a wilderness survival weapon, I would like the Rossi matched pair, .22LR and .410 shotgun, or if I could find one a Savage over and under .22LR over .410 or 20 gauge !Another good survival weapon that is relatively cheap is the Hipoint carbine, 9MM, .40 or .45ACP, an excellent self-defence weapon especially for individuals who live in areas where owning a handgun is rather difficult because of local laws, and a weapon that shoots a bullet larger than a .22 is more disired !

  11. Well, where to start.. I have a large family 6 all together. So I figured everyone will carry a gun if SHTF, So I have elected a .22lr Savage bolt, .22lr henry lever, 10/22 (so many lr’s just incase one goes down and easy to shot and easy to carry ammo), a Benjamin .22 model variable pump pellet rifle (I have killed so many squirrel/rabbit/dove with this gun and can fit enough ammo in a dip can to live for yrs.), 270 bolt action (incase there are any large game still around), a Winchester 12g Model 1300 speedpump for gettin out of dodge/protection, takedown recurve bow with different tips from blunt for small game to 125 grain fixed broad head for larger game. 3 kids will hold the 3 22’s with 550 rounds each, 1 kid will hold the .22 pellet with 2 dip can sized holders holding over 1500 rounds. wife with the 270 and 100 round in pack, me with 12 guage shotty and 50 round of buckshot, and take down recurve in pack with 20 arrows. Also will have most importantly a fixed blade knife for each member, snare wire/piano string, fire strikers (5), 2 bottles of antibiotics and aspirin, conibear traps,6 wool blankets rolled up, axes, rat traps, first aid kits, book of edible/medicinal plants of north america (with good pictures), 6 canteens w/stainless steel cups on bottom and water filters and sharpening stones. Split up between 6 people that makes for 40 lb packs (including guns/ammo). Light enough to be carried for miles in the Smokey mountains.

    • That is some decent prep, kudos to you for being so well thought out. Having a family to protect (as I do) is daunting but imperative. Prepare the best you can and do the best with what you prepared with.

  12. Well I saw this and decided too add my 2 cents, the 22 in any set up can be a effective weapon but just like with any other weapon practice is the key. Where it be a 556 a 9 or a 50if you miss then u are in deep dodo. Personally in my bug out kit is a mp5a5 for medium targets a armalite are 30 to reach out and say hello and a river charger for small game and usp 45 for short ranged defence but I’m a large gentleman so I understand a lot of people don’t carry that mutch weight so just go with what u are comfortable with that way u can take care of itself and your familyand remember the only difference between a idea and accomplishment is discipline

  13. Interesting that some many diverse opinions arrive at some of the same guns…

    I have Ruger 10/22, a Springfield XD in SW.40, and Remington 700 in 30-06. All have their uses for hunting and defense. In open terrain a 10/22 is not useful for defense, neither is a shotgun. And against bigger game a larger cartridge is needed. This is my opinion. Some would substitute a good battle rifle instead. But I like the 10/22 for hunting small game.

  14. People,If I had to pick a gun to get me out of town then it would be an AK,They do not care whether you drag the thru, swamps,forrest,deserts,mountains, or simply batter the piss out of them,I have a son in the 101st Airborne,many M-4’s are malfunctioning in the sand piles.BUT once I get to where I need to go,Screw the AK,To live off the land a .22 is needed,If not you are hosed,remember ounces equal pounds and pounds equal pain, I can carry more .22 ammo that anyone else can carry assualt weapon ammo,The .22 round killed more people in the United states than any other round, FBI crime statistics,

  15. Lot’s of good stuff, good prep work cost money though, and unless you are really able to spend a bunch of cash right now you need to work within your means and buy the stuff you really need. Every person on your team/family needs to have the same pack out.

    Ruger 10-22’s, Browning Buckmark .22’s for side arm, and at least 1000 rounds per person, more if you can carry it. (3) combat proven knives per person. But the most important things I have not seen posted are the things you will really need…..seeds,fishing line and circle hooks (not just for fishin’),550 cord,vac-pac tuna, meds, water sources (you’ll die if you fail here)and maps of the area’s you will be in. Topos,and sealed/waterproofed, proper foot gear and clothes for your AO, waterproof bags in your rucks make great floats too, at least three 120’s and beeners,and you must know and teach everyone how to make fire, snares, fish traps, and limb lines (Which means you must be near water, and near means near not on or beside it.

    Your Med bag must be capable of minor surgical,antibiotics and pain meds, fail here and again you will die. Fighting skills both unarmed and knife sets are worth the time and energy to start now, not later. Knowledge of shelter, camo, concealment, evasion, must be taught and shared with everyone. Once you are where you are going, ditch the vehicle,conceal if possible and then become what you are ….an Infantryman…..a walking soldier…..if you plan on lasting through it, it ain’t just about your guns,its about attitude and preparedness. Can your eleven year old make it without you, if not you are failing already. Training can be fun, but everyone needs the skill sets required, not just Papa. Like your site…..ya’ll get to your training!

  16. Most of the small game I take is with a Benjamin 392, 22 cal. pellet rifle, and I don’t even have to leave my back yard. I live in a developement, so the Benji is perfect, cause it’s quiet! The pellets they make for these air rifles is incredible, as they now make them much more useful for dispatching small game. Don’t get me wrong! I love my rimfires, centerfires, shotguns, and bows, but that little multi-pump airgun has done more to feed my family than any other tool I own. If I didn’t have the pellet gun, I would use the bow, but this is for survival purposes only. The shotgun is used for home protection, and the handgun for self protection.

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