hunter morrow with browning rifle

If the trigger is gold the target will fold!


Browning firearms have always been a staple in the shotgun market ever since the one and only Browning Auto-5 hit the market back in 1902, produced by John M Browning.  

I have always been a big Browning fan and I’ve had the pleasure to shoot multiple Browning shotgun models over the years here and on the other side of the world in all sorts of crazy conditions and let me tell you… Browning shotguns can happily take a beating and run with it.   

Late last year I got the chance to test the much awaited new Maxus II Wicked Wing, a hugely improved and overhauled version of the old original Maxus. After a planned goose hunt turned into a flop, as they can very well do, I luckily stumbled across a fresh stubble paddock drilled in peas, and better yet, covered in pigeons.  If you know me you know I love a good pigeon hunt! Perfect!

I figured a busy day on pigeons will be a great opportunity to put plenty of rounds through the gun and experiment with a variety of different shotshells to get a good feel for how the gun handles light to heavy loads.  

Pigeons being pigeons are tricky and not as silly as people think.  Typically, the day started with them playing chicken over the decoys, fluttering at 10-15 meters. I started the morning risking light clay target loads, knowing that a brand-new gun can be a bit sticky with these but the Maxus II showed this wasn’t a problem what so-ever… the perfectly tuned Power Drive Gas System had the gun ejecting and loading like a well-oiled machine.

A Wicked Performer!


Let me tell you, this Power Drive Gas System is SNAPPY fast and SILKY soft, and might I add, the quickest loading gas gun I have ever pulled the trigger on.  The Lightening Trigger on the Maxus has the fastest lock time of any autoloader in its class. As the morning went on and the pigeons got a little cagier, I changed to using heavier lead loads for any birds further out.  


This was a great way to replicate the more drawn-out swinging shots you get on waterfowl and learn the real-deal feel and balance of the beast.  The thing that really stood out the most to me personally is just how perfectly balanced the Maxus II really is, plus how quick to next target it points. Towards the end of the day, I’d moved on to heavy steel loads including a few 3 ½” shells just to be able to feel the gun in its full capability… you’re probably thinking, how ridiculous for a pigeon! It really is I know, but I have to say, I learnt the recoil of a 3 ½” shell was an absolute breeze through the Maxus II.  


On reflection, what a great opportunity this hunt was to try everything from light 28gr 8s through to 3 ½” magnum steel.  It was a fantastic hunt with 141 pigeons taken out, something appreciated by the farmer and better still, I got to do it with a couple of good friends and my new favourite shotgun!   

The Browning Maxus II Wicked Wing is a seriously cool and kitted out shotgun starting with a burnt bronze Cerakote receiver and barrel finish with the custom Browning Wicked Wing design on both sides of the receiver.  The composite stock can be trimmed and shimmed for cast, drop and length of pull, the rubber over-molding on stock and forearm gives extra grip and comfort for the worst of conditions, the fiber optic front sight and ivory mid-bead give quick target acquisition, plus it comes with three extended chokes that are styled off a goose leg-band (Full, Modified & Improved Cylinder).  Then there’s the Oversize Bolt Handle and Bolt Release Button and a Soft-flex cheek pad for added shooting comfort. (It’s also offered in Black Synthetic.)  

Guys and girls, if you’re in the market for a new shotgun that’s going to last you many hard-out years, one that won’t let you down, take my word for it and definitely check this gun out at your Hunting & Fishing New Zealand store.  Do your due-diligence and I’ll be surprised if you don’t become the next Maxus II owner this coming season.  I can assure you…  
you won’t be disappointed!