I learned to wingshoot with a Winchester Model 37A chambered in 3″ magnum 20 gauge, my first real shotgun. My friends all had HR Toppers chambered in .410, and I remember feeling smugly superior to them because my Winchester was an objectively nicer shotgun.
But that HR Topper was a ubiquitous firearm in the south; seems like every kid had one as his first shotgun, and when your kid graduated from squirrels to deer, you could swap out a scoped centerfire rifle barrel and be good to go.
Well, the latest in that tradition of simple but rugged and reliable starter shotguns is the Midland Backpack. The backpack features an internal hammer and a rather unique takedown lever, hollow synthetic stock, and Beretta-style choke tubes.
In short, this ain’t your Daddy’s old break-action single-shot shotgun. I’ll let Val Forgett of Midland tell you all about it.
At $149 MSRP, the Midland Backpack certainly checks the “affordable” and “simple” boxes for new shooters. I’ll be doing a T&E on it soon to see whether it also checks the boxes for “shootable” and “reliable.”