Best 20 Gauge Shotgun for Trap and Skeet Shooting


Man who use a shotgun for trap and skeet shooting

There is nothing like the feeling you get when you hit that target as the ammo from your 20 gauge shotgun sails through the air. It is thrilling and exciting all at the same time. You might even say that it is one of the best feelings in the world. If you’ve never felt it before, you don’t know what you’re missing.

At the same time, as you do your research, you’re going to find that there are so many models out there to choose from, that you may not know where to turn. Do you need one barrel over another one? Do you maybe need a semi-automatic or would a pump-action shotgun do the job?

Then you have to consider your budget. You don’t necessarily want to spend a small fortune on a shotgun. It makes sense to be concerned with what you’re choosing because finding the right shotgun is going to be an investment of time, energy, and money.

To help you get started, we’ve compiled several 20 gauge shotguns for you to consider.

The Pump-Action Shotgun

Most people can imagine the sound a shotgun makes. Children mimic the sound if they’re ever playing cops and robbers or pretending to hunt. Everyone knows that “chk-chk” sound a pump-action shotgun makes.

Pump-action shotguns are reliable and dependable. They’re also able to take a beating during use and are relatively inexpensive compared to other shotgun models. If you become really proficient in using this kind of shotgun, you can actually go about as fast as a semi-automatic.

The top pump-action shotguns that you should consider, if this is your preferred type, are the Remington 870, the Mossberg 500, and the Winchester SXP. All of these are available in 20 gauge shotgun configurations.

Remington 870

MODEL 870 WINGMASTER

You might say that the Remington 870 is at the top of the pack when it comes to pump-action shotguns. It has earned a reputation for being highly reliable and durable since it was first introduced in the 1950s. Even now, you can find them for a relatively low price and know that you’re getting a quality product that is also affordable. Its price is $800 to $1,000.

Mossberg 500

Mossberg 500

If you’re a gun enthusiast or just really into shotguns, you’re going to see the Mossberg 500 compared to the Remington 870 over and over again. It makes sense, though, because it is also highly reliable with only a few mechanical differences between it and the 870. Introduced in the 1960s, the Mossberg has also earned the reputation of being durable, affordable, and a fantastic entry-level 20 gauge shotgun. The average price for the Mossberg is $350 to $600.

Winchester SXP

Winchester SXP

Winchester is a name synonymous with guns and gunsmithing. Their pump-action shotgun easily meets the standards that the brand has set forth with previous firearm models. This particular design is much younger than the 870 or the 500, and so hasn’t had the opportunity to prove itself to the same extent as the Remington and Mossberg shotguns. Even still, because it’s a Winchester, you can rest assured that it is a quality piece. It will cost you between $300 and $550.

The Semi-Auto Shotgun

The semi-auto shotgun is the next gun to consider if you’re going to do skeet or trap shooting. The overall design is very much like pump-action shotguns, but with a semi-automatic, you won’t need to cycle the gun to prepare shooting the next round physically.

This distinction is essential because the semi-automatic shotgun encourages the shooter to concentrate on shooting instead of reloading. It all just happens. Of course, with convenience comes a higher price tag, so be prepared to pay more if you decide this is the way you want to go.

Stoeger M3000

Stoeger M3000

This firearm, available as a 20 gauge shotgun, is on the lower end of the cost spectrum. The design is simple but robust. If you like sporting clays or skeet shooting, this is a fantastic choice to make as your primary shotgun.

It uses what is called inertia-driven action which lends itself to being a reliable shotgun. It’s also easy to clean when the time comes. The M3000 is a great choice for a novice shooter who wants to see what a shotgun like this can do without breaking the bank. You can expect to pay between $500 and $700 for this one.

Mossberg 930

Mossberg 930

The 930 is an incredibly affordable semi-automatic shotgun, and it has proven itself a favorite among many casual shooters. There is a sporting clay model in this series that functions with a higher load in mind.

It is a gas gun with a soft-recoil, and its interior is polished more extensively than the others. The sporting clays model has an anti-rust coating, so you know it will be able to handle all of the rounds you put through it. The Mossberg runs about $600 to $800.

Remington 1100

Remington 1100

The first thing you should notice is that this is a Remington shotgun. That should automatically speak volumes because of the history Remington has with them. The 1100 deserves the same respect that an 870 receives because Remington set the standard for semi-automatics with this one.

You’ll be happy to know that you can find these fairly easily both brand new and pre-owned. The used models are affordable and give you an excellent experience while skeet or trap shooting. This Remington costs between $1,200 and $1,400.

Beretta A300

Beretta A300

Beretta has a reputation for quality that it has earned over its very long lifespan. As the company has been around for generations, their shotgun reflects the quality and reliability many people have come to expect from the brand.

While the A300 is their base model, that does not decrease its value or dependability in the slightest. It is typically more expensive than its peers, but at least you know without a shadow of a doubt that you’re purchasing one of the best 20 gauge shotguns in the world. This Beretta comes in at a price of $650 to $850.

The Double Barrel Shotgun

Double barrel shotguns are also known as over-under shotguns. They are available as 20 gauge shotguns and are considered to be the absolute pinnacle of shooting sports perfection. Professionals accept nothing less than a shotgun like this because of how smoothly they operate.

Quality is critical in selecting one of these, and features will vary from shotgun to shotgun. If you’re going for a gun like this, you don’t want to skimp on the price. A low-cost double barrel shotgun is not going to give you the performance you crave.

If you’re just starting out with using an over-under shotgun, prepare to spend at least a couple thousand dollars for a quality firearm. Don’t be surprised if it’s more, too, as professionals will easily spend several thousand on the shotgun they prefer.

The Yildiz SPZ ME/20

The Yildiz SPZ ME/12

This shotgun made the list because it is an excellent over-under piece. It does come from Turkey, which makes it difficult to locate, but it is well worth the effort to find.

They are relatively inexpensive for a double barrel shotgun, so if you’re starting out, this is going to be your absolute best option for less than a thousand dollars for the firearm.

Do keep in mind that these are very light compared to other double barrel shotguns, so that may or may not pose a problem for you if you hate recoil. These tend to have a harder recoil because they’re light. Expect to pay between $375 and $575 for this shotgun.

CZ Redhead Target

CZ Redhead Target

This over-under shotgun is more expensive than the others listed here, but it is a respectable gun for what you’ll see. It is made in Turkey and has an excellent reputation for performing well in both hunting and targeting.

You’ll appreciate that the Redhead Target is for clay shooting sports. It comes complete with 30-inch barrels, 6 choke tubes, and a comfortable grip courtesy of the Monte Carlo stock. This 20 gauge shotgun costs between $900 to $1,100.

Mossberg Silver Reserve II

Mossberg Silver Reserve II

Mossberg’s entry-level double barrel shotgun is inexpensive and is from Turkey. If you’ve ever been on their website, you’ll undoubtedly notice the extent of models that they have available.

This 20 gauge shotgun is no different. They are available with different chokes, adjustable stocks, and other features that you can customize to make the perfect combination for your shooting desires. It is heavier than most, but at least you know recoil won’t be that big of a deal because the weight can handle it. This Mossberg costs between $600 and $750.

Stoeger Condor

Stoeger Condor

Imported from Brazil, the Condor is the double barrel that you’re probably going to see the most as you go out and actively search for over-under shotguns. They are the cheapest among 20 gauge shotguns and perform about the way you would expect.

These are not designed for heavy use but would do well with moderate use. The recoil also isn’t too terribly awful given that the weight of this shotgun is on the heavier side. The Condor is definitely in the affordable range of $400 to $600.

Krieghoff K 80

The Krieghoff K-80 Skeet

The Krieghoff K 80 is the Rolls Royce of the 20 gauge shotgun world when it comes to over-under models. It is the shotgun that you’ll see Olympians use to compete. They trust the performance and reliability of the gun.

Be prepared to pay about what you would pay for a small car to purchase this gun, though, because it is pricey. You can find the Krieghoff in models for skeet shooting, trap shooting, and sporting clays specifically. You’ll spend a pretty penny on this impressive shotgun. It goes for $4,000 to $6,000.

Comparison Table

PRODUCT NAME & RATING

IMAGE

DETAILS

PRICE

MODEL 870 WINGMASTER

MODEL 870 WINGMASTER

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 26″/28″Capacity4Weight 

Mossberg 500

Mossberg 500

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 26”Capacity5+1Weight 7 lbs

Winchester SXP

Winchester SXP

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 26-inch/28-inchCapacityWeight 

Stoeger M3000

Stoeger M3000

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 28 inchesCapacityWeight 5.7 lbs.

Mossberg 930

Mossberg 930

Gauge12 GaugeBarrel Length 18.5″Capacity8Weight 7.5 lbs

Remington 1100

Remington 1100

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 28-inchCapacity4Weight 

Beretta A300

Beretta A300

Gauge12 GaugeBarrel Length 28-inchCapacityWeight 

The Yildiz SPZ ME/12

The Yildiz SPZ ME/12

Gauge12 GaugeBarrel Length 28″Capacity2Weight 7 lb.

CZ Redhead Target

CZ Redhead Target

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 24-inchCapacity 2Weight 

Mossberg Silver Reserve II

Mossberg Silver Reserve II

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 26″Capacity2Weight 7

Stoeger Condor

Stoeger Condor

Gauge20 GaugeBarrel Length 22″/26″Capacity2Weight 5.5/6.8 pounds

Krieghoff K 80

Krieghoff K 80

Gauge12/76 (3″), 20/76 (3″), 28/76 (3″), .410/76 (3″)*Barrel Length 28″, 30″, 32″CapacityWeight Approximately 8 3/4 lbs.

A Few Last Words

When you’re picking out a 20 gauge shotgun, you need to consider what your budget is, so you know what you can afford. If all you have is maybe $200, then you’re better off getting a Mossberg 500 basic model instead of the double barrel shotgun hanging in the pawn shop down the street.

The only way that would be an exception would be if the deal at the shop were an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime deal. Sometimes you can’t pass those up. More often than not, though, you’re want to try your best to pass on something like that.

Hopefully, the list of 20 gauge shotguns we’ve shared with you will help you at least get started in your quest. You may even realize now that you have more options than you even knew existed. From pump-action shotguns to semi-automatics to double barrel shotguns, there is something for everyone.

Also, remember, a 20 gauge shotgun is powerful. If you can shoot one before you commit to purchasing, you should definitely do so. You can probably try one out at a gun range that offers gun rentals. Search in your area for a place like that to try out the shotgun of your choice before you make your final decision.

(kw: 20 gauge shotgun)Featured Image: CC BY 2.0, by Giovanni Portelli, via Flickr

Dakota R.

My name is Dakota, Since I was a little boy, hunting has been my favorite things to do. Being outdoors meant I got to spend more one on one time with my father. I've learned so much from my dad over the years, and I hope you can learn and enjoy following my blog!

Recent Posts