How can this be avoided in the future and what action should I take?

RUST PREVENTION IN RIFLES
Steve Bowers
The problem is that when a rifle has been rained on, as soon as it is stored in a gunslip for the journey home, the dreaded rust starts to appear.

It is therefore important to remove the worst of the grime and wet before the rifle is encased in its slip, especially if the scope lenses are wet ? but great care must be taken to avoid scratching them.

Use a cloth such as Bushwear?s Spudz lens cloth (tel 0845 2260469) as a first cleaning step.

I always carry plenty of soft tissues in a plastic bag so that I can mop up any moisture before the rifle is placed in its cover or slip.

The next problem occurs when you take a cold rifle into a warm environment and condensation spreads like a virus over all the surfaces.

Before moving the gun it is a good idea to use a lubricant with a good water repellent as a first barrier to the wet.

It is also wise to place the rifle in a cold room if possible so that it can acclimatise to the new temperature change.

You can then start to give it a good wipe over and clean, using oil and a cloth.

If, however, the rifle is to be stored for a length of time, then it is wise to remove the action/barrel from the stock to ensure there is no moisture or grime which might swell the wood, soften the bedding or generate rust in the trigger mechanism.