Man, its been over 2 weeks since I went shooting with “The Posse” and haven’t written a word about it. In short, outstanding time. We shot at the Zanesville Rifle Club Range which is nestled in the hills of the Blue Rock State Park Southeast of Zanesville. It’s a beautiful setting and any outdoorsman type will appreciate its natural beauty and relative solitude. The range is situated on a plain above a nearby creek and has a firing line maybe 80 yards wide that can accommodate many shooters. It has a 200 yard berm with a target pit and gravity raised target stands as well as a closer “mound” for shooting at and a hill in the background that is maybe 280 yards away. By shooting at the full distance on the range (which we have not done yet) you can shoot the targets on the pit at 300 yards. Most of my shooting was done at 25 yards though. By using my PVC shooting stands and a few others, I mindfully tried to master my weapons on 1 inch squares at 25 meters. 1 inch at 25 yards (or meters , very little difference for this purpose) simulates 4 minutes of angle (MOA) shooting, which is the standard by which most service rifles are built around. This means off of a bench rest with mechanical firing means that a rifle will shoot all rounds into a 4 inch circle at 100 yards. All the shooter has to do is master their technique to achieve this in conjunction with the rifle and they can be assured that with a “battle zero” on their rifle that they will hit most targets engaged.
Anyway, the night before the shooting starts we set up camp, prepare dinner and generally swap stories and show off new gun acquisitions. The camping area is below the range by the creek and due to the abundant rains we have had was pretty wet. Despite this we were able to pitch tents and get a fire going. We had some of Mark’s (in)famous Texas Chili for dinner (just meat and spicy broth…along with some tortilla chips) and some snacks and such. The weather decided to rain on us again that night but we threw some more wood on the fire and all huddled under our mess awning to continue the camaraderie. Unfortunately my back decided to be a party pooper and get sore and stiff on my so I took a couple of pills and hit the hay for the night.
The Posse camp….”travel light, freeze at night”…hell no…
Setting up evening chow..
Admiring each others 1911, Mark (left) checks out Lynn’s $150 Filipino bargain and Lynn checks out Mark’s Remington Rand her got from his Father. Lynn’s budget 1911 fired without issues and Mark’s slide is the smoothest action I think I have ever felt on a 1911. Damn, now I want another one!
The next morning we got up and had our traditional breakfast of egg and sausage burritos. My contribution was another camping stove and coffee pot I bought the day before at Buckeye Outdoors on our way to the shoot. After chow and coffee we headed to set up the ranges.
We staked down tarps and set up targets. The ground in front of the firing line where we set up the 25 meter targets was like a rice paddy, need to remember waders next time. Being former military folks we can’t start shooting without a range safety brief, so we had one. Then we started to make “BANG!”.
Lynn ankle deep in water setting up a target stand.
I invited an old friend Otto to come shoot with me who brought some interesting stuff. The piece I like the most was a Swiss Schmidt-Rubinn rifle. Its not to be confused with the Swiss K31, which while similar and based on it, is a later variant and not as good as the original according to Otto. The unique thing about these rifles is the bolt is a straight pull design as opposed to the rotating bolt used on the Mauser type actions so common during that era.
Getting a few rounds downrange on the Schmidt-Rubin…very nice rifle…got to hand it to the Swiss, they know quality.
I shot the M1…a lot. Matter of fact I spent more time shooting that than anything else. Something just clicked with me and it and I started to get it to shoot where I wanted it to put rounds every time I pulled the trigger. I went through 2 full bandoliers which is only 96 rounds, but when you have a full power .30-06 Springfield shooting against your shoulder is a lot to manage. I also got it on with the AR to “cure” my slipstream permanent treatment and reaffirm my zeroes on it (iron and Eotech)…and to have fun. Somehow I only managed to shoot about 300 rounds through it…I was surprised on how much ammo I took home with me. Shot the Ruger 10/22 also, got some good, cheap fun out of it…at 25 meters it’s a lot of fun to put different targets out there with it and challenge yourself.
The M1 and a bunch of empty .30-06 cartridges lying empty beside it…the AR awaits in the on deck circle….
I shot a crap load of 9mm. As surprised with how much .223/5.56 I brought home I was just as shocked with the fact that (other than my personal defense ammo) I shot all of my 9mm rounds…that was about 450 of them in total. I did put 3 full boxes (150 rounds) through my Ruger LC9 without issues again and find now that the trigger is actually quite easy to use for me at 7 – 10 yards and keep them in the center mass of my target. Sure, they are not all going to fit into an quarter…but this gun was designed for CCW use at close range. As a side note I have been carrying it a lot and now am thinking the LCP may be in danger of being permanently replaced…hmmmmm. I also fired the Glocks a lot and let other shoot them as well. The G19 still stands as my favorite Glock to own and shoot…something about it that is just perfect. The G26 comes in a close second…especially when I shoot 30 rounds through it…..
I suggested we had a “cold bore” shoot as a contest. Each shooter got one shot at a 200 meter bull with a rifle that had sat unfired for 30 minutes at a minimum. Closest shot won and got a certificate as well as will get to hold onto a plaque (as soon as I can get one made!) until the next shoot. It was a good idea and I think everyone enjoyed it, just need to tighten up the set up for next time.
Jim…winner of the 1st Annual Cold Bore shoot!
All in all it was a great couple of days. Really looking forward to going back again in the fall.