Sunday, May 18, 2008

Marksmanship Training

I grew up in the midst of the greatest shooting range on earth. As a child, I had vast amounts of land to roam while honing my marksmanship skills, and it started at my parents house in Virginia.

When I was a teenager, it was no big deal to get up before sunrise, grab a rifle or two, and head out of the house on foot for a days worth of hunting; all the while my parents had no clue of my whereabouts, nor did they have a method of contacting me because people didn't own cellphones. I can remember one night, my friend and I had been hunting past sundown when we were stopped by a game warden in the dark while crossing a road. Here were two 13 year olds wandering around in the dark with 12 gauge shotguns, and all the game warden had to say was to get home safely.

These days, the land that I had once roamed about endlessly has turned into a sea of vinyl. The shear number of houses that are going up on a weekly basis makes me sick. The money hungry developers are not going to be satisfied until there isn't a tree left in this state. I can still shoot in my parents backyard, but it will not be long until the DC suburbia that is flowing South finishes off that too.

This shed is a testament to the large volume of shooting that my family has collectively done for the last 20 years.
Like 2 Shoot

I did a post about it a couple of months ago that can be read here.

This Sunday, my brother Seth and I spent a few hours shooting .22 caliber rifles at paper targets and clay pigeons. There is no finer way to keep your marksmanship sharp than to shoot at random targets at various ranges offhand with a small caliber rifle. We would throw several clay targets like a frisbee out into the grass and take offhand shots at ranges of 30 to 60 yards. The clay targets are challenging to hit like this because you only had the edge to aim at, and the grass partially obscures what little you can see.
Home shooting range

Here is my brother Seth taking aim with his Ruger 10/22:
Seth shooting clay

Here is another picture of Seth with one on those dreadful oversized magazines attached to the underside of his rifle:
Seth large mag

He has to keep that scary looking magazine locked up just to keep it from wandering the streets at night looking for drugs.

Here is a video clip of Seth blasting the clay targets:

What a great time! You can see the mist shoot up from the ground with every shot because mother nature sucks and it never stops raining. I feel like I live in Seattle. Here is a picture of me with an old Marlin Glenfield model 25:
CTone shooting clay

I've owned this rifle since I was a kid, and I will pass it on to my kids after they learn to shoot it. I plan on moving in the future to find a place where my family and I can shoot without worrying about hitting a house.

Talk about a fun way to spend an afternoon, and .22 caliber rounds are affordable too. I hope to spend many more days like this in the future.

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