Range Report


November 26, 2005, 01:12 PM
Yesterday I had the opportunity to shoot at the public range here in Valentine Nebraska. After picking up the meat rendered from the 2X2 mulie buck I shot two weeks ago I decided we had an hour or two to get in a little trigger time.

I and my two brothers loaded up my DSA SA58, MAS 36, Mosin Nagant M38, Yugo 59/66, and 1911A1 and headed down the hill to the public range.

This range is a trash shooters paradise. I swear that the people here have no idea how they give shooters a bad name and endanger the very range they are using. The place is awash in the residue of shot up television sets, glass, mufflers, and boxes with shot up targets taped to them. No one here seems to understand the concept of picking up after themselves.Anyway I should not let this turn into a rant about trash shooters. Note that what I call a trash shooter is not someone who shoots trash but rather has a "trashy style" when it comes to form and range etiquette as well as safety and respect for others and the range itself.

The worst thing about the place is the fact the nobody understands that shooting at targets close to the ground results in skipping bullets over the berm. This is especially bad at this range as a lot of the shooters are shooting high power rifles. I would venture to say that 50% or more of the bullets fired from high power rifles at this place skip over the berm.

When we got there only two shooters on the range. A guy shooting some sort of S&W in 45 auto and his brother with a scoped M1A. The guy with the M1A was shooting at box with a target taped to it a mere 15 yards on the ground in front of him. Why you would shoot a rifle capable of reaching out to 225 yards (the maximum distance at this range) at a target 15 yards in front of you is hard for me to understand. I can see doing this if you have no idea where the rifle is hitting and need to bring the target closer but this clearly was not the case.

The two shooters already there were kind enough to allow me to set up a couple of targets. I set one at 25 yards (used to help my brother who shoots about once a year to see where his Mosin Nagant is hitting and for me to see how well the French factory zeroed my new MAS 36) and the other at 100 yards.

The two shooters who arrived first went ahead and packed up their gear and left without picking up their target or a lot of their spent casings.

We started out with the Mosin Nagant. My brother (who I can never get to shoot any way other than offhand) took a crack at the 25 yard target. His first two shots were high and two the left (the bullet holes were touching each other though). The third was high and to the right the fourth was off paper and the fifth was low and two the right. Next I took a crack at this same target with the same rifle and got a nice group which was high and to the left. My thoughts are that I need to drift the the front sight slightly the left and file down the rear sight a bit to achieve a 100 yard zero with the milsurp ammo we normally shoot out of this gun. My other thought is that my brother being right handed and left eye dominant needs some quality trigger time with an eye patch and shooting from a prone position. I feel this would improve his shooting greatly.

Next up was the MAS 36. I started with the 25 yard target as one never knows where a milsurp will hit right out of the box. I was pleasantly suprised to have a very nice little group in the center of the target. This rifle appears to be the most accurate milsurp I have ever bought. The action also cycled nicely and the length of pull agreed with my short stature. The drawbacks were a very hard but crisp trigger pull and lack of safety.

After this I decided to shoot my new 1911A1. I was very displeased with my own marksmanship ( I am a rifle shooter and have spent very little time with handguns). The gun needs to have it's extractor polished as the casing seem to be rubbing against some thing when being extracted. In time I will address these issues. I also learned about hammer bite. My shooting hand had a nice little wound where the hammer pounded it against the beaver tail. I need to see if I can get an extended beaver tail for this gun.

Then I decided to have a little fun with the FAL. I placed an old pizza pan a against the berm at 225 yards with the intent of perforating it from afar. I laid down on my mat, slung the rifle and went to work. Out of ten rounds I put about five rounds though it. This was disappointing from a personal standpoint. It just drives home the fact that I need to spend more time at the range.

We shot the 59/66 too but it was not all that notable as it did exactly what we thought it would with no malfunctions. This gun really is a gem.

All in all it was exactly what I expected from the outing. I will say that I was dismayed at the amount debris laying around and the sloppiness of the shooters who use this range. If these people do not change their ways we WILL loose this range. Having a place to shoot is so important to our sport. It is time we as shooters take to heart the lesson of picking up after ourselves.

This concludes my rant/range report.

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November 26, 2005, 01:21 PM
Welcome to THR! A good range report is a great way to start posting.

And I agree - "trash shooters" really scroll my nurd... :fire:

November 26, 2005, 02:07 PM

I have no problem with people shooting "trash" as long as:
1. they pick up after themselves
2. what they are shooting leaves no hazardous chemicals/materials behind

Unfortunately, many people break one or both of those rules, as you point out above. :mad:

November 26, 2005, 02:20 PM
Thanks for the welcome. I have spent a lot of time lurking here. I feel that The High Road forum is the best shooting related forum online.

November 26, 2005, 02:50 PM
I have shot at ranges where the mess left by previous shooters along with the deliberate shooting of range safety signs would create an image of sport shooting as a completely unsatisfactory family sport.

Old televisions, broken glass, along with masses of beer cans left to litter the parking lot present anti-gun people with a visible means to demand local authorities do something to fix the situation.

The VPC offers anti-gun people resources to attack our sport through shooting ranges.

What the activities you outlined represent is the worst of our sport.


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