Lock and Load: Shooters can test their skills at the Las Vegas Gun Club


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Drizzt
January 4, 2003, 12:01 AM
Lock and Load

Shooters can test their skills at the Las Vegas Gun Club

By KEN WHITE
REVIEW-JOURNAL


It's a winter day at the Las Vegas Gun Club and the sound of shotguns pop intermittently in the cool afternoon air.

Shooters test their skills by taking aim at bright orange or green clay targets propelled out of a voice-activated, automated target-release system.

It's the only facility of its kind in the valley for a shooting sport that has undergone changes in recent years, according to Las Vegas Gun Club owner Steve Carmichael.

The Las Vegas Gun Club was only a trapshooting facility in years past, but Carmichael has broadened the options available for shooters.

"Recreational shooting is ready to take off again," Carmichael says.

Formerly the Mint Gun Club (and, before that, the Sahara Gun Club), the club, set on 70 acres, offers 14 trapshooting fields, two skeet fields, a five-stand, a 10-station sporting clay course and an international bunker for Olympic competitors.

Trapshooting is long-distance shooting at clay targets; skeet shooting is closer shooting but with targets released at different angles than trapshooting; a five-stand provides a variety of targets; and a sporting clay course simulates hunting conditions.

All use clay targets.

Next to Tule Springs Ranch Historic Area and Floyd Lamb State Park, the club goes through about 2 million targets each year, Carmichael says.

Fees for trap and skeet shooting are $4 for 25 targets for members, $5.50 for nonmembers; $6.50 for 25 targets at the five-stand facility, $8 for nonmembers; and 25 cents per target for members shooting sporting clays and 35 cents for nonmembers.

There is no charge for gun rental for members, who range in age from 7 to 97, according to Carmichael, but it's $5 per hour for nonmembers.

An annual membership is $125, prorated quarterly. Currently there are more than 300 members. The club, which requires eye and ear protection, available for loan or purchase in the pro shop, also is open to nonmembers.

Instruction is available for the novice, intermediate or advanced shooter of all ages.

Wednesday is league night at the facility, with more than 200 shooters competing on more than 50 teams during the spring and fall.

The facility's 6,000-square-feet clubhouse offers a pro shop with shotgun rental, ammunition and instruction, and the Red Moose restaurant-bar, open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for lunch, Wednesdays during league competition, and during tournaments.

In addition, Carmichael plans to add a handgun shooting facility, perhaps in the spring, pending state approval.

Originally from Missouri, Carmichael is no stranger to the club -- he participated there in several competitions at the club, starting in 1967. He took it over in 1990, and leases the land from the state.

Carmichael, a 1996 inductee into the Trapshooting Hall of Fame, began shooting in competition at age 13, winning three awards in his first year in the sport. He's a seven-time North American Amateur Trapshooting Association trap champion, a 13-time All-American team member, a U.S. Army team member with 19 consecutive victories on the European Grand Prix Circuit and the only shooter to hold three all-around national titles.

To reach the Las Vegas Gun Club, take Highway 95 north, turn right on Durango Drive and drive past the road to Floyd Lamb State Park to the club turnoff.


http://www.reviewjournal.com/lvrj_home/2003/Jan-03-Fri-2003/weekly/20341949.html

I also like that the picture accompanying the story showed an 11-year old out shooting trap. A child with a gun! What would people think?!!?!

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