Grade Your Area


March 22, 2011, 08:00 AM
If you had to grade your area when it comes to guns and shooting, what would you give it. One factor is obviously gun laws. But you need to consider other factors too. For example, do you have easy access to places to shoot or hunt.

If you live in an area with reasonable gun laws but you have to drive hours to shoot, then your grade should reflect that. Also, your grade should reflect the areas attitude about guns. If you strike up a gun conversation in public does it cause folks to throw dirty looks towards you? Or, is gun talk common and acceptable?

Do you have good gun shops around you? What about gunsmiths? These are also factors to consider. How about bumper stickers? Do cars in your area display NRA or other pro-shooting decals, or do PETA type stickers dominate the landscape?

So, if you look at the whole picture, what grade would you give the area you live in?

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March 22, 2011, 08:26 AM
Area: Central Iowa

Score: 7.5

Good (new) carry law here in Iowa.
Easy access to several ranges and public areas to shoot. The range I shoot is 2 miles from my house and I shoot some in my own back yard.
Several gun shops in small towns around us.
A lot of people own guns here.
Good hunting areas.

No NFA type arms in Iowa for us normal people.
My employer is very anti-gun. (parking lot rule etc...)
No 'castle doctrine' or 'stand your ground law' yet.
We boarder Illinois. (The crazy tends to leak over from Chicago sometimes.)

Overall I give my experience (YMMV) here in Iowa a 7.5, because we're in pretty good shape and moving the right way, but I think there's a lot of room for improvement.

I'm just happy to be out of Illinois. Having recently moved from West Central IL I would give my experience there a 4. We had a high rate of gun ownership where I was at, but with a foid card, no carry law and the costant anti-gun legislation from the Chicago crowd it was not a happy place for my firearms to be.

Sorry, I don't think in terms of letter grades. I guess it would be a 'B' if I had to give it a letter.

March 22, 2011, 08:30 AM
Interesting question. I live in the Valley Forge area of Pennsylvania and we have good gun laws. We will have really good gun laws when the Castle Doctrine is passed, I won't consider the gun laws great until we have permit-less carry.

There are numerous gun shops in the area and quite a few ranges, public and private. I know there are gunsmiths, but do not know how good they are because I have yet had to use one. I don't hunt but believe there are places in the surrounding areas.

Peoples attitude toward guns? Hmm interesting. I would say there is a good mix especially considering our proximity to Philadelphia.

Over all grade I would give us a B to B+. There others on here close by so now I am curious how they would grade it.


Friendly, Don't Fire!
March 22, 2011, 08:31 AM
I would grade where I live as being A to A-

March 22, 2011, 08:42 AM

+'s Decent gun shops, great gun laws, plenty of places to hunt and shoot with in the 'gallon of gas radius' for round trip, good public sentiment toward guns and gun rights. I don't really pay much attention to bumper stickers, unless they are garish or very funny, so I really can't say, but there are a lot of pickups that still have gun racks and most have a gun in the rack. OC is a non issue, and this is the Original Constitution Carry State.

-'s Walmart, for cheaper ammo, is a bit of a drive away. There are quite a few 'gunsmiths' that can do routine smithing but there are no 1911Tuners around, AFAIK, and a couple of butchers that have a sign but lack the ability to do much beyond get themselves in over their heads. And, oddly enough, no sound suppressors permitted, and no loaded long guns in autos.

This is not for the entire State, but only my small part of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom. (

Cal-gun Fan
March 22, 2011, 08:43 AM
I live about an hour north of San Francisco. F minus minus minus!

We range an hour away. It's ok, but the benches are falling apart and the rangemasters are extremely uptight. For serious shooting, we go two hours north to our cabin in the woods.

March 22, 2011, 08:52 AM
Friendly, Don't Fire - I would grade where I live as being A to A-

Soooo.... Where do you live??? :)

March 22, 2011, 09:03 AM
Area: NC
Grade: D- or 4.5 on a scale of 1-10 (I would say F, but we do have concealed carry)


We have concealed carry. (A bill is the house to repeal some of our archaic laws)
Open carry isn’t defined as illegal.
I see more NRA stickers than PETA.
Several ranges that hold competitions.
If you have a CHP, the federal government has declared that an NC CHP is a suitable substitute for NICS checks. I don’t need to worry about getting flagged on one of those dreadful things.


Concealed carry laws cripple our right to carry.
No concealed carry in an establishment that serves alcohol…like every restaurant under the sun. (A bill is currently in the house for this)
Open carry isn’t defined as legal. Going “armed to the terror of the public” is illegal and also a legal term shrouded in mystery. I could open carry a handgun in the wrong area and potentially face that charge.
I see PETA stickers.
No castle doctrine, though current laws do allow for home defense without duty to retreat…a well-defined castle doctrine would go a long way. (A bill is currently in the house for this)
Pistol Permits (leftover Jim Crow legislation!!!!) obtained through the local sheriff’s offices are required for pistol purchases…except for CHP holders. The local sheriff can deny purchase at whim if he so chooses.
My area doesn’t have many rifle ranges…luckily my backyard does.
This little blurb from NC Wild Life…an organization who values animal lives over human lives IMHO:“Concealed carry permits do not supersede the other regulations that apply,” said Maj. Keith Templeton, with the Law Enforcement Division of the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. “It is up to the individual with a valid concealed carry permit to know the law and obey it.”

Under game land regulations, it is unlawful to possess a firearm or bow and arrow on a game land at any time, except:
• During the open hunting seasons for game birds and game animals
• When the firearm is cased or not immediately available for use
• When possessed and used by participants in field trials on field trial areas
• When possessed and used on target shooting areas designated by the landowner
• When possessed in designated camping areas for defense of persons and property
Game land regulations allow .22 caliber pistols, with barrels not greater than seven and a half inches in length and shooting only short, long or long rifle ammunition, to be carried as a sidearm on game lands at any time, other than by hunters during the special bow and arrow and muzzleloading deer hunting seasons.
Some additional game land and hunting regulations of note:
• All hunting seasons are closed on Sunday; some game lands are open to hunting only three days per week.
• Only a shotgun and bow and arrow may be possessed during the big game season for wild turkey. This means no rifles or handguns are allowed on game lands during the wild turkey season.
Other notable state laws:
• Loaded firearms are prohibited at all N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission public access areas (boat ramps) and public fishing areas.
• It is also unlawful to possess a loaded firearm within a posted restricted zone of any state-owned fish hatchery.
• In counties where shining a light at deer is not prohibited, it is always unlawful to be in possession of any firearm, including a concealed firearm with permit, while shining a light in search of deer.

March 22, 2011, 09:30 AM
Grade -


MO's a GREAT PLACE for castle doctrine, ccw, open-carry, guns, shooters, outdoor sports - etc.

Columbia (where I live) is even BETTER... The ONLY "big box store" here is BassPro (no Cabellas, Gander - etc) BUT....
- 5 minutes to MidWayUSA
- 30 minutes to Grafs
- 45 minutes to Starline Brass
- 45 minutes to Sierra Bullet (next door to Starline Brass)
- 45-60 minutes to Missouri Bullet

Gun Availability?
If you can't find it here locally in the Columbia area, then you can pretty much rest assured you can find it East or West; it's 90minutes to KansasCity and 90minutes to St.Louis
(hence how "MidWay" get's it's name, their exit is EXACTLY halfway between KC and St.Lo)

Don't GIT Mo'Betta than this ! ! !

March 22, 2011, 09:37 AM
I would say Georgia is an 8.

We have to pay for a ccw license and submit fingerprints.

Gun shows and local web forums are the best place to find decent prices on guns.

We just got a new range in our area (Atlanta) that caters to more of the hipster crowd which is great. It is a much more friendly shooting environment being free from redneck types.

March 22, 2011, 10:15 AM
...caters to more of the hipster crowd which is great. It is a much more friendly shooting environment being free from redneck types.

And I am sure the 'rednecks' feel much safer not having to suffer the ill manners and juvenile antics of hipster types.:scrutiny::evil:

I don't think you actually meant that the way it came across but there are a lot of friendly 'redneck types':uhoh: inhabiting THR who might take offense.:eek:


March 22, 2011, 10:27 AM
Interesting question. I live in the Valley Forge area of Pennsylvania and we have good gun laws. I'd give PA a B based on the laws, but probably bump that to a B+ for gun 'culture.'

I don't like that handguns always have to transfer on a 4473, and I really don't like the PSP's handgun sales database scheme.

But, our LCTF is cheap and about as unrestricted a "shall issue" arrangement as possible. Open carry is legal. Title II stuff is easy and common. Good gun shops abound. There are thousands of gun clubs and ranges, most very inexpensive (mine is $55 a year for unlimited access to nine outdoor ranges, an indoor range, etc.). And the shooting competition scene is just fabulous!

CCW is also very unrestricted. With the exception of federal buildings, courthouses and schools (debatable), a licensed individual can carry pretty much anywhere they want to. In fact, most "Constitutional Carry" states still restrict guns in more places than does PA.

March 22, 2011, 10:27 AM
I'd give Michigan an overall 7, South East Michigan a 7 but for different reasons.

Castle Doctrine, Stand Your Ground, and Lawsuit Protection
Shall Issue
Open Carry legal (if you have a concealed carry permit, you can legally open carry in most pistol free zones)
Statewide pre-emption
Michigan is generally gun friendly, even our Democrats get high NRA ratings
Overall MI - LOTS of hunting and good game management
SE MI - Hunting not as close, but plenty of ranges and gun shops.

Pistol purchase permits required (if you do not have a carry permit)
Pistol Registration
No supressors allowed
Carry permit system is kind of wonky because it is handled at the county level rather than the state level.

If it wasn't for the Pistol Purchase Permits and Registration, I'd probably give Michigan 9. The overall trend in Michigan is for more and better firearm rights, so hopefully some of our Cons will go away soon.

March 22, 2011, 10:29 AM
East TN.... My overall grade would be 8.0. I have ranges close by, a sufficient number of gun shops who ask average to good prices, plenty of Walmarts, excellent carry permit once obtained, not sure about castle doctrine, no waiting period for firearm purchases from FFL dealers, no gun registry, no permits to buy, and generally a fairly good attitude by most folks about firearms in general.

If there is one lacking thing, I'd say it is hunting opportunities without paying the property owner or joining a club and hunting on club leases. Things improved a great deal after the NICS check was implemented as there was a waiting period prior to implementing this law. There had been one in TN for a long time.

March 22, 2011, 10:35 AM
I rate a 9.2 here in Sunny Southern Arizona. We are close to perfect but have room for improvement.

Pros: Lots of open public lands for shooting, hunting and driving. Quad and Jeep trails all over. Decent gun laws and have legal open/concealed carry with no permit needed. There is a decent municipal shooting range/recreation area with 800 yard gongs. Seperate pistol, rifle, archery ranges and a trap stand. Along with RC airplane paved strip and ramada, paintball course and ATV training course.

Cons: Only one Gun Store not counting WalMart. 85 miles to three other stores. 150 miles to Tucson and 180 miles to Phoenix.
Forest Service and BLM have closed some trails because of erosion problems that could have remained open with improvements.

But it is still a great place to live, work and play.

March 22, 2011, 10:50 AM
I'd give maine an 8
open carry legal, CCW easy to get (took me 15 minutes at town office)
good hunting

fair for gunshops, 1 1/2 hours+ for anything big, but lots of small mom-n-pop stores around
bad for ranges, few and far between, anywhere from 40 minutes to 2 hours depending on shooting preferences. most people just go to the local sandpit.

don't know of any gunsmiths in area, I use one near Rutland VT.

Carne Frio
March 22, 2011, 11:07 AM
Alaska; A+ forced to wear gloves when shooting part of the year.

Claude Clay
March 22, 2011, 11:12 AM
im living near a major city in Connecticut and would peg us now a C and going down.

its a 'shall issue' state but the closer you are to the liberal/high crime cities the more the power of the Chief of Police is felt. denied permits for parking tickets is not unheard of. of course you can appeal a denial--the appeals board currently has a 22 month back log.
the state is now debating a 10 round mag with NO grandfathering. 90 days from when its signed and you are a Class D felon for possession even if you do not have a gun that the mag fits.

upside is the large number of rangers and a active shooting community.

March 22, 2011, 11:14 AM
grade: 8

One factor is obviously gun laws.
pretty good. with shall issue passed the laws are pretty agreeable. the downside is that some county sheriffs (ours at least) dosent seem to really know any specifics about the carry laws. no NFA weapons which is a disappointment, but i can carry just about anywhere i ever go which is a big plus!

But you need to consider other factors too. For example, do you have easy access to places to shoot or hunt.
absolutly. shoot in the front yard and hunt with the fiance's family on their farm 10 minutes away. or on some family land 5 minutes away, or even some public land 15 minutes away.

the downside is that their is a total lack of actual shooting ranges anywhere in the area.

Also, your grade should reflect the areas attitude about guns. If you strike up a gun conversation in public does it cause folks to throw dirty looks towards you? Or, is gun talk common and acceptable?
acceptable as far as i have ever experienced. most of the people i have spoken with own guns (actually dont know of anyone in the area that dosent own at least A gun). some of them have fairly skewed view of the 2A/RKBA but after some pleasent conversation they tend to come around (usually).

Do you have good gun shops around you? What about gunsmiths?
nope and nope. there is one "gun shop" 30 minutes away (actually a bait shop with a few guns in the back) but dont try to make any extravogent requests like .40 bullets (no i dont want loaded ammunition i want the BULLETS :banghead:). the nearest gun shop with any selection and people who know what they are doing is scheels 1 1/2 hours away. gunsmiths are non-existent.

How about bumper stickers? Do cars in your area display NRA or other pro-shooting decals, or do PETA type stickers dominate the landscape?
NRA stickers are pretty common. nearly everyone in the area are hunters, married to hunters, or enjoy the meat that they are given by hunters that they allow on their land. PETA? this place would be a nightmare for those types!:D

Steve H
March 22, 2011, 11:16 AM
9+ for southern Utah. Everything is good but I'm 30 miles from town.

March 22, 2011, 11:18 AM
I gotta give my area an 9.5

I have never even met a true anti, I have met a few people who didn't have a problem the Clinton ban. As far as a place to shoot, well we don't have many ranges at all, we have pastures. 90% of my shooting is done within 50ft of my front door. There is also a good bit of public hunting land around here, but I have never hunted it because I (and family) have my/our own places and hunting clubs everywhere.

I can't give us a 10 because of a few state laws that are fairly common and the sheriff doesn't trust us enough to let us carry in a place that serves alcohol, which really ticks me off.:fire:

There are so many NRA stickers you don't even know who NRA members are. I know a few people who got a annual membership so they could put the sticker on their new truck and then never renewed. Used vehicle owners never take off old NRA stickers.

March 22, 2011, 11:21 AM
And I am sure the 'rednecks' feel much safer not having to suffer the ill manners and juvenile antics of hipster types

Actually at the public range I have attended, the younger, educated crowd has been very concerned with safety. The range near my house is located just a short ride from Emory University in Atlanta. As a result they get many college aged adults, professors, and graduate students. It is a very low testoterone feel for a public range, and as a result you see many women and first time shooters taking lessons. You don't see many gang bangers or redneck types. The atmosphere is polite, professional, and courteous. It is by far the best range I have visited simply because of clientel you can expect when shooting. Having a non-threating environment in which to try out firearms for the first time is essential, and I'm sure many a first timer have "joined the fold" so to speak as a result of their experience there.

there are a lot of friendly 'redneck types' inhabiting THR who might take offense Oh well, I'm pretty good at offending rednecks anyway. ;)

March 22, 2011, 11:34 AM
Southeast Wisconsin = 3

Plenty of places to shoot both indoor and outdoor. BUT no Castle Doctrine or CCW (yet).

Plus we have an abundance of lefty nut-jobs that think guns are responsible for every problem in society.

Pistol Ranch
March 22, 2011, 11:46 AM
Katy Texas (a western suburb of Houston) puts me a 15 minute drive to a rifle range with berms to 500 yards..
There are gun shows within a 50 mile radius nearly every weekend.
Academy, Carters Country, Bass Pro,Gander Mountain,and Wal-Mart are within a 20 minute drive of my home..
Texas law allows a loaded weapon in my vehicles..
Life is good;).
A 10


March 22, 2011, 12:11 PM
I'd give western Colorado an A. Gun stores an gunsmiths are easy to find. Places to shoot are close and accessable. The gun laws are easy to live with. Overall, very favorable gun culture. I am concerened that things may become a little more Denver-like though. I am watching with interest the influx of gangs/gangsta wannabes and drugs as well as an increasing population from California and New York. Both elements (as I see) who have different attitudes about firearms.

Armed 24/7
March 22, 2011, 12:12 PM
I live in the Corpus Christi,TX area, and I would give my area a 9.5. I say 9.5 because nowhere is gonna be perfect. I have an outdoor shooting range about a half mile from my apartment. The annual membership is $75. I can hear shots when I am outside if the wind is right. :D Also there is a supressor manufaturer about a mile away, and the local LE is very pro RKBA. There are also several gunshops, and an Academy nearby, and the Wal Marts around here stay pretty well stocked up on Ammo.

smurf hunter
March 22, 2011, 12:23 PM
This is difficult to rate. While I've visited other states and done some shooting and related activities while visiting, I've not been a resident of several states to know the laws first hand. That said, here's my shake.


Western Washington State

"Shall issue" conceal pistol license
some reciprocity with other states
A very nice outdoor range a few miles from me
A handful of decent indoor ranges attached to gunshops
There are a few places within 20 miles that sell a variety of ammo and reloading components. Aside from exotic accessories, I can usually get stuff locally, but expensive.
Good training, though I've not taken full advantage myself.

More PETA/Co-exist bumper stickers than NRA
In the populated/Urban areas, guns are a polarizing conversation in many cases
Silencer "use" is presently illegal in WA, though you may own one via NFA process.
Local sales tax is just under 10%, which encourages me to shop on the internet.

March 22, 2011, 12:53 PM
WA is pretty good, open carry, pennies over $50 for a 5 year shall issue CCW. Not a lot of restricted areas. State gun law preemption so you don't need to watch out for got ya local ordinances. Not perfect, but good.

Personal area. We live a couple miles from a couple million acres of National Forest, wilderness, BLM, and State land. (North-central WA)

We shoot on our own propery but there are 3 private ranges ($25/year) within 40 miles (we live 20 miles out of town). There are a couple of gun shops around, Wal-Mart is 40 miles. Never used a gun smith here so don't know that the answer to that one.

Culture, basically everyone here has several guns, most hunt, there are 40 fishable lakes within 40 miles, a couple of them fair sized (2000 acres+), We have Whitetail and Mule deer, sheep, goats, elk and moose, ducks, geese, quail, phesants, turkeys...lots of stuff to hunt. (most have been in our yard at one time or another)

There is one large ranch (15,000 acres) that was split up into 20 acre parcels a few years ago that has a no-shooting covenent. (The developers were trying to target the Seattle crowd) They haven't sold many of their lots.

Land is relatively inexpensive, property taxes are low, lots of land available...Good place to live/retire to. (no state income tax) We live 250 miles from Seattle,,,and Seattle Metro is very expensive... The East side (dry side) of the Cascade Mountains is a totally different place than the West side (wet side). It is like being in a different country. There is no PETA over here,

March 22, 2011, 12:58 PM
Having lived in NY, GA (Atlanta), Houston area, Tyler, TX, Western CO, middle ND, northern NV and now FL - I would give most of them about7.5-8, (NYC and Atlanta excluded)

NV and CO get the nod for ability to shoot as BLM land was all around me
FL seems to be more friendly in the other regards, but because of all the private land, the places to safely shoot are fewer and farther apart. CCW in FL is easier as well, but then you have to factor in sweat and rust!..:D

March 22, 2011, 01:13 PM
0.0 out of 10
Yes that would be the grade for my area, that area being the Chicagoland. Don't think I have to get into the cons of my area, since those are pretty obvious and as for the pros......good luck finding one, if you can find one.

I live in one of the surburbs of Chicago, so I don't have as many archaic laws as Chicago but I still live in Cook County.:( That said where I like to shoot is some of the families private land nearly 5 hours from here, so I don't get up their all that often and therefore don't get out shooting alot. There are no local outdoor ranges within an hour of where I live, so that doesn't help either.

March 22, 2011, 01:19 PM
Here behind the iron curtain, we have Concealed carry permits available. I have heard some municipalities are harder to get it in than others. I have not had a problem. We have an Attorney general that has an approved weapons roster which contains 668 different handguns we are allowed to purchase from 17 different companies. But most of those are Smith and Wesson or Ruger. We have a 10 round limit on magazines unless pre-ban. Here is the link to the list.

As far as places to shoot, we have quite a few within 30 minutes of me. I belong to a very reasonable club.

As far as culture, most people I meet are anti gun. Including in-laws. (Not all). I don't ever bring it up, but correct them when they spout out nonsense. I don't think I am converting many, but they are learning to keep their views to themselves.

The wife is as ready to move to TN as soon as the kids are out of high school.

If you were thinking about moving here, I wouldn't....


March 22, 2011, 01:26 PM
I'd rate my area as B-. State overall is an A-.

I live in central Houston, so I have to drive a long way (30-45 mins) to get to a rifle range. Indoor ranges (pistol-only) are closer. Harris County is not NFA-friendly. Mood is generally gun-friendly, although I work in an academic setting so the people I'm around daily are less so.

Texas is pretty good for gun ownership. CHL is shall-issue but expensive to get (~$250 for class+license fee), and there are too many places off limits. No open carry. Good state preemption law, so living in a big city is bearable in terms of gun laws. Very pro-gun of course once you get out of urban areas.

March 22, 2011, 02:02 PM
Area: Northern Virginia

Grade: B

Virginia, statewide, is fairly gun-friendly.
State preemption law keeps gun-unfriendly local jurisdictions in check.
No general gun registration, owner I.D.'s, waiting periods, etc.
Open carry is legal.
Concealed-carry permits are "shall-issue" and fairly easy to get. The required training course can be taken online.
CCW reciprocity is excellent (except for neighboring Maryland and D.C.).
NFA items are legal, with one-time after-the-fact registration with the State Police. Virginia is a "Uniform Machinegun Act" state.
Huge gun show ("Nation's Gun Show") in Chantilly several times a year.

Proximity to extremely anti-gun D.C. and moderately anti-gun Maryland. No carry in either of those jurisdictions. This limits the practical utility of carry permits.
One-gun-a-month limit on handgun purchases.
CLEO signoffs on NFA items are spotty. The Sheriff in Fairfax County will sign (after conducting his own investigation) but the CLEO's in Arlington and Alexandria won't sign.
No gunshops or ranges in the inner suburbs. You have to go out to exurban Prince William County at least.
The public attitude in Northern Virginia is fairly anti-gun. People open carrying will get unfriendly stares and questions. Politicians have apparently concluded that anti-gun positions will sell.

March 22, 2011, 02:35 PM
The Oregon Willamete Valley ... I'd give it a ... 8. 8 out of 10.

While the PETA and Granola types are thick here, they either largely seem to stick to themselves or are pro-gun. Also, watch out with those labels, as I do buy mostly organic and I don't think animals should be mistreated. >.O

The shops around here are a mixed lot. We have Bi-Mart for cheap ammo and good deals on very common low end but functional shotties and rifles, as well as cheap ammo.
We have several gunshops of which all but one get my business quite regularly. The only reason one of them doesn't is because they don't like us eco-shooters and organic cooks.

We have one very, very, very competent but sadly overworked gunsmith who does amazing work and really doesn't care who you are. you get good service and if you're even remotely a regular he's more than willing to "hook you up" quite nicely.

For shooting places ... we have Mary's Peak, which is great year-round, except for about ... four months of the year, where you need a four wheel drive with chains to get there, we have one or two decently sized private clubs and an indoor pistol and .22 range with a bad ventilation system. Oh well.

Oregon Gun Laws are quite bearable, even though I'd very much like looser legislation on nifty fun stuff like silencers, but well ... it's better than most places.

March 22, 2011, 02:58 PM
One more big negative for my neck of the woods in NC...our local "sheriff for life" (running against him is considered political suicide...been sheriff since 94) doesn't sign off on NFA items because mere peasants don't need such items. :cuss:

March 22, 2011, 03:24 PM
Northern Arizona

A+, 10/10, etc.

Common sense gun laws, Class III friendly LEOs, shooting areas within 25' of my house, etc.

March 22, 2011, 03:55 PM
Forum Surfer

Summed up North Carolina's laws much better than I could, shame on me, as CCP is available and the general attitude of most folks with the exception of Orange County is generally uninterested in shooting sports and CCW.
No decent gun shops in my general area, yet there are several in a 45 -60 minute drive. Limited public ranges. Lots of open areas to shoot but most of these are private property and posted. The only indoor range is a 45 minute drive and is crowded nights and weekends.

All in all, I would rate NC as a 6.5. Not great but beats the heck out of the San Francisco Bay area where I spent many years.

ForumSurfer would that be Durham or Orange county?

March 22, 2011, 04:04 PM
Marin and Sonoma County, CA

Grade: F- on a letter scale or Negative 1 on a 1 through 10 scale.

March 22, 2011, 04:19 PM
Northern AL B+.

Will edit and add more details when not on an iPhone and at real computer.

March 22, 2011, 04:19 PM
I'd give Kodiak an "A" except for a few cons like ammo availability and gunsmithing.

Ammo can be limited at times if you shoot something odd or want to buy in bulk. Shipping in bulk ammo is difficult since you have to ship to a barge service in WA, and then have your ammo barged up. A pain in the rear when you find a good deal on cans of .762x54 or .762 NATO.

Gunsmith? Nope. Again though, with the Internet you'd be amazed at all the videos and good info you can glean if you're willing to do it yourself.

The pro? Open carry or concealed carry without a permit. Shoot anywhere you want outside of town limits as long as you clean up after yourself.
Gun culture? Hell, it's just the culture. There really isn't any anti-gun culture here unless "I don't like Glocks" is anti-gun.

March 22, 2011, 04:52 PM
As a former NYC resident now living in the buckle of the Bible Belt, I would say SE TN is a 9+, descent CC rules, lots of private cun clubs , private ranges, friendly local gun shops. Compared to NYC this is heaven. IN NYC you had to register every hand gun purchased, you could not even pick one up to look at in a shop unless you had a permit

March 22, 2011, 05:25 PM
Illinois 4-4.5
1. There is a gun club with really nice 5 stand and skeet set ups and a 25 yard pistol/rimfire range within minutes of my house.
2. A lot of people in my area hunt, and therefore own guns.
3. Way more NRA stickers than PETA stickers.
4. A couple of small gun shops within 5-10 minutes from my house. They can order stuff in and do transfers as well.
5. Lots of deer, if that's your thing.
6. No assault weapon/magazine ban.
7. We sort of have Castle Doctrine.
8. My U.S. rep, state rep, and state senator are all pro gun.
9. There are a few gunsmiths around, but they are more into hunting, repair and such things. Don't count on them to help you on a big project gun.

1. It's Illinois, Chicago screws those of us downstate.
2. No carry of any kind (well you can open carry in unincorporated areas. (while hunting pretty much))
3. FOID cards.
4. The Attorney General is currently trying to get the names of all FOID card holders published through the AP.
5. No NFA items.
6. No AP ammo, or fancy shotgun shells (dragonsbreath, flechette, etc.)
7. Junk gun ban (metal melting point), because poor people shouldn't have guns.
8. No big gun shops for an hour or so.
9. No good rifle or indoor ranges for an hour or so.
10. Guns in cars must be unloaded and cased.
11. A lot of the gun owners in my area are hunters, so anything semiauto and smaller than a shotgun may get you looks and rude questions about your need to own "that".
12. Both of my U.S. senators are anti gun. So is the governor, Speaker of the House, etc.
13. Not that many places to shoot really. Too flat around here to feel comfortable shooting centerfire rifles.
14. Chicago.
15. Corruption

Pretty much, if you hunt and shoot skeet you are fine. If you want to do much beyond that, you either have to travel to a good range/gun shop, or leave the state forever.
The first 3, and the last 2 on the cons list are the worst parts. I'd really like to leave some day, while I'm still young enough to enjoy shooting in some other state.

March 22, 2011, 06:04 PM
I'd give my area a B because the nearest outdoor range is 45 minutes away.

March 22, 2011, 06:14 PM
Western Washington for me. I'll give it a B.

We have concealed carry.

We have open carry.

Theoretically, you can conceal carry without a permit if you are "engaged in a ligitimate outdoor activity" and above the age of 18. Its one of those yes its legal, and you'd win in court, but you may get arrested, things.

Culture - most folks seam to be OK with people owing guns for hunting.

Bill in legislature that would legalize the ownership and use of surpressors.

While folks seam OK wiht guns for hunting, a good portion don't really like the idea of regular joes having some of the more tacticool stuff.

NFA items are very strictly regulated - no SBS, SBR, or FA (I may be wrong though) and you can own a surpressors but you can not use it.

Not very many ranges (at least that I know of.)

Not very many gunshops. Big 5, Wholesale Sports, and the like sometimes carry firearms, but there aren't too many shops dedicated to guns.

Chris "the Kayak-Man" Johnson

Larry E
March 22, 2011, 06:44 PM
I'd give most of the state of Montana an A- to A grade down from when I grew up in North Central Montana. Too many people from out of state buying up ranches that formerly allowed hunting and closing them to hunting. There are three outdoor ranges in the immediate area, and a new indoor range opening soon, but at least two of the ranges are limited membership so hard to get into. The newer outdoor range is limited membership too I believe, and the indoor range is membership but may be open to public shooters. Just going out to shoot isn't like it used to be 50 and more years ago.

But Montana now has shall issue concealed carry, although the former sheriff didn't like the idea and made it as difficult as possible. The new sheriff is supposed to be more pro-gun (which wouldn't be hard), but I haven't had any experience with him so far. A Constitutional (no permit required) carry law is apparently going through the state legislature now, and the last session got castle doctrine and stand your ground laws passed and signed which they'd tried for awhile to do. While NFA weapons and suppressors can be owned by civilians, use of a suppressor in the field is currently prohibited. Unlike WA state where I lived for 34 years, a concealed carry permit is only required in towns and logging and railroad camps, outside of them no permit required. Open carry is also legal.

The leftist lawyers, politicians, and others were and are opposed to all the pro-gun laws and do the "blood in the streets" routine.

I'm not sure about talking to the general public about guns and shooting, but would imagine that most wouldn't be shocked or amazed to know that someone owns guns and shoots around here.

March 22, 2011, 07:37 PM
Down east Maine for mine. Almost heaven.:D A 9 for sure. It would be a 10 but the silly laws for those insecure transplants from Mass and CA in Acadia National Park stating you need a CCW to possess a firearm in the park.:barf::barf: Good areas to shoot and clubs around locally. Good shops and lots of ammo. Most are OK with if not into the firearms culture unless on the borders of "the park".:scrutiny:
Upthehill you need to live north or east of Augusta. You live in the "other" Maine. The southern part is mostly populated with transplants from Mass and NY state. I feel for ya.:D

Ala Dan
March 22, 2011, 07:49 PM
Area: Central Alabama (Jefferson County)

Cost of CCW License: Jefferson County = $7.50@ year, others = $10-20@ year
Open Carry Allowed Statewide (see AG opinion #84-00205); unless municipal
statues prevent open carry.
A resident of said county, shall be issued a CCW License by the Sheriff of that
county only.
Attitude towards CCW carry: 90% approve, 7% disapprove, 3% undecided
Are CCW classes and range qualification required~? NO
Several firing ranges lie within a short driving distance of Birmingham, AL
Also, several nice gunshops are in the area; within 45 minutes of one another
NICS background check required for each purchase; unless multiple purchase
made at the same time, then only one background check is required.
Several ranges have rangemaster's that assist the novice shooter.
One local PD range is open one day a month to the general public, and they
even furnish targets.

May not be the best place, but I would rate it at:

7.5 = C~!
On a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest possible score.

March 22, 2011, 09:47 PM
I'd agree with Unistat,exceot I've seen PETA stickers(you DO mean People Eating Tasty Animals,right?) AN 8,maybe.

Dmitri Popov
March 22, 2011, 10:25 PM
I live in Wayne County West Virginia, which is located right where the Ohio and Big Sandy rivers converge. I would have to give my area a 10 all around.

LEO's and courts sympathetic to self defense in home intrusions.
People who use self defence in home intrusions hearlded as local heros.
Easy goin' gun laws, open carry, CCW with easy to obtain permit.
Public range at nearby State Park.
HUGE variety of gun shops, pawn shops, gun smiths, and 7 Walmarts within twenty or so miles.
Healthy gun trade amongst private citizens (gotta love flea markets!!!)
And soon hopefull the passage of SB84 (WV's Firearms Freedom Act)
NRA alive and well!
Great hunting as well!

Will edit when substanial cause for alarm is found.

March 22, 2011, 10:29 PM
Mines near 10. I can be in the National Forest in less than 15 minutes for hunting and can be at either a private or public range in about the same time. Open carry is legal. A CCW permit is easily obtainable for the qualified. Guns are pretty much part of the culture.

March 22, 2011, 10:40 PM
East TN 9!
22-rimfire has it right on, but I dont hunt so I cant fault the state for lack of hunting or for paying to hunt on a persons property. I can do/get anything I want with gunshows about twice a month in my town. Even saw a keltec RFB at the last one. Shoot at a friends house and ammo at walmart. Only pain is a cary permit and that is easy but cost 200 bucks, and no open carry without permit.

March 22, 2011, 10:46 PM
I agree with the Illinois guys. D for me. Here in Northeast Illinois, Chicago pretty much ruins everything for the whole state, including firearms laws. We have no concealed carry, very few ranges, and few dealers too. The only thing that keeps me from giving it an F is that there is a Cabelas only 25 minutes away, and one of the biggest firearm dealers in Illinois 20 minutes away.

March 23, 2011, 01:42 AM
Pahrump, NV - I'd give it a 9.

CCW easy to get and took me 10 days to recieve. Open carry legal. Shooting is just across the road on BLM land. No gun registration here like in Vegas (70 miles away).

The Cons - Have to have NICS check when buying a gun, even for CCW holders. That really sucks! Have to qualify with every semi-auto but only with one revolver.

March 23, 2011, 09:55 AM
Everything is fine here except the limited number of ranges.

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