How do you find approval to plink-private land?


Ignition Override
August 23, 2015, 02:10 AM
As background, we grew up mostly in suburbs (KC area). No exposure to any hunting. Have been a member of MSSA in Lakeland TN for over seven years.
They only allow specific types of targets on rifle ranges. Paper targets.

If anybody within a max. of 30 min. drive from Lakeland or 25 min. drive from Arlington TN knows anybody who Might approve of plastic bottles or small fragments of concrete blocks against a berm etc, any pm is fine.

About to retire, probably next year. Quite frankly, paper targets interest me too little to justify taking my pair of nice Service Grade Garands to MSSA more than a few times per year.
A deer lease might work, if fairly freq. rifle noise is not a concern. But then again, how would you find somebody who might approve? Left a paper note on the bulletin board at MSSA about a deer lease.

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August 25, 2015, 10:27 PM
plastic bottles or small fragments of concrete blocks against a berm etc

Private landowners aren't likely to want someone bringing trash onto their property to use as targets since they'd be mistrustful that it would be taken away. Biodegradable targets would help reassure a landowner that any bits left after policing your shooting session would disappear by next year.

People allowing a hunting lease aren't any more interested in recreational shooters that risk leaving a mess and would want the same sorts of reassurances. Plenty of guys have lost their lease due to trash and property damage.

You should look for TWRA ranges around your area that would allow other than paper targets. They won't allow trash targets either, but they're more flexible about what you do shoot as long as it doesn't make a mess.

August 26, 2015, 08:45 PM
Champion has a very wide variety of interactive/reactive targets. Shop around for best pricing. Would certainly improve your approach to a land owner to have fun, nearly indestructible targets vs trying to get him to believe you will pick up your mess. Not o mention, they are more fun than cinder blocks.

November 12, 2015, 08:36 PM
You might try driving around and if you se a good place, stop and introduce yourself to the land owner, explain that you are looking for a place to target shoot, and assure him that you are a responsible person who will care for his land as if it were yours. If you do secure permission, BE SURE you make yourself available to help him with little things like fence repair, brush cutting, whatever you can do to replay the landowner.

My dad many years ago put an ad in the local farmer's newspaper published by the local county agricultural extension office asking permission, and he received two responses. But, then, that was a long time ago.

November 19, 2015, 05:44 PM
Well, I did it by marrying a woman with a small farm, who also enjoys shooting.

Short of that, though ...
Get to know people at a local shooting club. Even if they don't have land of their own, they likely know someone who does, and may make a recommendation or even an introduction.
The stop and introduce yourself idea is a good one as well. Again, even if you strike out, you might get a "Well, the Smiths and Williams over by the sportsmen's club do a lot of shooting, so they might let you shoot at their place."
I also like the idea of placing an ad in a local paper. Someone who shoots on their own land might be looking for a new shooting buddy.

One thing for sure -- if you do find a place on someone else's land, always clean up after yourself.

Jim K
November 23, 2015, 02:03 PM
Another idea is to ask around the gun shops and sporting goods stores, and also at the existing ranges. Some club ranges will allow "informal" shooting for members as long as it is safe and everyone cleans up his own mess.


November 23, 2015, 02:20 PM
Listen for the sound of gunfire, track it down, and if it's someone like me plinking on their property, stop and compliment them on their firearm or their shooting and pine away about how you wish you could find someplace to shoot. Worse thing that can happen is they tell you to get lost, but you could also make a new friend and have a place to shoot. ;)

I should mention that this only applies if you can see them from the road...I don't advise traipsing around on someone's private property looking for where they are might find out you're at the wrong end of it.

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