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Where to shoot in Northern California

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by DevLcL, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    I'm about an hour north of San Francisco up the 101. The closest place to get any free world type shooting done (rapid fire, etc.) is about an hour and a half drive away. From there, its another 30 min offroad drive to get to where you actually shoot! To make matters worse they often close the roads for no apparent reason at all and there is nobody to call to find out if they are closed. Sometimes I get up there and I realise I wasted a bunch of time and gas. Everytime I want to go shooting I have to pay close to a hundred bucks between gas, ammo/shooting supplies, and food. If anyone can help me out in looking for a place to go I'd greatly appreciate it. If anyone has private land suitable for shooting I'd gladly pay a fee.

    I'm an honest person. I always pick up my brass. I usually go shooting by myself (for lack of shooting buddies) and I would not exploit the land.

    Any replies are appreciated, Thanks,
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2006
  2. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Well-Known Member

    If you're north of San Francisco by one hour's travel...

    Then you aren't too far from Sacramento. There's a very nice outdoor 300-yard rifle, shotgun, and pistol range in Lincoln, CA. It's a private club, but open to the public on weekends. I was a range officer there for several years, very nice group of people.

  3. j grimes

    j grimes Member


    whats wrong with the beach?
  4. gunsmith

    gunsmith member

    any national forest

    go to Ukiah, turn right, head north east.
  5. Bacon

    Bacon Well-Known Member

  6. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    I live about 3 hours from Sacramento, so thats a no go. But thanks.

    Nothing, except all the people around??? I don't really know what the laws are regarding shooting on the beach, all I know is theres always someone out there walking their dog or going for a run and they would probably call the cops if I just started shooting. I've always wanted to shoot on the beach but I've always assumed it was taboo. Maybe you could enlighten me?

    Your talking about Cow Mountain right? Thats about an hour and a half away from me...so it'd be the same as the place I go to now. But thanks.

    Seems like I'm 1-2 hours away from everything!

    I'm really desperate to get some target practice done. Anyone whos owns a bunch of guns and wasn't able to shoot any of them for about 2 months knows where I'm coming from.

  7. slocum

    slocum Member

  8. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    Thanks but I'd rather be alone when I shoot. I can't stand shooting ranges...too many rules set in place because of liability issues. I wish people wern't so stupid!!!!

    #1. Paper targets only
    #2. No rapid fire (your litterally told to count to 3 between each trigger pull.)
    #3. No sitting or prone shooting, standing only
    #4. No shotguns
    #5. Every 10 minutes you have to wait 10 minutes while everyone goes downrange to look at their paper targets.

    Oh and of course theres ALWAYS some yahoo sweeping everyone on the range. Sure he gets yelled at... but only after the sweep.

    It's almost like an anti-gun shooting range. I have more fun sitting at home picking dirt out of belly button.

  9. Creeping Incrementalism

    Creeping Incrementalism Well-Known Member

    DevLcL, I know exactly what you are talking about. Except your range truly sucks--no sitting or prone? :confused:

    I too hate ranges. They are good for zeroing and testing how certain ammo performs, basic target practice, and skeet/trap if that's what you're into but that's it. Though if you are a member, I think its easier to do more fun stuff.

    People who live in the Bay Area are pretty much screwed when it comes to close off-range shooting. You have to plan at least a full-day trip every time. I'd say your only bet is too keep looking for good spots in the Medocino Nat'l Forest. Let me know if you find any! The closest spot for those of us not in the North Bay is Panoche Hills down 5 and the BLM land and Nat'l Forest land around the Stanislaus National Forest.

    A better place to ask this question is http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/forumdisplay.php?f=76. For any gun question regarding Calfornia, Calguns.net is the best place on the Internet to ask them.
  10. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    My e-mail address has been banned from Calguns.net..... no matter what e-mail address I try. Explain that one?
  11. blackedoutharley

    blackedoutharley Well-Known Member

    That is because you use Yahoo. I had the same problem and as soon as I changed it to "@SBCGLOBAL.NET" it worked.
    Send yourself an e-mail using this.

    send to "me@sbcglobal.net" rather than "me@yahoo.com". If you recieve the e-mail you are good to go.
  12. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    Actually I'm using hotmail. I tried my Sonic email which is @sonic.net.... still no dice.

  13. Creeping Incrementalism

    Creeping Incrementalism Well-Known Member

    Dev, I have no idea about your email problem on Calguns.net. Try emailing Ramon the admin.
  14. DevLcL

    DevLcL Well-Known Member

    Alright so I made it up to Cow Mountain today, about a 2 hour drive. When I arrived the only people on the range were an older man and his son (I'm guessing) and all was well. They even let me borrow some .22lr because I had forgotten mine like a moonbat. Anyway we were having a good time until a group of kids show up with like 5 SKS's and PGO shotguns. I tried giving them the benefit of the doubt until they started spraying our targets with birdshot :fire: and I wont even get into the sweeping. The older fellow was absolutely LIVID at these kids who were pointing their weapons directly at us (not on purpose, but still...) from time to time. I won' repeat what the man said as it's not suitable for this forum. The range itself was pretty trashed, but the drive up was actually very nice. A little 4x4 action never hurt anyone, and the scenery was spectacular. Overall I had a good time, but I'm not sure I want to spend the money on gas to make it back up any time soon.

    The search continues....

  15. gunsmith

    gunsmith member

    last time I went up there

    there were some teen drunk drivers .
    We have a good spot in Reno, come on out some time
  16. dm1333

    dm1333 Well-Known Member

    Try driving to Highway 20 west in Willits. Off of 20 in Jackson State Demonstration forest there are some gravel pits you can shoot in.
  17. chuckles

    chuckles Well-Known Member

    The Lincoln range that Gewehr98 mentioned used to have a problem with allowing any "rapid fire" with any rifle above a .22 caliber. I got tossed from there for firing 2 Galils and 2 AKs because "it makes the nice shooters nervous". Thats what he told us and we weren't even rapid firing. All the rimfire shooters and the guys zeroing in their deer rifles got scared of the assault rifles I had. They all hid by their cars when the range guy told us to leave. Never went back there. I then understood what California's problem was and is today.
  18. Creeping Incrementalism

    Creeping Incrementalism Well-Known Member

    The private range I go to in Concord is open to the public all week long (except Wed.). People are always there with "assault weapons", neutered and registered, and no one runs off.

    I think that Lincoln place must be a club for hunter/benchrest snobs.
  19. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Well-Known Member

    Depends on the range officer, and your definition of rapid fire.

    I doubt that, seriously. I don't know how many times I had my Bulgarian SLR-95 up there, chewing up 50 and 100 yard targets, as well as my steel swinging owl target at 100 yards. I never caught any flak from the range officers, and I was letting them go pretty quickly. We never had a "X number of shots per second" rule. We did have an "all shots must impact the berm" rule, however, and for a damned good reason.

    Rate of fire isn't the big deal at Lincoln. Accuracy of fire is. During your "rapid fire", were each and every one of your shots hitting the targets stapled to the cardboard backers on those wooden frames? Or were the wooden frames getting torn up, with bullets hitting everywhere but your target?

    Lincoln's range is built in front of a quarry, which sits behind the 300 meter berm. Residential sprawl is also getting darned close to that range, never mind the pasture immediately to the right side of the range, with cattle grazing there quite often.

    As a former range officer there, I'm well aware of what the rules are. I gave a person one warning if they were trying to spray bullets hither and yon, and I saw rounds bouncing off the ground and over that last 300 meter berm towards the quarry or neighborhood back there. There was no second warning.

    Bump-firing, and firing from the hip were also not allowed. Shooting at the cows next door was not allowed. Shooting while being ????-faced drunk was not allowed. Shooting at the flock of wild turkeys which decided to walk across the range was not allowed. Handling firearms while people were downrange inspecting their targets was not allowed. And yet, people still attempted to do so (the club had to pay the farmer for the dead cow) and bitched about what kind of ???????s the club and range officers were when they were told they couldn't. Remember, you aren't the one paying the liability insurance on a firing range.

    Rapid, controlled aimed fire was just fine with myself and the other range officers. It was always a safety thing that caused folks to get the range officer's attention. Sometime when you're out at Dillman Range, go ahead and look UP from the benches. See those pinhole spots of light in the roof? Guess how they got there, I'll give you a hint, it wasn't controlled, aimed fire...

    And that's total BS. Have you actually been there to shoot? Lincoln's members and public patrons are some of the nicest, most widely varied cross section of gun owners there are. Lincoln is also a very SAFE range, and in the name of safety, of course the club officers and range team aren't going to allow indiscriminate bullet hosing - there's no better way for a rifle range to get shut down by the local community. But that's a far cry from just plain banning rapid fire. Assuming folks know the difference, that it. :scrutiny:
  20. chuckles

    chuckles Well-Known Member

    Gewehr98, we were NOT "rapid firing". We were shooting at 100 yard paper targets in slow controlled aimed fire, from the shoulder not "bump firing" or hip shooting. Just the presence of the "Assault rifles" upset the people there that they complained to the range guy and he asked us to leave. He was an older guy and always carried a Garand at sling arms as he patroled the Firing Line.
    This was in the mid-late 80s and trust me, it happened. We did get a refund on our range fee for the day. We were also hitting the targets and berm, not anywhere close to wild, uncontrolled fire. We weren't shooting at cows, not at target frames, just at the targets like we were supposed to do. Rate of fire wasn't our issue, just the Galils and AKs we were shooting upset everyone. I've been going to firing ranges for 40 years, trust me, I know range rules and etiquette,

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