Posted by: exodus | April 28, 2009

Bonus Range Day Saturday

Documented here and here, I’ll add my bits as well. 

Boy was THAT fun! 

I’d come out to sell some ammo – I ended up selling everything I’d intended to, so that was good. But I stayed because the shooty goodness was too much fun. The pics are John’s camera phone at work. Not half bad for a camera phone! 

Started out on the steel range; worked a bit on my trigger reset with the USP. With my new focus on trigger reset… I discovered that the USP has a longer movement ’till reset than I’d like. Figures that I’d take a class and like my pistol less. But, not much less. I wonder what a trigger job for a USP runs – or who even does one. 


I'm the big marshmallow in the middle

I'm the big marshmallow in the middle

Folks were really generous with their firearms – I was able to shoot John’s Ciener-fied AR (loved the Tasco optic – never thought I’d say that!) and his Smith Model 19 (made the Gun Locker 101 list, it did) as well as his 2011 .22 conversion. He had another .22 1911 but it didn’t run right.

The AR was easy peasy. The Tasco red dot  holo optic thingie had a BRIGHT and tiny little dot. Ting ting ting, all day long. It was so easy that it bordered on boring. But somehow shooting never gets boring. Funny, that. 

I’m now sold on the Dawson Precision sights. The 2011 had ’em. They make missing downright embarrassing. I think the USP will get a set. Right now it has a glo-paint 3 dot factory deal. I know what I’m missing, now.

Shooting with John and John was nice. I met a few other folks who were equally nice. A great bunch. Hsoi had noticed that GunGeek had been gone for a while and that there was no shooty noise coming from the adjacent range. Just what could he be up to?

And why are there barriers and barrels all over the… uh oh. I’ve seen this before on TV. Wednesday nights on Outdoor Channel.


right side of the stage - with hostage target finish!

right side of the stage - with hostage target finish!


Left side - start of stage. rifle rack = 2 gun time!

Left side - start of stage. rifle rack = 2 gun time!


Basically, you start with a rifle:

  1. shoot the two left side paper targets, twice each
  2. shoot 4 clays once each, from between the barriers
  3. shoot the two right side paper targets, twice each
  4. run from Trogdor, over to the next barriers  
  5. one shot per steel plate, then two each on the two paper targets 
  6. two more shots on two paper targets, from between the barriers
  7. 2 headshots  from between the barrier- the white is a no-shoot

… well, if I remember the course correctly. 

I stood back and did my best Jim Scoutten impersonation – “It’s the Gun Geek CHALLENGE!” I tried to use my best announcer basso profundo voice. Helped me break the tension… ’cause I was sweating this. I was running the course as much as I could in my head, over and over – because I KNEW I would forget a target, or an instruction. Mercifully, I did neither – I was merely slow. But accurate! 


4 shots, 4 clays. Yes I do shoot rifle left-handed. I'm sinister!

4 shots, 4 clays. Yes I do shoot rifle left-handed. I'm sinister!

I ended up borrowing Hsoi’s AR for the rifle bits. I ended up shooting the rifle course ambidextrously, as that made sense… though the folks there now know that I know my way around an AR. No excuses left for me there! Good shot placement, but slow. Helps that Hsoi figured out the holdover for the clays for me – I just popped ’em, one shot each. I’m not gonna lie – that felt good. 


sometimes you gotta shoot right-handed though...

sometimes you gotta shoot right-handed though...

The pistol portion went OK – I missed a steel ’cause I freaking forgot to unsafety the cocked-n-locked pistol. Threw me off when the trigger just sat there… jeez. Again, decent shot placement, and again, slow. I had to reload at the very end of my run too. At least I had a good grip – didn’t forget that. 


trigger reset? What's that? I'm shooting a freakin' timed stage! Ayeee!

trigger reset? What's that? I'm shooting a freakin' timed stage! Ayeee!

I’d love to do it again. I can see this becoming preposterously expensive as a habit, but I went from “oh dude a timed stage – I’m so going to fail!” to “I could have done better here, here, and here – whadda ya mean we aren’t running it again?” 

I hope we get to do this again sometime. I’m still on a high from it. 

I went to look for an XDM in 9mm this week – Academy sold out but they sure had a bunch of cheap XD .45s in. I’ll see what Cabela’s has, but I am not holding out hope. 

Thanks Mr. Gun Geek and Mr. Hsoi! And also thanks to Karl for going to hang out with guys like Michael Bane for the weekend – that sure let us play!


  1. Whoa! Diagrams of the course. Awesome! And burnination was high!

    I was at Cabela’s on Sunday. I know I saw an XD(m) in the showcase, but didn’t check if it was the 9 or the 40. They did have a lot of .22 bricks! Picked up a bunch. 🙂

    I really would love to do this again. Hopefully it can happen.

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  3. Wow. Color me envious… was planning on going shooting this weekend, but schedules and screwed up wrists (not mine) prevented the shindig.

    We did not have anything nearly as interesting as that course, though :).

    Looks like a blast was had by all!

  4. Sunday I was pretty drained, yesterday I was in Killeen – sorry for the delay. The diagram took all afternoon! I had to build it from scratch. I hope I remembered the course correctly… I couldn’t fit all the barriers in though.


    I was actually going to go to Cabela’s tonight but I think I’ll go tomorrow. I used to be a lot faster with Photoshop, back in the day… I’ll see what they want for the 9 when I go.

  5. Linoge, we had a really great time. It simply MUST be done again.

    I failed to mention it (I think) but we ran all the runs timed. Hearing that buzzer is quite the rush… I think I could have been timed with a sundial, though. It took me over a minute, but I didn’t run with Hsoi’s rifle over to the next stage, and I did have a pesky reload to do from my jeans pocket of all places.

  6. The diagram is awesome. Yeah it’s missing a couple barriers, but they’re not really essential to describing the course. Sure it’s not to scale, but it gets the point across well enough.

    Yes, the course was timed.

    Hope the shopping is fruitful.

  7. I should have mentioned that the diagram is not to scale. Trogdor is MUCH larger than that!

    I wasn’t about to drop your rifle in my enthusiasm… or do a million other bad things. A brisk walk away from Trogdor was all I wanted to do while I put it on safe.

    And thanks again for letting me borrow it. Aiming at the clothespins was the hot trick!

  8. If you dropped it, it probably wouldn’t have flinched. If it’s supposed to be a fighting rifle then damnit it needs to be able to take some abuse, dontchathink? 🙂

    As for shooting it, you’re most welcome. It does tell me I need to work with it more to get my holdover more ingrained in my head.

  9. Okay, I need to get an invite to the next one.

  10. I got crazy lucky on this deal – it was a serendipitous occurrence, not unlike how lucky I was to go to Phlegmmy’s party.

    Hopefully there will be another one of these that more folks can attend. Shoothouse Barbie missed out – though I hear it was health-related and I hope that this condition improves.

    In fact I’ll help in any way I can, regarding helping out with the event, if that makes it more likely to happen again…

  11. Hot DAWG that is one cool drawing Dock!!!
    Glad to hear everyone like the day and the stage.

    JR You are on the list for the next time around. I was seriously limiting this time since this was the first go around and I wanted to restrict to people I knew and had shot with that I trusted to keep it safe and in the berm. This was at our private training range and we like to keep the neighbors safe and happy.

    Trogdor was MUCH larger than represented. Scared me enough that my shooting went to crap. That or I am just out of practice.

    Anyway, I had a blast and was absolutely wiped Sunday. misbeHaven will testify that I was pretty much worthless Sunday. It was great shooting for fun and just hanging out.

    Dock and Hsoi, if you want more, the Austin IPSC club runs stages like this all the time. That’s where course designs like this come from.

    I already have in mind the stage for next time. Shotgun/pistol stage “In-laws & Out-laws. It was run at our wedding celebration match by the Somerville gun club years ago. Or if I’m in a particularly nasty mood, “Last Dance”. You do like hostage head shot targets right?

  12. TXGunGeek: I do want to get into the local IDPA/IPSC stuff. It’s all been a matter of time/scheduling as to why I haven’t yet.

    Anyway, sounds like there’s another gathering brewing. Can’t wait! If I can help, let me know.

  13. I didn’t intend to go all Strongbad on the diagram, but I was fishing for a font to use and I came across the one used for “Teen Girl Squad” and that’s when it came together.


    I greatly appreciate being on the short list for this exercise in good times. I too was zonked Sunday, and most of the rest of Saturday as well. Sat in my easy chair and promptly conked out for 2 hours.

    The Austin IPSC club is more like La Grange, best I can tell, but that’s OK. Looked like a friendly bunch. Not the best time for me to get into spendy shooting though, or I’d probably be all over it.

    Do let me know when there’s another gathering at A-Zone… 🙂

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