MD State Championship and EIC at Fort Hill

To tack on one last EIC match for the season I headed to Fort Hill Rifle and Pistol which is tucked  the hills of western Maryland for the MD state Championship on Saturday and an EIC match on Sunday. Ft Hill is really a great club. Not a huge range but its run by a very dedicated group of folks who really made the match run smoothly.

600 yard line

600 yard line

MD State Championship

The MD state championship was a CMP 800 Agg. It was cool and overcast most of the day. which made for a nice day of shooting.

I had an up and down match but all in all it had some bright spots. Off hand started out about average in the first string, then I finished up with a bang and shot my best ever off-hand  string a 96-2 . That’s good news the way I see it as now I know i “can” shoot well in off-hand I need to just not screw up so much.

DCIM128GOPROShow me your warface! 

Sitting was a hot mess, rushed the first string after bumbling the load.  The second string went better but still a little weak. During the off-season I am going to spend some time practicing getting into position and firing with my 22 upper, my club as a nice warm,  indoor 22 range that would be perfect for this.

Rapid prone had been causing me some trouble in the past few XTC matches. I was able to get it together this time and post a reasonable score. Big surprise the key is slowing down.

Back to 600 I added another layer of bad shooting followed by one of great shooting. I shot my lowest ever slow prone in the first string. Dropping 5s, and 7s all over the place. Then, something clicked and I shot my best ever slow prone at 600. As in off-hand from this match I’ll take this as progress as it just means I have a higher potential for improvement now.

Fort Hill EIC Match.

Pre dawn I jumped back in the truck and crossed the MD line to Fort Hill’s Warrior Mountain Range for a day of shooting. I was hoping to take the best of what I did the day before and reproduce the best strings. Well, things didn’t quite go as planned. The

Off Hand started out good and ended good but I popped a 5 in the middle of the string, I knew it was bad when it left, I wasn’t ready and squeezed it anyway. Frankly i am lucky i caught that 5 ring.  That said the rest of the string was good. Still feeling ok about off-hand.

She ain't got no alibi She ain’t got no alibi

Well, In sitting I finally was that guy, I called an alibi. First round wouldn’t feed and while tried my best to troubleshoot it the clock ran too long. After trying to replicate the issue at home with some dummy rounds I think the culprit was as simple as i didn’t seat the mag all the way. Either way I pulled that mag from rotation.

Rapid prone proved to be a bright spot a with a nice and neat 1/4/5. if I work on my pace a bit I am sure I can tighten that up.

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Before I racked my rifle at the 300 yard line I cranked on the elevation, I needed to head back to 600,  Or so I thought. Took my time squaring up the first shot, squared trigger, bam, right in the dirt. Check my sight everything seemed fine, I added 5 clicks, maybe the light is different, maybe it was a bad round. Second one, perfect 6:00 right below the 5 ring.

Took the rifle out of my shoulder and cranked the elevation all the way down, at one rotation it bottomed out. I had put 38 clicks on instead of 63. Well there went trying to make the cut for a silver achievement award.  I went on to have a pretty good string, but there was no coming back from those two blanks.  My rear sight now has a nice index mark so at a glance I can see if I am at the right elevation for 600.

In the end I made some stupid mistakes this weekend but I’ll take that as progress. I’m feeling more confident off-hand and at 600 so I’ll I need to do is not F up. Easy right?

 

 

Redemption in the Poconos: Wilkes-Barre Rifle and Pistol Club Service Rifle

Back in 2012 when I was just getting started shooting Garand Matches I attended WBRP’s first Garand match. I had been meaning to return for some time and since I had the day free and I was looking for some trigger time (and some redemption from the Talladega match), I loaded up the truck and headed up north early in the morning.

It was a full 10 degrees cooler up in Wilkes-Berre and in the low 70s when firing started. It was just a little bit overcast and by the time we rolled into the last stage the sun was out. They have nice covered firing points with a concrete floor which makes things a little easier.

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This was a CMP “National Match Course” ¬†walk and paste, which is 50 shots 10 off-hand: 10 rapid sitting, 10 rapid prone, 20 slow prone. The rapid stages start from standing per CMP rules, which makes things interesting.

They allow service rifles and modern military to accommodate as many people as they can. There was even a women there who posted a respectable score with a AK-74. I brought both the Garand and the AR-15A2 with me but on the way up I decided to shoot the A2. I have big plans to shoot some black rifle events at Perry this year and I could use a little time on the trigger of that rifle.

Off Hand

Off Hand

Off Hand went well all things considered. I dropped a 5 then a 7 about half way. I reset my position and things went better from there. However, somewhere during the stage I put a nice shot at six o’clock into the 9 ring… of the hospital target.

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Dropping into the sitting position is not something I do often since the High Power Matches we shoot at Kimberton are NRA. That said, I managed to not fall over and dropped into a decent NPA. The first magazine did not feed on the first try. I don’t think I pulled the charging handle all the way. I let this stress me out and rushed the sting more than I should have but in the end I am happy with sitting. I should practice getting into position and not rocking so much when I shoot.

Rapid Fire Sitting

Rapid Fire Sitting

I feel great about my prone. I did well in rapid prone and cleaned one of the two targets for slow prone. After letting a bad prone string at Talladega get in my head I needed a couple good strings laying on the shooting mat.

DCIM121GOPRO

Prone

I am glad I made it back up to WBRP. It’s a great group of folks to shoot with and they run a nice match. I am going to try to make it back up there again in the fall with my Garand.

 

August Service Rife And Garand Matches: Making progress

First home match since Camp Perry! Shot service rifle on Saturday and JCG on Sunday. For service rifle I brought my front sight down a click, as I had been just a little high on the MR-31 targets we use for slow prone. This paid off and I gained a few points. I came 5 points from making “sharpshooter” and I had one miss in off hand. So in theory, I just need to get that last one on target and I’ll be there.

For JCG I took the hard lesson I learned about slowing down in rapid prone to heart and did better. Some sloppiness in off hand hurt my score at but all and all I’m happy with my results. Excluding Perry my scores seem to be improving it’s good to see my name in the middle of the results instead of the bottom!

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First NRA Highpower Service Rifle match

I’ve been shooting CMP games matches for some time now and I finally worked up the courage to shoot a NRA Highpower match with my White Oak AR15A2

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It was a great day for shooting mid-60s and sunny, a little windy but the berms kept that from being an issue at 100 yards.

It was a 4 stage 60 round 100 yard reduced walk and paste match with 2 sighters in each position.

1. Slow fire off hand 2 minutes for 2 sighters in the “lower” target 20 minutes for 10 in the right and 10 in the left targets

Walk… Score… Paste

2. Rapid sitting 2 minutes for 2 sighters single feed then 60 seconds for 10 rounds loaded 2 and 83

3. Rapid Prone 2 minutes for 2 sighters single feed then 60 seconds for 10 rounds loaded 2 and 83

Walk… Score… Paste

4. Slow fire prone 2 minutes for 2 sighters in the “lower” target 20 minutes for 10 in the right and 10 in the left targets.

I did “ok” for a first match, 71% but most importantly, I learned a few important things. Having preloaded magazines was very helpful next time I will be more constant with where I place them so when I grab one the bullets are froward when I try to change mags.

I really struggle with single loading prone, I am going to try on of those “bob sled” mags next time. I got in a nice rhythm after the first 10 rounds by keeping the rifle in my shoulder and just rocking to the left to drop the round in the chamber. I also reached through the carry handle instead of trying to reach over it per the advice of another shooter.

For off hand I had dry fire practiced, with the mag resting in the palm of my support hand. This turned out to be horrible, because it messed with the bolt locking to the rear and I had to charge it every time. After awhile I switched to my hand to on the D-ring which tool some shift in position but worked better in the long run. Also my 30 cal shell holder for my shooting jacket is a pain for .223 it’s hard for my fat fingers to fish the little rounds out.

I will definitely be back again, at least as long I can scrounge up ammo!

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Two days of practice

It was a beautiful weekend for shooting and with my wife away I did a cut corner job of mowing the lawn and spent most of it at the range. I brought out the 1917, M1 and my new(ish) A2.

I spent some time working on the elevation for both my 1917 and Garand for both the conversion to 6 o’clock hold and to figure out why I was so low at the York match. I got that all worked out then spent some time working on my prone position, which I am now feeling much more confident in.

I practiced prone with my A2 and raised the elevation a bit so I could use 6:00 hold with this rifle too. I am very happy with it’s performance so far. I tried my hand at shooting sitting which I have literally never tried before. After trying to imitate the “crossed ankles position” I settled into some sloppy variation of it that seems to work OK for me. This has given me the courage up to sign up for the next NRA highpower match and bring my A2 in a few weeks!

Kimberton has a nice new slab for shooting prone.

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Think I have enough stuff?

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Don’t tell Bloomberg about my assault clips.

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