31 January 2016

It Was a Struggle, But

Older Daughter and I took the morning off, and went to the range. I'd say "bright and early", but the sun hadn't come up when we left at 08:00.

The range had sent an e-mail to all its members, warning that ice cleats on footwear is mandatory. When we arrived, we could see why: all the precip had melted and refrozen several times, so that the entire grounds - roads, walkways, and ranges - was covered under two inches of nearly-transparent ice.

The view from the target line, back to the firing line shelter.

It was 10° F. when we arrived at 08:40, and didn't get much warmer over the next two hours. Daughter had her new .357 Ruger revolver to try out, but I went old-school.

There's no school like the old school. :)

She had her Garand, too, and I brought along my 1911 to complete the "old school" theme, but that's getting ahead of myself.

The range has floodlights, since we have more hours of darkness than daylight for several months during winter.  We set up our targets, laid our gear on the frost-covered benches, and turned on the other creature comfort.

Infrared heaters are quite welcome.

She started out prone, and since sitting on a hoarfrost-covered wooden stool didn't seem like much fun, I began off-hand, with a "hasty" sling. (You Appleseed shooters will know what I mean.)

My first group of eight is shown above. That's a 3.5" spread at 35 yards, which didn't seem too bad after not shooting since last summer. I know, I know: that's too long, but sometimes life gets in the way.

The pistol shooting didn't go nearly as well, and every month of my non-practice was right there on the target for all to see. Much work is needed.

By 10:30, the temperature had only warmed to 15°, and we noticed that cold-and-stiff feeling settling in, so we called it a good session and headed home.

But before wrapping this up, I'll share the scenery which surrounds the range.

Thanks for stopping by, friends. I'm going to get something warm to drink.


Rob said...

Padre, I didn't know you spoke Greek? As I don't understand weapons talk at all, not a gun owner, so it Greek to me. BIG GRIN. Bottom line nothing is better then hot lead and time with family. Have a great week Sir.

Rev. Paul said...

Rob - I was stationed in Greece for 18 months in the Navy, so I actually do speak a few words. Thanks. :)

David said...

"The range had sent an e-mail to all its members, warning that ice cleats on footwear is mandatory."

The difference between Virginia and Alaska. Our range sent out an email stating that due to snow the ranges were closed until further notice.

Rev. Paul said...

David, it's all about what an area is prepared for. Alaska is prepared for heavy snow & winter weather that lasts for six or seven months. Virginia ... isn't.

Ed Bonderenka said...

We don't have that problem at our indoor ranges.
What model Ruger did she get?
I just scored a .22 Luger!

Old NFO said...

Not bad... But a 'tad' chilly... Just sayin! :-)

Rev. Paul said...

Ed, it's not a Ruger, but an Italian repro of a Colt Peacemaker. The brand escapes me; my mistake. The only indoor range in these parts is nearly 60 miles away, so we put up with the outdoor accommodations.

NFO, I'm sure it's too cold for you. No worries. :)

Rob said...

Sorry Padre, I knew that comment would bite me back. I was forced to learn spanish back in 6th grade mandatory in Calif. Never took another foreign language, I have trouble with American English..;)

Guffaw in AZ said...

"Bottom line nothing is better then hot lead and time with family." +1 Rob!

I'd add friends, too.

Good for you, Rev. Like Old NFO, I don't think of cold as my friend.


Rev. Paul said...

Rob, I was kidding around, too. The Garand is the famous M1 rifle carried by our troops in WWII and Korea. Think Klinger on guard duty, on MASH. :) The 1911 is the .45 caliber semi-auto pistol carried from the early 1900s until the mid-80s by U.S. troops, as well. No worries, my friend.

Guffaw, it was cold. We've seen it much colder, but the temps this year have been unusually volatile; we've not had a chance to get acclimated. A good time? Absolutely. :)

Ajdshootist said...

I went shooting for the first time in a long time two sats ago gave up after 5 shots with my 38/40 winchester made in 1903 was so cold my fingers were turning blue even with gloves on and thats in England near the south coast.

Rev. Paul said...

Ajd, that must have been quite unpleasant. Sorry you had so few shots.

Cathy said...

Ya'll are made of tougher stuff than most of your fellow citizens. And that's all good.

Rev. Paul said...

Cathy, I suspect it's as much determination not to be trapped indoors all winter long, as anything. But yes, it's a good life. :)

Jenny said...

"A more elegant weapon, from a more civilized time."

Love my Alaska peeps. :)

Rev. Paul said...

I never forget the first trip to the Birchwood range with the Garand; the leader of a group of AR-15/M-4 shooters walked past, and said, "Now that's a real rifle."

If you ever visit again, you'll be welcome to have a go. :)