A group of us from church got together this morning for something we consider pretty sacred: target shooting. There were about a dozen of us that showed up over the course of the morning and early afternoon and we rented 3 lanes. I got to shoot my pastor’s semi-automatic, my brother-in-law’s target pistol and a couple of .22 bolt-actions, one with a scope. I didn’t bring my rifle because I was dropping my truck off at Tires Plus for an oil change on the way and I didn’t want to wait around in their parking lot holding a gun while waiting for my ride in these oh-so-sensitive days.
I hadn’t been shooting for a couple of years so I was looking forward to it. When I first got into a lane today I opened the rifle case and started to load the magazine with longs. I’m always pretty careful and intent when I’m handling live ammunition, especially with a gun I’m not familiar with. I’d carefully thumbed about three shells into the clip when the guy in the lane next to me, unseen behind the partition, suddenly opened up with a Desert Eagle, with about the same feel and effect on me as if I’d had defibulator paddles placed on my chest. After double-checking the status of my peewadding and that I hadn’t just blown my hand off, I took a cleansing breath and finished my task, ready to make a little noise of my own. Sure, the little snapping sound of the .22 following the Desert Eagle was like a chihuahua yipping after the mastiff had walked well down the street, but it was still fun.
My first grouping was fairly close together but high and left; after a few adjustments I started working my way into the black. One of the young men in our group had the same rifle, but with a scope on it. “A scope?” I asked. “I suppose you take cream in your coffee, too.” Nevertheless, I had to give it a try. I ran the target out to 50 feet and the guy told me I needed to aim just a little left of the bullseye. I did a few of these and saw that the gun actually was shooting true, so I adjusted. After reeling the target back in I was told that the young man was shooting from 25 feet, not 50. Since the pre-printed targets on that sheet were already pretty perforated, we stuck a black dot on the lower part of the sheet between two previous targets. This dot had a yellow film inside that would show up when it was hit. I ran the target out to 25 feet, looked through the scope fired another 10 shots, working the bolt between each. Here’s the result:
Their are nine holes in the dot and one down below. (The larger target directly above is the one I shot at from 50 feet). Okay, so it was only 25 feet and with a scope. If someone were to break into my home with malicious intent and stood still 25 feet in front of me, he’d be in trouble.
I moved down to the pistol lanes, and that was a lot of fun. That darn bullseye can be pretty elusive with a handgun, but one of the fathers there and I had a pretty good competition going. I was kind of handicapped while going through one magazine, though. There was a guy in the lane next to me with a 9mm semi-automatic who was practicing for his Conceal and Carry permit, and I kept getting hit in the head with his spent cartridges as they ejected out of his gun. Call it battle conditions, I guess.
It was amazing at how quickly we disposed of about 1000 rounds of ammunition (I bought 200 rounds myself for the people who’s guns I used). It was, literally, a blast. I can’t wait to get out again. Maybe we’ll even challenge another church to a little contest!