The Appleseed-shoot-neglecting, can’t-afford-ammo, no-new-guns-for-me stretch of life in the GG household seems to be soon coming to an end. GB got a job!!! A good one too with a nice pay rate and health insurance. I’m proud of my honey. Final exams are tomorrow. Between being done with summer semester and having two stable incomes again, I’m going to head into this nice long Independence Day weekend with a smile on my face! Maybe I’ll even find a way to get to the shooting range this weekend!
Tag: shooting range
The annual May Gardenerville Appleseed Shoot is coming right up Northern Nevada gun enthusiasts! I’ve gone to the last two Gardnerville Shoots and have learned a lot and had a great time. I hope to see you there!!
Here is some information about the shoot, copied from the Appleseed event page:
- Range: Private Property
- Address: 2449 Leviathan Mine Rd., Gardnerville, NV
- Website: none
- When: May 28-29, 2011
- Range Fee: none
- Camping available: Primitive camping on site. Potable water and porta-potties are available on site.
RV hookups available nearby at Topaz Lodge & Casino RV Resort.
- Carson Valley Inn (Hotel, Motor Lodge, RV resort), Minden, NV (800) 321-6983
- Holiday Inn Express, Gardnerville, NV. (775) 782-7500
- Topaz Lodge and Casino, RV Resort (800) 962-0732
- Directions: From Gardnerville take Hwy. 395 south approx. 10 miles to Leviathan Mine Road. Turn right to the range site at 2449 Leviathan Mine Road. Watch for signs.
- State Laws to be aware of: Check State laws.
- Misc: This promises to be an excellent shoot at a DAR site. With ranges out to 600 yds.+ bring the center fires. The firing line can handle 50 shooters with room for more easily added. No tracer or ammunition that is attracted to a magnet is allowed due to fire hazards.
- For More Information Contact: Private Message to “ChrisH” or “featherblue” on the Appleseed Forum. email NV@Appleseedinfo.org
- Registration Link: May 28-29: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/1360865385
The 2011 Nevada 4-H Shooting Sports Leader Training & Certification Spring Class is coming up! It will be held April 8th and 9th in Gardnerville, Nevada. If you’re local to Nevada, love shooting sports, are a responsible gun enthusiast and want to share your enthusiam and good, safe example of gun useage with youth in your community, please consider attending this training and becoming a 4-H Shooting Sports Volunteer. To view the flyer and registration form, click here. Sorry for the short notice, but the registration deadline for this training is March 25th, 2011!
For more information on this training or University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s 4-H Shooting Sports program, please see the Nevada 4-H Facebook page or contact your local University of Nevada Cooperative Extension office.
On Friday, I received my tax return money. I took my car down and had some routing maintenance done with the bounty, but I had a bit left over. I was thinking about paying off a credit card with it, but GB had a great idea. When we had brought the car back home and entered our driveway, he said “Let’s go to the gun store!” We drove down to Safe Shot Indoor Range. Downstairs they have a lead-free, expensive to shoot at indoor range, but upstairs is a gun store complete with guns, holsters and gun-related clothing.
At the gun store, he heavily encouraged me to check out some of the revolvers there. A friend of his concealed carries a revolver and the grip doesn’t house a magazine, so revolvers might better fit my hands. I was nervous about checking out revolvers. It never crossed my mind to carry one. Aside from the “oh isn’t that cute” glance at a Charter Ladysmith, I never paid much attention to wheel guns. I shot a few at the Gun Bloggers Rendezvous last year, but I never took that experience further and sort of forgot about it.
I wanted to check out the Walther PK380. I have the Walther P22 and they’re basically the same style. The P22 fits my hand perfectly because of its adjustable backstraps, but Gary of Safe Shot said that the .380 wasn’t made with the same adjustable backstraps as the .22. Darn! With my Walther hopes crushed, Gary showed me some of their revolvers.
Gun Bloggers: remember Gary from last year’s GBR? He gave us the great tour of the Cabela’s gun room and arranged for delivery of all of our conference swag. He’s working over at Safe Shot now. Anyway…
I wasn’t hooked on revolvers because of two things: not very many rounds and no external safety. I wasn’t convinced that I could take down an attacker or two in 5 shots. I’m a new shooter, it could be dark, I’d definitely be scared. With no external safety, what if I’m so scared that I shoot myself in the boob drawing from my chest holster? But it couldn’t hurt to hold a few revolvers, so I did and I ran across one that fit my hand perfectly: the Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 38. It also had an integrated laser which made me feel better about carrying with fewer rounds in the gun.
To help me feel better about the lack of external safety, Gary put a pen down the barrel of the revolver and pulled the trigger, “shooting” the pen. Then he put the pen back down there and whacked at the trigger with a marker until the trigger sprung. The pen didn’t “shoot” although the trigger moved. This is because there has to be a certain amount of continuous pressure for the trigger to actually begin the process of launching a projectile. I also dry fired the revolver. The double-action long trigger pull isn’t something I’m going to be able to do by accident!
To make sure I’d like to carry this gun and that having it would shut me up, we went home to get my bra holsters.
GB said that he’s tired of hearing me complain every Sunday morning about wearing my Bersa Thunder .380 PRO UC. I love that gun, but it’s got a fat grip due to the double-stacked magazine, and if I don’t position that gun just right under my left boob or if my shirt isn’t cut generously through the chest there, I can appear as if I’ve sprouted a third nipple. To make sure this gun wouldn’t do the same thing when carried, we grabbed every holster I like out of the house.
I brought my cheap Uncle Mike’s in waistband holster and my collection of Discreet Carry holsters. I have a Discreet Carry DH-1 holster, a Discreet Carry LadyBUG bra mount under arm holster and a Discreet Carry LadyBUG Cleavage holster. This is where the fun begun. I went to a gun store fully prepared to take one of their guns and shove it down my shirt. Haha. (Don’t worry, I had an undershirt on to prevent any “flashing.”
When we arrived back at Safe Shot, Gary was no longer at the counter. I was sorely disappointed in this as Gary’s replacement (the owner’s grandson), didn’t impress me. He took the Bodyguard out of the case and passed it to me without checking it first. Yes, those guns should be unloaded, but just in case… check! He pointed it at me once and at GB once too. Again… the guns should be unloaded, but that’s not the point. The point is safety. Never point your firearm, unloaded or not, at anything you’re not willing to destroy. Period. And when he revealed that he was a concealed carrier, I lost even more respect for the man.
He had his gun tied to his pants and his pants tied to himself with bright red shoe laces. Uh, what? How is he going to draw his gun when his gun is tied down? And if he gets his gun out, where are his pants? Around his ankles? How is he going to be able to move swiftly in an emergency situation with his pants tripping him up?
Get a belt and a holster.
He wanted to wear baggy pants so that solution didn’t work for him. I told him get a belly band and wear it sideways. There’s no rule that says the belly band has to sit your gun in front of your junk. Sheesh. He seemed impressed by that idea, so hopefully he checks it out. At least he wasn’t phased by me sticking the store’s revolver beneath my clothing.
When it was time to checkout, Gary reappeared from the range below and rescued us from the inadequate gun salesman. Thank God! We completed the paperwork and sale with Gary and took the Bodyguard home for the night. Gary and I made plans to add the gun to my CCW permit the next day. Yay!
Last night, a friend of GB’s drove in for a visit. They haven’t seen each other in about a year and they’ve missed each other a lot. They stayed up late last night, talking and catching up. I couldn’t stay up with them because I had to get up early this morning, so I headed up to bed around 10 p.m. Before I turned in, I gave the guys a run-down of my guns so they could take them to the range with them tomorrow.
The Bersa’s out of the safe, there’s a box of mag for it in the mag dresser upstairs. The Walther, Marlin and Mosin are all in the safe. Ammo for those are upstairs as well. I only have one mag for the Bersa. Extra mags for the Walther are in its box with it. The Marlin’s extra mags are in my range bag. I figured if they’re going and I can’t, they might as well take mine with them. The more guns to shoot the better, right? I told them all goodnight and went to lay out my clothes for the next day when, GB hollered at me. “Honey!”
GB called me back from the bedroom to prove to his friend that although I just gave a run down of my collection and sounded like I’ve been a gun girl all of my life, that in fact I wasn’t gun-gung-ho until I met GB and even then he had to work me up to it first. He said to his friend, “Before she didn’t like guns, now she knows more about guns than I do.”
Aww. That’s so sweet. My baby’s bragging on me.
Tonight, I’m stressing out about final exams, presentations and papers due. One of my economics papers is on ammunition supply, demand and the business cycle. Thinking of ammo, and wishing school wasn’t such a time-sucker in my life right now and that I could focus on more things ammo related, lead me down a reminiscent road tonight…
In May 2010, I attended my first Appleseed shoot in Gardnerville, Nevada. The most prominent thing I learned during those three days was trigger control.
In August 2010, I attended my second Appleseed shoot at the Sacramento Valley Shooting Facility, California. My breakthrough of the shoot was realizing that I finally could get my elbow under my rifle and that I achieved a natural point of aim in prone.
In October 2010, I attended my third Appleseed shoot again in Gardnerville, Nevada. This shoot was monumental for me because while my first two shoots were all about me, in this third shoot, I was able to help others: I correctly read a fellow shooter’s target, I learned how to be a Line Safety Officer and I was able to help a young female shooter with extractor problems get more shots downrange when I became her pseudo-extractor.
When’s my fourth shoot? I can’t wait.
It’s better late than never… right? I got a bit behind on the internet world, but I’m trying to catch up so here goes!
Sunday I got out the door to drive down to Gardnerville a little more smoothly. I felt more confident about the drive too and I arrived there before the 8:30 a.m. commencement of Appleseed. Chris_H and a few participants were there early as well, but Arashi wasn’t and that really worried Chris_H because it was hard enough for them on Saturday to teach us all and keep us all safe with only two of them, doing a one-man Sunday show would be super-difficult for Chris_H. Mrs. Featherblue went back to their house to call and only got the answering machine at Arashi’s house. We knew he was on call for his work that weekend, but also felt that he would call us and let us know if something happened. We were worried.
I told Chris_H that I’d step up and do whatever he needed me to do. The offer I made yesterday of not shooting and LSOing (Line Safety Officer-ing) or something else instead still stands. Show me how to do it and then I’ll do it. With Mr. and Mrs. Featherblue and several other returning Appleseeders, there would be enough experience to get us by safely. About 9 .m., we were ready to give up on Arashi and muddle through the Sunday course of fire without him, when a truck began down the dusty drive to the Gardnerville DAR (Dedicated Appleseed Range). Several calls of “What kind of truck does he drive?” were heard and we determined that Arashi wasn’t a no-show! His alarm clock had failed to awaken him and so he was running late and forgot the Coroplast to be used for long distance shooting, but he was here! And our day began.
Shooters on the firing line.
Chris_H gave me a run down on LSOing partway through the morning and I took on that responsibility. They’d tell us our preparation period has ended and to fire, I’d shoot my rounds and safe my rifle. Then, I’d hop up to work the line. It was fun. Everybody kinda giggled at me my first few times through checking the line because I was muttering to myself “bolt back, flag in, mag out, safety on” and I was poking the places on the rifles corresponding to my chant with my index finger. As the day progressed, I quit talking to myself and reduced my poking to pointing. Weeee!! At one point, an excellent shooter on the line with a great attitude forgot to put his rifle on safe and I called him over to correct that.
I felt embarrassed to be harping on such a professional shooter and I knew he knew better and had just forgot, but I didn’t want anyone to think that I’d go soft on them as far as safety rules go just because I know them, or like them, or because they’re a better shot than me. I’m a newbie, yes, but I don’t want any “accidental” (read: negligent) discharges. Then, another professional on the line who is a firearms instructor and a repeat Rifleman patch earner left his chamber flag out of his rifle. That’s when I noticed he had broken his chamber flag off so it was just a flag and no stem to go down in the barrel. He could be putting that flag in and it would look right, but the rifle could still be loaded. Yikes!
I called out to Chris_H about replacing the broken flag, but the gentleman whose rifle that was didn’t want it replaced. He gave me a hard time about it saying that a non-broken chamber flag won’t fit down his barrel. But I’m shooting a .22 and the flag fits in mine and so are a lot of other Appleseeders on the line. If we can do it, he can do it. I explained to him how to slightly bend the flag so it slides in more smoothly and he announced he couldn’t bend it and that I should do it. So I bent it and showed him how it went in more smoothly. To make things even easier on him, I gave him my old flag which is worn in juuuuusssst right and put the newer more stiff flag in my rifle. He told me thank you. I felt shaken up about this exchange because as a new shooter trying to follow basic safety rules, a professional shooter whom I thought would have my back about it made my job harder on me.
This gentleman had been instrumental in keeping the line safe over the lunch break that day when someone removing rifles from the line swept the lunch audience gathered to hear pre-American Revolutionary War history. I thought it odd that he’d be quick to enforce safety rules on behalf of the shooters that day when it’s someone else being unsafe, but act too good to be safe himself. I don’t know. I probably just embarrassed him and he was reacting to that uncomfortable feeling rather than the situation itself.
Later Chris_H and I examined the broken flag and discovered that it was from the faulty batch that had an unstable seam just after the flag connected to the stem. This probably made it too easy to break when bent, making the gentleman leery of trying to bend another one without breaking it again.
Sunday was exciting because the weather was better and our fingers weren’t so frozen as to make magazine loading painful like they were yesterday, because I was learning something new and because we were shooting AQTs. This is the point where we’d see just how much we all had learned and we’d be able to gather up together and celebrate our progress. It was Mr. Featherblue’s eighth Appleseed and he was knocking at the door of Rifleman scores. He shot a 210 and we were all so excited. Chris_H and Arashi signed his target. We pondered about dumping water on Mr. Featherblue at the Riflemen ceremony later that day as is tradition when someone scores exactly 210, but he raised his score up to the 220s, so he didn’t get wet. A couple other Riflemen were made and remade that day. We also honored our youth among us who shot through our Appleseed with good attitudes.
Mr. Featherblue hardly working on the firing line.
He earned his patch twice over this Appleseed.
Mrs. Featherblue working hard on the firing line.
Appleseed youth patch.
A highlight of the day was a young son who didn’t shoot, but who managed to entertain himself and keep himself out of trouble the whole day. Which is a lot to expect of someone of his age. My favorite scenes that day included watching him figure out how to use binoculars, especially when he used them backwards and hearing him shout out that he was going to wear his hearing protection all weekend, even to bed. It was sweet to see his dad and older brother walking with him downrange to check dad and brother’s targets. I love seeing families on the line like this.
Binoculars are great! You can see stuff.
It’s a family tradition: Dad, big and little brother checking targets.
All in all, this was a great Appleseed weekend. We moved more slowly and were more disorganized and short-staffed than other Appleseed shoots we’ve had, but we had great people there who learned new skills, tried on new leadership roles, fostered their family’s involvement in our country, etc. All of the makings for a beautiful shoot, especially when you add in that this was a Nevada Day shoot and that it was also our first simultaneous shoot with Las Vegas.
More pictures of the shoot, all 200 of them, are available on the Northern Nevada Appleseed Facebook fan page! Click here to see them.
On Twitter today, I noticed someone Tweeting about her new article: Hairstyles for the Gun Range. It’s similar to my Shooting Range Hairstyles article that I published as a page and as a blog entry back in October and about which NRA News interviewed me. The article is even signed with my initials: GG! It seems I have an alter-ego out there. Which begs the question, am I the good GG or the bad GG?
UPDATE: She sent me this on Twitter:
What should I guest blog about?
Saturday night after Appleseed, I flew into my driveway, ran to the house and got cracking! I showered, costumed and gathered up shooting booth supplies. GB drove us to the church building while I brushed my hair– haha. We arrived just in time. I began setting up my booth in earnest while everyone mingled (See planning the booth posts here and here). It ended up being a smart idea I had to purchase two “just-in-case” Nerf guns for the booth because the lady who was going to bring her kids’ Nerf guns from home forgot to do so.
We participated in the chili cook-off judging and voting and then the carnival games begun. From that point, I ran around like a mad-woman. GB ran around too. Without him, I wouldn’t have been able to get every kid who wanted a chance to shoot zombie clowns and zombie Nazis through the shooting booth. No one got shot, everyone had fun, I ran completely out of prizes and my booth was the most popular booth of the night. Whoo-hooo!
Pictures of what happens when you hand Nerf guns loaded with chocolate pudding covered darts to children 3-12 years old:
Targets with chocolate pudding “bullet holes”
The darts would hit the target and then drop to the floor creating a delicious mess.
Working with the young kids was fun as they discovered that they could “kill” zombies and save us all. The older kids were also a treat to teach because they grasped better how their aim impacted where they hit and which hits were more effective. Two female shooters competed against each other and the bought was close: 2-1. Hopefully this opportunity to fake shoot will inspire these two competitive and fun-loving girls to attend the more noisy kind of shooting range.
Six a.m. came early on Saturday. I rolled out of bed, showered, dressed and threw the gear in the car that I kept inside overnight: my lunch and the rifles. After programming the Gardnerville DAR (dedicated Appleseed range) into my phone and reviewing the directions, I was all set to go! I was a bit nervous to be driving such a long drive. I tend to stay close to home, but for Appleseed… I’ll do it! The drive went smoothly because there were hardly any other cars on the road and it was a scenic drive.
I barely arrived before the end of the 8-8:30 AM morning registration period. I bellied up to the table, signed in and made my duct tape name badges. Then, I pondered my outfit. Before the morning safety briefing, I scuttled off to put on some long john’s under my clothes and add a jacket. Brrr. It was cold. 40 degrees maybe? Plus this evil wind that passed through even layers of clothes to bite the delicate skin underneath. After the safety briefing, we 19 shooters began the long day of instruction, history and shooting under the tutelage of Chris_H and Arashi. We moved through the material pretty slowly as we had a lot of new shooters on the line, some shooters with physical limitations and because it was just so darn cold that we were frozen into slow-motion mode.
Arashi speaking during the safety briefing.
Chris_H and Arashi explaining the Redcoat target.
We also had a couple of troublesome rifles on the line. One young lady was shooting a bolt action rifle that wouldn’t extract. I’d shoot my shots quick and in a hurry and then duck over to her mat to extract for her. She was having a hard time working the bolt at all, so I told her to really manhandle it and that she couldn’t break it by using it how it was designed to be used. It went a little more smoothly after that for her, but not much, so Chris_H switched her over to his Ruger 10/22 LTR. Another new female shooter on the line had rifle problems too, but hers was with the sights on the stock Ruger 10/22. Her friend had another rifle in the car and once she switched to using that one, her groups improved significantly.
At this Appleseed, we had a couple of reasons to celebrate. First, this shoot was the inaugural Northern and Southern Nevada simultaneous shoot. Some might argue this is a reason NOT to celebrate as it meant that our shoot had only 2 instructors, but even with only 2 of them, we all made it through the shoot happy, safe and full of new information to integrate into our shooting. The second cause for celebration is that we had three generations of shooters on the line. I shot in the midst of Grandma and Grandpa, Mom and Dad and three Grandkids. All were relatively new to shooting. This was Mom’s first time using a rifle and Grandma and Grandpa haven’t been active in the shooting community for very long. Grandma just passed her CCW course and had been shooting for less than a year. Good job Grandma and Grandpa leading your posterity to responsible gun ownership and to our Appleseed shoot!
We were able to shoot one AQT before Saturday finished, and I don’t think we received any Rifleman’s scores as a result of it. I ducked out at 4 p.m. to head back to Reno to shower, change and instruct small children in the proper shooting of zombies at my church’s Trunk or Treat festival, so I missed hearing the telling of the third strike of the match. I also missed getting my Appleseed T-shirt. The past two Appleseeds I haven’t gotten one. ::tear::
The drive home.