Saving my views on self-defense and preparedness for later, this post is about spending time outdoors with family. While I visit the range fairly often, I truly enjoy the times when it's a family outing. Recently I had a fun visit to the range accompanied by my wife and son, along with a good family friend.
We headed to the range after work and set up three target stands with paper targets, along with two 10" round steel target. Soon after we got set up it started raining lightly. We continued shooting, after all, "It's not always going to be a sunny day." The range we were using this day has berms at 25 and 50 yards. We had set up our targets at the 50 yard berm, as the 25 yard berm is too narrow for all five of the target stands. We had been standing up near the berm doing some warm up drills and general plinking. Given the injury mentioned earlier, this was time for simple standing and shooting, no shooting on the move. After a short while we headed back to the covered bench up range to reload magazines. About that time the rain changed to a heavy downpour. (Although Hurricane Irene was due to arrive the next day, this rain was unrelated.)
Due to the location of our targets in relation to the front berm, only one target was visible from back at the bench. Not wanting to submit the gear, or ourselves, to the torrential rain, I came up with the idea to shoot that 10" round target from underneath cover - that's 50 yards. Not exactly our everyday pistol drill, but it gave us something to do while we waited for the rain to pass. I'm happy to say that everyone managed to hit the target from that distance. Finally the rain stopped and we headed back down range to shoot at more practical and realistic distances.
We spent the next hour or more shooting one-on-one challenges. Two people would go to the line, after a random start beep from the timer, the first person to draw and hit the steel would win. The winner would stay up until he or she was beat. We mixed it up by sometimes requiring two hits on steel to win. Everyone had wins and losses. No score was kept. I was surprised how quickly the time passed, and how much ammo we went through. It was really good fun and we had some good laughs. And I was also impressed how good, and fast, a shooter our son has become.
Now there's a certain segment of our society that would wring their hands and cry out in anguish that we considered an afternoon shooting guns to be a good family activity. (If any of that segment is reading this now, I hope you'll work through those irrational fears and open your minds.) What's not to like? We're outdoors, we're teaching/learning responsibility, and we're exercising basic Constitutional, and human rights. And, most importantly, we're spending time together as a family. That certainly passes muster in my book.