Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Overcrowded Range Saga Continues

You may remember back in December I posted about a day we were unable to shoot due to overcrowded ranges. There have been numerous times since then when waited while other folks finished, but we usually, but not always, got to use the range after not too much of a wait.

On Monday I had one last day of leave time to burn and had made plans to spend some time at the range with my wife. We headed over before lunch and found both ranges already in use, each with multiple folks shooting. So we went home, had lunch and came back. We missed the shooter switch at one range, but the other was still occupied by the same folks. They'd been there over 2 hours. Still sitting in the same chairs, shooting a .22 rifle from a bench rest at a target 7 yards downrange.

One of the conditions exasperating the crowding issue is that the club sets no limit on the number of members they accept, yet there's been no expansion of the facilities to handle the growth. Over the past few months we've noticed a significant increase in the number of folks using the ranges, and a corresponding increase in wait times, or times we can't shoot at all. I had a conversation with one of the club officials recently concerning the increasing crowded conditions and he agreed there was an issue. He said perhaps they would need to set a time limit when other folks were waiting. I don't know what the answer is, but I'm hoping I can attend next month's club meeting and speak to someone about the issue.

I find it noteworthy that this increase in the range use has taken place despite it being the winter months.

I'm spoiled. I've grown accustomed to using this range with little or no waiting time. Unfortunately there's no way to know, until after we've loaded the car and driven over there, if we'll actually be able to shoot.

I'm somewhat adverse to paying good money to stand in a lane at an indoor range. I find them very restricting; no holster draw, no rapid fire, no movement, no multiple targets, no clue who's next to you...
I am admittedly jealous of you folks who have backyard ranges.

For now, I guess it's time to settle for dry fire practice.


  1. Revenge shall be mine!

    But thanks. I'll work on that tonight.

  2. What range are you shooting at? I've been looking to join the Northern Virginia Gun Club though I have a feeling that might be the one you're saying is crowded. I've been a couple times with a friend and both times the place has been empty - even in mid-July on a great weather day. I was able to test fire my M4 and my friend's M1 Garand and Sig 5.56 (which is a great gun) at decent range.

    1. I know that NVG has put in new pistol ranges and will start IDPA this summer. I hope to check it out, but it's too far for quick trips for me. I'm shooting at a local conservation groups property that it close by.

      Sig 5.56 is one of my dream guns. :-)

    2. NVGC is a bit of a haul for me as well - the closest outdoor range [I know of] to me is Clark Bros. which I have determined is impossible even if you arrive when the store opens.

      Well then there's also my neighbor who just shoots into another neighbor's backyard...


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