Saturday, October 29, 2022

A Beautiful Fall Day For IDPA

After a little over a month "off" from any matches, I made it to the October match at the Cavalier Rifle and Pistol Club on Montpelier. The morning was cool, and I grabbed a pair of light gloves on the way out the door. I was thankful I did, though the sun eventually warmed the air by mid-match. 

With summer travel keeping many folks away over the past few months, this match seemed like a reunion of sorts, with the "full crew" of regulars on hand. It was good to catch up. As I often say, a match is a social event interrupted by occasional gunfire! :-)

The first stage the squad shot had us seated to start, with the loaded gun on the table. After engaging targets in the open to either side, we left the chair to move through the course of fire. First to the left, then crossing back to the right to engage targets from several points of cover.

Next up was a simple, two string stage shot standing in one spot. The first string required two hits to the body and one head shot on the close target, followed by two body shots on the far targets. The second string was two head shots to each of the two back targets. A quick stage that our squad of 18(!) shooters finished quickly.

Our third stage of the morning began with us facing uprange. There were target options to either side of the wall behind us. The right target could be shot from the starting position, at a moderate distance, or we could move down range in a winding path, around a wall and barrel, to engage it from a closer distance. Most chose to add the extra steps to close the distance, while others chose the longer shot and shorter path. I elected the former. After those targets were sorted, we moved to other points of cover to finish the stage. Despite the longer path, this was my next to best stage.

Although I generally prefer field courses to stand and shoot exercises, the next stage proved very fun. Once again constrained to a shooting box, we faced four arrays of paper and steel at varying distances. I was feeling good about my shooting, and maybe a little cocky, so I planned to shoot the first five targets as fast as I could, keeping the splits between shots and targets as even as possible. 

The plan paid off. I was -2 on the far paper target, but came in 3rd overall on the stage with a raw time of 8.33 seconds. I must admit, it felt a little wild, but point shooting usually does.

Our last stage of the day broke the typical "two shots on paper" mold with a Halloween zombie-style stage.  We started with just four rounds in the gun, and all reloading devices on a table downrange. All the targets were head-only and required a single shot. Starting with our hands on the pumpkin, the first three targets were engaged as we moved towards our magazines at the table. Seven more targets finished the stage.

I was pleased with my results this morning. In the 10 matches I've shot this spring through summer, I've been quite happy with my performance most of the time. I've been aiming for accuracy, but finishing a little better than midfield most of the time. Aging eyes and knees, as well absolutely zero practice time on the range, having their effect. I went into the match with the intent to speed up a bit, and believe I did that. The 8 points down for the match equal my average of late, but I managed a 10th of 35 overall finish, and 3rd of 7 in SSP. 

It was an enjoyable match shot in pleasant fall weather with good friends. As winter approaches, it's unclear how much more shooting I'll see this year, but this would suffice as a suitable cap.

Friday, October 28, 2022

It's Been a Minute

I recently received an email from a reader making note of my absence from posting. My web browser landing pages set to these Musings, so I am constantly made well-aware of the stale post. Rest assured reader, I am still here. The break has been by design due to a busy schedule, and a lack of inspiration. 

For those wondering, the shooting, cigar, beer, whiskey, and travel activities have not ceased. To illustrate, since my last post on April 10, 2022, I've actually participated in 10 local monthly IDPA matches. I do plan to go back to some match write-ups in the future as an expansion of the brief notes I make for my own benefit.

There have been some 42 different cigars enjoyed in that time too. I opted to not take notes, even for the new or limited releases. Many of those cigars were obviously enjoyed with good bourbon or craft beer. This is a good place to mention that many of those smokes, and other subjects, are illustrated on my Instagram feed.

Speaking of whiskey, my spreadsheet shows I've added 26 whiskeys, mostly bourbons, to my stock since April. That number shocks me a bit -- hopefully my wife isn't reading this. Although she is well aware of the new shelf in the dining room. There are still half a dozen I need to open.

The above statements reveal my OCD, or nerd factor, around the logging and journaling I do across my interests. 

Speaking of travel, we've been to Montana, and to Central Europe for a great Danube River cruise. And, once fall arrived, Hokies football has added several weekend trips to the schedule. 

Wait, I forget where I was going with all this.

Chat soon!. . .