Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Weekend Pistol Shooting

After a few months of missing out, I was happy to have the opportunity to shoot an IDPA match with friends last weekend. It was an especially pleasant morning as the October temps rose into the mid-80's over the weekend. I decided to shoot my Compact Sig P320 instead of the Full Size model I'd used most of the year. That gun had not been out since the Spring, and gets carried more in the winter, so it was time.

The match organizers had six interesting stages prepared for us. The first stage we shot was a "Standards" stage with two shooting boxes. The directions were to start with six rounds loaded in the gun. We had to fire one shot at each of six targets, before moving to the opposite box and reengaging the targets with six more rounds. It was a good way to warm up, though I did manage to have one hit on the center non-threat. The same edge of the same target was tagged by about 6 other people on our squad, so it seems it a well-placed challenge!

Next up was a more typical field course stage starting with a couple of close targets. After that we maneuvered around the walls engaging targets as they became visible. The short field courses, still with lots of movement are always enjoyable.

Then we had the stage called "Also a Standard," consisting of just four targets. One of those targets was paced off at about 24 yards. Starting with our hands touching the wall, we first engaged a target across the bay to our left, before turning our attention to the one barely visible "way down there." Then there were two more targets, both partially blocked by non-threats. One was directly to our right behind the wall, the other we backed uprange to shoot around the other end of the wall. I was extra pleased to shoot this one only -1; that one low shot being on the far target.

That fun stage was followed by another fun field course. That one had us seated at the start with our firearms and loading devices on a table a few yards distant. It presented a good mix of target engagements.

The next stage presented the challenge of head shot only targets. There was an array of four targets to the front, along with lone targets to the right and left of the start position. In a nod to the upcoming Halloween festivities, we started the course of fire with our hands resting on a "bloody" bandage, presumably a wounded companion. Nature provided an additional challenge -- the sunlight showing brightly through the pasted holes on the left target, made it nearly impossible to distinguish between your hits and ones from previous shooters. I managed to shoot just two down for the course.

For the last stage we hiked up to a distant bay where there was a large arrangement of walls set up. The layout was used at the previous weekend's USPSA match, and is modified and reused often. We didn't make use of the entire setup. The course included a mix of close and long distant targets. The final position required engaging targets from low cover while kneeling. On top of shooting a little too fast on the long targets and racking up points down, I shot the last two targets out of order and earned a PE. Not the best way to wrap up the match, but the stage was enjoyable nonetheless.

I actually felt pretty good about my shooting overall. For all intents and purposes, I was accurate enough, but my legs don't move as fast or my eyes focus as quickly as they once did. The weather certainly was a treat, with the unseasonably warm temperatures. The social aspect is always great at the matches. And I got to shoot? What's not to like?


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