Range Work and the Real World
Kevin Felts 06.01.17
There is a difference between range work and real world applications. This is not a question, it is a statement of fact.
How is the weather when you go to a shooting range? Nice clear skies and in the middle of the day? Maybe go to the range in the morning and get some lunch on the way home? What kind of weather do you go hunting in? Freezing temps, snow, maybe drizzling rain?
The clothes you wear to the range, jeans, and tee-shirt? The clothes you go hunting in, hunting vest, coat, jacket, heavy gloves and a cold weather hat?
Do you use a nice comfy brace when shooting? Do you use that same brace hunting? Probably not. Most of us use the window of the hunting blind to help hold our rifle or shotgun stable.
When you are at the range, do you take the time to get that nice tight group? As compared to having a few seconds to size up a deer before taking a shot.
Ever take your rifle or shotgun anywhere besides to the car and on the range? How would you cross a creek or go up a steep bank with your firearm? How does the firearm carry on a hike? For example, the rivet on my jeans rubs against the lower receiver of my AR-15.
Does the shooting range have nice flat ground? How does that prepare you to shoot from rocky or sandy soil where you may slip and fall?
The gun range I go to is a local sand pit. The ground is uneven and covered in weeds and rocks.
Train in a range of conditions and get out of your comfort zone. Not everything is going to be clear skies, bright, sunny and having all your range gear on.
For example, a few months ago, there was a coyote hanging out across the creek. I took the opportunity to take my AR through some dense brush and up and down creek banks. The extended charging handle came loose several times. Every time I would sling the rifle across my back so my hands were free, the charging handle would bump against my belt and would come loose.
That extended charging handle was moved to a target rifle and a smaller handle was bought for my carry rifle.
Taking the rifle off the range and putting it through a real world application allowed me to find problems in my setup.
I am sure there are range junkies who are are going to justify never going off range with their firearms. Let me guess, “Everything you need to know can be learned on a range”, right?