While David likes to relax in a hot tub with a good drink, a cigar and his lovely wife enjoying the view high above Reno after Boomershoot, I somehow ended up in the high desert of New Mexico to continue the Odyssey.
It’s the Saturday after Boomershoot and I’m sitting in the Best Western Hotel restaurant in Raton, NM. having dinner as I type this post. It’s been a year since I was last down here participating in the Sporting Rifle Match. Tomorrow is the match for the month of May and I spent the afternoon helping the match director and others set up targets and splash them with a fresh coat of paint to prepare them for the punishment they will endure tomorrow. I was my usual doltish self and didn’t think to bring sun screen with me on this trip. So I borrowed a few splashes of sun block prior to painting the targets in the 86 degree temps.
After the work was done, we had a couple of hours to lay at the practice line and shoot at some sight-in targets.
I worked up a series of scope settings from 240 yd. out to 690 yd. Although I had set my scope’s “zero” at 200 yd. at my home range in Michigan, it was performed at the altitude of around 960 ft. above sea level. Out here in Raton, where the match takes place, the altitude is 6650 ft. above sea level. In addition to that, if one takes a look at an ‘absolute density’ chart, the altitude behaves more like somewhere in the 7000-9000 ft. range.
On the sight-in line I was able to shoot enough shots to hit the metal targets at 240, 300, 400, 500, 550, 600, 650 and 690 yd.
I will go back to my room where I’m staying at the Whittington Center and play with the “Shooter” ballistics app to see if I can generate a table that will show the same scope settings as the sight-in hits and then fill in the remaining settings in 5 yd. increments from 175 yd. to 900 yd. During the match itself, there is but one single target placed out farther than 685 yd. This one target is ranged at 875 yd. Thus all my practice today was at 690 yd. and closer as that is where the bulk of the points will be earned (he said with the word prayer coming to mind).
One thing I did learn today from the match director was that I was not the lone holder of the lowest score ever shot here at the Raton matches . . . . . . it so happens that I am a co-holder of the lowest score ever shot here. (I’ll wait for the applause to die down).
Not much more to report on for today. I’ll try and post an after action report tomorrow after the match.