Sunday, March 15, 2009

Bowling Night Report 3/12/09 and BONUS! PASA Park USPSA Event 3/15/09

Well, the usual match night sucked. I had a lot of procedural errors that wrecked a decent shoot. There's really not much to talk about there.

Saturday I began my search for ammunition. The Wal-Mart I Never Go To For Ammunition, so named for the fact it never has anyone at the counter, was my first stop, as the other two Wal-Marts in town were bare of .40 S&W ammunition. I saw one box in there of 50 rounds, and thought that might be all there is in town. Thankfully, after about 30 seconds of waiting, a clerk came over and helped me with the purchase. Even better he offered to check in the back for me for any other ammunition that came off the truck. And so, he came back with a case of Winchester's "White Box" ammunition. I took the case, since I'm running low. Anyway, I was pretty shocked that any .40 was able to be found in town. I even managed to pick up some more .22LR, as that was also out of stock in a few places. I'm trying out Remington's hollow point "Golden Bullets." The hollow points are much deeper than the Federal or CCI hollow points. That will be interesting to see if there's much of a difference than what I'm used to using.

Sunday, I get up at 5am. So you all know, I never get up at 5 in the morning unless I'm sick and can't sleep. I stopped doing that when I left the Air Force. I got everything ready by 6:30, taking my 1911 from STI to use for the matches. I'm happy that my parish has Saturday evening Mass. It would make attending events like this much more difficult. I was mostly excited about the match having four classifier stages on the schedule. That's four more steps towards getting ranked.

So, I get on I-72 westbound from Springfield and take it all the way to the Barry exit to get to PASA Park. It took about 90 minutes to get there, which isn't too bad. PASA is kind of hidden, but that's okay. It's a great place to shoot from what I've seen of it. They've also got a 600-yard range for rifles in addition to their multiple bays for practical shooting and cowboy action shooting and the 200-yard handgun range for the Masters shooting competition. Yes, the competitors shoot pistols (really bolt actions built on pistol frames and single-shot pistols) at ranges up to 200 yards. They use modified rifle calibers for the most part.

I arrived at around 8:15am and helped with the finishing touches on one of the stages shortly after I arrived. I figured that since I was a guest there, I should lend a hand where possible. I noticed that there were a lot of steel targets in the classifiers. Most steel targets are removed in our usual classifiers. I stumbled on those stages, but still did decently enough, I suppose. The weather was perfect, too. It was cold until the sun got a little higher up in the sky and then it was perfect shooting weather. The roads were a little muddy but I figured they would be. That's what why you keep old shoes around, kids. You never know when you'll be trudging from one shooting stage to the next in vaguely muddy terrain. I met up prior to the match with a good-sized crowd from Springfield Tactical Shooters, my local USPSA club. I wasn't sure who was going to be there.

My point of aim wasn't completely off unless I rushed. I also made a good choice to strip the bumper pads off of some 10-rounders that haven't worked too well for me and placed the bumpers on my 8-round magazines. Considering that we were dropping them into gravel, those made a big difference to me. No failures to feed and no failures to fire and no failures to eject means I had a really good day of shooting.

Still, though, if you get a chance to shoot at PASA, by all means take it! Also, if you get a chance to go to the Single Stack Classic at the end of April, take that opportunity as well to see some of the best shooters in the sport. I won't be there, as I'm not quite at that level of competition. Someday, though, I'll compete. Probably just not this year.

As for those 10-round magazines, I have an idea as to how to use them for their intended purpose. It just might take some time to get that done properly.

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