Bristol Kidd, Wild Sage & husband Brent Cantrell

Shooting sports
& fun activities

   There are more interesting shooting sports & activities than you can imagine. It's up to you to pick one and give it a try.

  Once you have a pistol permit it is a matter of what sport you'd like to do with a handgun. Search the Internet for a club near you, do some research on how it's done and go to a match.

   Most clubs are open to the public and welcome to all safe shooters. For instance, the SASS (Single Action Shooting Society) hold Cowboy Action matches every weekend during the summer in an area near you!

  Or you can try any flavor of the IPSC (USPSA) type shoots, which come in IDPA or the 3-Gun type matches. All of which are truly a blast..   

   USPSA (IPSC) is done under open-ended time as well as limited time fire. For instance, the RO above is holding a Pact Pro-Timer. He holds it out so that it will pick up and register the time of the last shot fired. If she shoots a total of 40 points in a final time to 8 seconds, her final score would be points divided by time, or 5.

   Obviously you try and shoot as fast as you can without "going over". You try to get as many points as you can in the shortest time. But if you go too fast, you get few points. It's really quite addicting.

   If running and gunning isn't your forte perhaps a little more formal gun-game will suit you. PPC (Practical Pistol Course) is a timed fire type match. It is shot from several different positions, including sitting, through a little window, and around a barricade. If you score perfect in a PPC match you'll get a 300, which nowadays is quite do'able. If 2 or more competitors score 300 in a match, the winner is the one who scores the most "X" hits (the tiny circle in the middle).

       You can get into a shooting sport as much you'd like. Some get a bang out of shooting a stock pistol and refuse to upgrade his or her gun. Note the gun I'm using behind barricade #6 above. It's a standard blued Smith & Wesson model #10 fixed sight revolver.

   Later I tried a highly specialized Wilson Combat PPC gun. It has all the bells and whistles that you could possibly imagine.

  But you know what?
It all comes down to this..



     Perhaps you'd like to try some "Pin" shooting? That's an awful lot of fun.  Knocking bowling pins off a table using a handgun, trying to see who can do it the fastest.

   There's a bit more to it than first appears. It requires a fairly stiff load to knock a pin down. And the pin's shiney hard surface tends to make the bullet "glance" off as it hits. The best load for a "Pin" match is a big, heavy bullet that's moving relatively slow, and has a "bight" upon impact. Like a .44 or the .45 auto with gaping big hollow point bullets.

But it's all a game, often like a game of golf. Some days you clean a table, 1, 2, 3, 4 ,5. Some days, you don't have enough bullets to finish the match.. (That was the day my partner & I shot at Second Chance at left)

   Or you might be tempted to try "Fast Draw". This is the only shooting sport I know of that does NOT involve the front sight. It's done by using a single action handgun with a special cartridge that fires a wax bullet. The gun is usually a .45 Long Colt in caliber, but you can use any caliber that you want for practice.

   The bullet is seated in the cartridge using your thumb and the only thing used to propel the wax bullet is a primer. The wax bullet comes out at around 700 feet per seconds, and will flatten or splatter when hitting a wood board.

   In the game of "Fast Draw" you need a 1/8 inch thick steel target circle. The circle is a 24 inch disc which is mounted 50 inches off the ground. A light in the middle will appear at random and the idea is to shoot it. And hit it! If you hit the steel target, the clock stops and it displays on a little device. As you can see by the little hits all around the target edge, I missed quite a bit..

   You start with your hand on the gun, finger out of the trigger. The time shown in the photo at right is .391  That's three hundred ninety one thousandth of a second.

   When the light comes on, you draw the gun, cock the gun with your thumb, level the gun and shoot. If you do it right, the movement is a blur of motion. It's really quite a hoot to just to bang off a bunch of primers trying to see how fast you can go. Check out the "Cowboy Fastdraw Association" 

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