Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sniper Match

I had a chance to participate in a sniper/spotter match.  It wasn’t what you might consider a classic match.  Nobody had to hide in the weeds and get two undetected shots off.  But still there was a lot to learn.

For example, I have to remember to account for the offset between the sight and barrel under 25 yards.  I also learned to check hands and waistlines on the realist photo targets during building searches.  They were good lessons and I hope to remember them.

I also learned I carry too much gear.  Here’s my list:
Rifle w/ dot
Ammo in plastic box
Shooting gloves
Range finder
Sand bag
First aid kit
Folding cleaning rod
4-30 rd magazines
2-20 rd magazines
Leatherman tool
Fixed blade knife
Ear protection
1 liter water
Elbow pads
Magazine carrier on belt
Loading tool
Vest with shooting pad.

Some of these are obvious, right?  No sense attending a match without your rifle or ammo.  But what about the other items?

Here’s what I didn’t use:
Shooting gloves
Sand bag
First aid kit
Folding cleaning rod
2-30 rd magazines
1-20 rd magazines
Leatherman tool
Elbow pads.

Next time I do this I’d leave the extra magazines in my vehicle with the sandbag and a third of my ammo, assuming I could get back to the vehicle at lunch or while moving from stage to stage.  After 4 hours and trooping all over the range, every ounce not carried is a blessing!

Everything else is light enough and has too much potential to be left behind.  Cleaning rod? Solves a lot of potential problems, everything from a mud plugged barrel to a jammed case.  First aid kit, do I even need to discuss this?  Elbow pads?  Go prone on gravel and see what you think.  Extra magazines? You’ve never had one fail?

I traveled light.  Some shooters had shooting mats, spotting scopes with stands, chairs and several sand bags as well as two-way radios to communicate between spotter and sniper.  You can see the utility of those things, but in many cases they required a cart to lug all that gear.

Just think about what you need and what you think you might need and see how luggable it is.

Here's some pictures from the match.

The sniper  has to fire one round from each of the cut outs.  The low offset between the scope and barrel favored most bolt guns.

sniper target
This is the target for the barricade shooters, about 120 yards away.

 Greenport tactical sniping match
From the roof each sniper must shoot 5 targets at 200 yards.  The targets are different size and shape.  Miss one and you lose all your points.
Greenport Tactical sniper match
The sniper is using an old style bolt action rifle, but he still racks up a nice score. It's about the shooter and not the equipment

Spotter stage at the sniper match
The spotter gets to shoot here.  From each barricade a different CoF is required.  At these distances scope off set is important!

spotter stage at sniping match
A spotter engages his first target.  It was very difficult to raise the muzzle sufficiently to engage the targets.

Spotter and sniper working at sniper match
One of the few stages where the spotter works with the sniper.  I'm spotting and my sniper is punching holes in a 2 inch diameter target 89 yards away, after I tell him which colored circle to shoot.

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