Shooting “Courses of Fire”
Lately we’ve been doing a lot of IDPA-like (International Defensive Pistol Association) shooting at the range.
Shooting various “courses of fire” makes it so much more interesting and challenging than just stationary target shooting. Not only do you have to problem solve how to shoot the course – but then you have to move, shoot and reload while balancing accuracy with speed.
If you would like to learn more about the International Defensive Pistol Association - here's a link to their website:
Went Stargazing to See Jupiter and the Stars
With stargazing on our minds lately - this weekend we went out to a local Astronomy get-together to look at the night sky. There were telescopes ranging from 2” apertures to 14” apertures - so there were lots of celestial objects to look at - if you knew what you were looking for.
During the evening we saw (1) Jupiter and the 4 Galilean Moons (Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto), (2) Mizar and Alcor - two stars that form a double star in the handle of the Big Dipper (aka Ursa Major), (3) the "Double-Double" stars of Epsilon 1/2 and Delta 1/2 in the constellation of Lyra near Vega and (4) even a low earth orbit satellite zipping by. Although we did not take any direct photos of the planets, moons and stars that we saw - here are some representative pictures of what they looked like.
Bought New Ultimate Survival Technologies Brightforce 2AAA LED Flashlight
With the days getting longer lately we’ve found ourselves at the shooting range as the sun starts to set. Because of this we decided to add a small flashlight to our range bag. Because we wanted a small light that was bright and durable we purchased a UST Brightforce LED flashlight.
You can find the details about the Brightforce LED flashlight on the Shooting/ Range Items and Tools page.
Bought New Adventure Medical Kits - Ultralight/ Watertight Medical Kit
Lately we’ve been at the range shooting with other people when someone got a cut or other small scrape that needed a Band-Aid. Although we had a small First Aid Kit in the trunk of our car we didn’t have one with us on the firing line. To remedy this situation we added an Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight/Watertight Medical Kit.3 to our range bag.
You can find the details about the Medical Kit.3 on the Shooting/ Range Items and Tools page.
Bought New Hyve Technologies 9mm Magazine Extensions
If you have a 9mm S&W M&P Shield and are looking to extend the magazine capacity from 8 to 10 rounds then you might want to check out the magazine extension that Hyve Technologies is making. The Hyve extension replaces the footplate on the stock 8 round magazine and increases its capacity to 10 rounds while retaining the lines of the Shield’s grip.
You can find the details about the Hyve 9mm magazine extension on the Shooting/Magazines page.
Attended United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) Course
This weekend we spent two days at a United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) course. The USPSA is one of the premier competitive shooting organizations in the world and a member of the International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) that conducts shooting matches around the world. The USPSA has nearly 400 clubs all over the United States.
Practical shooting, also sometimes known as dynamic shooting or action shooting, is a shooting sport where the competitors try to unite precision, power and speed, by using a firearm of a certain minimum power (caliber) to score as many points as possible during the shortest amount of time, with penalties for inaccurate shooting. The courses are called "stages", and are shot individually by the shooters. Usually the shooter must move and shoot from several positions, fire under or over obstacles and in other unfamiliar positions. There are no standard exercises or set arrangement of the targets, and the courses are often designed so that the shooter must be inventive, and therefore the solutions of exercises sometimes varies between shooters. Although the weather was a little iffy on the first day it was a great course and everyone seemed to have a good time in the range pits.
You can find out more about the USPSA at their website: https://www.uspsa.org/
Here are some photos of the stage layouts and outdoor shooting stages from the USPSA course that we attended.
Bought New Magpul AR15/M4 Armorer's Wrench
If you work on your firearms (to either clean, modify or enhance them) then you need the right tools for the job. Luckily most of the tools that you need are common everyday tools like screwdrivers, punches, Allen wrenches and small mallets. But if you work on an AR-15/M4 platform there is probably one unique tool that you should have – an Armorer’s Wrench. Even though it is probably the most expensive wrench on the market we bought the Magpul Armorer's Wrench since it also seems to be the best and most useful wrench out there.
You can find the details about this Armorer’s Wrench on the Shooting/ Range Items and Tools page.
Added Photos of Some of our Adventures in Maryland, Washington DC and Gettysburg
We just got back from a trip to Maryland, Washington DC and Pennsylvania. Saw lots of interesting historic sites as we hiked through the Maryland countryside, the heart of DC and Gettysburg.
In Maryland we saw the sites of Point Lookout Prison (the largest Union prison camp for Confederate soldiers of the Civil War), Fort Lincoln (one of three forts constructed for the defense of Point Lookout) and the statue commemorating Benjamin Welch Owens Confederate States of America (CSA) Medal of Honor actions at Gettysburg.
Although not "backcountry" hiking our trip to DC qualified as a 10 mile "urban" hike. We walked everywhere and saw everything that we could fit in. Saw the Air and Space Museum, Natural History Museum, National Archives, National Gallery of Art, Capitol Building , Washington Monument, WWII Monument, Viet Nam Veterans Memorial, Lincoln Monument, Korean War Monument, White House (even got to see the President's helicopters fly in) and the Hamilton statue at the Treasury Building. The weather was 70 degrees and sunny with a slight breeze and reasonable humidity - so it was as close to a perfect as you could hope to have in DC.
In Gettysburg, after going through the museum and the Cyclorama (a 360° cylindrical painting of the battle, originally commissioned in 1884, that's 42 feet high and 377 feet in circumference), we hiked all over the battlefield - focusing on Little Roundtop, the Devil's Den, the Bloody Wheatfield and the Peach Orchard since that is where the most critical fighting occurred.
You can see all the photos of our Adventures on the Adventures/North America page.
Top 10 Items Sold at the Auction
Here's a brief summary of the 10 highest priced items that sold at the James D. Julia "Extraordinary Firearms" auction in Maine that we recently went to.
They range from $80,500 to $460,000:
Photos from Our 2 Days at the "Extraordinary Firearms” Auction
On 10 and 11 April we went to Maine to the James D. Julia "Extraordinary Firearms" Auction. At the auction they were auctioning off everything from a single action Colt revolver that had been forensically proven to have been at Little Big Horn with The 7th Cavalry and Custer - to a WWII German MG-42 complete with tripod. There were some amazing firearms there. Ranging from the 1500's to today; historic to one of a kind. We all had a great time. In case you are interested the Colt revolver sold for $400,000.
If you want to see everything that they had for sale you should check out their site at:
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