Thursday, October 30, 2008

One e-Postal Match To Go!

A while back Curtis and I decided to add one additional e-Postal match for this season. Even though the weather isn't always cooperative this time of year for some of us, you still can make it out to the range for the match, or, if you have an indoor range nearby, you can shoot this one indoors.

for the rules, details, and how to download the targets.


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

50 Caliber Barrett at GBR-III Video

There were a lot of cool things out at the range, but this was clearly one of the coolest!


Sunday, October 26, 2008

The TRUE Rednecks

We have enjoyed the redneck jokes for years. It's time to take a reflective look at the core beliefs of a culture that values home, family, country and God. If I had to stand before a dozen terrorists who threaten my life, I'd choose a half dozen or so rednecks to back me up. Tire irons, squirrel guns and grit -- that's what rednecks are made of. I hope I am one of those. If you feel the same, pass this on to your redneck friends. Ya'll know who ya'are.

You might be a redneck if:
It never occurred to you to be offended by the phrase, 'One nation, under God.'

You might be a redneck if:
You've never protested about seeing the 10 Commandments posted in public places.

You might be a redneck if:
You still say 'Christmas' instead of 'Winter Festival.'

You might be a redneck if:
You bow your head when someone prays.

You might be a redneck if:
You stand and place your hand over your heart when they play the National Anthem.

You might be a redneck if:
You treat our armed forces veterans with great respect, and always have.

You might be a redneck if:
You've never burned an American flag, nor intend to.

You might be a redneck if:
You know what you believe and you aren't afraid to say so, no matter who is listening.

You might be a redneck if:
You respect your elders and raised your kids to do the same.

You might be a redneck if:
You'd give your last dollar to a friend in need.

God Bless the USA

Thanks to Luke for sending this my way.....

Saturday, October 25, 2008

GBR-III -- Heading Home.....

Monday afternoon KeeWee and I caught the free Circus Circus shuttle out to the Reno airport to catch our flight home. Checking in and checking our bags went uneventfully, thank goodness, and we headed out to our gate.

Just in case you didn't leave all your money in the Reno casinos, the airport one armed bandits give you one last chance to go home broke!

I haven't quite got used to the idea of slot machines in the airport waiting areas. The "Jetway" covered walkway doesn't actually go to the airplane. At the outer end of it you make a 90 degree turn and walk down a flight of steps to the concrete., then over to the airplane and up it's own set of stairs.

Horizon Air Bombardier Q400 turboprop aircraft.

Six big composite propeller blades suck up almost 5,000 shaft horsepower.

Looking back towards Reno and the Reno airport.

Reno 'burbs.

Two forest/brush fires in Northern California.

Our flight path took us a bit East of two fairly good sized fires, a smaller one in the foreground, and a much larger one to the West. The air was blue with smoke, as you can see.

The rest of the trip home was boring, and that's just how I like it! The flight to Seattle took about two hours, then nearly a two hour wait for the shuttle bus to Whidbey Island. The bus ride to get us back to Whidbey, including the ferry ride, added another couple of hours to the trip. Finally, we were home.

Exhausted, but home!!


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Gun Blogger Rendezvous III - Part Four

Sunday morning a few of us still in Reno got together for breakfast. After breakfast we headed out in different directions for some last minute sightseeing, shopping, and exploring. Phil and David (and a couple of other folks?) were off to see the car museum. (If you've never seen the Reno car museum, it's definitely worth seeing!) Joe, Barb, KeeWee and I had several stops planned.

Barb had heard about a big liquidator/overstock/remnant store in Reno that was worth checking out. It was kinda interesting, and I picked up a fly fishing book "Go-To Flies" by Tony Lolli. I contributed a bit when the book was originally put together, and it really is an excellent reference on flies that actually catch fish. No, I don't get a dime for plugging it.

Go-To Flies by Tony Lolli and 101 fly fishing guides!

After cruising the liquidator store, we decided to go check out a new Sporting Goods store called Scheel's Outfitters that had just opened a couple of weeks ago in Reno. The store was so new we couldn't even find driving directions on Joe's GPS/Maps gizmo. As we were exploring I spotted A Shepler's Western Wear store. I had heard that Shepler's had a lot of good stuff but I'd never been in one of their stores. I was kinda looking for a good pair of cowboy boots for Cowboy Fast Draw matches. I didn't find anything I liked, but KeeWee found some clothes she liked and I think Barb did too. We got to talking with the guy at the cash register and he had helped to wire the new Scheel's store, so he knew exactly where it was and how to get there. COOL!

......... on the road again!

Scheel's Outfitters in Reno.

When we pulled into the parking lot it was a bit mind-boggling to see just how big the store actually was. In the above picture I was a long ways back and full wide angle and I still couldn't get it all in the picture. It turns out it's 300,000 square feet, all in one building. To put that in perspective, an acre is 43,560 square feet! That figures out to 6.89 acres of floor space.

Scheel's parking lot tram.

The parking lot was pretty full, and they even have a tram to shuttle you from the outer areas of the parking lot to the store entrance.

One end of the archway aquarium.

Just inside the main entrance is a huge aquarium/archway/portal that you walk through to get into the main part of the store. I'd guess it must be fifteen or twenty feet from column to column. Somewhere I read that it holds 16,000 gallons of water. In short, it's big, and it's spectacular!

One of the aquarium columns.

After you have passed through the archway aquarium, you see the fully restored 1930's era ferris wheel in the center of the store. It's 65 feet high. If a building story is roughly ten feet, then it's six and a half stories high.

The Ferris wheel.

We were all getting hungry, so we hit the Scheel's restaurant first for some lunch. The food was good! After lunch we were off to explore.

All over the store there were displays of taxidermy, full size animated US presidents, and other stuff to grab your attention.

The store was packed with folks checking it out!

Barb and KeeWee headed off in one direction and Joe and I made a bee line for the gun department. It was well stocked and the prices were clearly marked.


Even more guns.....

Yessir, lotsa guns!!

Taxidermy mountain.

On the second floor there was a huge taxidermy mountain. Very impressive!


Also on the second floor was a three car NASCAR racing simulator. The lineup was long to give it a try, or I would have been in one of those cars all day!

Three car NASCAR Racing simulator.

The cars were each mounted on hydraulics so they bumped, tipped and bounced around syncronised with what the car was doing.

NASCAR Simulator - Check out the wrap-around visuals for the driver!

Float plane 3/4 scale model. Even so, it was probably a 20 or 25 foot wingspan!

After several hours at Scheel's we were starting to get worn out, and we still hadn't seen all of the store! We'll have to come back next year and see the rest of it......

After Scheel's it was back to the hotel to clean up a bit, then Mr. And Mrs. JimmyB, Joe, Barb, KeeWee and I headed out to dinner at a restaurant (The Brown Bear, or something like that?) that we had spotted in our travels. The dinner was good, but it was kinda sad to realize that the weekend was finally coming to an end. We had all had a wonderful time, saw some new sights, enjoyed each other's company, emptied brass, gained weight, met new folks, and raised over $2000 for Project Valour-IT. Each year the Rendezvous gets better, and this was definitely the best Rendezvous ever. I can hardly wait until next year!


August e-Postal Match Results are up!

The AUGUST e-Postal match results are now posted over at True Blue Sam's place. There was a delay in getting the results sorted out, but Sam stepped up to the plate and finished the tabulating and posting for us. Thanks, Sam!

AUGUST e-Postal Match Results

Don't forget we've got another e-Postal match underway right now and there's still time to download the targets, shoot 'em up, and send in pictures and your scores. This month's match info is HERE at Traction Control.

There's only one more match left until early next Spring, so you better get on it!


Gun Blogger Rendezvous III Report - Part 3

On Saturday morning we were up bright (?) and early for breakfast. We went to the Buffet downstairs and pigged out big time.

Here's my first (!) plate full of breakfast. French toast, a waffle, a pear, a peach, whipped cream, biscuits and gravy, scrambled eggs, bacon, and pork sausage. Desert for the first plate full was a maple bar doughnut.

It's about a half hour drive out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, also called the Pyramid range, as it's on the road to Pyramid lake. Although there was no snow on the ground at the range, the nearby hills were dusted in white.


Vintage battle rifles......

Evil Black Rifles, shotguns, high power pistols, and more.

Here's the Para USA .45 that Para USA donated to our fund raising raffle for Project Valour-IT. The picture doesn't do it justice. Everyone there wanted it! It just didn't seem right to raffle it off without thoroughly testing it, however........

The long distance - High accuracy end of the shooting line.

Yes, it WAS cold!!

As mid-afternoon approached, the cold was getting to us a bit, so we loaded up and headed back to the hotel to thaw out and get ready for the Pizza feed and raffle. And refreshments! Always time for more refreshments.............

Around 6pm. we gathered in the hospitality room for all the pizza we could eat, along with refreshments, munchies, and the Commandress's "Blog Famous" brownies. YUMM....

After eating all we could hold, or perhaps a bit more, KeeWee, Mrs JimmyB, and Liz sold raffle tickets to those who hadn't yet bought them, and for those who had bought some already, they sold them a few more! In the raffle was the beautiful Para USA .45, a 9mm. Hi Point pistol, a $2,000 certificate for four days of training at Front Sight, a Brownell's super deluxe range bag, a Dillon Ammo bag, and a Kalishnikitty shirt. That's just the goodies in the raffle!

The raffle prizes.

I was running the raffle drawing and the door prize drawings so I didn't have much time to take any pictures, but KeeWee took some HERE.

A small part of the door prizes.

Thanks to our sponsors and donors we had lots of very nice door prizes and everyone attending got several great prizes.

The pizza feed, raffle, and door prize drawings were the last scheduled event for this year's Gun Blogger Rendezvous, although the traditional refreshments and conversations went well into the night. Some of the folks would be leaving in the morning, some later in the day, and a few of us were staying an extra day, returning home on Monday. Sunday is a good day for exploring Reno, checking out the car museum, or some of the other interesting places.

Those of us who would still be around in the morning agreed to meet for breakfast, then head out for some Sunday exploring.

-- End of Part Three --


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gun Blogger Rendezvous III - Part Two

Once we returned from Cabela's we had a few minutes to swing by our rooms to change clothes and clean up a bit before heading back to the hospitality room for meeting with Ashley Varner from the NRA, followed by Show & Tell.

Ashley Varner of the NRA.

We had a good discussion with Ashley about the gun bloggers, the election, political issues, and so forth. Ashley also brought along some very cool NRA shirts, plus bumper stickers, buttons, and more.

Still no word on the missing wheelbarrows of cash supposedly headed my way, though. I guess I just need to be patient.....

Part of the Show & Tell stuff. Everything from an AR-7 to a Barrett 50. The red STI 2011 is the same one on the cover of Brownell's catalog #61. It shoots as well as it looks!

After Ashley and the NRA we moved into show & Tell. There was so much neat stuff there it would have taken two days to go over it all in detail!

Showing off the Barrett!

It's even legal in California! Not counting the dual drum magazine, I suspect. That was another blogger's magazine.......

Even MORE Show & Tell!

Kevin shows off his Para Gun Blog .45. He explained a bit about the LDA (Light Double Action) trigger, and how he liked the Para.

Joe talking about concealed carry holsters. Joe also showed off his Para Gun Blog .45 and demonstrated the Crimson Trace grip and laser sight.

WOW, just WOW......

After Show & Tell we had a little time to swing by our rooms, clean up a bit, change clothes, and head down to the hospitality room to head out to the Basque Banquet dinner. It was rather chilly out and just a bit farther than you'd comfortably like to walk, so we car-pooled up and headed over to Louis' Basque restaurant. The dinner was OK but nothing really outstanding. It was also a bit pricey. I later heard that the previous chef had left and the new one wasn't as good, but was improving. Even so, we had a great time over dinner.

No one went away hungry.

After dinner we all got back together for refreshments and conversation in the hospitality room. With all the refreshments, by the end of the Rendezvous we must have been REALLY refreshed!

Some of the gang kept going well into the night, but I faded out and headed to the room for some sleep. Tomorrow would be range day and the pizza feed, so I wanted to be rested.......

-- End of Part Two --


Monday, October 20, 2008

GBR-III Raises $2,030 For Valour-IT

I just finished sitting down with the folks at Barrett Escrow and sorting out the final accounting for this year's Gun Blogger Rendezvous, just concluded in Reno at the Circus Circus. After subtracting the pizza feed cost and a small handling fee charged by the hotel to receive two UPS packages, the final total came to $2,030.00.

I didn't take out any of my expenses, and paid for my long distance phone calls, my accommodations, some of the munchies and most of the soft drinks out of my own pocket as my financial contribution to the Rendezvous. Many of those attended also contributed to the financial success of the Rendezvous by providing refreshments, munchies, and other things, and for this we are all greatly appreciative.

We also need to thank our generous sponsors and contributors, including

Thanks are also in order to the bloggers who also donated items to the raffle and door prizes. Without all of your help this year's success could not have happened.

This year's Gun Blogger Rendezvous was by far the best ever, and I'm already working on some ideas to make next year's Rendezvous even better!

It's not too early to start thinking about making it to next year's Rendezvous!

Hope to see you all again next year...............


Sunday, October 19, 2008

More GBR-III Pictures & Posts

Everyone's getting a lot of their GBR-III posts up, and here's links to some newer posts. All include lots of great pictures:

KeeWee's Corner:
GBR Reno Trip Part One
GBR Reno Trip Part Two
GBR Reno Trip Part Three

Walls of the City:
Photographic Overload


Saturday, October 18, 2008

Gun Blogger Rendezvous - Part One

Our day started out with an hour and a half airport shuttle ride from Whidbey Island, across Puget Sound from Clinton to Mukilteo on the Washington State Ferry, then South to Seattle Tacoma International Airport.

Security was only annoying to the usual levels, although my belt buckle, which didn't used to set off their machines, now does. I DID remember to put my belt back on BEFORE bending over to put my shoes on, though. Mooning the TSA might just be taken in several possible wrong ways, none of which do I want to discuss in polite company.

When we got to the departure gate for our flight we waited and waited for the boarding call, but finally they announced that the flight was late and the new departure gate was at the other end of the airport. In fact a very long walk plus a subway ride to get there. Fortunately the Horizon Air ticket Counter lady summoned one of those electric golf cart like vehicles to get us to the other gate in time. The flight was now even more delayed than it was. Alaska Airlines discontinued flying 737's to Reno from Seattle, and now their partner, Horizon, is flying turboprops on the same route instead. Interestingly enough the flight time is about the same.

Our Horizon Air Q400 on the ramp in Seattle.

Once we finally got to Reno we caught the free Circus Circus shuttle to the hotel, checked in, and headed to the hospitality room to meet up with whoever else was here. About half the gang was here, so without dallying around much we car-pooled up to head over to the NRA Press Conference at the Grand Sierra hotel a few miles away. When we entered the lobby of the Grand Sierra there was Ashley Varner from the NRA to greet us and show us the way to the press conference. It had been promoted as a "Big Election Announcement" in the NRA press releases, so we were hoping for something big. It didn't happen. The message was basically that Obama is very "anti-gun" (no surprise) and that the NRA was endorsing McCain. Again, no surprise. Wayne LaPierre was a good speaker, though, and I enjoyed hearing him in person.

Wayne LaPierre

After the press conference I asked Wayne about my wheelbarrow full of cash, as it still had not arrived and I was getting concerned. On second thought I guess I should not have asked about that in public as it's supposed to be a big secret, only recently discovered by the liberal bloggers. He just said that he didn't know, but I'm sure he'll take care of it......

The Usual Suspects. That's Ashley on the far right.

After the press conference we headed back to the Circus Circus for dinner. We decided to try out the Gecko's BBQ downstairs. I was pleasantly surprised with how tasty the food was. Possibly the best meal of the entire weekend, and reasonably priced, to boot!

A table surrounded by hungry bloggers and shooters!

After dinner we headed up to the hospitality room for an evening of refreshments, munchies, and conversation. As the evening wore on more bloggers started to show up. The bull sessions ran well into the night, but eventually the travel (and maybe some of the beer, wine, and excellent Scotch) started to take its toll, and everyone wandered off to their rooms to get some sleep, as Friday was scheduled to be a big day.

At 8:15am we gathered, somewhat groggily, to go downstairs for breakfast. After a filling, but over-priced breakfast, we car-pooled it to head 12 miles West to Verdi, Nevada, the location of the recently opened Cabela's store. When we got there the weather wasn't too bad at all, with even a little blue sky poking through.

The main Entrance to Cabela's.

We had coordinated with Cabela's in advance and they were expecting us. We were met at the front door by Gary Shank, head of the gun Department. Gary showed us around the store, and then took us back to the Gun library. The gun library was impressive, with row after row and shelf after shelf of rare, valuable, and collectible rifles, handguns, and shotguns. Several were in the $30,000 dollar range.

Looking down the center of Cabela's.

Display over the front entrance.

A part of the gun library.

Regular price $39,000, marked down to only $30,000. I suppose I should have picked it up. You can always use another truck gun......

Gary Shank shows us what a $35,000 rifle looks like.

The Taxidermy Mountain display.

One of the fish tanks.

The fishing tackle department.

The shooting gallery.

Gary gave us all a handful of tokens for the shooting gallery. The rifles fire a beam of light (infrared?) and if you hit the round target whatever is next to the target moves, wiggles, tips over, or growls at you. Actually, it was kinda fun!

After wandering all over the store it was approaching lunch time, so we grabbed lunch at the Cabela's restaurant in the store. After lunch we headed back to the hotel, as there was still a lot of activities scheduled for the rest of the day. When we stepped out of Cabela's we were greeted by nearly an inch of sloppy snow, and big wet snowflakes falling from the sky.

Driving back to the hotel. Not exactly the kind of day you'd want to be outside!

Fortunately the drive back was sloppy but uneventful. We still had a lot on the schedule for the day, including meeting with Ashley Varner from the NRA, Show & Tell, a Basque Banquet, and bull sessions and refreshments well into the night.

-- end of Part One --


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