Monday, October 11, 2010

Amphibious Steel

Our trip over to the KRRC Steel Challenge match was kind of interesting. We made reservations for the Whidbey Island to Port Townsend ferry a couple of weeks ago, and when we go that way instead of going across the Clinton-Mukilteo and then Edmonds-Kingston ferries it saves us about $40 in ferry fares. The problem with the Port Townsend ferry route is that if the wind is blowing, or it's foggy, or the tide is too low, or whatever, they cancel the run. The weather forecast looked like fog shouldn't be a problem, but there was some wind forecast. Not a big wind storm, but some wind, none the less. The ferry did leave almost on time though, and even through the whitecaps we only got hit with salt spray a couple of times. Because of the rough water the skipper took a longer route across to Port Townsend, avoiding much of the worst areas. We arrived a bit late, but not bad considering conditions. The one hour plus drive to the range near Bremerton was uneventful. After stopping by the range for a bit, we headed down to the Big Apple Diner for dinner, one of our favorite places to eat. After a big dinner we headed back to the range for the night. Even though gun ranges are pretty noisy during the day, they are usually very quiet at night, and  the KRRC range was nice and quiet all night. We hit the sack early and got a good night's sleep, although one of the outdoor parking lot lights would turn on and off every so often, and that woke KeeWee up a few times. I didn't notice it at all.

Saturday morning I pitched in and helped get the steel plates and target stands put out into the various pistol bays for the match. The wind from Friday had disappeared, but was now replaced by heavy mist alternating with rain. It looked like it was going to be a wet one, for sure. Fortunately there were covered areas at each bay so you could keep out of the rain most of the time.

After the short shooter's meeting we headed out to shoot the match, and try to keep from getting totally soaked in the process. Although it was raining most of the day, the temperature was mild and there was no wind, so even when you got wet it wasn't all that cold. Ty, Aaron, and Steve (?) from Yakima came West to give KRRC a try, and we squadded together, along with Scott, Matt, Matt's Mom Liz, and KeeWee. Even though we all got pretty wet, we had a great time!

After the match most of the shooter's took off, leaving just a few of us to break down all the stages and haul everything back into storage. If you shoot IPSC, SASS, IDPA, or steel matches, you should make an effort to help set up and break down the match. Those of us that set the match up would like to go home right after the match too, and if you hang around after the match for a bit and help us put everything away, then WE get to go home sooner, too. At least ASK the match director if he needs a hand. If he's got enough help already, that's fine, but most of the time it's the same folks doing all the hard work, so why not show a little appreciation and help out a bit?

By the time we had put everything away, we had run out of time to get something to eat before driving back to Port Townsend to catch the ferry back to Whidbey Island. I had a breakfast roll left over from morning, and Keewee had some peanut butter and bread, so that was our "On the Road" dinner as we drove back to Port Townsend. The ferry ride back to Whidbey was much smoother, and by 8 p.m. we were back home, tired, still a bit soggy, and ready for some sleep.

A long, soggy day, but a lot of fun in spite of the weather!

Next match: Paul Bunyan Steel in Puyallup on October 17th.

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At Monday, October 11, 2010 2:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good to see you there! I'd have stuck around to help, but my friend's ankle (he's had 4 operations and carries a nice collection of screws in it) was acting up from standing on it all day. Next match we'll bring chairs and lend a hand cleaning up.

Now I need to find some more .22lr ammo to shoot -- I've nearly exhausted my cache of PMC Zapper, and wouldn't you know it the manufacturer has discontinued it.


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