I laughed out loud when I saw the poster for the Springfield Armory M1A Match at their store on Commercial Row early this week. Last year it rained- rained like-you-were-growing-corn or getting-readyto-pair-up-animals together rain- the whole match last year. The photo on the poster is of the firing line and it looks green and soggy. Of COURSE it's a bad photo. Looked like it was shot through an algea filter. Terrible day, terrible photo.
I was shooting legendary curmudgeon TSRA Coach Dick Curry's M1A for the match. The match is fired from 300 yards and I asked Dick what the elevation was on his rifle for 300. He thought for a while and then brightened and said: "Up 24." On the first shot I warned my scorer that I had an unzeroed rifle and I wanted him to watch the bullet trace in case I wasn't on paper. I rolled into position and broke a good shot. Nothing. The scorer offered that it looked over the target "about ten feet." I shot another while he watched and he said when he saw it last, it was going into low Earth orbit over the polar regions. I started cranking down and zeroed the rifle at Up 3, not 24. I probably sunk a small pleasure craft in the Canadian Maritime Provinces with my first three sighting shots.
I was soaked, rain was slanting down and I was very happy to be shooting someone else's rifle.
I've noticed all week how HAPPY everyone is. Armed, sunburned, out on the range for eight hours a day....and damn glad to be there. Nice to be around happy people doing something they love.