An Off Day At The Range - 1

On Monday I morning I woke up feeling run down. In an effort to shake off the lousy feeling, I wanted to get up and moving. I started by hopping into the shower then making myself a piping hot cup of coffee. As I sipped my coffee and puffed on a cigar, I thought it would be fun to head over to the range while my wife, daughter, and dog slept in for the holiday.

When I arrived at the range there was a father and son enjoying their Independence Day by shooting together. I hung out at my car for a few minutes, at which point they approached me to let me know that they wouldn’t be too much longer (They were shooting rifle and I was planning on shooting pistol, which can’t be done at the same time). A few minutes later, the three of us were on the firing line together getting ready to send a variety of calibers down range.

I started the day with my wife’s .22 LR Beretta Neos. As usual, my shots were going high and to the right. To correct this, I held low and to the left. By holding about where I felt I needed to, my shots were grouping in a god position, although the group was getting spread out. I fired at least one-hundred rounds through the pistol and was fairly happy with the results.

With a smile on my face, I picked up my 9mm Smith & Wesson M&P. From fifteen yards, our group of three began firing. My first ten rounds were all over the target. Surprised by such a wild bunch of shots, I loaded another magazine and gave it another try. This time my shots were better but still in no real group. I began to get frustrated, which made the next magazine worse than the one before it.

At this point I am frustrated and determined to tighten the group. I take things slow and begin over-analyzing everything. I check my stance, my grip, the way I press the trigger. This makes things even worse and I begin thinking that I should just pack it up and head home instead of wasting a bunch of ammunition. The stubborn side of me said no, keep shooting until you get it right or run out of ammo. Well, I didn’t get it right and was completely out of 9mm with nothing to show for it besides holes spread wildly in a paper target,

Against my beter judgement, I packed up my Smith & Wesson M&P and got my Springfield XD Sub Compact ready to shoot. Instead of taping up the center mass section of my target, I thought that I would just shoot at the head area with the .40 S&W bullets. As you probably guessed, these shots were all over the place as well.

With the frustration mounting, I fired off a few magazines to try and bring the shots together into a decent group. On this day, it just wasn’t happening. After fifty rounds, I packed up my guns and cleaned up my brass. I said goodbye to the guys and made my way home.

I must have just had an off day. I haven’t shot that poorly in some time. What was supposed to be a relaxing morning at the range wound up being a frustrating waste of roughly one hundred fifty rounds of ammunition. Next time, I think I’ll accept the fact that I’m having an off day and pack it up early.

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