It’s no big secret among my friends, gun-related or not, that I’m easy to sell on an adventure. Some of my best memories have come from saying yes when I know the response should have been no. Nick has taken advantage multiple times, notably by challenging me to run my Garand in a local carbine match. So I should have seen it coming when my instant message client at work popped up with a note from my coworker Jacob . . .
Jacob: “Have you signed up for the Bushnell Brawl yet?”
Jacob: “You should”
Tyler: “Is that the event with the long range shooting and the helicopter?”
Tyler: “Didn’t you get last place your first time out?”
Jacob: “Yes. But I won a McMillan A5 for my performance”
Tyler: “I don’t have a rifle for this event”
Jacob: “I’m coming over to your desk”
A few minutes later, a tall, bearded technologist was at my desk explaining that his shooting partner, and a fellow coworker had an “extra” rifle that I could use. And that he’d be happy to let me use all his reloading equipment. Really the only thing I’d need was some gear and a scope. And a great attitude. I was sold.
Later that week, said coworker brought me a Rem 700 action rebarreled in .260 Remington sitting comfortably in a KRG X-Ray chassis. Shortly thereafter, a package arrived from Bushnell containing a HDMR 3.5-21. It wouldn’t be fair to go shoot the Bushnell Brawl with anything other than a Bushnell optic, I figured.
Earlier this week, some mag pouches for AICS magazines arrived along with some rain gear and miscellaneous doo dads. I also found my good attitude while I was rooting around in the garage, so I think I’m set.
I’m not really sure what to expect out of this match. It’s part of the aptly-named Precision Rifle Series, but from what I can glean, it’s one of the most difficult matches of the year for that group. The accompanying pictures were shot at a practice day we put together out at the local range.
After establishing zeroes and making sure our bullets were flying true, the guys who had been to a Brawl before told me to stop wasting ammo shooting strong side prone. I spent the rest of the day looking through my left eye and fumbling with a new rifle. As I’m sure you can imagine, this is going to be a riot.
As I’d alluded to earlier, one of the stages is shot from a flying helicopter. And it looks like there’s some running and gunning, too. I certainly have all the gear necessary to compete, but skillset is a tossup. I’m a decent rifleman and hunting out of vehicles and on foot for a good part of my life has forced me to make good use of impromptu steadying aids. But, as someone who as competed in precisely zero precision matches, I anticipate a cataclysm of embarrassing events. As always, my embarrassment and shame will be on full display.
Our group is rolling out Thursday morning for Kingsville, Texas. We’ll get our briefing on the stages and such that evening. The competition is Friday and Saturday. I’m taking a bunch of cameras and a laptop so I can keep you updated throughout the day. Be sure to check this space for the hijinks over the weekend.