Anyone that lives in the city can tell you just how difficult, limiting, and expensive shooting can be when you don’t have access to the country. I once joined a shooting range with the understanding that I’d be able to shoot photos and videos for this website, only to find out that they would later decide that wouldn’t be allowed (legal and PR fears running rampant). I’ve shot at ranges that only allowed a single round to be loaded into rifle magazines at a time. I’ve shot at ranges that don’t allow concealed or open carry. I’ve shot at ranges where only members could get dedicated lanes. I’ve paid nearly $20. to shoot for an hour. I’ve driven long distances to shoot. This all gets to you after a while! In-city gun ranges can be great, but for me it was time for a change.
A New Phase for Ultimate Reloader
This year my wife and I decided to fulfill a life-long dream of mine- to buy a cabin in the woods. On my 40th birthday I stood on my own land – 31 acres of it in Central Washington. Tucked up away in the hills this property afforts 360-degree privacy, great views, and is located on a country road behind a locked gate. Now I can shoot pistol, rifle, and shotgun and be my own rangemaster! This is country where packing a 44 Magnum is relevant… Now I can setup a reloading shack next to where I shoot and be able to test loads as they come off the press. In short- this changes everything. While we will still live in the city, we’ll be spending a LOT of time in the country and I’m really looking forward to incorporating this new venue into the content that I publish here on ultimatereloader.com. It’s going to be FUN!
Evening campfires at the property are a great way to take in the surroundings
New Friends and Shooting Buddies
After buying our place in the country it didn’t take long to meet people in the area, and it’s been great to make new friends, learn about the area, talk reloading, and to shoot together! Imagine being able to shoot pistol, shotgun, and rifle any time at ranges up to 1000 yards! Shooting for me has never been this enjoyable or relaxing. While on a recent work trip at the cabin, I had the opportunity to go shooting with friends Jim the Plumber, Kyle, and neighbor Ron the carpenter. Jim is particularly keen on long distance shooting, and after a hike up the hill with our rifles he got us all setup to shoot at 600 yard steel targets with his amazing custom rifles in 6.5x47mm and 338 Lapua. The 8-ounce triggers cleanly break without disturbing point of aim. AMAZING!
Jim the Plumber (rear) coaches Kyle (middle) on the 6.5×47 wile Ron (front) spots with his 300 Win Mag
Seth (11 years old, far) gets ready to shoot the 338 Lapua while Jim (near) spots with his scope
I had the opportunity to shoot both the 6.5×47 and the 338 Lapua rifles at 600 yards, and both proved to be deadly once Jim dialed in the “dope”. I can tell that I’ll be needing to put up steel all over my property, that’s for sure! This kind of shooting can be totally addicting…
My friend Kyle brought an AR-15 that he built from scratch, so we got to break in his rifle as well. It was great to do some red-dot shooting while standing in my meadow. No one to tell us what to do, just some good shooting and good times.
Kyle with his newly built AR-15
This meadow makes a great close-range rifle or pistol range, and I’m looking forward to putting up some reactive targets so that we can practice run-and-gun shooting. I could do that all day long!
Kyle firing his newly-built AR-15 at one of the many shooting spots on the property
Lions Tigers and Bears, Oh My!
One of the most exciting aspects of having a place in the country is all of the wildlife that you encounter. Along our canyon one will run into deer, elk, black bear, wolf, cougar, wild turkey, grouse, quail, owls, eagles, hawks, rattlesnakes, coyote, and marmot (to name a few ). Recently, while pushing a wheelbarrow of firewood through the darkness towards my fire pit I heard a rattlesnake rattle right by me (~3′ away). I was wearing sandals and shorts, so I was feeling particularly vulnerable. Here’s a picture of that fellow:
One of two rattlesnakes that Kyle and I ran into over the weekend
Time to load up some 44 Magnum shot loads for these guys! (I’ve seen 6 of them in the last couple months).
One of the reasons that I’m excited about this new location is all of the awesome shooting and reloading stories that I’ll incorporate right here on Ultimate Reloader. Have ideas for “in the field” reloading stories? Please leave a comment! You might even see me reloading progressive pistol ammo outside, who knows! I think it’s time to start thinking about some “reloading 50 BMG” content! Please stay tuned as the story unfolds…