Outdoors in Maine: Extended-shot artists fueled by passion, filled with expertise


Most of us workaday, run-of-the mill commoners admire people who are pretty, pretty excellent at what they do.

Tom Brady throws a football like no other. Mookie Betts hits baseballs with a ability that brings baseball fans to their feet.

V. Paul Reynolds, Outdoors Columnist

Most of these folks who shine and standout from the crowd had been born with organic talent, but you can be positive that tough operate, dedication and practice got them exactly where they are.

There is likely one particular other ingredient: passion. They adore what they do and it offers them a capacity to concentrate with an uncommon intensity that is just not attainable to quite a few of us.

Marksmanship is no exception. Skeet shooter Tim Bradley is arguably one particular of the ideal shots in the planet. Beretta place him on the payroll. Take a appear at his jaw-dropping YouTube demonstrations of what he can do one particular-handed with a skeet gun. 4 or 5 clays at one particular throw!

A former SEAL, Bradley is a thing to see.

Speaking of SEALS, a quantity of military snipers, Chris Kyle and other individuals, have established lengthy-variety records in marksmanship. 4 or 5 are at the prime of the heap. The lengthy-distance record was set not so lengthy ago by a Marine in Afghanistan: two,700 yards. Picture! That is someplace in the neighborhood of a mile and a half.

These of us who hunt, most of us, operate at our marksmanship. In the East, deer hunters seldom kill a deer at additional than 50 yards, so a handful of trips to the variety or the gravel pit will generally suffice. Out West, although, lengthy shots on elk and mule deer are not uncommon at distances in excess of 300 yards.

Lately, whilst at a neighborhood gun variety, I was when once again in a position to poke some close-collectively holes in a 100-yard target. Not THAT close collectively, but close adequate. I do not take game shots considerably beyond 100 yards, even out West.

Although at the variety, club member and nationally active competitive shooter Butch Randall opened my eyes to just what he and other marksman like him can do with their ability and expertise when it comes to reaching out with surgical precision to six-inch lengthy variety targets.

Randall’s pride and joy is a .30 caliber hybrid rifle of his creation that fires a wildcat cartridge that he calls a .30 BR. It is equipped with a 55 energy Evening Force scope, festooned with knobs for dialing in windage and elevation. An elaborate and high-priced shooting “vice” rounds out the competitive shooting lashup.

Randall clearly loves his sport and is properly-versed in ballistics and the intricacies of hand-loading his personal ammo.

An enthusiastic, gentle man naturally skilled at his craft and prepared to share his expertise, it struck me that he is one particular of so quite a few millions of law-abiding, gun-appreciating Americans who you just under no circumstances hear about in the national gun debates.

By the way, with Randall’s guidance and his particular rifle, yours really place a bullet hole in a bullet hole at 100 yards. That under no circumstances occurred ahead of in my life and I anticipate that it under no circumstances will once again.

V. Paul Reynolds is editor of the Northwoods Sporting Journal. He is also a Maine guide and host of a weekly radio system, “Maine Outdoors,” heard at 7 p.m. Sundays on The Voice of Maine News-Speak Network. He has authored 3 books on line acquire information and facts is offered at www.maineoutdoorpublications.net.

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