U.S. Training Center Precision Rifle 1
November 22-24, 2010
Before I begin with the course I just want to comment on the facility. This is the first time I have been there and I was in awe the whole time. The facility was massive with great accommodations to include lodging and a mess hall. I could have spent the whole three days just exploring the facility. I did not stay on site (wives wanted to stay on the beach), but several people in the class did and they had nothing but good to say about the accommodations.
We started in the classroom and had the meet and greet with the instructors. Our main instructor was Tom (aka tomalibrando on here). We started from the bare basics going over the safety rules, different parts of the rifle, setting up the scope and rifle and different equipment. We then broke out the rifles and began fitting them to each shooter to include eye relief, cheek and butt adjustment.
We then got into the basics of marksmanship fundamentals, units of measurement, recording data, checking/torquing weapon, cleaning weapon, and the pre-fire checklist.
After lunch we went out to range 19 (1,200 yard range) to do some shooting. We started off by zeroing the weapons at 100 yards and talked about cold bore shots and grouping. We then moved out to 200 and 300 yards gathering dope for each.
We started day two back in the classroom to go over wind, reading mirage, hold-off adjustment, units of measurement, spotting and watching trace.
We then made it out to the range and started with a wind demonstration. They set off some smoke bombs to show the wind characteristics at different points on the range and the effect the terrain has on wind. The wind was about 10-15mph that day so we had some great practical training.
We started at 400 yards and worked our way back to 900 yards stopping every 100 yards. We were shooting on steel plates and were using a spotter to watch trace and give adjustment feedback to the shooter. We all learned a lot back at that distance with the effects of wind, spin drift and ammunition differences.
While back at 800 yards, momma bear and her two cubs decided to take a stroll on the range. A little while later a group of turkey decided to also take a stroll on the range. That was pretty brave of them given Thanksgiving was only two days away.
We again started the day briefly in the classroom to go over positional shooting. We then headed back out to the range.
We shot freehand, equipment/buddy supported and slung while standing, kneeling and sitting at 100, 200 and 300 yards.
In the afternoon we had a friendly competition where we put the skills we learned about hold-off to the test.
I was pared up with my father who took the class with me. We ended up winning the competition and my Dad was the only shooter to clean house with one shot hits on all targets. I of course threw a shot or two make him look good ;). Go team Gators!
We then had a sit down discussion going over equipment and anything else we had questions on. We took some group photos, passed out the class certificates and headed on our way.
Overall I was super impressed with the training, instructors and U.S. Training Center facilities. I could not have asked for any more from my experience, except to stay longer. I highly recommend USTC to anyone and everyone. You will not be disappointed. I look forward to the next class. Thanks to all the instructors and USTC for a great time.
I did carbine operator over the summer, we spent part of our last day on that range. Very nice.
Good writeup, great pics.