Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Trap, Skeet, and Sporting Clays

  1. #1
    Member MNViking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Anchorage, AK
    Posts
    746

    Default Trap, Skeet, and Sporting Clays

    Hello all, since I have been out of the shooting business for about 12 years (except an M16) I've been thinking of getting involved in some trap, skeet, and/or sporting clays to get my skills back up to hunting level, and to meet some people/future hunting partners when I get to Alaska. What is the availability and popularity of these sports in the Anchorage/Eagle River area?

    All I've ever really done is some backyard trap with my grandfather and uncle when I was a kid. All my other shotgunning was learn as I hunt, and I never really attained the skill level I wanted.

    Also, it's a good excuse to buy another gun, even though I'd start with my trusty old mossburg 500. I'd love to pick up an old Browning Superposed.

  2. #2

    Default Shooting Sports

    Basically, these are 3 distinct games.For very casual participation, a good O/U or semi can work.Screw ins are mandatory,meaning that fixed chokes could be a severe handicap.

    Really good trap and skeet shooters rarely miss.They use very specialized equipment built and adjusted to the specific game.A true skeet gun is a major handicap at even 16 yard trap, much less handicap yardages.A true trap gun is very tough to use on a skeet field.

    Sporting clays has grown by leaps and bounds over the past 15 to 20 years.There are basically no defined parameters to set up a SC field or course.In this, it is more akin to golf, where every course is different. In trap and skeet, other than the location, climate , wind and background, they are identical.

    Sporting clays also uses a variety of targets and target sizes..trap and skeet birds are uniform.

    My advice would be to try all 3 games several times with borrowed or rented guns.See which appeals you the most and then make a purchase decision based on your game preference.

    Any attempt to find one gun for all three games will be a compromise.The closest I've ever come is the following...and it is still a compromise:

    * Skeet Citori High post rib with 28" barrels
    * Stock custom fitted by the late Jack "Doc' Docweiller for a 60/40 pattern
    * Pro ported
    * Briley X2 chokes
    * Kickease pad with rounded edges
    * triggers reworked for 3.5lb release

    While this is a compromise, it will inkspot trap birds...works very well in skeet...and is usable, but a bit cumbersome in SC.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Member JOAT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Soldotna, ALASKA since '78
    Posts
    3,720

    Default Lots of opportunity in Ak

    Birchwood range in Eagle River has some great trap, skeet, and sporting clays ranges with a large following. They are open most days with different hours for club members and general public (there are some member only days as I recall). I believe there are trap and skeet fields at the Rabbit Creek range on the south side of Anchorage, but I've never been there so can't tell you anything about it. I also understand there is a good range on the military base as well. Seems there was another thread on this topic that gave details of that range.

    You'll be just fine with your 500 for starting out. I've been shooting trap and skeet with an 870 for years; just put on a 28" vent-rib barrel with a good selection of Rem Chokes and it will hold up against any other gun at the range. But, you can certainly choose to drop a couple grand on a purpose-built O/U twice-shooter. I always figured I could get 3 other guns for that price and my $400 Rem 870 does the same job so why bother? So you can just get whatever good wingshooter you'll be using in the field and use that for your clay games (per the original purpose of the clay games).
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

  4. #4

    Default

    Yep, good answers all. One thing I would add is if you want to get serious about this, do as was already memtioned. Used borrowed or rented guns to see how you shoot with them. Your Mossberg 500 is fine, unless you really get the bug and get serious competitively. Then, a semi-auto or O/U is the way to go. Trap is a bit different, as a pump works well with the right chokes from all ranges. A dedicated trap gun is built to force you to shoot low, improving your hit percentage. It isn't much good for anything else.

    I started out with an 870, too. I shot skeet with it for years, and the pump action was instinct after awhile, but I shot a buddies O/U and was hooked. I still have that 870, but it is used mostly in the field, and at the trap range.

    Paying upwards of $2,000.00 for a dedicated skeet gun sounds far-fetched for some, but once you get the bug, it will be worth every penny. You can also do like a lot of folks do, buy an O/U field gun, and use it for skeet/sporting clays and in the field. I have a Beretta 686 .12 gauge I do this with. My .28 and .410 skeet guns are Browning Citori skeet grade, and I just love to shoot with them. Haven't been out much lately, but am getting the bug to start again.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  5. #5

    Default

    Are there any ranges on the bases in the Anchorage area? Lots of other large bases around the country have them, and some are quite good.

    The most recent one I shot on was while visiting family members in Virginia, and I was impressed- with the facilities, with the people running it, with the "regulars" who haunted it, and with the variety of guns available to rent. If you had a problem or a question with any stage, there was always a friendly face there to help you sort it out.

    I've never seen one in civvy land run as well as the average range on post.

  6. #6
    Member MNViking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Anchorage, AK
    Posts
    746

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JOAT View Post
    So you can just get whatever good wingshooter you'll be using in the field and use that for your clay games (per the original purpose of the clay games).
    That's the master plan. I've always wanted an O/U and I've been infatuated with my grandfathers Superposed for 20 years.

    Thanks for the info everyone!

  7. #7
    Member schmidty_dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Kansas
    Posts
    535

    Default On Base

    I have used both the ranges at Cannon AFB and up here at Eielson. I wouldn't be surprised if Elmendorf had the same setup. Trap and skeet, generally on the same range and you just have the guy at the range set it to go for ya. I like skeet better because the clays are kinda flying all over back and forth but trap is cool too because you are never sure which direction its gonna come out of there.

    Usually there are a bunch of older guys that hang around the range that have been doing it for years and will have lots of experience to share with you. I found this a great help when getting started at Cannon. They let me try out their guns too! I'd definitely check out on base stuff first.

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    79

    Default Birchwood Range

    Birchwood range in Chugiak has fall and winter leagues available for skeet, trap, and sporting clays on Tuesdays through Thursdays. Their phone number is 688-2809 for questions. Teams are always looking for people to sub when team members are not available to shoot. This would be a great way to break in and get to know the club and its members. From there you would be able to either get on a team or start your own team. The club also has guns that you can try out. I can't remember if they charge for rental or not but they are fairly new since they just purchased new guns to replace the older rentals that were not worth fixing any more. Hope this helps.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •