Building a shooting range (lane)

Truenorthed

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I purchased some property next door to me. The property has about a 35 degree slope and is at least 1500 feet in depth. I would like to build myself a little shooting range (or lane) on that property. I want to do it safely. I would prefer to shoot into a solid back stop but that's not really an option on this property. However, with a 100 yard lane, shooting downward into a target, shouldn't the 'ground' function as a back-stop? There are no immediate houses that abut this property. The nearest house is at least a mile away and not in-line with the lane; so I don't think a bullet could easily ricochet from the ground and travel a mile to this are. In fact, I wouldn't expect any kind of ricochet shooting into soft dirt (not rock). I'll attach a sketch to better depict my plan. Also, do you think the placement of the targe relative to the flat ground could affect bullet travel? I would think I want the target closest to the flat area to minimize the travel of any bullet after hitting the target.

As a precursor, I'm not looking for 'chastisement' , I'm looking for 'constructive' input.

thanks,
 

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Frostbitten

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I would consider mounding dirt directly behind the target area to essentially create a 90 degree backstop. That's just me though, I prefer to err on the side of caution. As far as the degree of slope, I believe it would have an effect on the trajectory/point of impact over a lane that was flat/level.
 

Truenorthed

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That's a good point. I was actually thinking of 'carting' some sand bags behind the target area just to catch any 'ricochets' that might occur. (I'm with you on erring on the side of caution).
 

tailwind

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Bullets will ricochet if you use sand bags. Use a large dirt mound, like FB said. Otherwise you could injure neighbors, which will really put a damper on your sunday afternoon shooting!
 

ADfields

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Not knowing the whole layout around what if you reverse it and dig out the top to make back stop taking the dirt downhill to flatten it out, this way you shoot flat and into a cutbank with left and right wing banks. Or do the same thing 90* to the slope and build a back stop with a Cat. The incline will affect your shooting but there are ways to calculate it and compensate for it. What you have will work but if there are people crossing 1000 yards down range can you see them? I would want to be as sure as I could where bullets will stop so some kind of berm or cutbank would be a must for me.
 

AGL4now

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My range I built with a D-8 and is 175 Yards. One thing to keep in mind is regrowth. I have to clean my shooting lanes every six weeks, as the willows & Cottonwood saplings grow like weeds. Also if the impact end is North, and the fireingline is from the South, you will enjoy well lit targets.
 

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