Project Appleseed

After Action Reports! => After Action Reports => Topic started by: Devnull on December 08, 2009, 06:08:47 PM

Title: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Devnull on December 08, 2009, 06:08:47 PM
It started as a cold and blustery day. I woke up early and began loading the truck with all of the supplies needed. As I glanced at my thermometer near the front door I took note of the fact that it read 7 degrees.

Upon reaching the range about an hour later it was a balmy 14 degrees (according to the thermometer in the truck) and the wind was starting to kick up. How many would show up in the frigged cold?

Slowly shooters started to arrive. All said and done we had 20 shooters show up! We had several kiddos that were walkons as well.

Things were a little slow at first due to the cold. We would center up and people were hopping from one foot to the other, blowing on their hands and drinking hot cocoa that NMMI9100 provided. Redcoat, prone, six steps and so on we went through the course of fire. No one complained, however you could see by their shivering that they were mighty uncomfortable.

We finally broke for lunch and while some cowered in their cars for heat most everyone sat out in the cold with us instructors as we taught the three strikes. By now the wind was blowing and clouds had moved in. A quick glance at the thermometer in my truck showed it was 24 degrees.

The first strike was told and everyone was sitting on the edge of their seats, listening intently. Then the third strike and a few started to mist up. Finally the third strike and some explanation of why we do what we do. There was a great deal of emotional connection with those men and women. Everyone could feel the importance of that heritage.

We continued on with our grueling course of fire. We put the spurs to her and tried to catch up to where we should have been. Unfortunately the temperature continued to plummet and we saw the clouds turn into snow that wasn't reaching the ground. You could see the virga descending from them but for some strange reason it wasn't reaching the gound.

We managed to catch up and had our first AQT before the end of the day.

Blondie44 explained the course of fire for stage one. The sun was starting to get low on the horizon so we forwent going down range after each stage. Then she explained stage 2, stage three and finally stage 4. By now the wind was about 15 mph and we had a slight warming trend as the sun passed the clouds. With frozen shivering fingers they eagerly added up their AQTs. "Hey Shoot Boss! We have a question on this target!" Out comes the 30 cal bullet. He didn't really need the extra point, but we try to be precise.  ;D

Our first rifleman of the weekend! Woohoo! Congratulations David!

Then onto the last target, another red coat. The scores had really show some improvement!

After returning from the target line with Red Coats in hand apparently not everyone had finished scoring their AQTs. "Hey Shoot boss! We have some questions on this target!" Wait, you didn't miss that round on the third stage. That's two holes REALLY close together! That's a five, that's a four, that's a five. Woohoo! Two riflemen on the first AQT! Congratulations Andrew! Copies of Paul Revere's ride for the both of them!

So we finished the first day and headed home. Our minds were full of warm thoughts on the perseverance of all the shooters that day, especially the children.

0730 we arrive back at the range. As I left home I noted it was 24 degrees this morning. "Whew! I guess it will be a warmer day!"

We had 13 show up today. Two hadn't been there the day before so we went ahead and reviewed all of the positions again. Then Ball and Dummy. The wind started again around 20 knots and gusting up around 35 knots. Finally we started the grind. AQTs for everyone!

After the first AQT we broke for lunch and some dangerous old men and women were discussed. There wasn't a dry eye left in the group. We all began to understand the sacrifices and horrors that occurred that day. We explained that they paid with their lives and personal security so that we would never have to repeat that course of action. While they had the choice of Slavery or possible death we have a third choice, the ballot box. The temperature at lunch time was 22 degrees.

After the second AQT I noticed a lot of shot fussing going on and failing to focus on the front sight. We did the focus drill with a blank sheet of paper, then an NPOA drill on the squares. Then back to the grind.

Two AQTs later as we are scoring I see a huddle of people around one of the benches. They looked like they were studying something VERY intently. Humm... I wonder what it could be?

As I arrived over there one person asks me "Well, were wondering if this is a 210 or a 211." Well some math errors were made and it was actually a 216 I believe. He didn't even need the 30 cal rule! His buddies were just trying to get him soaked!  **) Woohoo! Third rifleman of the weekend! Way to go Scott!

We continued on the grind with a short break to decimate some cookies. The mood was quite jovial. Everyone was joking around, laughing and just having a blast. The camaraderie between everyone was superb!

On our second to last AQT we could hardly keep the mats on the ground. Even us instructors were feeling chilled to our bones. It was officially COLD! Freefyrefly quickly put them back into prep after a short break to score their targets so we could squeeze one more AQT in before the sun won out.

We finished our last AQT and began setting up for the final red coat and scoring the targets. "Hey Chris, can you look at my target? This was the AQT before this last one and I didn't think I did well, but it's pretty close!" Well out comes the 30 cal again. 209? Wait, look there! 210! Woohoo! Congratulations Curt!

Now I have to admit I felt bad for him due to the impending soaking he was going to endure. I had mentioned after the first AQT that a 210 gets you doused with water and I probably shouldn't have let that slip...  :-X Being as it was colder than heck I figured he would have said "No way man!" as I opened the bottle of water, but no. He cinched up the hood of his sweat shirt and with a big grin said "Go for it!". At Appleseed we are all about tradition after all aren't we?  ;D

I pulled all four riflemen aside separately and asked them what they thought of the program. Each and every one of them felt like we were doing something important and two of them actually directly asked "How can I become an instructor?" Each and every one of them wanted to step up to the brotherhood of the orange hat and we will now have FOUR new IITs here in New Mexico! Way to 7th step there guys!

We shot the final Red Coat and again everyone showed tremendous improvements over the weekend.

We finished up and talked about getting involved, the importance of letting our voices be heard by our congress critters as well as awarded the kiddos with their very own patch for persevering through the brutal cold and not once complaining. All of us had a blast and look forward to working with you all again. Remember to be practicing those positions, write those one minute letters and most importantly let your friends and family members know the rich heritage that we have in this great country!
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Fred on December 08, 2009, 06:21:43 PM

    Can there be a better example than this for all our naysayers about "Appleseed in winter"?

    It takes a tough crowd to do it - but there seems to be a few tough Americans still out there - and we'd be letting down The Mission if we failed to give them an opportunity to show what they're made of - and to learn what steel their forebears were made of...

     Folks, this is definitely a 12-months-a-year program.

     But I am kinda surprised not everyone volunteered - man, come out in all that cold, and not volunteer?

     What's up with that? >:( ;D

    Good job, guys! O0 O0
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: BobABQ on December 08, 2009, 09:48:43 PM
I go to school with Andrew and actually answered some of his questions prior to him, his brother and Father all attended.

I was quite pleased to hear that he both shot Rifleman and took the orange hat. He will be a great asset to Appleseed.
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: TaosGlock on December 09, 2009, 01:26:03 AM
I hope the RR AS quells any notion that we don't ever get a bit of chilly weather in this state.  8)
Sure is a refreshing change from the oppressive simmer summers we often get. >:D
Sounds like you had a hardy group of shooters that the founders would be proud of! :--- O0
And 4 new Riflemen and IIT's to boot!
Way to go all you instructors!! O0

And those AS Admins need to get that "Shoot Boss" status below you name.   ^-^
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Precisely Advantageous on December 10, 2009, 02:25:13 PM
This past weekend brought out the best of Albuquerque. It was COLD! We were off to a slow start but we got things going, got back on track and got a AQT in before the first day was over with. The shooters persisted and showed us that American heritage we all know is there. They got to hear the stories of how the war did not exclude anybody and they got to prove that they are willing to give 110% showing up in this freezing weather...good job shooters O0 There were four riflemen this weekend who showed us what they are about. Great job David, Andrew, Scott and Curt. All of the shooters did very well and everyone progressed. Now that you've made riflemen don't stop there you have to go for that 250 now! To those that didn't make it this time you are all knocking on that door with scores in the 170-200's. Just more dry firing and finding out whats comfortable for YOU and you'll have it in no time. If the weather was warmer and the wind had calmed down  a bit I'm sure our riflemen percentage would have been above 30%. But great job to everyone and I look forward to seeing all of you again on the Appleseed trail.
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Precisely Advantageous on December 10, 2009, 02:29:16 PM
Of course the AAR would never be the same without the pictures of our great patriotic shooters and instructors....Thanks for coming out and devoting your time to a worthy cause :---
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: freefyrefly on December 10, 2009, 05:26:06 PM
After all the grumbling about the cold is said and done, I would have to say that I would definitely be up for another winter AS, we worked with a really great group! The cold slowed us down and we really had to crack the whip to keep things moving but the hot cocoa really helped! We even had shooters helping take down the line on Sunday, so I know we touched some hearts and minds, they were all ready to start volunteering!!! I think we gained some very valuable additions to our Albuquerque team, and thanks to all the shooters for showing so much heart!
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: BobABQ on December 10, 2009, 08:32:53 PM
It looks like everyone had a great time.

Good job.
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Captwa on December 15, 2009, 12:14:27 AM
    Hey Y'all,

       Shorty, ( my wife) and I had a great time at Rio Rancho.  The facility is one of the best (besides Whittington Center) in a state that is known for its ranges. This was my second and Shorty's first appleseed. Bertha ( my M1A) ran well and even provided some fun for an IIT who was paired with me for Ball and Dummy drill. There is nothing in this world like a .30 cal smile.  I suspect she's heading in that direction.

     That being said, the instruction was up to Appleseed standards, particularly in safety with some walk in kids getting extra supervision and instruction on that first day. Appleseed comeraderie was in evidence as Mr. Chavez lent Shorty a 20 rd magazine for the AR-15 she is learning to master. 20 rd mags are best for prone especially for short armed shooters !  Much thanks my friend.

     Shorty was cold and mizerable at the end of the first day. The instruction was intense and overwhelming ( drinking from a firehose was mentioned) and I certainly was hearing what might seem like mutinous noises coming from that direction. ( History lesson:  German intelligence thought that morale was low on the Belgian front because American troops were complaining about cold, food,fatigue, etc. They thought the Bulge would be an easy push. We know how that turned out.)  Until Sunday morning even I wasnt sure how things were going. Shorty got a cup of coffey that morning and woke me up to get going. Perseverance! ( Three strike story and some other encouragement helped)

    Appleseed is a great way to get your wife to shoot without endangering your relationship. I only taught her safe rifle operation and Appleseed did the rest. No conflict no stress and while WE didnt make Rifleman she could beat her little sisters Nat Guard qual score with the same rifle.

    Me?  I'm working on the 7th step.  In the year since my first Appleseed I've gotten my Bro in law and nephew shooting and two others back in NY . They'll get to Appleseed within a year.  I write to newspapers and politicians where I used to just vote. As to making Rifleman?  I suspect that 5 min after Shorty makes it I will.  There are some politics I just won't touch.

     Outstanding job by all instructors and participants.  HUZZA!!!


Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Buckshotjoe on December 15, 2009, 12:41:15 AM
I would have been there if it wasn't my drill weekend for the reserves...

It took me awhile to post but I was at the Alamogordo Appleseed 29-30 Aug and had a blast!

I'll make another Appleseed in 2010, my New Year's resolution!
Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: SamD on December 15, 2009, 12:45:51 AM
We'll be having another Alamogordo Shoot on 9-10 Jan.
Come on down
Carlsbad this weekend.

Hey Captwa,
You voicemail hit my box about a week ago.

Title: Re: AAR Rio Rancho, NM - Dec 5-6th 2009
Post by: Captwa on December 19, 2009, 07:44:59 PM

      That call was back a few months ago when Shorty got her rifle and we were heading to the La Luz range for familiarization.  Your analysis of Berthas problem was correct (imperfection in chamber face) and Springfield missed it when I returned it to them.  I bought a diamond file and dressed the dig myself so bolt could rotate when hot.  We'll catch up when I get back down there some time again.