Author Topic: First Ever Appleseed AAR - Worland, WY, July 16-17, 2005!  (Read 1225 times)

Offline Fred

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First Ever Appleseed AAR - Worland, WY, July 16-17, 2005!
« on: April 29, 2013, 02:49:12 AM »
[Thank heaven for the internet, where nothing ever dies! Whence comes this report of the first-ever Appleseed (as we now know it), from the first trial run done in Worland, WY in July 2005 - note the early emphasis on "train the trainers" approach - and no mention of telling The Story... IIRC this report first appeared in Shotgun News. Also note that this "first Appleseed" lasted a day or less, with the balance being integrated into a local "rifleman" competition of some interest. We took some of the WY match ideas back and replicated them at a later shoot at the Home Range - including "walking targets" at 100 yards!]

    Wyoming! Land of open spaces and endless wind!

    Fred, on his first trip there, may as well have been on the moon!

    Coming from tree-filled NC, from concrete firing lines, covered shelters, wind never a problem, Wyoming was a shock.

    Fred was there for the Wyoming Rifleman Challenge at Worland, WY July 15/16, put on by the Wyoming Riflemen Association as a training opportunity to learn to shoot like riflemen.

    And the opportunity sure was there.

    Take a desert landscape, add a National Guard range dating back to the 1920s, update with some 'flash' Ivan targets, and you've gone a long way toward the challenge of the tradition.

    Concrete firing lines? Not for the real rifleman! Cactus will do great...

    Overhead shelter? What, are you kidding? Open desert is fine...sunshine means vitamin D, doesn't it?

    Add hard-to-see, briefly-exposed targets up to 300 yards away, blowing full- and half-value wind (if you don't know the difference, better order the AQT and Rifleman Guide) of 15-25 mph (gusting up to 40), temp above 105 F, hot bright sun, cacti right there on the ground where you want to shoot, and all the blowing sand, dirt, dust, and grit your rifle can stand. Dehydration was an extra; by 10 AM Fred was on the fifth of many bottles of water...

    Fred flew in to Denver airport with the RWVA Armorer and met up there with the RWVA Field Rep for the drive up to Wyoming for the event to promote the Appleseed project and train people to go back home and teach the AQT.

    When the announcement was made Saturday right at the begining that those there for the AQT should proceed to Range 3, nearly half the crowd took off for Range 3.

    Fred didn't waste his time on the regular AQT. Sure, participants shot the AQT, but they were told to play the role of the 'newbie' while Fred would role-play them as they taught newbies how to shoot the AQT. Sorta a train-the-trainers approach.

    An effort to multi-track, building skills while learning to teach others those same skills. They to learn on the line, while watching Fred to see how it's done. Not easy, my friend. Keeps you mentally alert and busy...

    One thing was clear at the start: It was a serious bunch that showed up. And a serious bunch shooting the AQT. Did they all shoot rifleman scores? No. Did they all try? Yes. Did they all learn something? Believe so. Will they be better shooters? They will, if they persist, and practice firing each shot 'by the numbers'. But that's all just a prelim...

    The important point: take the knowledge and skills back home, start up AQT shoots in NM, CA, MT, WY, UT, WA, ID, NV and other places Fred's never heard of, and there'll soon be more apple trees growing in this apple-starved country.

    (Next up in Fred's nationwide Appleseed tour: Texas, Oct 29/30 [2005].)

    That was in the morning, while the other shooters were shooting the Rifleman Challenge on the big range. The Rifleman Challenge was a series of four matches stressing shooter movement, quick target acquisition and engagement, firing on multiple targets, as well as moving targets. In poor visibility, blowing dust, heat waves, sun glare.

    In the PM, as the wind shifted around to 9 o'clock to become full-value, it was the turn of Fred and his AQT shooters. To go out on that sandy, dusty, dirty, grit-blowing range, and shoot the targets. (You may be able to tell what impressed Fred by his first shooting experience in Wyoming, huh?)

    The first match was at 100 yards, two shots per five second exposure (head/shoulder target), standing, starting from 'ready' (muzzle down, butt in shoulder), total of five exposures & ten shots. Fred won this one.

    Match Two at 200 yards was 30 secs to drop to sitting from standing and fire 10 shots, full silhouette; followed by five 5-sec exposures of the 'big' and 'little' targets simultaneously, one shot on each in the five seconds, from prone. Boston of BGB-fame won this one.

      Third up was at 300 yards, 20 shots in 2 stages on the full-size silhouette - first, slow fire prone; second, ten shots in 40 secs divided between two full targets. Fred lucked up and took the honors.

    Final match was a killer: NINE stages taking you from 300 yards slow- and rapid-fire right down to 50 yards standing, with plenty of fire and movement in between, including moving targets. A good all-round wind-up end-of-the-day test of skills. Boston took this one, Match 4, arguably the most prestigious, but you could tweak Boston with the notion that while he was shooting his dialed-in scoped precision rifle, Fred was shooting a borrowed iron-sighted M14 (thanks to the WY rifleman who loaned it, it was a sweet rifle, great trigger...).

    Sunday, a traditional 'iron maiden' sudden death miss-and-you're-out, starting at 100 yards standing on a full head/chest steel target, then 200 kneeling, 300 sitting, and prone back until the last man was standing (600 yards, that day, with Larry from NM hanging in far longer than he expected), the winner being, appropriately, DR, a WY rifleman and all-round tough shooter. At 300 yards, Fred let Step 5 jump in front of Step 4 and had the rifle go off before his sights were quite on the target, for an easy miss at 5 o'clock. (Don't say anything - just shake your head...)

      The Wyoming Riflemen, an RWVA-sister organization which sponsored the event, is a serious bunch. They want to see Wyoming riflemen back to the tradition of a man with a rifle being a rifleman. Look for a Jan event to shoot in the cold...and a series of shoots in '06.

    It was a great match, with great people running it. Some of the snap-shooting events will be in the RWVA Oct popup shoot. How's about a "Wyoming Rifleman Shoot" at RWVA? If they can do it, we can do it...we'll have giant wind machines on the line, jackhammer the concrete and leave it in place to shoot off of, and periodically empty bags of dry cement mix into the fans...and did I mention the huge heaters? Good grief, can it get any closer to real?

    It was a fine shoot, run by people who care, who want to see riflemen once again a factor in the history and tradition of this great country. Hats off to the Wyoming crew who put it on!
"Ready to eat dirt and sweat bore solvent?" - Ask me how to become an RWVA volunteer!

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     What about it, do-nothings? You heard the man, jump on in...

Offline Jerry Hall

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Re: First Ever Appleseed AAR - Worland, WY, July 16-17, 2005!
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2013, 05:53:53 PM »
Sounds like a typical Sunday in El Paso-  blowing full- and half-value wind of 15-25 mph (gusting up to 40), temp above 105 F, hot bright sun, cacti right there on the ground where you want to shoot, and all the blowing sand, dirt, dust, and grit your rifle can stand. Dehydration... Equals Fundamental of Rifle Marksmanship.  ~~:)

The important point: take the knowledge and skills back home, start up AQT shoots in TX, NM, CA, MT, WY, UT, WA, ID, NV and other places Fred's never heard of, and there'll soon be more apple trees growing in this apple-starved country.

Thanks Fred!
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Offline Mark Davis

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Re: First Ever Appleseed AAR - Worland, WY, July 16-17, 2005!
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2019, 02:07:26 AM »
Just reread this report from 2005.
Good thing it was hot and dry, otherwise the wind will throw mud on your sights.