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A Unique Weekend

Shotgun Goof’n.
Kraken visits the John1911 range.

A couple of weeks ago I learned that I would be in southern Ohio on business.  After talking to Marky, he graciously invited me to the JOHN1911 range for the weekend.  A few quick logistical changes and I was in.  Since it is impolite to show up without a gift, I brought the single digit temps from Nebraska with me.  I do not believe Marky was impressed with my gift.  

Since it was 3 degrees Saturday morning and I was still a little punked out from the over 12 hour drive, we decided to meet up in my room.  We looked over a few of the guns I brought, talked about guns in general, and I got a good start on my daily caffeine intake.  Since I also brought a big bag of venison jerky, I think Marky may have  temporarily forgiven me for the weather.  

We then loaded up and headed to the range.  Even with about 4 inches of fresh snow, first impression of the range is quite impressive.  It has a very professional pistol pit and the rifle steel was dotted all up the hillside with easily discernible target locations.

Shotgun Goof’n.
It was very cold most of the week.

Between the two of us, we had an assortment of weapons ranging from semi auto shotguns to precision rifles.  Stay tuned for videos and stories(subtle hint).  When shooting anything in extreme weather, certain things become apparent.  Some of these are very important to consider if you regularly carry weapons.  First off, not all weapon lubes are created equal.  Since I grew up in Iowa, deer hunting in single digit weather and snow is a norm, not an exception.  I learned the hard way that not all gun lubes work well in extreme cold.  Semi auto gas shotguns seem more susceptible to cold weather issues than inertia guns.  Marky had just picked up a Beretta gas gun the night before.  Manually working the action, you could visibly see the action was very sluggish and this very likely due to gummy lube.  To it’s credit, the Beretta ran flawlessly with a range of loads.  I run one tried and true gun lube and have not had cold weather issues since.  I will leave the choice of gun lube at that, as everybody has their favorite lube and to be honest, I just don’t want to have the “but mah lube” debate today.

Shotgun Goof’n.
Kraken with a Beretta 1301 and a 1201.

The other glaringly apparent consideration is a person’s ability to physically move and perform in extreme  conditions.  Great strides have been made in cold weather gear, but even the best gear that is suitable for single digit temps and below is still quite bulky.  Even with high quality clothing, your body still gets cold and reacts to severe cold.  Simple pistol drills that you can run right through when it is 70 and sunny become more problematic.  The clothing can really limit your range of unhindered motion and extreme cold subtly at first changes your fine motor skills.  The motor skills issues really creep up on you and if you are not accustomed to it, a person may not even notice it until you start warming up at the end of the day and cannot figure out why you are hungry, sore, and stiff.  Of course I am a high mileage model now and as I vaguely remember, it doesn’t affect you young bucks quite as much.

All in all, it was a helluva way to start 2024 after a fairly crappy 2023.  Marky is a great person to be around.  His range is top notch with a variety of shooting accommodations and some beautiful rolling timber.  We shot a number of different guns, and had some great and widely varied conversations.  Even a general BS session with Marky challenges you to think deeper on subjects and for me that is a great amount of fun.  Keep an eye out for some video content and other general thoughts from the weekend.  I don’t think I am welcome back unless I promise to leave the cold weather back home.  Until a later time, keep shooting guns and having fun!





“Shooting Guns & Having Fun”

The Kraken
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