The past weekend, March 6 and 7, 1999, the Virginia Shooting Sports Association held the second weekend session of its service rifle competition training program for Basic and Advanced High Power Rifle.
Saturdays’ session enjoyed some very pleasant weather. Sunday, a day on which my personal goal was to break my PR (personal record) for the National Match Course was a horse of a different color (mostly blue!). The temperature was well below 40 Fahrenheit and the wind was gusting from 25 to 45 mph with the direction swinging from straight up range to from the left.
Shooting into a bitterly cold, gusty wind was a previously experience phenomenon, but I did not handle it any better than I have in the past. Even my sitting rapid score was strung out down wind. The session was called after about 2 hours, because of the weather.
What I should like to hear from the high power/service rifle community is comments/guidance on adverse conditions:
Do you adjust your goals for weather conditions, and if so how do you determine the adjustment?
What do you physically do to “windproof your standing, sitting and prone positions.
How do you deal with widely varying wind directions and velocities?
Before you respond consider this information:
On Saturday my coaches told me to be more discerning of the sight picture and sight alignment after I shot a 95 sitting. I then shot a 97 and a 98, the 98 had two shots that were merely millimeters from being 10s. I was able to call each shot in each of the three strings clearly, and the shots were on call!
On Sunday, after having shot the poorest offhand I have had in some considerable time, I determined to significantly improve my sitting. As the string commenced the wind seemed to be coming from 10:30 gusting from 25-35 mph. After I reloaded the eight rounder, the wind picked up to something significantly greater, and shifted from 10:30 to 9:00 for about three shots, it then swung back into my face over the course of 2 shots and finished about where it was when we started. I worked through this, holding center throughout and being very meticulous on both trigger control and sight alignment/picture. I called the string clean, and suffered great disappointment.
The score was an 82-1 the whole group was strung out to the right and almost appeared to be a right (firing) elbow sliding out kind of situation. Could the wind have moved me or the bullets that far?
Masters, give me your take on this, please.
Ni ellegimit carborundum esse!
Yours In Marksmanship