Thread: Turkey shoot
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Old November 18, 2009, 04:15 PM   #6
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Join Date: August 23, 2008
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,442
If you've never been to a turkey shoot and are considering trying one, here are some points to ponder…

Turkey shoots are generally held for two reasons, as organization fund raisers or as gun club autumn fun shoots. Your odds of winning are probably better at a club fun shoot.

There are two different types of turkey shoots, skill based and mostly luck. If you're an accomplished shooter (or think you are) you'll gravitate towards the skill type shoot. If you're neither a comp shooter nor ace hunter, then the luck type shoot may have a greater appeal.

Turkey shoots can be organized any way the management wants. Usually ease of operating the shoot is a major consideration. It's best to keep the shoot progressing a steady pace. So, events involving elaborate, or time consuming scoring, are best avoided. In the case of the previously discussed shoot, it's much easier to score a closest single pellet than to count holes.

The last turkey shoot I attended was a skill type held at the club's trap ranges. For the price of a standard trap ticket you got a chance for a turkey. Squads of ten (2 men per station) shoot 10 targets, 2 per station, of 16-yard trap. If you were a comp shooter, you were assigned to a handicap event. A turkey was given to the winner of each squad and ties were broken sudden death. This kept the shoot progressing at a steady pace and there was no waiting around for pellet holes to be measured or counted. If you missed, you could try again on another 16-yard squad. If you'd already won a turkey, then you would be assigned to a handicap squad.

To maximize you chances in a shoot like this, start later to take advantage of the remaining shooters. As the shoot progresses the better shooters will have been assigned yardage, so there is less competition at the 16-yard line. Almost everyone is guaranteed a turkey if they are persistent.

Also, as the shoot nears completion, the management may permit shorter squads. They will already have paid for all the turkeys so fielding a squad of less than 10 still makes them a profit. For the shooter, the smaller the squad the better their chance of winning.

For the luck type of shoot, obviously the fairest method would be to require everyone to shoot the same gun with the same ammo; however, most folks would balk at not being allowed to shoot their own gun. If the club allows any ammo to be used, then the blue-dot boys are at a significant advantage with their with their custom tailored boomers. If only factory loads are permitted, then obviously you want to use the load with the maximum (smallest) number pellets of that will go the distance and get the job done. Avoid promotional loads with questionable components and get first rate target loads. Some luck type shoots may involve popping balloons or other task beyond penetrating paper. Make sure your loads are up to the job. The more prepared you can be, the better your chances of winning a luck type of event.

Good luck, have fun, and be safe.
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