Fun in the Sun

Awesome Weekend, Last in NB!

Justin dialling in his scope at 600 yards downrange from the target lineup.

This is my last weekend as a resident of Fredericton.  I've lived in New Brunswick my entire life and I'll be moving to Nova Scotia (neighbouring province) by the end of this week.  I've had a lot of fun in my home province, and will be missing it dearly. 

The fact is, hunting and fishing are a huge part of life in NB, and I've partaken in fishing many times when living in Welsford, but only rarely did I get out to go hunting.  On those rare occasions, we never saw a thing, but got in some target practice with a tin can or plastic bottle (we always picked up our trash afterward)

Fortunately, I got out this previous weekend to a local rifle range with some friends and got to try out a few rifles I wouldn't have otherwise had the opportunity to shoot.  Also, I was able to hone my shooting skills a bit, both with the camera and a gun.   

SAFETY NOTE: Though it looks like we were fooling around a bit, everyone attending the range has at some point taken a firearm safety course and knows the dangers of handling weapons.  Any time photos were being taken the range was declared "Cold" and any weapons were cleared of ammunition and checked over to ensure no accidents would happen.  

This is our target lineup.  The metal plate on the upper right was 12" by 12" to give a sense of scale.  At 600 yards, it looked like a little orange dot. 

Shooting is entirely too much fun.  We were on the long range, as in, 600 yards long.  Starting at 100 yards, we could see targets and a get a feel for the rifles.  After we shot a handful of times, we moved downrange to the 300 yard mark and dialed in from there.  Finally, we went to the end of the range and tried to hit some targets.  At this range, there was a wild amount of haze from the heat of the day.  I got lucky several times and hit the steel plate and clipped a tin can we set up and painted orange.

Photographically speaking, the hot sun provided a series of challenges but luckily I brought along a flash and trigger to help fill in some of the harsh shadows.  It was also fortunate that the sun was behind us while we were shooting, so getting in front of the firing line on a cold range allowed me to get some cool photos like the one at the top of the post.  

Fill flash was used to minimize harsh shadows on Jonah's ripped torso.  I had to use a small aperture (F11) to cut down the sun, resulting in a very long depth of field.
The only undesirable incident of the day was Nick getting a scope in the forehead on a kickback from the 30-06, causing a pretty sizeable cut and requiring some first aid.  He was alright, but needed a sit down for a while.  (The AR-15 he has in his hands has no firing pin and the clip was empty) 

Finally, at the end of the day we all posed for a group photo. I used my tripod and timer to set off the camera.  Once again, a fill flash off camera was used to minimize the harsh shadows from mid-day sun.

I was sure to snap one "serious" shot, then moved on to some poses.  I liked this one the best of the posed shots.

All in all, a great Saturday, and loads of fun.  The next morning I played in a golf tournament with some other friends, wrapping up my last full weekend in New Brunswick.   

Cheers, more tk...