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Thread: Advanced marksmanship test - deer management course

  1. #1

    Advanced marksmanship test - deer management course

    Just a quick report about a meet of the North-Cotswolds Deer Management Group, yesterday, at the Criggion Estate in Shropshire, which we chose as it has such an excellent firing-range and training facilities.
    Some fourteen of us did a 'mock' advanced marksmanship test. Our experience ranged from almost complete novice to very experienced/DSC2 holders. The test followed the same course of fire as the real thing - just two shots allowed to test zero, followed by nine shots from various positions at deer targets at various distances from 50 to 150 yards, including awkward angles from high seats and timed sequential shots.
    The feedback afterwards was particularly critical of everybody's muzzle awareness while on the range, and it was quite a shock to learn that if the test would have been for real only two out of fourteen would have passed.
    It is up to the reader to draw a conclusion from that - either the test is quite hard, or deer stalkers from Gloucestershire are particular bad marksman and pretty dangerous as well. Or maybe a bit of both. It is quite a miracle that anybody of this DMG actually manages to cull any deer at all, ever.
    But seriously, it was a great day and we all learned a lot, made some new friends and all present were keen to get some more advanced marksmanship training at a future day. Many thanks to Gamekeeper/Shooting Tenant Jonathan Archer and his wife at the Criggion Estate for the hospitality; Joe, our brilliant RCO and fire-arms instructor; and Steven, his charming assistant.
    If you want to find out more about the North-Cotswolds DMG please email north-cotswolds-dmg@hotmail.com for more information.
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  2. #2
    I don't think that the stalkers in Glos are any different to others in the country. Never met a perfect stalker yet!!
    Quite a few virtual ones on the web though, perfect muzzle awareness, and a shooting prowess that would put to shame any military sniper..

  3. #3
    Having done this shoot, I have to say its not easy when you come up against a paper deer under test conditions. I have watched some seasoned stalkers fail on both first and second attempt's.

    i think the difference is that when you are timed and are under pressure the results differ from a live stalk.

    however my advise to anyone undertaking this test would be that practice makes perfect.
    Last edited by Tam the Gun; 23-02-2014 at 16:41. Reason: Mistake

  4. #4
    Erik, what I most enjoyed was the company on that day. The test was hard and we have much to do to get to "proffesional" standard but I have learned alot about my capabillities and what I have to do to get better. Looking forward to do this more often and with more help than assessment. I will aproach Jonothan to get this set up in spring perhaps with filming our appraoch to shooting positions and a group assessment afterwards discussing what we have done wrong and what we could do better, especially muzzle awareness. Then out for a second round to see if it had improved the shooting and safety. As Tam the gun says, practise makes perfect. Good shooting everybody and be safe out there.

  5. #5
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    If I recall correctly, when I did the course for real only four (not three) out of a dozen or so passed without the need for some form of re-take.

    willie_gunn
    Last edited by willie_gunn; 26-02-2014 at 13:53. Reason: Wrong memory
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  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by willie_gunn View Post
    If I recall correctly, when I did the course for real only three out of a dozen or so passed without the need for some form of re-take.

    willie_gunn
    I think I was on the same course. Add to this the fact that several candidates elected not to take on the challenge at all and I think that its safe to say that accurate, practical rifle shooting is not as simple as it seems?

    When I am asked about 'advanced' shooting I always advocate simply doubling the DSC1 course of fire so, prone at 200m, sitting at 140m and sticks at 80m. I also expect people to do this with confidence and a minimum of fussing around. Its nice if you can introduce a timed aspect too but thats more difficult to organise.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Glyn 1 View Post
    When I am asked about 'advanced' shooting I always advocate simply doubling the DSC1 course of fire so, prone at 200m, sitting at 140m and sticks at 80m. I also expect people to do this with confidence and a minimum of fussing around. Its nice if you can introduce a timed aspect too but thats more difficult to organise.
    I shot an interesting one last year, viz
    4 rounds each:
    300yds prone bipod
    200yds sitting bipod or sticks
    100yds standing sticks
    60yds standing freehand

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Glyn 1 View Post
    I think I was on the same course. Add to this the fact that several candidates elected not to take on the challenge at all and I think that its safe to say that accurate, practical rifle shooting is not as simple as it seems?

    When I am asked about 'advanced' shooting I always advocate simply doubling the DSC1 course of fire so, prone at 200m, sitting at 140m and sticks at 80m. I also expect people to do this with confidence and a minimum of fussing around. Its nice if you can introduce a timed aspect too but thats more difficult to organise.
    don't you have a watch?
    "Politicians must be allowed to panic. They need activity. It is their substitute for achievement"
    "'The matter is under consideration' means we have lost the file. 'The matter is under active consideration' means we are trying to find the file."

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by kennyc View Post
    don't you have a watch?
    I suppose I asked for that!

    What I meant was its difficult to devise a timed event that accurately and fairly tests people on the compromise that has to take place between speed and precision especially whilst maintaining a good degree of safely on the range. Obviously the RCO can just shout go and then stop the watch when the last round of a group is fired but its a bit crude and what does it prove if the holes are all over the place?

    The best attempt at a test of speed and accuracy that I've seen recently was on a Jelen course where candidates fired a group at a zeroing target, the stopwatch ran from the sound of the first shot to the last then the distance from the centre of the target to each hole was measured in cm. Total seconds plus total centimetres equalled score. Lowest score wins.

    Another good thing is to test people's confidence and judgment, for example, present them with a roe target which has score/kill zones on the chest and neck, chest shot scores 10, neck shot scores 20 but if you hit the neck outside the kill zone you score minus 20.
    Last edited by Glyn 1; 26-02-2014 at 00:46.

  10. #10
    The one I shot on had a limit of 90s for the four shots. Hits in the chest of the roebuck target scored 1, hits anywhere else on the buck scored -1. The points derived from the scoring-rings in the chest were recorded for interest.

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