Shooting in Wind
Several months ago, the Tulsa Gun Club held the annual St. Patrick’s Day Shoot. As always, it was a well-run shoot with over 60 shooters braving the cold and WINDY conditions.
The weather in Tulsa that month had, until that weekend, been warm and mostly calm, but because there was a shoot, Mother Nature had to show us that the last of cold, windy days weren’t over – it was still winter.
For the conditions, we had some pretty good scores, and I believe that almost everyone had fun. Of course it’s always more fun if you shoot those good scores.
I’ve found that, when shooting skeet in windy conditions, it helps to hit the targets a little quicker than you might normally shoot them. In this way you can take some of the variables caused by the wind out of the equation.
By shooting the targets while they still have the thrust the springs give them, you have less wind affecting the target. You still get ‘sky rockets’ and ankle-level shots, but they’re a little more like normal targets if you get them while they retain the momentum from the spring.
The SCTP kids that practice at the Tulsa Gun Club get a lot of practice in windy conditions. When they get to shoot in calm conditions, their scores go up.
Shooting in windy conditions takes concentration and a real desire to hit the targets. You might get what some of the local shooters call ‘a seven-ten split’ where one target heads toward the sky and the other tries to land before the station you’re shooting from.
Concentration and desire–these are the elements that we always need to shoot the scores necessary to be in the winners’ circle or at least in the shoot-offs. During windy conditions you see who is working and who is not working. Without concentration and desire, your scores will not get you in those shoot-offs.
Shooting in the wind can be fun and exciting, but your scores may not be what you want them to be.
Barry Hartmann is an NSSA Master Level and NRA Certified shotgun instructor who can help you improve your skills at American Skeet and wingshooting. To contact Barry, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or give him a call at (918)803-2393.