I actually had…

…a few free minutes tonight for blogging so I wanted to catch you up on a few things about this trip.

First, remember that whole “beautiful Washington State” comment from my post last week when I arrived here?

Well…

Here you go…

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Secondly, I had some free time last weekend and since I was in the area of a couple of my favorite bloggers I wanted to finally meet them.

To that end, on Saturday, I drove up to Whidbey Island, home of gun-blogger extraordinaire and the godfather of the E-Postal matches, Mr. Completely. He covered our activities pretty well in his post on the subject but I wanted to add my thanks for his and his lovely bride’s hospitality. He let me shoot several of his guns including the big guy: the Ruger .480, and the infamous Econo Race Gun.

As an added bonus, we even got an opportunity to introduce a young shooter to the joys of big bore revolver shooting, albeit with relatively low powered loads.

Then we set up and operated Mr. Completely’s cowboy fast draw gear outside the Friends of the NRA banquet hosted by his gun club…which is a great facility by the way.

What…A…Blast…

I highly recommend it for anyone looking for some friendly competition and good old-fashioned fun.

Anyway, after an eventful and fun filled day topped off by dinner with Mr. and Mrs. Completely, I headed back to my hotel. To start the day off, I had to get up at 4am to be sure to make the 6:30 ferry to Whidbey Island. Was on my feet pretty much all day, then caught the final ferry trip back to the correct side of the Puget Sound at about 10:30pm…and the ferry crew-person had the audacity to act nonplussed about the fact that I fell asleep in my car on the ferry and she had to wake me up to get me to drive off the ferry (and out of the rest of the ferry rider’s way).

At any rate…Sunday, I headed to Outback steak house in Tacoma to meet with a couple of other bloggers. First up, Earl of Just the Library Keeper lives in Tacoma. A very interesting man and fellow biker trash gunny, I didn’t want to pass up an opportunity to meet with him. Also, it just happened that a local Virginia Beach blogger, Big Bad Wolf was in the area for business as well. Wolf and I have been reading and commenting on each other’s blogs for a while now but we’d never had an opportunity to meet. We both thought that it was a bit strange that we both had to travel 4,000 miles to finally get that chance. Imagine how our surprise was compounded when we realized that we work for different departments of the same company!

Anyway, we had an excellent dinner and enjoyed even better conversation in unmatched company. What a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Finally, I was able to pry myself away from work on Tuesday evening long enough to hit the Steel Plate match at the Gig Harbor Rod and Gun Club.

What a great group of people and what a fun match. It is a very fast paced, uncomplicated, head to head match. Basically, you’re only allowed 6 rounds per mag (to keep revolvers on a relatively even footing) but as many mags as you need, to knock down 5 steel plates faster than your opponent.

Sounds easy doesn’t it? It’s pretty easy to be fast, and pretty easy to be accurate, but to be fast and accurate is…not so easy.

Suffice it to say that I’ll need a LOT of practice to get good at this.

For your viewing pleasure, your match Champion, Rob. This wasn’t his best run, but you can get an idea of how fast he was.

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I didn’t want to have a whole bunch of ammo left because I knew I wouldn’t be able to bring it back with me so I only bought one box each for the Ruger and the CZ. That meant that I ran out of ammo before the final round. Three of the members (including match champion Rob) allowed me to borrow their guns and ammo so I could finish out the match. Did I mention how great a group of people they are?

Anyway, I got a chance to shoot a Springfield XD, a Glock 34 and a custom 1911. Interestingly, I shot the Glock the best. I’ve tried several of the smaller Glocks and never really liked the feel of them, but the full sized 34 really worked for me. I shot my best run of the day with it. I’m going to have to revisit Glocks at least for match shooting if not for a carry pistol.

The bottom line is that I had a productive and, although I miss my wife, dogs and home terribly, enjoyable trip. I got to meet some bloggers I’d never met, got to meet some shooters, got to try some things I’ve never done before and some pistols I’ve never fired before…oh, and I guess I got some work done too.

As much as I’m dreading the flight home…I can’t wait to get there and get back to my lovely wife and my regularly scheduled life…such as it is.

Catch you on the flip side. I’m out.

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