Long Range Muzzle Loading, Bisley, June 2024

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Written by: David Minshall

Another splendid weekend of long range muzzle loading at Bisley, with the MLAGB and the Long Range Rifles Branch! Travelled to the National Shooting Centre on Thursday and met friends for a meal, drink and good chat. Friday we spent the day shooting at 900 yards, Saturday 1,000 yards and Sunday 600 yards. Mostly competition this weekend (7-9 June), but also some opportunity for practice.

Long range shooting with the muzzle loading rifle is a challenge – there’s a lot that a changeable wind can do to deflect the heavy lead bullet from the centre of the target! For those who have developed an accurate load and honed their technical shooting skills, understanding and reacting to changing atmospheric conditions is the key to good results.

The conditions for the weekend were testing! Light varied throughout the days, from bright sunshine to somewhat overcast. The mirage present during the bright spells also vanished during the dull periods. The biggest variable however was the wind – it was good training though for dealing with a fishtailing headwind! On the plus side it stayed dry…

This can be a frustrating and challenging sport, but just a few well-placed shots in difficult conditions can be a joy. The goal though is to extend those strings of well-placed shots to challenge for a medal placing! Happily, I managed to figure some conditions out and was pleased with 2nd place in the target rifle match and 3rd place in the Enfield rifle match, both at 600 yards. Middle of the field at 900 and 1,000 yards.

All in all, a good weekend with friends from throughout the UK plus the Netherlands. Plenty of time to relax in good company too.