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Shooting/Hunting-why do you do it?
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By Derek W
Sep 8, 2010
First summit of First Flatiron
Sam Stephens wrote:
I shoot because I carry. I go to the range to train. I work on things that I've been taught and things that I feel are appropriate to have wired into muscle memory with my guns. I understand the obligation that comes with my carrying a firearm, and I don't seek out fights or bad situations.


+1 for your thoughts
+1 for citizens like yourself - responsible, lawful, thoughtful

Carrying a firearm is a huge responsibility, one not to be taken lightly. However, I don't think the OP was talking much about carrying for protection as much as recreation. I shoot because, as you noted, it's fun and relaxing. Blowing up water filled pop cans or seeing who can hit the end of a shotgun shell first at 200 yards. I also hunt. I hunt for food, for conservation and for protection of livestock (coyotes and mtn lions claim a number of our cattle each year). I went to school and got my B.S. in Zoology so I know about ecology and population dynamics. I am passionate about nature and wildlife, which is why I don't hunt more than I can eat or shoot more coyotes than seems reasonable for the area, etc.

It's something you have to find within yourself - the reasons why. However, as far as safety, if you do not have kids or roommates, generally just keeping them out of sight is probably sufficient. Next, as Mark mentioned, a gun safe is a wise investment. (think of fires, people you don't know too well, burglaries, etc). Keeping the ammo and guns separate is wise unless you have one for personal protection, then that one needs to have some extra barriers against accidents and so on.

But remember, you don't have to hunt to own a gun nor do you have to plan on shooting somebody. They are forms of recreation, just like climbing and when handled responsibly, there's not a thing wrong with them.

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By Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Sep 8, 2010
Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Peak.
Mark Nelson wrote:
There's also the reverse definition -- should a vegan hottie inquire about my dietary preference; oh hell yes I'm a vegetarian!


Yeah, you're going to regret that after eating eggplant for the fiftieth time.

I used to have a ton of guns, most given to me by my dad when he grew tired of lugging them around. Then of course I grew tired of moving them from place to place and started the sell-off. I would rather buy climbing gear or any gear now than blow $25 on a box of pistol ammo. It's just too expensive to shoot, even if you reload, which I don't. Too tedious.

That said, for guns in the home definitely have the trigger guard lock, gun safe, and separated ammo. Only keep a fully loaded gun ready if you live in some sort of urban area where home invasions are common, in which case move outta there.

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By Mut
Sep 8, 2010
Sam Stephens wrote:
I feel like it's necessary for me to comment on this. I shoot because I carry. I go to the range to train. I work on things that I've been taught and things that I feel are appropriate to have wired into muscle memory with my guns. I understand the obligation that comes with my carrying a firearm, and I don't seek out fights or bad situations. The reason I chose to start carrying a gun is simple. I was at Virginia Tech when 32 of my classmates were shot dead in a place that was supposed to be as close to conflict free as you can get without going to a monastery. I listened to a police scanner a building away as it all happened and I saw the footage of the police waiting outside. They didn't do anything to help anyone inside and I made up my mind right then that I wasn't ever going to rely on anyone else if I ever crossed that close to a situation where deadly force was needed again. The first year I was at Tech, a convict at a hospital shot and killed a sheriff. The second year Cho tore up 32 of my classmates. The third year a guy cut off a girls head in a dining area in front of other students. The fourth year two kids were killed camping ten miles from campus. It's a personal decision that I've battled with time and time again, but I don't leave the house without my gun unless I know I'm going to have a drink while I'm out or I'm going to work where no one gets in or out without a background check and being checked in or out of the area. I don't have a gun within arms reach every day because I'm paranoid, but because I've seen bad things happen that I don't want to encounter unarmed should I have the unfortunate fate of encountering such a circumstance ever again in my life. I battle with feeling like I need to be able to defend myself and contradicting that with my belief that most people are inherently good. For a while it was a struggle that I'd go back and forth on and I eventually came to terms with the fact that bad things don't happen when you expect them. They happen when you're not ready and when you are least prepared. That's why I'm always prepared. For what it's worth I'm now a VT Alumnus.


Holy shiat. Thank god I went to Fort Lewis.

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By Cpt. E
Sep 8, 2010
yeah, its nice here in durango, huh? I bet that's what they thought at VA. tech.

i bench shoot at the range to get the hell away from everyone and do something other than climbing. i find it kind of zen-like to watch my heart rate wobble the scope recticle. slowing it down and letting my trigger finger operate independently of the rest of the body is cool. i like thinking about the ballistics involved at long distances. i guess its kind of nerdy. but so is mountain biking.

i hunt to eat organic meat. that god-damned Laura's beef is expensive.

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By tenpins
Sep 8, 2010
David Rivers wrote:
I went shooting w/my sister-in-law's brother this summer. We spent 4 hours shooting a Beretta 92FS 9 mm, Remington 7600 .270, and a 12 gauge shotgun. It was the first time I'd been out since I was a kid shooting at my neighbors, and the first time ever shooting a pistol. It was enjoyable and troubling(sobering is a better word) at the same time. Since than I've been pondering purchasing both a pistol and a hunting rifle. I guess the crux for me is the philosophical justification. Simply exercising my 2nd Amendment rights may be enough, but I'd like to ask veteran shooters and hunters why you do it. How much time do you spend honing your skills vs time spent at other pursuits like climbing, biking,surfing, etc. What safety measures do you take in storage? I have lots of other questions, but will start w/these. Thanks, Dave


this card carrying lefty and weapons enthusiast like to fire weapons just because. Seriously, Is there any other reason?

I lived the romantic version of "shooting" for over a year in iraq. Kinda over that. And the weapons we are allowed to have as civilians just really doesnt compare so cant really get excited.

One of the many gifts I brought home from overseas was a heightened sense of vigilance. Clinically diagnosed as NOT hyper-vigilant. Even with this gift that keeps on giving, I dont own a firearm, and wouldnt carry it if I did.
I have two young daughters, the risk of an accident is far greater than the risk of needing a firearm to fend off an attack. For home defense, we of course have a phone to call 911, and two 90 pound lab husky mixes. They are the early detection system and do a great job. In the remotest of remote chances someone would try and break into the house when we are home, they wouldnt get very far, the surprise would be on them cause they cant sneak into the house with these dogs. speaking as a vet, Im not afraid to bludgeon someone to death if they were truly threatening my family.

that being said, firearms are cool. They can be a lot of fun. If you purchase one, please go to formalized training and spare no expense to keep it out of unwanted hands, be it kids or strangers.

A good afternoon of paintball has always been more fun to me than a day of shooting targets.

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By BDergay
From Eldorado
Sep 8, 2010
Jayy-Dogg on rappel
People who feel they have to open carry have issues. Do EVERYBODY a favor and lose the paranoia!

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By Cpt. E
Sep 8, 2010
yeah, open carry is uncomfortable to me on many levels.

However, i have no prob with concealed-carry by qualified folks. but its not for everyone.

as far as home defense goes, i cannot fathom having '911' as my only means to defend my family. its not like i envision any kind of a realistic scenerio where a wacko comes lurching out of the woods, its more like it just seems kind of exposed to not have a pop-gun of some sort in the house.

there's a question: what have non-gun owning folks had to have done in order to dispatch their own cat after it comes crawling home without a face?

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By Buff Johnson
Sep 8, 2010
smiley face
never send your attack cat without its tequila-lime helmet; any gun owner knows that

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By Cpt. E
Sep 8, 2010
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like this?

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By Olaf Mitchell
From Paia, Maui, Hi,
Sep 8, 2010
rockerwaves
You never know who's packin these days.
You never know who's packin these days.

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By mtnkid85
Sep 8, 2010
Well, I almost made it through a few of the posts above...

I hunt mostly from family tradition, Its how I was brought up. I still enjoy it very much, its just another excuse to be out in the mountains and I can gurantee that while hunting youll go places and see things that you would never see otherwise.

I own guns because as a citizen of the USA I think its my responsibility to excercise the rights this country gives me... or something like that. I also am a gear whore and guns are maybe almost a little bit cooler than cams!

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By Rick Blair
From Denver
Sep 8, 2010
This is a novel auto blocking belay device.  I think it works quite well, depending on rope thickness and sheath quality, it belays very smooth.  Great to lower with.  You gotta love over engineering.  $3 at a gear swap!
I own guns because I like to shoot and I am ultimately responsible for the protection of my family and myself. If you are concerned about ammo cost, buy a 22 along with your larger caliber gun and take both to the range.

My father in-law teaches shooting to kids in Sweden. He claims all of his students see improvements in their grades at school after they start shooting. It is definitely a great exercise in concentration. One of the things I like about climbing is that you have to examine what you are doing carefully for safety because death is a very real consideration. The same is true with handling firearms.

If you want one for protection, keeping it unloaded is not a good idea, separating the ammo is a really really bad idea. Buy a quick access pistol safe. Many of them even have indicators if someone has been trying the combo and getting it wrong ( ie kids). If you don't feel you can store it loaded safely, get something else for protection.

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By Cpt. E
Sep 8, 2010
same's true with the operation of a chainsaw. maybe i should have cut more wood in college....

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By Rick Blair
From Denver
Sep 8, 2010
This is a novel auto blocking belay device.  I think it works quite well, depending on rope thickness and sheath quality, it belays very smooth.  Great to lower with.  You gotta love over engineering.  $3 at a gear swap!
Cpt. E wrote:
same's true with the operation of a chainsaw. maybe i should have cut more wood in college....

My uncle dropped out of a CU EE program back in the 60s. He has cut his own trees and has his own sawmill, he made a really good living off of that.

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By phil wortmann
From Colorado Springs, Co.
Sep 8, 2010
Shredded by the Center Route.
My only advice is to pick up your brass and targets. There are few places to shoot anymore because, unfortunately, many from the gun culture don't pick up after themselves. I grew up with guns, and use them for hunting. Protect the tradition and the right by being responsible and careful.

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By Timmamok
From Durango, CO
Sep 8, 2010
crack at undisclosed location - my little proj
+ another one - lefties with guns

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By Tea
Sep 8, 2010
just Jong it!
1. It's my right as a US citizen, and I exercise it.
2. Self reliance is a great quality, especially when in life threatening situations.
3. I would rather have it and not need it, then wish I had one when I do need it.

If someone intends to do you harm, the lengths they will go to do that can be shocking.

I do not have children though, and live alone. With kids in the house I would have a different opinion. As will all PPE gear...proper training and familiarity are essential, lest it become a liability.

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By willeslinger
From Golden, Colorado
Sep 8, 2010
I was pretty bummed when they didn't greenlight my "Bourne Identity" style reboot of The Eiger Sanction. This was from the rough draft's first act.
I hunted on my family farm when I was younger, I guess I was a pretty natural marksman, but I find it all pretty boring. I'll occasionally break out my bow and send some arrows down rage, but that's kind of like a zen meditative thing for me, because when I shoot with my bow, I feel like a lot of the other stuff that worries me just falls away. Kind of like climbing, just less strenuous and time consuming. Basically, it's a nice thing to do for a half hour every so often, nothing more.

Love me some deer meat though, but I live in the southeast, and that stuff gets given away like acid at a Grateful Dead concert when the season opens.

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By Buff Johnson
Sep 8, 2010
smiley face
Just be glad Bambi doesn't have a fully-auto

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By Leo Paik
Administrator
From Westminster, Colorado
Sep 8, 2010
One thing to keep in mind is that hunting is far, far more than killing. That's just the tiny part before you dress the meat.

Safety is huge, especially, as others mention, when it comes to others in your household. You HAVE to teach everyone else in your home how to deal with weapons safely if you own.

Shooting and hunting can be an excellent complement to climbing activities...especially using traditional bows.

Finally, one thing to strongly consider is chronic wasting disease, possibly our local version of kuru/scrapie/Jacob Creutzfeld/mad cow. Stanley Preussner was thought to be a wacko...then he got the Nobel prize for his work on prions. We don't really understand all that is involved in cross-species transmission.

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By Olaf Mitchell
From Paia, Maui, Hi,
Sep 15, 2010
rockerwaves
What can I say, We ate well that winter!
What can I say, We ate well that winter!

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By jim-c
Sep 21, 2010
topping 2
Another tree-hugging liberal with a gun. We have a farm and raise our own meat, so I don't see the need to hunt as much when I can go to the pasture more easily. In the end, I raise/hunt for food, not for pleasure. I'm not looking to hang a trophy but to stock my freezer. Circle of life and all. I am an omnivore and a predator and I like knowing how my food was prepared.

It surprises a lot of my right-wing friends. There is that stereo-type that says if you are liberal, you cannot own a gun or hunt.

I will say that I am not a fan of handguns - different purpose than a rifle. I have never felt the need to carry one or have one around. But each to his own.

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By Buff Johnson
Sep 21, 2010
smiley face
After this, did Olaf take up surfing???

The Deer Hunter
The Deer Hunter

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By Cpt. E
Sep 21, 2010
yeah, i go in and out on the hand-gun thing too....

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By Olaf Mitchell
From Paia, Maui, Hi,
Oct 16, 2010
rockerwaves
Mark, I must admit that some of my best naps have been at about 10am on a clear,sunny Rocky Mountain morning sitting under a tree after freezing my tail off since way before dawn.

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