Tag Archives: missions

2015 Walker Draw Tactical Challenge

On a cool, foggy morning in late August, the 2015 Walker Draw Tactical Challenge was already facing some challenges of its own. The heavy fog shrouded the rolling hills making even close-range targets invisible.

Fog as Thick as Pea Soup
Fog as Thick as Pea Soup

Competitors milled about as the match directors conducted the safety briefing. About an hour after the scheduled start time, the safety briefing was over and competitors were on their way to the various shooting stages. Perhaps a half hour after that, the fog had lifted and the long-range targets were visible.

The Competition Gets Underway
The Competition Gets Underway

The Walker Draw Tactical Challenge is put on by the Old Breed Gun Club (OBGC) on private property near Bloomfield, NE. The property is exceptional and the guys from the OBGC are top-notch.

Several Junior Shooters Competed in the Challenge
Several Junior Shooters Competed in the Challenge

One hundred percent of the proceeds from the Walker Draw are donated to The Battle Buddy Foundation. This year, the OBGC donated more than $3000.00 to Battle Buddy.

One of the organizers, D.R. Herrold, said, “We are honored to do what we can to help out such an important organization. The Battle Buddy Foundation is quietly battling a vicious enemy, and winning.”

Obviously, Battle Buddy is a veteran-oriented organization. Even though all of the members of the OBGC are veterans, the event is open to those without prior military service. The overall feeling is one of inclusion and brotherhood, regardless of military service. (OK, there might be a little ribbing that goes on between former Marines and ex-Army, but that’s about it.) There were several junior shooters at the event, all of whom seemed to feel right at home.

The competition itself is pretty much what one would expect from such an event. The course of fire was comprised of fifteen stages with scenarios that challenged competitors and mimicked real-world situations – “rooftops,” pistol-to-rifle transitions, moving targets, “floating” shooting platforms, VTAC boards, long-range, close-range and much more.

Multi-position Shooting Challenges Abound
Multi-position Shooting Challenges Abound

The organizers also recovered exceptionally well from the fog delay. An hour and a half delay in an eight-hour competition is significant. By lunch time, however, the organizers had recovered nearly half of that time. With an eat-on-the-go lunch, the competition wrapped up by around 6:30 p.m. Dinner and the awards ceremony were finished and most everyone was on their way home by 9:00 p.m. or so.

Floating Platform for the "Captain Phillips" Challenge
Floating Platform for the “Captain Phillips” Challenge

Speaking of the awards ceremony, the prize table was impressive for such a young competition.

According to Herrold, “OBGC is comprised of four main members. All four of us reached out to the shooting community to get the best prize table possible. Numerous emails, phone conversations and a lot of time went into reaching out to the sponsors. All of which were an absolute pleasure to deal with. Every business noted on our website deserves your attention. Quality people putting out quality products and services.”

Almost as importantly, the food was excellent featuring beef raised on the property and venison harvested on the property. I can’t think of another shooting competition that offers food raised or harvested on property!

The OBGC is looking to keep the Walker Draw at about the same size as this year’s event. So, if you’re looking to get in on a great event hosted by some great guys on some great property, get your registration in early for next year’s competition.

 

 

Oklahoma Run and Gun

Are you ready? No, I mean truly ready. What if riots broke out in your area tomorrow and you had to make it home from work without your vehicle?

The Oklahoma Run and Gun is a pretty good test of an individual’s readiness. The Run and Gun combines oppressive heat, a 5K or 10K run (or walk), obstacle challenges and shooting challenges. Competitors must carry all of their firearms, ammunition and gear over the entire course, including enough water to support them in 100° Oklahoma heat.

An invitation from RISE Armament, of Tulsa, OK, led two Trek Tech Black staffers to the starting line of this event on a hot Saturday in July.

The event began with an uphill crawl over crushed rock under barbed wire. For competitors in shorts and/or short sleeves, the Run and Gun delivered on its tag line of, “Blood, Sweat and Bullets” almost immediately.

Uphill Barbed Wire Crawl
Uphill Barbed Wire Crawl
BLOOD, Sweat and Bullets
Making Good on the Promise of BLOOD, Sweat and Bullets

The first shooting stage was called Fast and Close. Competitors engaged targets with pistol or rifle approximately ten yards away across a creek from various shooting positions.

After the first shooting stage, participants crossed a creek utilizing a cargo net. It was fairly obvious that many of the competitors had not negotiated a cargo net before.

Attempting to Walk Across the Cargo Net
Attempting to Walk Across the Cargo Net …
... Didn't End So Well
… Didn’t End So Well
Attempting to Belly Crawl Across the Cargo Net
Attempting to Belly Crawl Across the Cargo Net

Once across the cargo net, competitors negotiated a steep uphill climb and continued to the second shooting stage.

Uphill Climb
Uphill Climb

The second shooting stage required shooters to score two hits on torso-sized steel targets at 200, 300 and 500 yards within three minutes. Shooters were allowed to lie prone while shooting. Each shooting stage had a three-minute time limit.

A Trek Tech Staffer Engages the 500 Yard Target with a RISE Armament Rifle
A Trek Tech Staffer Engages the 500 Yard Target with a RISE Armament Rifle

After the 200, 300 and 500 yard targets, competitors slogged out a shadeless, two-mile gravel road march/run to the “Junkyard.”

In the Junkyard, shooters transitioned from a simulated rooftop to a chain link fence to the hood of a truck, finishing with two shots through a barricade all on a torso-sized target approximately 200 yards away.

With the Junkyard complete, shooters ran to a farm pond and down the dam to engage several 8″ steel targets over water at 10-20 yards.  The first three targets were pistol targets. The fourth and fifth targets were rifle targets at 10-40 yards. Each of these targets required two hits. The final target was a pistol target. Shooters were required to score one hit and fire five rounds.

The Slaughtering Hole
The Slaughtering Hole

After clearing the “Slaughtering Hole” at the bottom of the dam, shooters proceeded to a burial mound where they carried a 40 lb ammo can to the top of the mound and then engaged a torso-sized steel target from three unsupported firing positions. The first firing position was approximately 220 yards from the target. Each successive firing position was approximately 30 yards closer. A magazine change was required.

The Top of the Burial Mound
The Top of the Burial Mound

After one last bonus shooting stage, where shooters were allowed to fire one round at a head-sized steel target approximately 250 yards distant, shooters sprinted (or dragged themselves) about 600 yards to the finish line.

Biathlon events like the the Oklahoma Run and Gun have gained considerable popularity in the last few years. The organizers of the Oklahoma Run and Gun have developed an excellent test of man (or woman) and gear. Competitors bumped up against their physical and psychological limits but every minute of the event was incredibly fun. Winners were determined by equal weighting of the run time and the shooting speed and accuracy. We highly recommend it if you want to test your readiness.

We would like to offer our thanks to John, the landowner, Al and Daniel, the event organizers.

We would also like to thank the good folks at RISE Armament who invited us. We ran one of their complete RA-325 Tactical V.2 rifles and one of their RA-535 Advanced Triggers in our Run and Gun AR (Stay tuned to a series of articles on the build of this rifle) in the race.

The RISE Armament rifle performed flawlessly aiding one Trek Tech Black teammate in his third-place finish in the 5K race.

The RA-535 trigger is a thing of beauty – a race gun trigger for your AR. With a 3.5 lb single stage pull, one of the cleanest breaks we’ve experienced, a 0.0045″ pull and a 0.0035″ reset, this is definitely one of the finest AR drop-in triggers on the market. You really owe it to yourself to give it a try.

There is also a winter Run and Gun for those that want to avoid the heat. For more information, click here to visit the Oklahoma Run and Gun website.

2014 Sniper Adventure Challenge Gear – Gear tough enough to take on the Challenge and come back for more

Author: Toby Asplin

If you haven’t read my after action report (AAR) on the 2014 Competition Dynamics Sniper Adventure Challenge, this article may not make much sense. If you’ve read my AAR, you know that the 2014 Sniper Adventure Challenge was an excellent test of both man and material.

The Competition Dynamics folks provided an extensive required gear list to competitors. This gear had to be carried at all times during the event. Thankfully, most of the required gear went unused as it was focused on trauma, first aid and rescue.

We did utilize several key pieces of kit. Here’s a review of the gear that survived the event and worked well for us.

A good foundation is critical to success in most disciplines. Tactical adventure racing is no exception. My foundation (boot) of choice was the Salomon Quest 4D GTX. The Quests, along with my sock choices and a liberal application of Body Glide, kept my feet blister-free during the event. Relatively lightweight, at 2 lbs. 13 oz., these backpacking boots from Salomon provided excellent support and held up well to the constant punishment of the rocky terrain. In contrast, the soles of the Oboz mid-height hiking boots worn by my teammate were literally shredded in several areas. If these boots fit you well, I highly recommend them for difficult terrain and pack weights in the 40-60 lb. range. Continue reading 2014 Sniper Adventure Challenge Gear – Gear tough enough to take on the Challenge and come back for more