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So, I am a member of what I feel is an excellent private shooting range facility here in SW Ohio. They have enough shooting bays that I can usually get one to myself except on a really busy weekend. And when I say bay, I am talking an area probably like 25 yards across, and then 25, 50, 100 or 200 yards deep. They also have a dedicated shotgun area, host 3-gun, IDPA & SASS matches, etc... Anyway, nice range.

I have however noticed a phenomenon whenever I go there. I have been a member for a number of years now, and can count on one hand all the times I recall there being someone on the 200 yard range when I wanted to use it. In fact, the 200 yard line is usually not being used at all based on my observations. It isn't that the club members don't shoot rifles, I see all sorts of rifles being fired in the shorter bays. I just don't see them being used much on the 200, and the 100 yard bay is generally the second least busy. Now, on one hand this is great news for me, because I can usually drive on out to the range, and get in all the 200 yard shooting I want.

That being said, I really cut my teeth on shooting longer distances starting in Parris Island, where everyone who goes through has to have some proficiency with hitting a man sized target on a pretty consistent basis at 500 yards. I remember doing a SAW training range later with my unit that was iron sights out to about 800 yards (it helps when you are using the SAW as an area weapon vs point weapon). And shooting at vehicle sized targets at over 1,000 yards with Ma Deuce. So, 200 yards to me seems like a relatively short distance to be shooting a centerfire rifle. It is actually the shortest distance of the Marine Corps known distance range qualification, and is shot from offhand, sitting and kneeling (no prone).

I get that there are plenty of reasons to shoot rifles at shorter distances. Today for instance, I started with a 50 yard bay, because I recently swapped some scopes and had to re-zero as well as wanting to do some pistol work. I also worked on some shooting on the move, reloads, transitions, shooting from cover, and things like that on the shorter bay with the AR. All perfectly valid (to me), reasons to be using a rifle in a short bay.

I guess that I am just a bit dismayed that I don't see more people utilizing the longer distance range. It is a bit more of a pain to walk the targets out, but with hi-vis targets and a scope you can spot hits from the firing line, so I just put a bunch out at once. Any centerfire rifle with decent iron sights or a scope should be able to make 200 yard shots. Even a properly zero'd no magnification RDS is perfectly capable of a 200 yard shot. 200 yards is short enough that the wind should have a pretty negligible effect on a centerfire bullet unless you are in a hurricane. With the trajectory of most rounds, there isn't much of a need to adjust scopes or sights for the distance either.

I realize that I have had some formal instruction and lots of experience shooting at longer distances, so maybe that skews my perception that 200 yards isn't a really long shot? Does anyone else see similar trends at their local shooting spot? Lots of close (<50 yard) shooting, and not a whole lot beyond that? Does the average shooter feel that 200 yards really is a long shot?
 

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The range I go to is an out door one. It's the same way. They have a 25 meter zero and it's always full. Their 100 is some what busy. No seems to shoot out farther. The most fun I had in the Army were on KD ranges. I have watched plenty of people zero hunting rifles at 25 then walk off. I like to confirm at at least 100 with my hunting rifles and with an AR I confirm at 300. My 45-70 when I take it, all shooting is done at 100. That's as far as I will take a shot with it on hogs due to the terrain.
As for why people don't shoot long rang, who knows. Personally I like the challenge.
 

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Could be a lot of different thinking going on.

A lot of guys that are hunters feel like a zero at 100 is a perfect or good enough place, allowing for sufficient trajectory at longer range with the flat shooting guns of today.

Or, it could be that a lot of people with AR style rifles, never carried or used one in the military, and figure that 100 yards is good enough for their purposes.

Like you, the 500 yard KD course with iron sights in the Marines gave me a really good perspective and opened up an entire new way of looking at rifle shooting and potential.

If your experience was like mine, the 500 yard, 10 shot string was where my money was. Off hand at 200 yards is the only place I had any chance of dropping a point or two.

Come to think of it, doesn't Ohio only allow pistol caliber rifles for hunting?
That might be a lot of it right there.
 
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100 yards max is almost standard here. Few ranges exceed and the furthest (without it being a military base) I have seen is a 200 yard range.

I've exceeded 300 yards on my own property which almost seems to amaze people around here. The majority of people I have seen at ranges around here are either sighting in a hunting rifle/confirming zero or college students who buy a short barreled AK or handgun and want to practice some skills at close (50 yards and in) range. Up here there aren't many opportunities during hunting to shoot past 100 yards.

I've always found the further out you shoot and practice the better your closer groupings get. Of course this was learned when I first shot out to 300 yards at a man sized target consistently and then moving into 100 yards it was faster and closer groupings.
 

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Could be a lot of different thinking going on.

A lot of guys that are hunters feel like a zero at 100 is a perfect or good enough place, allowing for sufficient trajectory at longer range with the flat shooting guns of today.

Or, it could be that a lot of people with AR style rifles, never carried or used one in the military, and figure that 100 yards is good enough for their purposes.

Like you, the 500 yard KD course with iron sights in the Marines gave me a really good perspective and opened up an entire new way of looking at rifle shooting and potential.

If your experience was like mine, the 500 yard, 10 shot string was where my money was. Off hand at 200 yards is the only place I had any chance of dropping a point or two.

Come to think of it, doesn't Ohio only allow pistol caliber rifles for hunting?
That might be a lot of it right there.
We caught a bit of a reprieve a couple years ago:

Legal deer hunting rifles are chambered for the following calibers: .357 Magnum, .357 Maximum, .38 Special, .375 Super Magnum, .375 Winchester, .38-55, .41 Long Colt, .41 Magnum, .44 Special, .44 Magnum, .444 Marlin, .45 ACP, .45 Colt, .45 Long Colt, .45 Winchester Magnum, .45 Smith & Wesson, .454 Casull, .460 Smith & Wesson, .45-70, .45-90, .45-110, .475 Linebaugh, .50-70, .50-90, .50-100, .50-110 and .500 Smith & Wesson.

https://www.buckeyefirearms.org/str...ifles-approved-hunting-white-tailed-deer-ohio
 

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Come to think of it, doesn't Ohio only allow pistol caliber rifles for hunting?
That might be a lot of it right there.
That could be part of it. Although for some of the "straight walled pistol cartridges" allowed, like the .45-70, a 200 yard shot is rather short. For a shotgun with rifled slugs, or something like a .357 carbine, the 100 yard line is probably a more realistic place to be shooting.

But I'm not just seeing hunting rifles being shot. I see plenty of bolt actions in the .30 calibers, old mil-surp bolt guns, ARs, AKs, SKS's, etc... So I think it has to do more with mindset than hardware.

I would love to have somewhere I could regularly shoot out to 800-1000 yards. Not that I have a whole lot of experience at those distances, but I would like the challenge, and would finally feel like a .338 Lapua or .50 BMG was justifiable. Like you, the 500 was where I made my money on the range, although it actually got harder at the 500 when we went to ACOGs for quals.
 
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We caught a bit of a reprieve a couple years ago:

Legal deer hunting rifles are chambered for the following calibers: .357 Magnum, .357 Maximum, .38 Special, .375 Super Magnum, .375 Winchester, .38-55, .41 Long Colt, .41 Magnum, .44 Special, .44 Magnum, .444 Marlin, .45 ACP, .45 Colt, .45 Long Colt, .45 Winchester Magnum, .45 Smith & Wesson, .454 Casull, .460 Smith & Wesson, .45-70, .45-90, .45-110, .475 Linebaugh, .50-70, .50-90, .50-100, .50-110 and .500 Smith & Wesson.

https://www.buckeyefirearms.org/str...ifles-approved-hunting-white-tailed-deer-ohio
It actually might get even better this year. But still no bottleneck cartridges.
 

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We caught a bit of a reprieve a couple years ago:

Legal deer hunting rifles are chambered for the following calibers: .357 Magnum, .357 Maximum, .38 Special, .375 Super Magnum, .375 Winchester, .38-55, .41 Long Colt, .41 Magnum, .44 Special, .44 Magnum, .444 Marlin, .45 ACP, .45 Colt, .45 Long Colt, .45 Winchester Magnum, .45 Smith & Wesson, .454 Casull, .460 Smith & Wesson, .45-70, .45-90, .45-110, .475 Linebaugh, .50-70, .50-90, .50-100, .50-110 and .500 Smith & Wesson.

https://www.buckeyefirearms.org/str...ifles-approved-hunting-white-tailed-deer-ohio
The more commons ones, (even the least common ) still have quite a rainbow trajectory, compared to even a 30-30.

Of course I'm just pontificating, here, but a sight in at 100 yards would be quite sufficient for those, allowing for holding the sight on the back of the animal at a guestimated 200 yard shot.
 
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The more commons ones, (even the least common ) still have quite a rainbow trajectory, compared to even a 30-30.

Of course I'm just pontificating, here, but a sight in at 100 yards would be quite sufficient for those, allowing for holding the sight on the back of the animal at a guestimated 200 yard shot.
Yup, 100 yards is plenty for sighting an Ohio deer gun.
 

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Yup, 100 yards is plenty for sighting an Ohio deer gun.
Generally, yes.

But by my nature I would still walk over to the 200 yard line, and shoot it there. Just so I knew what it would do at 200 yards.
 
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It's not enough to see what it will do at 200 though. Another excuse to post a pic of my 12 ga rifle.

View attachment 169650
Nice pic. I'm not sure what you mean by see what it will do at 200. Bullet drop is listed on the box of most sabot rounds.
 

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I see the same thing here. A nice 200 yard outdoor range, and guys shooting mostly at 50 and 100 yards. The one that cracks me up is the indoor range that belong to - I see guys shooting new AR's at 5-10 yards (standing). And not all of them are in the black.
 

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I too was at PI (1983)so maybe its us ha. I'm cynical, I think most gun owners aren't shooters. They like shooting but just not that into it maybe. I wonder how many just buy them to impress others and haven't a clue. I've seen many like that. So that in mind they stay at ranges where they always shoot well. I've gotten strange looks just shooting a 1911 prone at 200 yd line. Finding someone with the desire to learn advanced rifle marksmanship is tough. If ya find one ...teach 'em. But sadly most lack desire imho.
 

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If I go to a "range" here, it's got steel at 200 and 300, and you place paper to punch at 100. That range begs for me to work the 200 and 300 yrd gongs with any rifle I've got there.

Even my 357mag Rossi lever, dialed for 50 yrds POA will whack the steel at 200 all day long holding on the top edge of the plate/gong. 300 is out of the question. If I'm using irons on the M1a or scope, those gongs get used at every outing just so I stay sharp on my [ "come up's" and hold offs ]. The sks, I make use of the ladder rear and make reliable hits out to 300 all day with it.

Like many here who've been through USMC boot, becoming a rifleman and remaining one is just a lot of fun/enjoyment and personal gratification that even with irons, threat to 200 are toast and with the right cartridge, 300 all day making chest shots.

I've had shooters next to me using scopes at 100 and checking their hits with a spotting scope make remarks that my groups with the irons on the m1a are better than theirs using scopes at 100. They get discouraged pretty easily apparently, and demonstrate they really are only up there to "play" having no real skills to fall on;
 

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I don't go to public ranges much, but have my deer rifle sighted for 200 yards. Seems to work well enough for those few and far between longer shots. I do have some training is shooting longer distance from service rifle competition.
 

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I don't think you are alone. I see lots of people shooting AR's and AK's at 10 to 25 yards. And I'm amassed at how many of them miss the target completely!

I have several friends that are hunting guides, they always ask,"How is your shooting skills?" Almost everyone says they can hit an 8" target out to 500 yards! Very few can actually do it!

I regularly practice to 200 yards with my deer rifles, And when I get the chance Ill run that out to 300. That is about as far as I can put 3 in a row on target. Beyond that the cross hairs will completely cover the target. I'm interested in shooting longer, but not equipt for it! DR
 

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I see the same thing here. A nice 200 yard outdoor range, and guys shooting mostly at 50 and 100 yards. The one that cracks me up is the indoor range that belong to - I see guys shooting new AR's at 5-10 yards (standing). And not all of them are in the black.
Well, actually, at something like 5-10 yards, the bullet's path has not yet crossed the plain of most AR iron sights, due to the significant offset. So, most people shoot a couple inches below where they think they will there.

I do sometimes shoot AR's at 5-10 yards, but am usually doing something a bit more dynamic than standing square to the target when I do so.
 
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Well, actually, at something like 5-10 yards, the bullet's path has not yet crossed the plain of most AR iron sights, due to the significant offset. So, most people shoot a couple inches below where they think they will there.

I do sometimes shoot AR's at 5-10 yards, but am usually doing something a bit more dynamic than standing square to the target when I do so.
I understand trajectory. What I should have said was, at 5-10 yards their groups are FUBAR.
 
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