Sunday, 18 September 2011

Nationals Shoot Report 17th September 2011

BadgeThe 2011 Nationals had finally come around and after a disastrous pre-nationals shoot at South Wilts I was hoping that this weekend was going to be significantly better. This year the Nationals were being held at Eastnor Castle near Ledbury in Herefordshire and having looked at the website I was looking forward to shooting in the woods around the castle. Having spent Friday on a Westfield Experience day at the Millbrook Proving Ground it meant I would need to be up early to arrive in time to register and so it was.

I should have been shoot both days but as things turned out I could only make the Saturday and given the way that went maybe it was for the best. So after a 2 hour drive I finally arrive at the shoot and the first priority was to track down a cup of tea. So with tea in hand it was time to register and go and find out who else was around for the pre-shoot chat.

The weather in the morning was glorious with blue skies and the odd cloud but the crowd of archers was smaller this year than previous and to reflect this their would only be 3 courses rather than the traditional 4. The result of this was that the Longbow Archers would be shooting with Compounds and Crossbows on the Y course which was laid by Doverdale Bowmen for compounds.

So having registered and chatted with my fellow archers it was to Y course and what would prove to be an interesting days shooting if not a successful one. Y course was a long walk through A course and with the Longbow archers marching as to war we were off to the course briefing area and then onto to my starting target 9.

Saturday I'd be shooting with Bob (Longbow), Martin (Longbow) and Mike (Crossbow) and I did a lot of shooting but not a lot of scoring. It was to be another day of 3D wounds which are not much good when shooting faces but it's the shooting in new environments that is the fun part of field archery.

Mike, Bob & Martin
Mike, Bob and Martin
The first target of the day was going to be a Hare hidden behind the bracken. With a Mike showing us where the kill was and me not talking advantage of something to aim at it was off to the next target a Fox and then onto a long Bear. By this time the weather was beginning to take a turn for the worse and with darkening skies the rain started come down by the bucket full.

So it was on with the waterproof before shooting the Pheasant and then onto a Prong Horn before we moved onto the tea tent. We decided at this point to continue because it was too early for lunch not realising that we had another 20 targets before the next break. So bypassing the tea tent it was off to the next target an Antelope before a Goose and then a Raccoon.

With the Raccoon out of the way it was off to a Deer quickly followed by a Rabbit and a Stag before shooting the first of many Boars. With the Boar history it was off to a Goat and by this time we were beginning to warm up because the sun was out again and we were still wearing the waterproofs.

Mike Shows us where the kill is
It was time for a larger target and a Cougar before we were back to a small Turkey and then another Boar before it was time for a Javelina. With the Javelina out of the way it was off to a Bobcat and then a Wolf and we were over half way through the targets. By this time we were getting rather hungry but we still had a number of targets to go before we could take a break.

The next target was a Stag and then a Turkey shot before a Bear and a Reindeer. We could see the tea tent now but their were still a few more targets to shoot before we could grab a burger. So with the thought of food in our minds it was time to shoot another Boar and then a Rabbit before it was time to have our burger and a break.

DeerAfter a short break for a Cheese Burger and a tea it was time for the final few targets in the woods before we would move out into the open. The first target after lunch was that Duck before a Pheasant and and Deer before we moved out into the open.

At this point the rain started again; all the time we were in the woods, well apart from the first rain, it was sunny but as soon as we moved out in the open the rain started coming down hard.

So wearing the waterproofs again it was time to shoot a long Stag and you can see from the picture right what we were shooting in. With the Stag out of the way it was off to an Antelope and my first 24 of the day.

Next was a long Stag before we moved onto a long Bear before a Cougar over the bracken and then a Bear before fore we move back into the woods for the final two targets. The penultimate target was a longish Jay and my second 24 of the day what a pity that I only managed to start hitting the targets at the end of the day.

The final target of the day was a Turkey and then it was time to total up the scores.

With the day over and an atrocious score in the bag it was simply a case of dropping off the cards and wandering into Wales Archery for a new set of gloves and a chat about 110lb Gary Evans longbows it was time to head off home.

Saturday 17th September


Me John

Me John
09 Hare - - 27 Wolf 8 -
10 Fox 10 - 28 Stag 16 -
11 Bear 10 - 29 Turkey - -
12 Pheasant 8 - 30 Bear - -
13 Prong Horn - - 31 Reindeer 16 -
14 Antelope 4 - 32 Boar 4 -
15 Canada Goose 10 - 33 Rabbit 16 -
16 Raccoon - - 34 Duck 20 -
17 Deer 16 - 35 Pheasant 16 -
18 Rabbit 16 - 36 Deer 10 -
19 Stag 16 - 01 Stag - -
20 Boar - - 02 Antelope 24 -
21 Goat - - 03 Stag 10 -
22 Cougar 14 - 04 Bear 4 -
23 Turkey 10 - 05 Cougar 10 -
24 Boar - - 06 Bear - -
25 Javelina - - 07 Jay 24 -
26 Bobcat 10 - 08 Turkey 16 -

124 -
194 -

Total 318 -

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