Story and photos by Russell Purcell
December is often a hectic month in my household as I struggle to meet work deadlines and other obligations so that I can spend some quality time with close friends and family over the holidays.
With my social calendar filling up with work parties and other seasonal hijinks, I always make a concentrated effort to schedule some time at the range to put holes in paper. Presently, I belong to three gun clubs- two outdoor and one indoor – although the indoor range becomes my primary shooting spot during the cold and dreary winter months.
I was initially attracted to the DVC Vancouver Gun Range by the fact that it was an indoor shooting centre, which meant that I could enjoy target shooting all year round – regardless of the weather. Its extended hours of operation meant that I would have more opportunities to shoot, as most of the outdoor operations shut down in the early evening due to the lack of suitable lighting.
Having the ability to practice my marksmanship skills in a safe, warm, and dry environment is something I have come to cherish, and not just because I detest the blustery fall weather, but because it allows me to introduce more friends and acquaintances to the joys of shooting sports in a very comfortable setting. Not to mention I appreciate the great social atmosphere that comes along for the ride.
The reality is that when you are comfortable you tend to have better focus, and studies show that your brain will retain information more readily under these conditions. The end result is that your shooting should improve, and all parties involved should derive more enjoyment from the experience. This definitely sounds like a win-win to me, especially when I can participate unencumbered by a heavy jacket and gloves.
A visit to the range can also prove beneficial for those individuals looking to get more involved in the hobby; especially if they are planning to acquire a firearm of their own. DVC offers PAL training on a regular basis if you haven’t yet taken the licensing course, but it also offers advanced courses and private instruction for those parties interested in improving their technique and further developing their shooting skills and knowledge.
Another great advantage offered by DVC is that guests and members have access to a large inventory of rental guns which are available to sample at the range. This allows you to find the perfect handgun, rifle or shotgun to meet your needs before committing to a purchase at a retailer. This is where comfort comes in again, as you will be surprised at how different the shooting experience can be while transitioning from model to model, brand to brand. Finding a gun that fits your hands and feels right under fire will greatly enhance your shooting ability.
So when you get tired of navigating through seasonal traffic and or the chaos of congested shopping malls, or perhaps just need to get out of the house for a change of pace, a visit to the range is a terrific place to get educated, socialize, or unwind.