By now I’m fairly certain that everyone knows the specifics of what this match entailed so I’m not going to bore you with my depiction of that. What I can say is that it was like nothing we have ever done before in the shooting sports. I was a little skeptical about it when I first heard the format, but who wouldn’t be with uncharted waters. It’s so hard to try and imagine how something is going to go down when you’ve never been a part of it or anything like it before.

I really didn’t put a great deal of thought into my gear for the match. I only had one pack that seemed fitting for the match, and planned on just shooting it and seeing what happened. I used my TacOptics JP rifle with my V-tac sling pretty much still attached from Blue Ridge. I had 5 total AR mags, 2 sets of coupled 30’s and 1 40rd bigstick. With the weather being on the iffy side and not knowing what shooting positions we were going to use, I opted to bring my Glock 34 for the sole reason of not wanting to have to spend hours cleaning FLSC fine sand out of my 2011. I only had 3 glock mags with basepads on them. I brought those 3 along with a 17rd mag for barney starts. I brought 300 rounds of rifle ammo and 300 rounds of pistol (plus a partial mag). I loaded up all my mags to start and the remaining rounds stayed in the factory packaging. I didn’t bring any water or anything else other than what is listed above.

Chris’ Gear

Match Prep

Since the match was announced on Facebook I watched people prep and test and weigh their gear. I took a much different approach to prepping for the match. I just so happen to be a grand master procrastinator and seem to say eff this lets do it live, and nothing changed for this match. The eve of the Trekker found me working a midnight shift. I finished up at 0700 and was home sleeping shorting after 0800 the morning of the match. I set my alarm for 1000, where I proceeded to wake up and start packing my gear for the first time then. I loaded my mags and tossed them along with the rest of my ammo in the main compartment of my pack. A pop tart and a coffee on my way to Forest Lake and there I was ready to rock out the trekker.

Game Time

I had one plan for the match, RUN. Seeing the rule set that was put out, I knew that getting hits on the first two laps was important due to the point value of those rounds. But when push came to shove I shot every station during the match at the same speed. I don’t think I can honestly say that I aimed more or less during any given station. The only variation that I put in was on stage 4 where I switched shooting positions in the box a few times.
I was able to complete 6 3/4 laps (which I’m told was 2nd best for the match behind Josh Eernisse) and think that I could have got one more full lap if I hadn’t spent as much time loading mags. I consider myself in ok shape physically. I do work out a time or two a week, but in all reality I’m a stones throw from 40, I sleep 4 hours on a good day, and most days my dinner comes out of a microwave at 3am and gets washed down with more energy drink than a person should ever think about. The one thing I do know is how to dig deep for that extra bit of mojo to keep pushing. I have been around sports my whole life and being a multi-sport collegiate athlete has paid many dividends for me. Even though it was 2 decades ago the difference between going to the gym and getting swole  (as the hipsters like to say these days) and running ladders until you puke with your coach chirping in your ear is apples to oranges. I would venture to guess that people who were in military experienced similar results.

Lessons Learned

Knowing then what I know now, I would have brought more mags and loaded them all up ahead of time. I was limited on how many pistol mags I could have done since I only had 3 with extended capacity, but the more the merrier. After the first lap I had to load a mag for every stage that I stopped at. Going into the match I assumed that there would be log jams at the stages giving me time to load any mags and then some. I was dead wrong there. I would say that the majority of the stages I arrived at had either no one or maybe 1-2 people stacked up. I had to pull my pack off, take out the box of ammo, open it up, and load the mag to shoot the stage. As stated earlier I think I could have got another full lap had I not spent the time loading mags. I tried loading a rifle mag while jogging from stage 4 to stage 1. Needless to say I yard sale’d about $5 is XM193 on the way in case Ron wants to go pick it all up.
Another thing I’d change would be the clothes I wear. I really over dressed for the match. When I woke up that morning I felt pretty chilled. Most of the time I would much rather be warm than cold so I put on an UA cold gear long sleeve shirt, with a fleece pull over. I didn’t want to wear long john’s so I opted for flannel lined carhart pants and my trusty salomon spikecross shoes. I sweated through all of that stuff really bad and the heat and moisture coming off me reeked havoc on my scope fogging up.
Finally I would have brought more pistol ammo. My G34 mag’s with the basepads hold 23+1 rounds. I shot my pistol to slidelock on every one of the pistol stages. I was able to put up several 17-20 hit stages so I certainly wasn’t blazing the trigger and not hitting anything. I brought 300 rounds plus a partial mag which had I believe 19 rounds. When I arrived at stage 3 on my final lap, I searched all pockets, mags, boxes, and only came up with 7 remaining rounds of 9mm. Had there been time to make another partial lap I would have shot 6 and kept the last one ready to move on to get me another rifle stage after that. It was hard to gauge how many were needed for the match and had I guessed any less I would have been up the creek.
All and all it was an awesome time and I will definitely look forward to another one in the future.