Pictured: Camp Katahdin visitors taking advantage of our private shooting range.
If you’re going to spend some time on the Maine gun range, you want to make sure you have all the gear you need.
Aside from the guns and ammo you’ll be shooting, you might also want to pack a couple socks, a tablecloth, a Tupperware dish, and some markers.
Stay with me…you’ll see what I mean.
Today’s post is about what to carry in your range bag to make your visit to the Maine gun range as convenient and enjoyable as it should be.
Not All Bags Created Equal
What you carry to the range to shoot clays with a shotgun will be different than what you’ll want to take with you to shoot pistols or rifles. Since you can shoot just about any type of firearm at this Maine shooting range, I’ll try to cover all options.
Standard Range Bag Items
No matter what kind of shooting you’ll be doing, you’ll need some standard gear.
- Eye protection – safety or shooting glasses of some kind. In my bag, I always try to carry a pair of clear glasses and a pair of yellow tinted glasses. If it’s sunny out, I’m generally wearing dark sunglasses anyway so I’ll have those too. There are tons of other colors of shooting glasses for varying conditions but I’ve found that yellow ones really help in low light such as when it’s cloudy or after dusk.
- Ear protection – I carry electronic earmuffs in my bag but I always keep a handful of earplugs stashed away in it too. Inevitably, there will be times I forget my earmuffs so it’s nice to have the plugs in there as a backup. I like the electronic earmuffs because I can have conversations with my fellow shooters and hear range commands easily while wearing them. When shooting very loud, high caliber rifles, I’ll even double up with earmuffs over earplugs.
- Barrel rod – always carry a rod to clear a bore obstruction should you need to. A stove-piped round could spell the end of your range visit without a means of dislodging it.
- Cleaning rag and cleaning solution – it’s a good idea to give your guns a light wipe-down when you’re done for the day. That way any moisture, condensation, or the standard grime that comes from shooting gets wiped off before the gun goes back in the case.
Other Range Bag Items
The following items are specific to the type of shooting you’ll be doing.
- Staple gun and staples – for hanging paper targets at the pistol and rifle range. For obvious reasons, always make sure to have plenty of extra staples.
- Shell pouch or vest – To carry ammo and spent rounds to and from the shotgun range.
- Tools – Pack any specific tools you might need for adjusting sights or making other field modifications.
- Binoculars or spotting scope – For checking long-range rifle targets without having to go all the way downrange.
Range Bag Items You Never Knew You Needed
Now for those obscure items I mentioned at the start of this post. These are the range bag items you never knew you needed.
- Socks – Plain cotton socks (clean ones, preferably) make great covers for shooting glasses. They keep your glasses from getting all scratched up while bouncing around in your range bag. The soft inside of the socks double as lens cloths to keep your glasses clean. Socks cut lengthwise with the elastic part cut off also make great gun cleaning rags.
- Tablecloth – Either that or a piece of felt fabric is good to include in your range bag. Spread it on top of the range bench for padding for your gun and elbows. Or spread it out on the ground for prone shooting or to catch spent brass. Get the waterproof, wipe-down kind and it can double as a rain cover should the weather turn bad.
- Tupperware dish – I hate fumbling pistol and rifle ammo out of the factory boxes. So I pack a sandwich-sized plastic container with a lid in my range bag. I dump a box of ammo into it and scoop out handfuls to load into magazines. Then when I’m done, I use it to hold my spent brass for reloading later. If you don’t reload, it’s still nice to have a container to throw empties into to carry off the range for deposit into the trash.
- Markers – Rather than changing targets after every round, I use markers to make slashes through the holes in the paper to indicate which shots have already been scored. I use a different color for each round so I can compare my groups on the same target.
Maine Gun Range
For your trip to the Maine shooting range, what other unique or obscure items would you pack in your range bag?
From handguns to the heaviest rifles to busting clays with shotguns, there’s plenty of opportunity to challenge your friends. During your stay at Camp Katahdin’s Denney Lodge be sure to check out our private shooting pavilion.
Once in a while Camp Katahdin invites a small group to train with high level military trainers. If you would like to learn more about our upcoming shooting courses. Click here: