Practical/Tactical style matches have exploded in popularity over the last 3-5 years. With the technological leaps in rifles, ballistics and support gear, many shooters are finding it easier than ever to jump on a precision rifle and shoot out to distance.
However, to really test yourself you need to compete in an event with time and obstacle stressors. Here’s where and how you can get involved.
Single Day Matches
Pikes Peak Precision
Pikes Peak Precision hosts and promotes a series of practical/tactical precision rifle matches in the state of Colorado. Beginners and experts alike are welcome to attend and shoot these 1-day matches with challenging courses of fire. $30-$40 to shoot.
Matches are hosted on the 2nd Saturday of every month at Cheyenne Mtn. Shooting Complex. Round count is generally +/- 80 rounds. Small to Medium Rifle cartridges, no magnum cartridges. 3,200FPS speed limit. Match Schedule can be found at – www.pikespeakprecision.com
Hosted at Ben Lomond Gun Club, The Hu$tle is a fast paced precision rifle match with targets out to 600 yards. Matches are hosted on the 4th Sunday of every month, and are generally +/- 80 rounds, 8 stages. $40 to shoot, with pay backs to top finishers.
Full schedule can be found at pikespeakprecision.com
Border War South Central
Colorado is in the South Central NRL Border War region. Originally the brainchild of Jim See, the Border War series has grown from the Midwest with the help of the National Rifle League. Colorado will host three matches in the state. https://nrlborderwar.org/south-central-region/
April 27th – Holly, Co.
June 1st – Craig, Co.
September 14th – Colorado Springs, Co.
NoCo Precision Rifle Match at Pawnee
This monthly long range match is held on the 2nd Saturday of every month at Pawnee Sportsman’s Center in Briggsdale CO. This match emphasizes positional shooting (sticks, tripods, barricades, Bags, etc). There may be pistols on some match days, so bring one with a box of ammo.
This is a fun challenging match for all skill levels. $50 to shoot. More information can be found on https://www.facebook.com/groups/255884904834543
Colorado Rifle Club Long Range Precision
The Colorado Rifle Club (CRC), outside of Byers, Colorado hosts a monthly precision rifle match every 4th Saturday of the month. The course of fire is the same each month. Various target sizes are placed between 200 and 500 meters. The course is run by each competitor three times for a total of 50 rounds fired. For scheduling and match information, visit www.crci.org
Pueblo Precision Field Rifle Match
Pueblo West Sportsman’s Assn and Pikes Peak Practical Shooters host the Precision Field Rifle Match. 8:30 start time and a 12:00 start time. $10 per entry. 3rd Saturday, year round. You will be able to verify your zero from 8:00-8:20 and again from 11:30-12:00.
20 shooter max for the 8:30 match and 25 shooter max for the noon match. If you do not sign up ahead of time you do not get to shoot. To get signed up, go to Practiscore and look for Hosers Steel under the clubs tab or click on the link below. You don’t pay when you sign up, you pay at the match. https://practiscore.com/clubs/hosers-steel
Rifle Sportsman Club Precision Rifle Match
Hosted in Rifle, Co. on the first Saturday of each month, this match is +/- 40 rounds with sign up at 8:30am. All calibers welcome. www.riflegunclub.com
Two Day Events
High Country Precision Mile High Shootout
July 12-14, 2019 – Craig Colorado
Hosted by High Country Precision, this NRL event is a two day precision rifle match. The Mile High Shootout is an 18-20 stage field course with static and reactive targets ranging from 200 yards to 1400 yards.
Most targets will be under 1000 yards, but get ready for a few surprises! Most shooting positions will be in natural terrain and conditions with a few shooting props.
Walking between stages will be necessary so plan on shooting the entire course with what you’re carrying! Round count for the match will be no more than 250, but be sure to bring extra ammunition for the zero range. www.nationalrifleleague.org
Bushnell Elite Sniper Challenge
May 24-26 – DeBeque, Co. https://www.facebook.com/BushnellEliteTacticalSniperChallenge/
The Bushnel Elite Tactical “HIGH ANGLE” Sniper Challenge will take place in DeBeque, CO. 24-26 May 2019. It will be held at the most incredible place for a sniper challenge that anyone has ever seen, Branded Rock Canyon! An unparalleled shooting paradise with a culture of long-range marksmanship, it is truly the Gem of the West.
If you are 1/4 precision marksman, 1/4 tactical thinker, 1/4 wind guru, and 1/4 Mountain Goat, you stand a good chance at bringing home the win. Base elevation in the canyon is 6k’ and your travels will take you through the 3/4 mile wide, 6 mile long valley and up the canyon switchbacks. You will top out at 8k’ head across the mesa and back down; shooting up, down, and across the canyon. The opportunity at this match for high angle shooting is unmatched.
22LR Rimfire Events
22LR rimfire has taken the industry by storm. With inexpensive ammo and improvements in rifle systems, it’s a great way to practice and just have an enjoyable time shooting. It’s also a great way to get younger or inexperienced shooters into the rifle sports with low recoil and concussion.
Colorado hosts three NRL22 Matches across the state.
Ben Lomond NRL 22 – Hosted on the 3rd Saturday of every month, this match is hosted at the 560 acre shooting facility near Ramah Co. Distances out to 150 yards. www.nrl22.org
High Country Precision – Precision Rifle match located 4 miles from Craig, Co. Distances up to 300 yards! www.nrl22.org
Steel Marksmanship Challenge – Since the advent of the NRL22, Broken Box R LLC is now excited to add this additional COF for both existing and new Steel Marksmanship Challenge Marksmen! For more details regarding our NRL22 matches, please check out our website and click on the “NRL22 Match” tab or check out our Facebook page to keep up with the latest news and information regarding our upcoming NRL22 matches and COF’s. Distances to 100 yards – www.steelmarksmanshipchallenge.com
Pueblo West Sportsman’s Association Precision Rimfire – 22 Long Rifle only. No 22 mag or 17s. All shooting prone or bench. Up to the shooter. You can even shoot off sticks/packs/standing/ect. You can build your own shooting challenge based on your training needs. Any flavor of optics allowed. Suppressors allowed and encouraged.
No time limits or bonus points for finishing fast for the morning match, but you must be done shooting by 11:00. Most stages for the PRS match will have a 90 second time limit. www.ar-15.co
Matches Near Colorado (4 Hour Drive or Less)
Sporting Rifle Match, Whittington Center, Raton, NM
The Sporting Rifle Match at the NRA Whittington Center in Raton NM is designed to test a rifleman’s skills shooting small targets from approximately 175 to 875 yards in the natural terrain, with what he can carry throughout the course.
The match format is 10 stages spread over a 2 mile distance. Each stage has 6 targets at varying distances to be engaged with only one shot each. Target distances are known to the shooter. Shooters must complete each stage’s target engagements within 3 minutes. No “sighter shots” allowed. Score is total number of hits out of 60 possible. No one has shot a perfect score, yet.
Match entry is $30. There is partial cash payback to winner(s) based on the match turnout. The balance of fees goes to the NRA WC.
Typical equipment used includes: a rifle capable of 1 MOA accuracy; rifle optics allowing precise hold-over for small targets from 175 – 875 yards; binoculars to spot for other shooters; and a backpack to carry water, ammunition, and a couple power bars. Bring 60 rounds plus whatever you want for Saturday afternoon & Sunday morning sight-in. Schedule – www.sportingriflematch.com
National Rifle League Prairie Rock Shootout
May 17-19 – Bridgeport, NE.
Formerly the Battle of the Breakneck, this field style match features great views, long targets and natural terrain. Hosted near the city of Bridgeport NE. this is a staple of the precision rifle calendar. www.nationalrifleleague.org
Nightforce ELR Steel Challenge
June 14-16, Mills Wyo.
Nightforce presents their 4th Annual Nightforce ELR Match, hosted at the picturesque Q Creek Ranch in Wyoming. This is no longer a PRS match, and now has division for larger calibers such as .416 Barrett, .375 CheyTac, etc. www.facebook.com/events/307075520118105/
Competition Dynamics Burris Team Challenge
June 27-30 – Douglas, Wyo.
This match is an extreme test of practical field shooting of rifles, carbines, and pistols, and supporting activities. Two-man teams will be required to navigate rugged desert / mountainous terrain, recognize, locate, range, and engage challenging rifle targets from compromised shooting positions, communicate with their partner and the range officer (RO), and do it under time constraints. www.competition-dynamics.com
Competition Dynamics 2019 Sniper Adventure Challenge
Sept. 6-8 – Medicine Bow, Wyo.
You and your partner will undergo tests involving: land navigation; practical shooting with long-range rifle, carbine, and pistols; fieldcraft; problem solving; and other related tasks. Two-man teams will be required to navigate 30-60+ miles on foot to complete the course.
Along the way, there will be a series of tasks to accomplish to gain additional points. These tasks may include: shooting problems with long-range rifle, carbine, and pistols; problem-solving; physical challenges; fieldcraft; communication; target recognition; memory; and other tasks. www.competition-dynamics.com
There’s a lot of opportunity to shoot many different types of matches in the state this year. Don’t miss out on expanding your skills and meeting new friends.
Nick Depperschmidt is one of the founding members of Black Flag Precision. A group of precision rifle shooters that compete in and host practical/tactical rifles matches in the PRS, NRL, and Border Wars Series. Nick’s main focus is training and practice techniques to help his teammates and other shooters succeed on the national level. If you’d like to reach out, email Nick at [email protected].