Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Redding Trail Shoot/NFAA Nationals.

Good Afternoon, it is Tuesday.

As Hansen and I have done for the last four years the beginning of May, we headed down to Redding California for the Redding Trail Shoot/NFAA National Safari Championships. Every year the weather has been a little different, from 100 degrees to 60 degrees and pouring rain. This year was somewhere in the middle. The mornings were cold and the afternoons were windy! While there was zero rain this time, it is clear that rain has happened as this was the first time I've ever seen Lake Shasta at full capacity.
The eleven hour drive on Thursday morning was so long. Halfway through I picked up a Monster Energy drink at a rest stop. Never have I had one of these. I was wide awake for the second half of the drive, but yeah, these things taste gross. This is a picture Hansen snapped to his brother.
The first day is always the most enjoyable for me. The crowds and the excitement are palpable.
Here is a pano of the main crowd. Behind me is where all the booths are set up. I've never taken a pano without at least one person looking goofy. LOL. While I was people watching, I should have taken a pic of the booths as well.
Time to get shooting. We were part of a very nice group of folks. I was one of the score keepers once again. It's fun to be part of the action. I shot very well the first day. I was one of the best in the group for day 1, but I slipped a little on days 2 and 3.
As usual in Redding, there is plenty of sitting around. Basically it takes most the day to shoot 25 targets. If you had to wait like this at a local shoot, you'd simply go home and practice on your own, but this is the Nationals, and 1800 archers is a lot. And to be honest, the waiting is not so bad in this environment.
I wish I had more photos of Hansen from different vantages than just the back. I'd liked to have a few photos of myself shooting as well. But Hansen and I were usually shooting side by side so we could spot each other's arrows.
Rattle snakes! There were several sightings and humans were being asked to use the utmost care when thinking about leaving the trail. This one is a fake, but it sure make a lot of people jump when placed out in the display areas. Not nice! I hate snakes.
 I got to visit the Archery God while on the trail. He sits on the tee box of one of the hardest shots on the course. Yes, we're buddies now. Hansen didn't need to visit the Archery God. He used his own talent to shot good scores. Hansen defended his NFAA YAMBHFS (young adult male bow hunter freestyle) title. Great Going Hansen! This was his last year as a young adult. Next year he will be shooting in the adult division.
If you're wondering what my bow looks like, this is it. I shoot in the freestyle division which means I get to use long stabilizers, a movable site, and a lens if I choose. Hansen shoots in the bowhunter division which means shorter stabilizers and a solid sight with up to five reference pins. The fact that he was able to beat me for the weekend shows his skills. Hansen would shoot in the freestyle division, but the colors of the targets and a lens do not go well together for a colorblind shooter. Of course, if he was in the freestyle division, I wouldn't stand a fighting chance. Over the course of 70 targets, Hansen beat me by two points.
A couple days before we left, John turned 80 years old! Happy birthday! We took him out for dinner and ice-cream.
Did I say John turned 80? Well, that's 560 in dog years. Hah! Great shirt his old army friend gave him.

See you tomorrow.

1 comment:

Ellen said...

Congrats to you and Hansen on your archery skills! Happy birthday to John! Dad agrees with you that Monster is disgusting. He says stick with the cold bottles of Starbucks.