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Civilian access to military ranges?

Discussion in 'Texas Gun Ranges' started by Nietzsche, Feb 9, 2019.

  1. toddnjoyce

    toddnjoyce TGT Addict

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    It’s nice enough. Monday’s are closed for EPSO training. If your familiar, enter like you’re going to Gate 20 (I-25 & Fountain). About 100 yds shy of the ECP/ACP is a dirt toad on the left. Turn there. It’s maybe 1/4 - 1/2 mi back.
     


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  2. Nietzsche

    Nietzsche Member

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    It would be a shame if this is so.

    The quoted reg does say "All rifle ranges constructed in whole or in part with funds provided by the United States may be used by members of the armed forces and by persons capable of bearing arms."
    The purpose of this may be to allow "John Q. Public" to develop and maintain the skills necessary to form a "well regulated militia". (Depending on one's interpretation of "well regulated").

    It certainly sounds like it's more hassle than it's worth. My question was posed on the basis of finding a decent range to get back into ELR shooting. I fancy buying another .375 cheytac or .50bmg but there doesn't seem much point at the moment due to range availability.
     
  3. toddnjoyce

    toddnjoyce TGT Addict

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    Again, as a retired military officer, it is so in practice. Generally speaking, you WILL usually require a military sponsor who can be held liable for your conduct.

    Additionally, there really aren’t all that many rifle ranges on any given installation, and even fewer that can handle calibers such as you’re interested in.

    Each range has certain restrictions on what rounds can be fired on it and under what conditions. For example, my time at Ft Carson.

    Range 57 has to be scheduled through Range Control’s RFMSS program. Unit scheduled activities take precedence and can be reserved 6 months in advance.

    To ‘check out’ your reserved range, you’ve got to have 2-way radio comms with Range Control, and RSO certified/qualified on the weapon being employed, and a Range Officer, also qualified in the weapon being employed. These ROs/RSOs aren’t NRA quals, they’re Army certifications and require minimum rank/grade requirements.

    Range 57 is also limited to 9mm and 5.56 ammunition, unless a suitable Surface Danger Zone plan has been approved by range control in advance.

    Which is why MWR runs sportsman’s or rod & gun clubs for members to shoot their privately owned weapons.

    Check out your local installations and see if they have something like that. You may find they have a process for civilian access. Follow it and enjoy. I just don’t recommend driving up to the gate with a 50BMG and asking where the M2 capable ranges are.
     
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  4. Nietzsche

    Nietzsche Member

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    Thanks again TnJ. The procedure you describe is very similar to the UK. I was one of the clubs certified RO's (the certification was issued by the UK NRA but recognized by the Army). The club secretary had to book in advance, provide names and firearms certificates numbers. When on the range we had to sign in, have radio contact with the base at all times also a trained first responder present. Most ranges were limited to .30. We only had a few ranges with extended danger areas suitable for the bigger stuff. I was lucky enough to live about 25 miles from one of them.
    I appreciate your detailed explanation.
     
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  5. toddnjoyce

    toddnjoyce TGT Addict

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    You’re welcome. My brother used to live in Croughton, then Cambridge for a total of 12 or 14 years.

    Love visiting the UK, but most of was work related, so I didn’t get to see much more than London unfortunately.

    ETA: check out ELRCentral.

    https://elrcentral.com/elr-locations/
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
  6. robertc1024

    robertc1024 Moderator Staff Member Moderator TGT Supporter

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    I wish I had known that about Cheyenne Mountain a couple of months ago. Drove right by it and had the better part of a day to kill. I'll take about any opportunity to shoot out to 500+ yards.
     
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  7. majormadmax

    majormadmax TGT Addict

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    You'll most likely have to search elsewhere. As toddnjoyce stated, it's unlikely that any military range would allow you to shoot those calibers. If you notice the link I posted for Bullis, it is restricted to smaller than 7.62.

    The intent is not for the general public to shoot on these ranges, but those on base who want to do so in an unofficial capacity. Most military ranges are not open to anyone beyond training for forces, Bullis only has one range out of several that is used for off-duty shooting.

    There is no requirement for the DoD to allow "John Q. Public" to develop and maintain the skills necessary to form a "well regulated militia." That is upon the individual.
     
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  8. Nietzsche

    Nietzsche Member

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    So you piqued my interest from an academic standpoint, and I did a bit more searching on title 10.

    Going back to 1958 it appears there was once a subsection 4307 & 4308 ( repealed around 1996) which related to a promotion of civilian marksmanship. The purpose was to instruct able bodied citizens of the U.S. in rifle marksmanship. At that time the unorganized militia was able bodied male citizens aged 17 - 45.
    The ranges were for civilian and military use.
    I suspect technology means the Government no longer worries about hoards of communists and so along with the intention to disarm, are slowly nibbling away at the links between the citizens and the services. (It's the same in the U.K.)

    Oh and title 10 has been changed ss4309 appears to be ss7409 since 2018.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
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  9. majormadmax

    majormadmax TGT Addict

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    Interesting, but did anywhere in your research did you find a requirement for the DoD to provide any of the training and/or facilities?

    I believe the subsection you're referring to was the basis of the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP), which was created as part of the 1903 War Department Appropriations Act and administered by the US Army until about the same time as subsections 4307 & 4308 were repealed (which as you mentioned was around 1996).

    Title XVI of the FY96 NDAA created the Corporation for the Promotion of Rifle Practice & Firearms Safety (CPRPFS) to take over administration and promotion of the CMP. The CPRPFS is a tax-exempt non-profit corporation chartered by Congress, but is not an agency of the US government (Title 36, United States Code, Section 40701 et seq.).

    Apart from a donation of surplus .22 and .30 caliber rifles from the Army's inventory, the CMP receives no federal funding.
     
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  10. Nietzsche

    Nietzsche Member

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    On that I am not sure due to the way ss4307 & ss4308 are written, the titles/ roles referred to and relationship to DoD. If you have a moment to review and comment, the document I looked at should be here (Pg.1240):

    https://www.loc.gov/item/uscode1958-002010401/
     


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