Competitors line up to shoot the various “5 Dot” and “Know Your Limitations” drills.

The Sniper’s Hide Cup is an extraordinarily challenging precision rifle course of fire — not because it requires land navigation skills, but because it doesn’t. It is all about the competitor and his weapons, both rifle and pistol. Each year the requirements to perform become more difficult and many competitors become better. It is all about performance under stress, on demand. And it is often more about thinking than shooting.

One cannot equate a sniper/tactical match to real life or to war. The crushing physical requirements and deprivation of the latter are lacking, as well as the element of fear. But these matches do provide the opportunity to know one’s rifle and as well as one’s own capabilities with it. It gives the competitors a chance to understand what elements they are lacking and what to practice in order to improve them.

Physical stamina and speed are required to place high in the standings. Competitors range from 25 to 45. Yet Bill Fowler, in his 60’s, is still competing at the top level, placing 5th in this year’s match.

Rifles Only
snipere28099s-hide-cup-2010bAnother helicopter event was sponsored by Patriot Ordnance Factory (POF). The shooter tries to hit three barrels filled with white dust as the pilot guides the chopper sideways along them. With no lube, the POF rifles performed flawlessly.

Rifles Only, owned and operated by Jacob Bynum and his wife Lisa, has been training Law Enforcement, Military, and civilian shooters for more than a decade. Jacob has spent a great deal of time and money to provide a superior training facility and training crew. He continuously adds to his grounds and the products he offers. His staff trains personnel in hand-to-hand combat, field craft, tactics, close quarter battle rifle, precision rifle, and combat pistol to name a few, with his emphasis being on precision rifle.

Sniper’s Hide is a website ( dedicated primarily to long-range precision rifle. Owned and operated by Frank Galli, the site works hard to review the latest of what’s out there and provides a forum for like-minded individuals like Frank, a former Marine sniper.

For those so inclined, there is a train-up that runs Monday through Thursday prior to the match, which starts on a Friday. I have no data to support the idea that those who take it do better, but at least those who do become familiar with the topography, the range officers, the tower, and the moving target layout. They also have a chance to check their come-ups from 0 to 1,000 yards.

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Competitors line up to shoot the various “5 Dot” and “Know Your Limitations” drills.…