Did you bring your desert hiking boots?
I’ve got a bit of a trek ahead.
Shooters are ranked by the NRA according to their scores in official competitions. These are most easily expressed as the appropriate percent of the perfect 100.
- Marksman – Less than 85%
- Sharpshooter – 85-90%
- Expert – 90-95%
- Master – 95-97%
- High Master – 97% and above
To earn a higher ranking, a shooter must record a total of 360 shots at the new level.
Back in April at the Arizona Regional Championships, I shot a 2440-35. The 2440 is a smidgin above the 90% mark of the possible 2700 points but only includes 270 shots. It is an expert-class score but not enough shots to earn a step up. (I’m Sharpshooter class at the moment.)
In today’s official 2700, I shot a 2441-53 over an additional 270 shots.
And that should be sufficient.
In the next couple of weeks, I should be receiving my Expert-class card from the NRA.
That’s the good news.
The bad news is that Expert class is also known as the “vast wasteland” that many shooters enter but few leave.
I think of it as the Mojave desert, completely barren and devoid of plant life, unlike the sometimes lush Sonoran desert we have around Phoenix.
But with a couple of gallons of drinkable water, some dried desert rations and a pair of good boots, I’m ready to begin my trek.
I’ll be the dried-up, leather-skinned, dusty-haired shooter at firing position #8 for a while.
10s and Xs, pardner!