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Thursday, October 15, 2015

Copenhagen Adventure: Shooting clay birds with shotgun!

On one of the evenings when I was working in Copenhagen, we went out for a team event, that involved shooting clay birds with real shotgun. This post is a brief experience account of that, after removing any personal/corporate information related to my colleagues and employer.

I have very limited exposure to firing guns. Most of it is limited to Airguns on the beaches to fire at balloons. In 2013 however I tried my hands at real bullets, at a police camp in Kanchanburi, during the annual River Kwai festival. For about 10 bahts a bullet, I could fire half a dozen shots from 0.22 bolt rifle and pistols. I didn't have much success there- more details in this post.

The Copenhagen experience was different and more fulfilling. We went to a place called Københavns flugtskytte klub, located in the outskirts of Copenhagen, near Bella Sky.

We were to get about 25 shots each, fired in 3 different sets. Our instructor told the basics of shotgun operation and safety. In first set, we fired 5 solo shots (one bullet added to the gun, fire and then reload)- this helped us get familiar with the gun and firing techniques. Usually for first timers success of hitting clay disc at this stage is usually low. After everyone were done with their first round, second round began. Here we had both barrels loaded with bullet, but we would still fire one at a time. If we are comfortable next target will be released immediately, else we can take a moment and tell them when we are ready to fire.

The third and final round was most tricky- two clay discs were fired back to back and we had to fire at them one after another in quick succession.

Note that we fired from behind the target. It was fired from a spot adjacent to us and flew away from us, we just have to get the elevation right, not much of a horizontal movement is involved. A more challenging one will be to fire standing perpendicular to the flight path- in this one we should aim factoring both X and Y axis.

Clay being brittle, is very ideal for target practice. If it is hit, it will instantly break into dozens of smaller pieces and fly in all directions, making it very spectacular. Other materials like plastic can’t give that effect.

Out of 25, my score was about 12-13. About half the time I could hit the target. Only a few scored above 20, majority managed between 5 to 15 hits.

There was only one instructor who knew English. Others spoke only Danish.


Price: The one we tried- 25 shot series, costs DKK 3500, or close to 35000 INR as per their website. There are many other formats and pricing and am sure there will be some bulk discount for large groups.

This being live ammunition, some safety precautions are needed- guns come with a safety pin, but we should be careful not to point it in unsafe directions (towards ground, towards other people etc). If not positioned correctly, recoil can hurt bad. Campus has a small restaurant.
Machines that fire a clay disc
Overall it was an adventure filled evening to fire from a shotgun at moving targets and be successful at it too (half the time). Smoke coming out of the gun while reloading is also something unique up close experience. We spent about couple of hours here and then went to city for dinner. Since this centre is far from city and the sessions are a bit expensive, regular tourists may not find it viable to come here and indulge in a session. But if you are serious about weapons and shooting, you should give it a try.

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