Ben Gochberg
Special to the Daily

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April 30, 2014
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At home on the range

GYPSUM — Springtime means getting lead downrange out in Gypsum. The Gypsum Gun Club is open again for business, offering a variety of services, class programming and events for shooting enthusiasts, whether old or young.

“We are working on quite a calendar for this summer,” said Charlie Bell, club board member. “We’ve even got an event during Gypsum Daze where people can fire a machine gun. I think the next closest place you can do that is in Las Vegas or something.”

Should an automatic weapon be too much to handle, the gun club also caters to a wide variety of other shooting enthusiasts. The range has targets and distances available for handguns, rifles, bows and shotguns alike. During the course of a given year, various competitions are held at the range including events that showcase cowboy-style shooting, silhouette shooting and long distance shooting. Whether you carry a six shooter or a Sig Sauer, there are events and trainings that cater to your side-arm or rifle of choice.

Take a class

A variety of instructors offer classes and events at the gun range all summer long. Whether to train on safety, gun handling, tactics or specialty shooting, there is a class to be found. Instructors, many of whom have worked in law enforcement or military, go through a vetting process with the Gypsum Gun Club for authorization to teach or use the range. This screening process helps ensure real professionals are on site to offer safe and effective training. Interested instructors and learners can go to for a calendar of events and more information on how to contact the board for screening.

“Of course, safety is a huge interest of ours,” Bell said. “Safety, safety, safety.”

Although the range all on its own is safe, the inevitable introduction of people and guns to the premise requires that safety be a constant priority. For this reason, the Gypsum Gun Club began a safety officer training course, by which gun club members can become safety certified to monitor the consistent safety of the club and the range. The club has safety supervision on site throughout the summer, with peak times and dates being a key focus. In addition, the club also plans to add breach flags this season, further increasing the safety when multiple individuals are using the range simultaneously. Further development of safety protocols will be an ongoing process throughout the shooting season.

In addition, the club emphasizes that guns must be transported to and from the range in accordance with state laws, and in a safe manner. This means that rifles must be unloaded, breach open, when arriving, and pistols must be holstered. Relevant concealed carry laws also apply to transporting your gun to the range.

Public offerings

The general public is allowed access to the private range but must park outside the range on the street. A $5 usage fee is requested and a waiver must be filled out and deposited on site. No weapons are available for rent at the range, but members have access to sighting scopes, sandbags, rests, ear protection and other shooting accessories. To take advantage of these amenities, a yearly membership is required. Membership at the range is $50 a year, with a $100 work bond that can be paid with volunteer hours on site during community events.

The range offers its services for community and nonprofit events as well. In previous seasons, the range has provided its services to the Boys and Girls Club, the Boy Scouts, as well as bachelor parties. Organizations or individuals interested in hosting a shooting event on site, whether for a fundraiser or education, are invited to contact the club board. The ranges are open from 9 a.m. to dusk daily.

Those interested in using the range can find a variety of information on the website

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The VailDaily Updated May 1, 2014 04:21PM Published Apr 30, 2014 10:21PM Copyright 2014 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.