CMP and NRA Style "High Power" Rifle Competition

Page 3 - Ranges and Distances

Both NRA and CMP matches use the same distances for the various stages of fire. They are:

  1. Offhand, Slow Fire - 200 yards;
  2. Sitting, Rapid Fire - 200 yards;
  3. Prone, Rapid Fire - 300 yards;
  4. Prone, Slow Fire - 600 yards.


Most CMP and NRA style matches are fired on 100 yard ranges, some times 200 yard ranges, using targets reduced in size to simulate 200, 300 and 600 distances. The targets shown at the bottom of page 2 are an example of reduced targets. See the second picture on this page for full size a 600 yard Slow Prone target.

First time shooters are strongly encouraged to find a match conducted at a 100-yard range. This reduced range and match has the following advantages:

  1. The aiming black of all the (reduced) targets is the same diameter. This means that once you have sighted your rifle (usually before the match), no, or only very minor, sight adjustments will be required;
  2. Once a shooter is on the firing line, the shooter completes the entire match. This means that a first time shooter can watch some other shooters complete an entire match, before beginning him/her self. (This is assuming that there are more shooters participating than there are firing points and the entire match is repeated a second and maybe a third time.)
  3. The 100-yard range masters seem more flexible in regards to rifles. I don't mean safety, as this is taken very seriously at all matches. I mean that they will accept almost any safe rifle, whether it meets the rulebook or not.

On the East Coast it's hard to be more than an hour away from a once-a-month NRA/CMP style match, but they seem hard to discover. One easy way to locate a match near you is to join the HiPower talk board at Shooters.Com and ask, giving a location or area. If you live in Western or Central PA E-Mail me - SteveWag@aol.com

One thing about these High Power shooters is that they are VERY friendly and eager to help.

Don't be put off by a lack of equipment. At 100 yards a spotting scope is not needed, and a scrap of carpet seems to work as well as a $75 mat. Almost any bolt action military rifle will be acceptable, and I believe that an SKS meets the NRA rules for a Match Rifle.

The following pictures were taken at the 2002 PA State Service Rifle Championship Match (NRA rules match for Service Rifles only) fired at the Western PA 30 Cal. League range. They are intended to show how a 200, 300 and 600 yard match is conducted.

First, every shooter is "squadded" with three (or more) other shooters to form a four shooter "squad". Each squad is assigned a target. Here we see some offhand shooters, each with one squad member seated behind. The seated squad member is acting as a scorer/observer for his shooting squad member. The other two squad members are in the target pit, at the targets. The targets are mounted in moveable frames that are raised and lowered, along with various markers to indicate shot position and value.

Here is a view of the targets. Note that targets 1, 4 and 10 are not seen, they are "down' being marked as to score and position. Look closely at targets 3 and 7. See the round "dot" in the upper right corner of the target? These dots, from their position, indicate that the last shot fired had a point value of "7". Look closely at target 9, the value marker is barely visible as a dot centered below the white target, indicating a value of "10", also note the white dot in the black bulls-eye (also visible in #8), showing the shooter and scorer the exact shot placement. These markers are being placed by the other squad members assigned to that target.


Above is a scorer, clipboard and pencil in hand, examining the target, with spotting scope at hand. Also note the wheeled carts. These are used when the shooters move from targets to the pits and when changing from the 200 to 300 yard firing positions or 300 to 600 yard position.

Here is a view during the Sitting, Rapid Fire stage. During the Slow Fire stages, the target is lowered, marked and raised after each shot. During the Rapid Fire stages, the targets are raised for the duration of the 60 or 70 seconds, all ten shots are fired (hopefully) and then the targets are lowered and marked as to score and position.

In all cases we have a calm and collected Range Master, in this case with a radio in hand, co-ordinating things and in communication with the target pits.

Note the little strips of paper and cloth blowing in the wind in these pictures, giving the shooters an estimate of wind conditions.

Other Kinds of "HiPower" Matches

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