AAR #2: CRCD March 29/30 – Mike H

CRCD 29-30 Mar2014 2

Observations for my notes over the weekend…

Travel to site- It was a long round trip. I tried to stay low profile as possible. The weather did cooperate with no icy conditions encountered. I will post more in the traveling thread.

Hotel- Stayed at the Koolwink Friday night, camped on Saturday, and back to Koolwink on Sunday before heading out on Monday. Its a nice clean place. I liked having my truck right out in front of my door for easy access to my stuff.

Range-Great setup with terrain that takes no prisoners. Max has put and continues to put a lot of effort into his place.

Camping- Want to check out your field gear? Here’s an opportunity to camp primitive on site. The weather was horrible but I did learn some things about my gear load out. I had a cold war era German pup tent and it kept me dry of the most part. It is too heavy though when wet so I have to come up with a lighter option. I was toasty in my bag but don’t forget a spare watch cap to sleep in…had one packed inside a ziplock bag for this use. One piece of advice I can give(I got it from Bergmann) is to purchase and use those construction grade black bags. I stuffed a couple of extras in my ruck before leaving home and they provided a dry ground cover to place gear inside the tent.

Training- The training was realistic and physically demanding. The progression of the weekend was well laid out. For me the most important point I took from the weekend was working as a team. Communication is the key as this is how you manage movement, volume of fire, “getting your team out of the pickle”, and dealing with adversity.

PT- By Sunday afternoon I was gassed. Max’s place has terrain very different from my AO. I’ll be working harder this spring to upgrade my PT levels.

Gear- My clothing consisted of a Smock w/ a USMC fleece zip up and long sleeve t-shirt on top w/ old Army long john bottoms and French chem pants on the bottom. Altima boots. The only clothing I switched out during the weekend was my socks(Saturday night just before I slipped into my sleep bag. I was damp but fine during the entire class.

Rifle(RRA AR) ran fine. My optics(Burris AR) came loose from its mount on Saturday afternoon. I took the entire optics off the rifle, tightened the screws, and re-mounted. I was fine the rest of the weekend but will get some loc-tight on there.

I thought I was so-so with mag changes off my Battle Belt. I’m sure they will get smoother with practice.

Reloading mags from stripper clips is the cats meow. I would suggest getting them if you haven’t already. I purchased a couple of cans of ammo on stripper clips w/ the cardboard sleeves and then bought bandoleers from Numrich Corp.

Max- Training others is hard work. My various jobs over the years has had one constant…training. I also am a trainer at my current job. Having to speak in front of others and conveying information in a structured way while keeping it flowing is draining. You also have to field questions as you go along. IMO Max nailed it! The class flowed thru the day on Saturday and Max fought through what we call ” the time monkey” and got us through Sunday afternoon.

A note on Saturday night… after class Max was up on that range in the crappy weather as I was setting up camp. He was preparing for Sunday. I believe he wants his students to get the most out of the class and puts in a lot of effort to achieve that.

Reasons to attend this class-

1) The experience of the training is well worth the cost. I wasn’t disappointed.

2) It’s a realistic weekend….you’ll be sore and your gear/self will get soiled….that’s realistic!

3) An opportunity to test yourself and that gear…you’ll even have time to make adjustments.

4) Spend a weekend with a dozen good people. There were some spirited debates about the world but Max’s place was definitely a “cry-baby free zone”.

Get to this training. I plan on attending again…maybe I’ll see ya there!

Mike H