FAQ About the Sport

Following is some basic information about the sport.  Our Club’s full rules and policies are posted on our discipline’s page.

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Clay target thrower

Sporting Clays is a form of clay pigeon shooting, often described as “golf with a shotgun” because a typical course includes from 10 to 15 different shooting stations laid out over natural terrain. Unlike trap and skeet, which are games of repeatable target presentations, sporting clays simulates the unpredictability of live-quarry shooting, offering a great variety of trajectories, angles, speeds, elevations, distances, and target sizes.

A typical course consists of 10 to 15 stations, with each station presenting targets from trap machines. Usually 6 to 10 targets are shot at each station by a squad of up to six shooters for a total outing of 50 to 100 targets per person. Targets are thrown one at a time or in pairs. Pairs may be thrown as:

  • a true pair (or simultaneous pair, i.e., thrown at the same time),
  • as a following pair (thrown sequentially), or
  • on report (the second clay launched on the firing of the shooter’s gun).

Numerous hunting conditions and shooting challenges can be simulated by combining various speeds and angles with different types of clay targets. Each station is unique. Throughout a course, the shooters might see targets:

  • crossing from either side (left or right crosser),
  • coming inward (incoming),
  • going outward (away or outgoing),
  • flying straight up (spring teal),
  • rolling on the ground (rabbit),
  • arcing high in the air (chandelle), or
  • thrown from towers.

The possible target presentations are limited only by safety considerations, the terrain, and the imagination of the course designer. The configuration of the stations is often changed to maintain interest for the shooters.

5 Stand Course

5-Stand offers challenges similar to sporting clays, trap and skeet. 5 Stand is often referred to as Compact Sporting Clays, 25 sporting clay presentations shot in a smaller area. There are five stations, or stands, and strategically placed clay target throwers (called traps) offer 6 to 8 different target presentations. Participants shoot in turn at various combinations of clay birds presented in single, report pairs and true pair targets. Five Stand always welcomes the new and seasoned shooter.

Shoot through: invite faster groups to shoot ahead of you to keep the course flowing (just like golf).

Bring a bag: Besides a vest or pouch, you will need a bag to haul four boxes of shells around the course, plus water and whatever else you want to bring.

Toss your empties: We have a shell bucket at each station for hulls. Toss ‘em. Clean up any that went flying.

Don’t load until you are in the station: You will shoot several time at pairs at each station. Have a dozen shells in your pocket when it’s your turn to shoot. Do not load your gun until you are in the cage and load only two shells. The rest of the time your gun is unloaded and your action is open unless it’s a break action and it’s in a gun rack.

Honor Code: Don’t shoot extra targets. Some shooters will ask the puller for extra targets after they have shot the station’s card. Please don’t. Every extra bird you shoot cuts into our revenue which we need to purchase more birds and equipment. If you want to shoot extra birds, please return to the Lodge and pay for them.

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