Friday, July 15, 2005

Summer's Almost Gone...

Morning found us calmly unaware
Noon burn gold into our hair
At night we sailed the laughin' sea
When summer's gone
Where will we be?
— Jim Morrison

At the very least, I owe you an explanation for my absence of blogging. Twofold — I'm on the road all of July filming, and it is brutal. We did four shows in a row in Califiornia this week, 12 hour shooting days in 106-degree heat. Can't say that I'm big on writing when I finally stumble back to the hotel room!

Secondly, and more importantly, there are some pretty serious things going on in my personal life right now, and those things absolutely require all my attention. In an effort to do that, I've shifted my travel schedule so I'm constantly coming back home for a day, day and a half. I am profoundly mentally and spiritually exhausted, and even though I've pretty much written every day since, like 1972, I find myself looking at a blank screeen with nothing to say.

Things will get better, I have faith.

A quick summary of the USFS WAR FRONT:

• The Second Amendment Foundation is finding evidence of a widespread US Forest Service conspiracy to close shooting and hunting areas, verifying my gut feelings! It appears that because of the budget required and the lead time necessary for collateral material (such as metal signs) that this was approved at a very high level, probably inside the Beltway.

• Forest Service shills are now admitting that the legal basis for their antigun attacks is the redefining of "roads" as "occupied areas." Amazingly, this redefinition was apparently done at an administrative level; that is, nobody asked the attorneys about the legal implications of antigun advocates deciding to make laws on their own!

• There are so many roads on USFS land in the West that the ruling effectively ends shooting on most USFS land; there is no exemption in this ruling for hunting, and USFS has issued no statement reaffirming the right to hunt.

• Apparently, the USFS actions have ended hunting for disabled/challenged hunters on USFS land. Those hunters were, by law, allowed to hunt from roads. The new ruling flatly ends that right.

To summarize, as an equestrian guy told me Wednesday, USFS sees the national forests as "their private parks, and only they have the right to say who comes to visit." My friends, they do not want us pesky shooters and hunters as visitors! As I've said earlier, NO COOPERATION WITH USFS RANGERS until this is settled.


• I received my Ugly Gun holster from Rusty is brilliantly executed and one of the finest crafted holsters I've ever seen! What amazes me is that he was able to translate my rambling description of what I wanted into fine horsehide. It's a vertical belt holster for a 6-inch 1955/1917 .45 ACP S&W revolver. I conceived the holster both for field carry and for ICORE/USPSA revolver competition, which mandates stability on the belt, the ability to easily reholster the gun and a covered trigger guard.

Rusty addessed the stability issue by using his double loop system — a belt tunnel on the holster and a second belt loop to the rear of the holster. The result is that the weight of a heavy gun is distributed along the belt. The holster extends about half an inch above the fat .45 cylinder and is just tight enough to retain the gun but quickly release on a clean draw. There's a reinforced horsehide band to stabilize the opening of the holster and to facilitate reholstering, and while the trigger guard is covered the holster is cut away to allow a full hand on the grip.

This is one of the finest holsters I own! I can't recommend Rusty enough.

• I just received one of the new Taurus single action Gaucho cowboy revolvers. I haven't shot it yet, but the fit, feel and finish is excellent, on par with anything currently available and certainly the equal (or better) of the zillions of Italian clones out there. Mine's in .45 Colt; I'm hoping to round up a couple of the .357 Gauchos to use in cowboy competition.

In other stupid news:

• I ground through 75 miles of the Triple Bypass bicycle ride last weekend, including 11,140 foot Juniper Pass and 11,910 Loveland Pass. I bailed on the lower Vail Pass, which was part of my game plan. All in all, I'm happy with the ride — it hurt, but in some sort of sick way it was fun. My Sweetie zipped right through the whole 120 miles, whipping up the three passes like a rocket!

Thanks for putting up with my sporatic posts!

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