Trap Shooting Etiquette

These are the Range Safety Rules our club follows


Basic Safe Gun Handling

  1.  Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction. Treat every gun as if it was loaded.
  2.  Always keep the action open until ready to load and fire.
  3.  Never load the gun (in chamber or magazine) until actually ready to fire. Never take another person’s word that the gun is unloaded.
  4.  Always keep your finger off the trigger, and keep the safety on until you’re actually ready to fire.
  5.  Always know your gun, its proper operation, and proper ammunition.
  6.  Never touch a firearm in any way when someone is going “Down range”. Call out “Is the line is clear?” before moving down range.
  7.  Never leave a firearm, loaded or unloaded, unattended or stored in a precarious position.
  8.  Always be sure of your target and what is beyond.
  9.  Never use alcohol or take medication that may influence your judgment or reflexes prior to shooting.
  10.  Always wear sufficient eye and ear protection.

As this applies on our trap field:

  1. Muzzle must be down range, towards trap house, or straight up.
  2. Actions are to be open when carrying and in the rack, if possible. Exception for break action guns while in the rack.
  3. Load one shell only into action when on station.Action remains open until the shooter before you fires. Exception- for two shells for doubles. Do not change stations with a shell in the gun.
  4. Keep finger off the trigger until gun is shouldered. Safeties are NOT used in trap.
  5. Make sure you have the proper gage shells for your gun. Only carry one gauge. All apparent dud or weak sounding shells demand that the barrel be proofed clear before shooting resumes.
  6. The line must be made safe before anyone goes in front of the line to check the trap.
  7. Guns must be stored in the rack or cased in your vehicle between rounds.
  8. Be alert that no one has wandered into the trap field.
  9. No alcohol is allowed prior to shooting, scoring, or pulling.
  10. All shooters will wear eye and ear protection.

We also generally adhere to ATA rules regarding safety, scoring, and conduct.

We are a sportsmen’s club. Let’s be true sportsmen!

  1. While waiting for your turn, never close the action of your gun, track or shoot at another shooter’s birds. Call for your bird in a reasonable time frame, neither too fast or too slow.
  2. Do not practice gun mounting or swinging anywhere near the trap area when shooters are on line. Move to the parking area and keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
  3. Do not distract fellow shooters or the puller and scorer with loud talking. This applies to shooters and onlookers alike.
  4. We allow and encourage on line instruction to new shooters provided it does not overly distract other shooters. If this bothers you, we will gladly move you to another squad.
  5. In the case of an imminent safety problem, ANYONE may call “CEASE FIRE”. But remember, in all cases, the scorer serves as range officer once the round starts. His word is law.
  6. Shooters should not hold up others on the line because of a gun malfunction or adjustment. If the problem cannot be corrected quickly, please leave the line. Common sense and courtesy must prevail.
  7. We expect everyone who is physically capable to help pull, score, and move birds. This is a membership club, not a paid commercial operation.
  8. No one may sign another person up to shoot if they are not present. If you must leave temporarily for some reason, please remove your name from the sign up sheet.
  9. Only the scorer or scorer/puller will determine dead and lost birds, not participants.
  10. All shells, fired or unfired, must be removed from the gun before leaving the line. Please clean up your own shells and place in the buckets provided.  
  11. Empty hulls deposited in these buckets become the sole property of the club.  See the RSO if you would like some for reloading.  
  12. Snap caps or recoil reducing devices may only be used if colored safety orange.

If you need help understanding or following these rules, or feel that they have been violated, please feel free to discuss it with me. The trap chairman or his designate reserves the right to enforce these rules.