Hunting, shooting, and purchasing firearms and ammunition are exciting adventures, especially for first-timers. Whether you're heading afield or to the range to shoot at targets or sporting clays, buying a firearm is the first step to a rewarding pastime.
Hitting the Range
Regardless of how many guns you own, getting to the range for some trigger time is on everyone's mind after buying a new gun. After all, shooting is a blast! Regular practice helps develop safe and proper technique.
However, finding access to shooting ranges can be a challenging task, especially for newer shooters in urban areas. Luckily, the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) is here to help with a searchable directory of places to shoot.
Available online or as a smartphone app, the NSSF's wheretoshoot.org directory locates shooting ranges, safety courses and events based on your state, zip code or specific shooting discipline.
Hunting for Locations
One of the biggest obstacles for new hunters is finding accessible land to hunt. Unless you own land or know someone who does, gaining access can be difficult or expensive.
For most aspiring hunters, the answer to this problem is to hunt on public land. Although public lands offer great opportunities for beginning hunters, finding them can prove challenging.
In addition to finding ranges, the NSSF has a resource featuring a state-by-state directory of places to hunt. It also provides links to laws and regulations for each state, license and permit details, and information on hunter education courses.
Another free app with the most comprehensive map of public lands is produced by powderhook.com. In addition to finding accessible places, you can ask questions and online mentors will try to answer them.
Whether you're completely new to hunting or an experienced hunter moving to a new state, the NSSF's wheretohunt.org resource has the information you need to get started on the right path.