Real Training : Painful, Dangerous And Uncomfortable

By John Farnam

Glock G19 Gen4 Pistol
Glock G19 Gen4 Pistol
Defense Training International, Inc
Defense Training International, Inc

Ft Collins, CO –-(Ammoland.com)- This from a friend in Europe who just finished a week-long Pistol/Rifle Course in the high country.

Good information:

“I used a Colt AR (equipped with Aimpoint M4), and a G19.

Orders were: low profile, no ‘camo,’ clothing, nor equipment. No chest rigs. Much concern here about ‘para-military’ training!

We were located at 3k feet in elevation, and weather was not friendly! Cold for the duration, 30s and low 40s. Non-stop wind. We enjoyed continuous rain for the first two days, hail at the end of the second day, and snow the last three days. Very little sunshine. Oh, and constant mud!

These conditions were ideal, not only to test my carbine and pistol, but my clothing and my spirit as well!

I had a pair of excellent Goretex boots. While my boots rendered satisfactory service, my socks were not adequate, and my feet were constantly cold, a good reminder to pay attention to small details!

I wore long underwear, BDU trousers, and waterproof over-pants. My legs didn’t suffer from the cold. However, condensation dampened my BDUs by the end of the day.

I had a polar undershirt, light turtleneck, fleece sweatshirt, waterproof jacket, and a poncho. By the end of the day, the poncho could no longer stop water.

Protecting my hands was an issue. I had neoprene gloves, wool gloves, and inner gloves. In the constant rain, my neoprene gloves and my inner gloves were wet, but not cold. Wool gloves kept my hands warm, but with them on it is not easy to recharge magazines!

The poncho was less than satisfactory, as noted above. In addition, many times it blew in front of my pistol as I was trying to shoot!

My Glock ran smoothly for the duration. My AR experienced two hiccups during our low-light exercises. I was able to quickly reduce both stoppages, but I’m still not sure what the problem was.

Using my carbine in the open with high, wet wind was challenging! Once on target and ready to shoot, a wet gust would invariably move my sights off target. Rain and snow were also challenging for the optics. We had to wipe them regularly, particularly at night. Aimpoint ran for the duration.

My AR is not equipped with a flashlight, so I used my handheld flashlight and the ‘Harries’ method. It ‘worked’ after a fashion, but the rifle was not stable. A mounted, co-axial flashlight is much better!

The issue of dumping magazines on the ground during the reloading process is something that comes up regularly. Our military instructors assured us that, in a real situation, when it is time to ‘pick up’ dumped magazines, they are probably at least five kilometers away and submerged in mud when you suddenly remember that you want them back! We thus learned very quickly to default to a ‘military’ reload and retain expended magazines, as they quickly become valuable, beyond measure! This applies to both pistol and rifle!”

Comment:

“Smooth seas do not good sailors make!”

All training, worthy of the title is, (1) painful, and (2) dangerous. We can probably add (3) uncomfortable… as we see!

/John

About John Farnam & Defense Training International, Inc
As a defensive weapons and tactics instructor John Farnam will urge you, based on your own beliefs, to make up your mind in advance as to what you would do when faced with an imminent and unlawful lethal threat. You should, of course, also decide what preparations you should make in advance, if any. Defense Training International wants to make sure that their students fully understand the physical, legal, psychological, and societal consequences of their actions or inactions.

It is our duty to make you aware of certain unpleasant physical realities intrinsic to the Planet Earth. Mr Farnam is happy to be your counselor and advisor. Visit: www.defense-training.com

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TEX
TEX
4 years ago

Firearms training and being an accurate and consistent shot is a perishable skill. Practice and train as much as possible. I like to train at the deer lease because most gun ranges have their rules that prohibit aggressive training techniques.

Jack Patriot
Jack Patriot
4 years ago

Could this article be any more advertising intensive? Jesus.

Lou
Lou
4 years ago

Hi John, We met during one of your participations at the National Tactical Invitational near Harrisburg, Pa. a few years back. I was one of the guys running the Skills Stage. When I read the title of this article, I expected that you would be referring to the kind of force-on force training that sadly so very few self-defense oriented shooters ever have an opportunity to participate in. Nothing we can do to train, and prepare for a possible life or death self-defense crisis is any where near as preparatory as a confrontation under unpredictable circumstance against live actors. There’s… Read more »

lowell
lowell
4 years ago

“The issue of dumping magazines on the ground during the reloading process is something that comes up regularly. Our military instructors assured us that, in a real situation, when it is time to ‘pick up’ dumped magazines, they are probably at least five kilometers away and submerged in mud when you suddenly remember that you want them back! We thus learned very quickly to default to a ‘military’ reload and retain expended magazines, as they quickly become valuable, beyond measure! This applies to both pistol and rifle!” This has been a thing that worries me most about almost all the… Read more »

TSgt B
TSgt B
4 years ago

As we practiced in SAC: “train as you would fight, and you’ll fight as you were trained”.

jim
jim
4 years ago

How did you carry loose rounds or stripper clips for your military reloads? How many rounds/strips?

Jeffrey Wollman
Jeffrey Wollman
4 years ago

John:
Great article. Glad to see you! I took one of your self defense classes at The Serious Sportsman in New York back in the early 90’s. I still use what you taught me, every day. Thanks

MIO
MIO
4 years ago

Good article. The only way to know if what you have works is to train on the worst day possible. Brand names don’t matter as much as performance.

Malakie
Malakie
4 years ago

Would be nice to see a list of the products that failed in this test so the rest of us know what to avoid…