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Shooting on Larch Mountain near Vancouver, Wa

Discussion in 'Outdoor Shooting Areas' started by galenweaver, May 23, 2012.

  1. galenweaver

    galenweaver Vancouver, WA Member

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    A friend and I are going to go exploring for shooting places on Larch mountain this weekend based on some older posts off this site. We're looking for something that is the 100-300 range preferably with low crowds. We are competent, safe shooters who take out more trash than we bring in.

    If any one has any spots they'd like to share it would be greatly appreciated. If you want to PM to keep it private that is great. Directions or GPS coordinates are welcome. Thanks a bunch
     
  2. t.huynh

    t.huynh vancouver, wa Active Member

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    I could have sworn larch was closed to all shooting.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
     
  3. PaulZ

    PaulZ Oregon City Active Member

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    Think it is closed; the couv's messed up that deal years ago
     
  4. galenweaver

    galenweaver Vancouver, WA Member

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    If Larch is closed does anyone know of some other places in SW Washington. Willing to drive a bit to explore.
    Less people the better and the longer the better.
    Thanks,
     
  5. t.huynh

    t.huynh vancouver, wa Active Member

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    Heard of a place out past the bridge of the gods. Never been there myself though.
     
  6. codezilla

    codezilla United States Member

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    I was out shooting at Larch last week during our glimmer of sunny weather, and that was maybe the 5th or 6th time I've gone up there. Maybe 3 summers ago we went to Dougan Falls and asked a ranger where we could go shoot. He didn't say it was legal- but he said just go back out of the safety corridor then go up the dirt road a few miles and "you'll be fine". Never had a problem, and often hear other people shooting up there too.
     
  7. Spray-n-pray

    Spray-n-pray Battle Ground Moderator Staff Member Bronze Supporter

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    I avoid Larch like the plague. I had heard numerous horror stories of idiots being EXTREMELY unsafe there, so I never had gone until last year. A friend wanted to show me a spot he found, so I went up there to play around. We found a spot and started plinking with our 10/22s and some pistols. A while later, some other guys parked right across the dirt road from us and started shooting. They weren't shooting at us, but closer than we wanted to be. We ended up packing up and trying to find a different spot on the way back down the hill. Every place that was possible to shoot was full of people. The one that took the cake, though, was the group that had set balloons on a ridge line to shoot. These helium balloons were floating above the ridge, so their bullets did not impact the dirt. Lord knows where their bullets went, but I don't think it ever occurred to them that a balloon would not stop a rifle round. We got the heck out of there and I haven't been back since.
     
  8. Vanillagerrilla

    Vanillagerrilla Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, It was bad a few years ago, now its down right dangerous up there. So many stupid unsafe people that buy guns these days, makes me kinda wish there was a basic competency test to purchase. (I know I know - but still )
    I've been muzzle swept by morons up there, had little kids running around while setting up a shot, and I have seen groups of strangely dressed uniformed types up there too.
    I will pay the $20 at English pit
     
  9. codezilla

    codezilla United States Member

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    Can't use my slide fire stock at english pit :)
     
  10. galenweaver

    galenweaver Vancouver, WA Member

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    I go to English pit often and it's ok but longest is 100 yards and you can only shoot rimfire on the 50 yard. I mean I love putting 10 shots into a dime hole at 50 yards with the 22 but want to go longer with the 22 and farther than 100 with the AR
     
  11. Torqk911

    Torqk911 Yacolt,Wa Member

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    Larch used to be a great place to go. Now, its flat out scary. The last time I went I had people popping out of the bushes periodically off of the hill I had walked around and checked before shooting for a backing. I had people drive up on me on a dead end get out and act like they were going to rob me. All separate experiences but later I found out that a lot of people were getting robbed up there and I think I recall a death. Don't quote me there but it seems to stick out a few years back happening.
     
  12. codezilla

    codezilla United States Member

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    I've heard the same. I haven't had any dangerous or threatening experiences personally, though.
     
  13. pdxsks

    pdxsks vancouver, washington Member

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    Was at Larch Mountain two weeks ago. Very unsafe. I let people around me that was going set targets. Next thing gun shots were being fired while down range.
    I was scared. When I asked if they seen me. reply back was " I did not see you." I wont even drive up the 1500 rd anymore
     
  14. Trailboss

    Trailboss Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    I stopped going to the English Pit for the same reasons. My Anschutz Model 64 with a 6-24 scope puts everything into one hole at 50 yeards, not much challange. "The man" told me I can't shoot at the 100 yard because I "may accidentally point my rifle up and fire over the top of the berm." Say what? Must be something magical about the centerfire calibers, that they can't be pointed up and fired. What ever, I don't have time for nonsense, I will shoot elsewhere. Oh, did I mention that I used to teach NRA rifle and pistol safety classes and did competition shooting with 22 pistol, 45 pistol, 22 rifle and centerfire rifle.
     
  15. Pinfold

    Pinfold Ridgefield Member

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    There is a place that's very easy to find, I recommend 4wd, but not required. Drive out WA Hwy 14 to the bridge of the gods, the very next street on your left (after the bridge) is called Ash Lake Road. Turn left on it, single lane, but paved so far. About a half mile or so up go right onto the unpaved Blue Lake road. Follow it, staying left every time it offers a choice, and you will pass by a trailer which looks like it's right out of a horror movie (dolls and weird things hanging around it, along with an old broken down car) and that's your sign you are almost there. Shortly you will reach a small sign that says "shooting range" or "gun range", can't remember which. Follow it up about 50 feet more, and bang, you are at the Skamania County outdoor free public range.

    There are 3 tabled stations on the pistol range, and 5 on the rifle range. I go there often, very early in the morning, to avoid having to wait a turn. :) If anyone needs further clarification, feel free to message me.

    It's great place to shoot, all in all about 2-3 miles off-road from when you turn onto Ash Lake road.

    Glenn (Pinfold)
    jesrael@hotmail.com
     
  16. kenjo

    kenjo Washougal Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Unfortunately this range is being closed by DNR in mid-August. Not sure exactly why, but I suspect there has been too much careless shooting and way too much garbage left on the range. The Cascade Sportsmans Club has taken responsibility for providing the benches and cleaning up the range on a regular basis but the amount of garbage that is left is really disgusting. I have taken heavy garbage bags and a rake and filled several bags each time I go up. The minority of shooters who create this mess spoil it for the rest of us. For example, shooters take bottles to use as targets, car doors and even used the large garbage cans as targets. I've seen people shoot at objects being tossed into the air without a thought about where the bullets were going. It's a small segment of the shooting population, but they ruin it for everybody.
     
  17. ArBrnSnpr

    ArBrnSnpr PNW Active Member

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    That's too bad, that was a decent spot.
     
  18. EMP9596

    EMP9596 Two Trees West of Camas, WA. Active Member

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    Washington side of bridge of the gods, about a 2/10th of a mile east to ash lake road take a left, follow ash lake rd to blue lake rd, follow for about 2 or 3 miles and there will be signs to the shooting range. It has shooting tables, about a 100-150 yard range and a separate pistol area.
     
  19. FatherHolyHoly

    FatherHolyHoly MN Active Member

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    Giving out directions to a good place to shoot on a public forum is like giving directions to a pot of gold. Let's just say you're not going to find it the way you left it.
    Kenjo, do you have any links from the DNR about the closure? I'm sorry to hear it and I'm hoping it's not true. Wish I could say I was surprised.
     
  20. kenjo

    kenjo Washougal Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    According to the Cascade Sportsmans Club, the closure is nonnegotiable; the Skamania County Commissioners argued with the DNR to keep it open, but without success. DNR reportedly never wanted the range there in the first place and have now come up with some excuse to shut it down. I don't have any more info than that.