Robb’s looking for a range bag for practical pistol, so I thought I’d post about what I carry with me to a match.
I take a different approach to range bags than a lot of people. Rather than opt for a sofa-sized carryall with a strap, I built my bag based on my years as a professional photog. I rarely packed up the entire studio when I went on location, instead, I just carried the stuff I needed. For most editorial assignments, I carried two bodies, a strobe, two or three lenses and associated accessories (meter, batteries, filters, etc) in a small Domke Bag.
Why? Because I knew that’s all I needed to do the job. If I needed more, (portrait setup, Hassie, room lights, etc.) I kept those in the truck until when and if I needed them. I don’t like acting like a pack mule because that distracts from the job at hand. If I’m sweating from carrying a huge bag around, that’ll affect how I shoot, be it guns or cameras.
So what do you need (not want) to shoot a club match? It’s pretty basic, when you think about it.
– Gun (duh)
– Belt, holster and mag carriers
That’s it. Anything else is “want” not “need. Yes, the needs for a major match are different, but I don’t shoot major matches aside from the Rio Salado Desert Classic, so again, that isn’t my need.
So what’s in my bag?
Clockwise from top left
Bag: A cheap MidwayUSA bag that they don’t sell anymore. It’s got a decent-sized interior pocket with two side pockets and six mag pouches.
Competitive Edge Dynamics Dump Pouch: For spent brass.
Howard Leight Earmuffs: Love these. Clear sound, effective noise suppression and less than half the cost of other electronic earmuffs.
Gun lube and sunscreen: Because I live in a desert.
Mags: 9 total.
Fobus Paddle Mag Pouch: In case of extra-long stages.
Belt Clip for Earmuffs: I rarely use this, but I can’t really subsititute something else for it if I need it.
Club ID Card on Lanyard: Handy to have, but not always needed at my club.
USPSA Rulebook: I’ve never had to whip this thing out on a stage and I hope I never have to.
USPSA Overlays: No, you did not get a perfect double on this target, and here’s proof.
Clipboard and Pen: For taking notes on an especially tough stage and how I shot it.
Earplugs: Just in case I forget my earmuffs and/or need extra noise protection.
Speedloader: Because thumbs are a terrible thing to waste.
Cleaning rod: I don’t know if you know, but it gets a bit dusty here in the Desert Southwest.
Ammo: Typically, I take twice the recommended round count with me to a match, because you never know.
Gun: CZ75 in a Bor-Stor sleeve.
That’s about it, aside from the iPhone and the CRKT Pazoda I have with me all the time. No backup gun, no menagarie of spare parts. If I need more than than, I’ll get it from my car or wait until the match is over.