mercredi 1 octobre 2008

Chasse practique

Today after a rushed morning's shopping, I went to Foix for an afternoon course in preparation for the 'chasse practique exam'. I thought this would be the easy bit, having used shotguns and airrifles for quite a few years...but no. The french have very specific ways of handling firearms which differ very slightly from the ways I have learnt. Undoubtedly the french ways are very safe, if a bit awkward sometimes (I think deliberately so to prevent safe techniques degenerating over time into potentially unsafe ones). The problem is I must now unlearn many years habits if I want to pass the exam. In my first trial run of the exam I failed before I had even fired a shot because I rested my trigger finger erect against the side of the trigger guard. Strictly 'interdit'. Also when breaking a shotgun one has to rotate the gun through 90 degrees (away from you) and push the stock away from the barrels. When reloading one must put the stock under your arm and hold the barrels with your left hand over the top, not underneath.

A final part of the test involves a simulated 'chasse en battue'. Where hunters with rifles stand in a line and game is driven past them. Using a bolt action rifle is a new experience for me. More difficult, throughout the test I have to give a commentary of my actions in french - which involves some new vocabulary.

Two weeks of practice coming up!

1 commentaire :

Anonyme a dit…

Ha, ha! Sounds tought...but it can't be worse than learning to drive on the wrong side of the road?