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The blizzard of January 2016 has trapped millions of Americans indoors. Many of these shut-ins are gun enthusiasts. As the long winter days ahead provide little chance for them to exercise their Second Amendment protected right to keep and bear arms, they have to indulge their love of all things ballistic in other ways. To those of our readers in the snowy north, what you do to keep yourself amused, gun-wise? Dry fire? Watch YouTube gun videos? Clean your guns? Reload? What?

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    • I stalk rats in the garage with a .22 pistol and Aguila’s Super Colibri rounds. Just hold still for a moment you nasty little bastards…

  1. I don’t understand how mere snow could trap millions of people inside.

    If snow prevented us from going outside, Wyomingites would be trapped in their houses six or seven months out of the year.

    • Not to generalize, but most people in the Mountain West and Midwest are made of much sterner stuff than the nanny-coddled folk in East Coast urban areas. Of course, East Coast urban areas is where most of the national media personalities reside, so they love to make a huge to-do out of it any time they get a foot of snow or more. Their sense of self-worth requires that their relevance to the world be constantly reaffirmed.

      • lol… Not to generalize, but that sounded about as snobby as most of yuppy Main Liners I have to deal with every day here cowboy.

        It was 28.5 inches here. And I drive a Nissan Altima, so I wasn’t going anywhere, regardless of my stern-rating.

        • Well there is your first problem, a real man should own a pickup truck that is at a minimum 3/4ton or larger with a diesel and a lift kit with no smaller than 35″ mud tires. Bonus preparedness points for train horns, spike lug nuts, semi wheels, smokestacks, and lope idle tunes. If it doesn’t sound like you put river rocks in a paint shaker when idling and smoke like a Peterbilt gravel truck even on partial throttle then it ain’t got enough power. You need to actually do work with this truck you ask? That’s what they make 18″ drop hitches for duhhhh

        • ^ This is so true it’s scary.

          Maybe it’s just the redneck part of NY that I live in, but it seems like what you’ve described is around 70% of the vehicles on the road today. Of course they’re all 15 years old and have 200,000 miles on them as well.

      • North easterner here. I dug out my RWD car and went to work without shedding a tear. The media like snow because it gives them something easy to babble on about.

        • Right on. They have been talking about snow that is no where near as bad as last year for over a week…

    • Agreed. They’re panic buying water for what, a foot? Foot and half? That’s just the minimum amount that makes driving to work fun.

      • Not to mention there’s billions of gallons of water right outside their doors. All they need is a pan or bucket and they could scoop if right off their porch and bring it in to melt.

        • For those flavors you have to go to the store, but for pure drinking water there’s not much need to stock up for a snowstorm.

  2. I do a lot of reloading during the sucky part of the winter.
    When it’s raining an inch a day, there’s not much else to do.

    • Yep. Loading, brass-sorting, gun-cleaning, scope/sight swapping (rare but rather involved), and lately, knife blade repair/re-contouring. Throw in archiving digital photos and some Amazon shopping (care must be taken that the last item doesn’t get out-of-hand).

  3. Paint little smiley faces on my bullet tips!

    But seriously folk, I read my little ones stories about the big bad wolf, the potus.

  4. My wife and I have set it up so that we can do some of our reloading steps in front of the TV. We hand de-prime with a Harvey Deprimer. We hand-prime cleaned/sized brass with various hand primers (RCBS, Lee). We clean brass (either in the tank in the kitchen or the tumbler downstairs).

  5. Reload and clean guns. Winter makes for a great time to go through the whole collection and make it look sparkly clean. It also makes for a great time to take care of all the brass that I picked up all summer. Range gear gets cleaned, and steel targets get inspected and flipped if they need it. Then I head to the range. The cold and the snow makes me leave earlier, but it doesn’t prevent me from going.

  6. I’m truly worried for our nation. Our nation’s capitol is effectively shutdown. I’ve heard that is bad. I haven’t really witnessed the effects but I’ve been told its bad when it happens in the Summer. After a blizzard, everybody on the news is smiling about it.

  7. I always have a couple of gun projects lined up, waiting for an opportunity to get into them. Examples are an ASTONISHINGLY homely old Remington 721 in .257 Roberts in the wings for some serious work, couple of older milsurps that always need a bit of love, and sight and/or spring updates on a handful of handguns.

    But if it’s weather… that calls for popping in Zulu, Enemy at the Gates, Gladiator, or Band of Brothers and getting into some serious gun cleaning on the coffee table.

  8. Yesterday I swapped out the front site on my Sub2k (Gen1) with a Red Lion. Pretty sweet!

    Then today I dug out my car (under 28.5 inches of snow), then proceeded to help my neighbor, then we both helped the next neighbor and before it was over, everyone was digging out everyone (and turns out the chick on the corner is reallly hot and single too, woo wee).

    I don’t watch the TV by the way, but it sounds like they are doing their usual panicky cry baby stuff, from some of the comments above. It was 28.5 inches here, so yeah… we were snowed in. Sorry, we don’t all have 4×4’s here and aren’t ripping bark off of trees with our teeth like some of ya’ll.

  9. Personally I go out and shoot. Fewer people at the range. There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad/improper clothing and equipment.

  10. I have been stuck indoors in the wilds of SW Missouri with a broken leg for the past two weeks. I broke it the day after I started constructing the backstop for my 100 yard range which of course, means that construction came to a screaming (it really hurt and I heard it snap!) stop.

    So I have spent my time barraging TTAG Editor Dan with emails arguing in favor of a “The Truth About Guns” TV show using the exact same format as the blog.

    The stuff on the Outdoor Channel and the Sportsman channel shown for the general POTG is pretty lame

    I am pretty sure TTAG can far outshine “Gunfather”

    • Re the broken leg … *wince* my condolences. May it heal straight, fast and well. And – speaking from experience here – work with a good physical therapist afterwards. If you haven’t had a broken leg before, you’ll be amazed at how much muscle mass it will lose.

  11. I scour Amazon for gun parts, manuals, books, and milsurp gear. And detail strip/clean all of my firearms, which takes the better part of two days.

  12. I’ve set up a BB range in my basement. At 10 yards it is great practice when I can’t get out to the range. I have a Umarex semiauto pistol and a Daisy 880 rifle, both of which are surprisingly accurate.

  13. Either:

    Play Duck Hunt for NES, or sometimes, play other light gun games for Wii.

    Yeah I said, my girlfriend owns a Wii.

    • I’m more impressed that you have a legit NES that still works. I took great care of mine as a kid, and it still has to be disassembled and have its pins cleaned at some point, which I’ve heard hurts resale value anyway.

  14. I usually have to go to work.

    On the snow days when I’m off I kick back with some beer or wine, stuff my face with food, and watch movies.

    And piddle with a BB gun in my backyard.

  15. After shoveling and reading a couple of books by the fire, I put some of that high school wood shop knowledge to good use and refinished the stocks on my PU Mosin, K98k, and Steyr M95 carbine. No historical butchery took place, as the Mauser and Steyr had already been touched up by previous owners. The Mosin was in dire need of cosmetic surgery because the orange shellac was falling off. All in all it has been a great weekend.

  16. Being in ‘Sunny Florida’, no (water) snow to be buried in.

    However, the wimps up north? They’ll do what people always do when trapped indoors.

    Drink and screw.

    Watch for a spike in childbirth in 9 months…

    • Actually, when it snows, the wimps up north go to Florida, where a man can wear lime green pants with a white belt and not feel out of place.

  17. Why do people stock up with 8 gallons of milk before big snow storms? What are you going to do with 8 gallons of milk?

    What I have been doing is working on gun projects and reloading. I got my reloading setup last week and I have been working on .40 S&W. I primed 100 cases. I have probably 1000 brass prepped and ready to go.

    • When I was a teenager, my dad, brother and I would go through a gallon of milk a day. No doubt a big family could drink more.

  18. It’s been so long since I’ve been back to Illinois. Can’t say I miss the blizzards. Or the crazy frost bite inducing winds. I wouldn’t even trade the godawful humidity for that.

  19. Well, it has been rather chilly (mid 60’s) here in Arizona, so I turned the heater on in the garage and reloaded about 1000 rounds of 9MM.

  20. I’d like to point out that the snowstorm completely missed the north. It was the Midcoast that got hit. We didn’t even get clouds up here.

  21. I don’t even get snow in my part of the world, unless I want a 6+ hour drive (or 8+ hour bus trip) to the Snowy Mountains SW of Canberra.

    Foreign immigrants from North America and Europe say “Australia has no winter”.

    But if an emergency forced and extended lock-down, I have several weeks of dried and tinned food, two full gas bottles for the BBQ in case there is no electricity, lots of books to read to occupy my time, and enough guns and ammunition to equip a light infantry section and see off all-but a mass assault of at least company size.

  22. Got a start on reloading. A few days, it was too cold to smelt wheel weights effectively, so we got the Lee Load-All set up and a bunch of hulls readied to accept slugs once we cast them.

  23. Amfivena had it right: with snow, go out and shoot.

    The only real difference is target type. I prefer snowmen set up in a scattered pattern through the trees, bearing branches and pine cones to simulate terrorists coming my way.

    Huge icicles hanging from cut cuts are always tempting, but too many have solid rock hidden behind them; ricochets are not nice when the woods is full of people enjoying the frozen version of water.

    And I will confess that once when out shooting in the snow, a large dead tree was just too tempting; we needed the firewood, and cutting it down with lead seemed a far more enjoyable proposition than the mundane chain saw approach.


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