The Fernie Rod and Gun Club (FRGC) hosted their second, and largest, 3-D shoot of the season from Aug. 20 to 21 at the Coal Creek Range. The FRGC offered three courses of 15 targets and one course of 10 targets to the more than 220 shooters who attended. Many of the shooters were from outside of B.C. with archers hailing from Saskatchewan, Alberta and various U.S. states. The event also had approximately 40 youth participants ages four to 17.
Nature is what people enjoy most about the 3-D hunt, explained the President of the Fernie Rod and Gun Club, Kevin Marasco to The Free Press.
“They love the outdoors and the scenery. The trails go out and around the range and some trails go high up so [participants] can see across to where the ammonite is and they can see the ski hill,” he said.
The event was open to everyone and offered different courses for different abilities and categories.
“We have three fun courses with 15 targets. We have different stakes set up for men, women, traditional shooters and kids,” he said. “Anyone can come from anywhere; there is a scoring system on the targets. We have an extreme course that is competitive and it is for big prizes.”
The Elk Valley Extreme winner Jordan Adachi accepts his $1,000 first place prize and trophy from organizes Kevin Marasco, Curtis Mummery, Kevin Evans and Lorne Cook.
FRGC also holds a 3-D tournament in June. According to Marasco, the June event usually sees fewer participants and worse weather. However, the event also serves as one of three qualifiers for the Elk Valley Extreme final, which were held on the evening of Aug. 20. The other two qualifiers for the finals were held in Sparwood and Cranbrook.
“All the qualifiers get together, that’s 33 adults and 30 kids, and they shoot off on Saturday night in front of everybody,” said Marasco. “They shoot our famous ‘running bear’, which is a moving bear, and we set up a bunch of secret events that no one knows about until that night.”
The secret events ranged from shooting balloons to a timed event where archers had to shoot three arrows in 25 seconds.
The highlight of the secret events was a lift that raised participants 20 to 30 feet in the air, competing archers then shot down at the running bear.
The event changes slightly every year, with different targets or courses offered to keep things fresh.
This year, according to Marasco, the club featured many of their upgraded targets that feature better quality arrow blocks.
“We always have different targets and we change our trails around. We have purchased more Rinehart targets so they are all quality targets,” he said. “You won’t blow the arrows through the targets and wreck arrows. A lot of the shooters that come are pros, they like everyone else don’t like to ruin their arrows when they hit a target. Rinehart’s are the best and it is nice to shoot good targets.”
Marasco believes that the event was a great success, with many visitors stopping by to see what the event was all about.
“It is a great weekend and everyone’s welcome. A lot of the people that came up didn’t have bows and we have 24 generic bows that we have been helping people and their kids with,” he said. “At least 20 kids have come up without any equipment and we get them on the range and they start to shoot balloons and get into the program. We have had a dozen people go out on the courses with the bows and the parents and kids get to see what it is all about, they walk the trails and have fun.”