My favorite type of clay shooting has to be that of a Sim day. Being out in the field with friends, sipping sloe gin, really does make me happy. There is no pressure at all; you can shoot as much or as little as you would like and no one is there keeping track of your score. Bonus! After a year of completions getting out in the field on a sim day is just what I need to relax back into shooting and to start enjoying it again
I am a big advocate of dressing up for a sim day. Any excuse to get the tweed out and the feather hat pin! One of my favorite Field outfits is the loaders skirt and matching waistcoat by the incredibly talented Emma Brown Tweed and a pair of House of Cheviot socks keep your feet comfy!!
But whatever you wear a sim day is about having fun, laughing with friends, great hospitality and slaying clays in style! A sim day can certainly get you ready for game season and if your not into game shooting yet trust me you will be after a sim day! The excitement and atmosphere of the day is like no other day shooting clay!
I usually get through between 300 and 400 cartridges on a sim day. Getting through this number of cartridges in one day was certainly a shock my first time, my shoulder was sore and my arms ached but the rush of the day certainly outweighed this and you soon get used to it. I would definitely recommend shooting with a 21g load Cartridge to reduce the recoil, especially as you are getting through so many in one go. Something like the Hull Fibre Wad cartridges which are some of my favourites!
Unlike on a game day, poaching the ‘birds’ of your neighbours is the order of the day and the whoops and cheers as you steal that bird right in front of your neighbours eyes is like no other. However, I will admit it is rather frustrating watching your own clays turn to dust before you have had a chance to pull the trigger, but hey I guess you have to learn to shoot quicker! Picking out some of those difficult birds is a must! Unlike with game where you worry about the welfare of the animal, there is no worry with clay so you can practise on high ‘pheasants’ or distance crossers to your hearts content. And wow does it feel great when you finally get them!
Now I have to give a mention to the sim day Gun Bus as these beauties really are brilliant! It means no faffing with your own 4×4 or in my case hopping into a fellow guns; instead all guns can be driven around together so the giggles and chatter between drives can continue! My favourite gun bus to date has to be the Stockton Shoot one; it was unbelievable and even had a built in BBQ underneath!!!!
This leads on nicely to the food. When you book a sim day be prepared to eat, eat and eat! There is usually always breakfast, elevenses and then lunch so you will be eating almost constantly throughout the day.
I have been lucky enough to enjoy some amazing sim days this year in some beautiful parts of the country. If you haven’t yet booked one what are you waiting for?!?