This match honors those who fought and died in the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir in Northern Korea in the winter of 1950. The Battle of Chosin Reservoir, also known as the Chosin Reservoir Campaign, was a brutal 17-day battle of the Korean War, fought over the roughest terrain under the harshest winter weather conditions of the war. Allied troops were encircled and attacked by enemy forces but were able to break out and inflict crippling losses on the enemy. A cold front from Siberia had descended over the Chosin Reservoir and the temperature plunged to as low as −35 °F. The freezing weather resulted in frostbite casualties, icy roads, and numerous weapon malfunctions. Medical supplies froze, morphine syringes had to be defrosted in a medic's mouth before they could be injected, and frozen blood plasma was useless on the battlefield. Cutting off clothing to deal with a wound risked gangrene and frostbite. Batteries for the vehicles and radios did not function in the freezing weather and quickly ran down. The lubrication in the guns gelled and rendered them useless in battle. Firing pin springs and operating rods froze and jammed. Refer to the Wikipedia page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Chosin_Reservoir for details on the battle and the heroism and hardships of “The Chosin Few”. Although we won’t get anywhere close to the miserable conditions they experienced during the battle, this match honors their service and sacrifice.
Sanner’s Lake Frozen Chosin Match Report
The day dawned with temperatures just cresting above the freezing mark as a stalwart band of competitors made their way to the Sanner’s Lake rifle range for the eighth annual Frozen Chosin match. As the sun rose higher in the sky, though, the conditions took a marked turn for the better...hardly representative of the grueling conditions at the actual Battle of Chosin Reservoir, but it sure made for perfectly pleasant conditions under which to shoot a rifle match!
The battle for the top spot was tight but it came down to the final string of standing slow fire to determine the victor, with James Black and his Garand taking first place overall with an excellent 256-3X, edging out Jeremy Hanson and his Garand rolling into second place with an superb 250-3X. Right behind them Greg Banta’s M1 Carbine was nipping at their heels, finishing strong with a well-shot 248-1X to take third place overall as well as top M1 Carbine! Amongst the enemy rifles it was the SVT-40 of Nathanial Swift keeping the heat on the allies, overcoming a minor malfunction during the rapid fire stage with some field-expedient percussive maintenance, jumping right back into the battle and cruising into fourth place with a crisp 234-2X. Congratulations to all the winners!
See a complete summary of the scores as well as pictures from the match below. Thanks to everybody for making it to the range regardless of the balmy weather and keeping the action fast and furious! Keep an eye on the Sanner’s club calendar as we get closer to the “regular season” of matches starting in the March timeframe.
See you at the range!
The “Chosin Few”:
Wall to Wall Slow Fire:
The Targets Tell the Tale:
- M1 Carbines are the focus of the match, but any centerfire rifle or carbine used in service during the Korean conflict is acceptable.
- Refer to the Korean War Weapons Wikipedia page for details. If it’s on the list and legal for use at SLSC, bring it!
- Rifle must be configured as it was used in service, i.e. no sporter modifications, aftermarket precision sights, bedded stocks, etc. are allowed.
- Modern replicas (e.g. James River M1 Carbine) or semi-automatic variants (e.g. Auto-Ordnance Thompson, Ohio Ordnance Works BAR) are acceptable.
- No mounted optics or bipods. Shooting mats and slings are acceptable.
- Attire should be appropriate to the weather (period correct preferred!). No custom shooting jackets or specialized gloves.
- Ammo: 30 rounds ammunition plus sighting/backup rounds
- Other: Spotting scope (optional, but helpful), shooting mat (optional)
- Open to the public. Non-members contact match director for gate access.
- The colder the better. Rifle and equipment should be properly cold soaked on the line prior to shooting. Only historically accurate methods may be used to unstick frozen equipment!
- Rifle type and caliber will be listed in match results. The more interesting and unique, the better!
Course of Fire Details
- NRA SR-1 targets at 100 yards.
- Sighting shots: 10 rounds (or more if needed) in 10 minutes
- Prone slow fire: 10 rounds in 10 minutes
- Prone rapid fire: 10 rounds in 70 seconds with one reload.
- Standing: 10 rounds in 10 minutes
- Thirty shots total for score
- 100 points possible for each string, 300 points total.
- Shooters ranked by highest combined score.
- Ties broken by X's, then by highest individual string, then by fewest hits of lowest value.
- Each string of 10 shots will be shot on a separate target.
- Point value of the ring for each shot will be totaled (maximum of 100 per target).
- Number of X's will be noted.
- Holes touching a higher value ring are given the higher value.
- Firing fewer than required number of shots will be scored as misses.
- Firing more than the required number of shots and more than 10 hits are on the target, with no cross firing evident, the 10 hits of the lowest value will be recorded for that string.