"Frozen Chosin" Match

The Sanner's Lake Frozen Chosin 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 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.    

Match Report

Sanner’s Lake Frozen Chosin Match Report


The freezing weather that crept in and clamped its icy tentacles over Southern Maryland for the first few weeks of 2024 was tragically nowhere to be seen as the sun rose over Sanner’s Lake for the ninth annual Frozen Chosin match.  But the perfectly pleasant conditions didn’t deter ten competitors who made their way to the SLSC rifle range to do battle against paper targets in remembrance of those who fought and died taking a stand for freedom at the brutal Battle of Chosin Reservoir.

The firing line was dominated by M1 Carbines, rightfully so, with a sprinkling of Garands as well as a lone ’03 Springfield providing an appropriately period-correct representation of Allied firepower.  And so, the battle commenced, with fierce fighting from one end of the firing line to the other.  As the first relay came to a close Greg Banta found himself sitting comfortably in first place with a strong 244-1X.  However he then made a grave tactical error by offering his gun to the match director (who hadn’t planned to shoot) and insisting he shoot the second relay... with Greg even providing the ammo.  Well, no good deed goes unpunished, and as the second relay wound down Greg found himself bounced back to second place!  But at least he could take solace in the fact that his Carbine (along with his reloaded ammo) worked perfectly.  Further down the standings, the Carbines continued to put on a strong showing, holding their own between the Garands and the lone Springfield with just ten points separating the next five scores.  See all the scores and details at the link below.   

Thanks to everybody for making it to the range and putting their classic battle rifles to the test regardless of the beautiful weather...and, more importantly, helping out fellow competitors regardless of consequences in the spirit of the Chosin Few.  As the vernal equinox approaches and we get closer to legitimate springtime weather, be sure to bookmark the Sanner’s club calendar and take note of the rifle matches, vintage and otherwise, that will be starting back up in the March timeframe. 

Until then, don’t be a stranger and we’ll see you at the range!

Match Photos

Prone Slow – a chance to nail that perfect group...

... before things go downhill at the ever-popular Standing Stage:

Match Details

  • January 27th, 2024
  • Match date for 2025 is TBD
  • Sign in starts at 8AM
  • Match starts at 9AM
  • Match fee $5 

More Info

Match Director

Match Description

  • 30 round match shot at 100 yards using a standard NRA SR-1 target. 
  • Ten shots prone slow fire, ten shots prone rapid fire, and ten shots standing slow fire following NRA high power rifle rules. 
  • Ten minute sighting-in period prior to shooting for score. 

  • 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.



  • Once a year in January or February targeting (hopefully!) the coldest day possible.


  • 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!


  • Everyone - $5

Age Categories

  • None.  Match director may handicap shooters displaying excessive youth and vitality! 


  • 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: 5 rounds (or more if needed) in 10 minutes
  • Prone slow fire: 10 rounds in 10 minutes
  • Prone rapid fire: 10 rounds in 60 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.

Sanners Lake Sportmen's Club
PO Box 1300, Lexington Park, MD 20653

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