April 5th, 2012

ShootingPlaces.com — New Online Database of Shooting Facilities

Forum member Stan C. (aka BigBamBoo) has created an impressive FREE online database of shooting ranges and clubs throughout the fifty United States, plus Canada. Stan’s new website, ShootingPlaces.com, is simple to use — and it is wicked fast. A handy state/province pull-down menu lets you instantly find all the shooting venues in any particular U.S. State or Canadian Province. Alternatively, you can search for ranges within a given radius of a location or zip code — that’s great when you want to narrow your focus to a particular metropolitan area. The database is very comprehensive, and search results came up almost instantly for us. We ran searches for a number of zip codes near the AccurateShooter.com offices in southern California. Overall the results were impressive, though there was a prominent omission — the Ojai Valley Gun Club, our ‘home range’, didn’t appear. So be aware that the database may not be 100% just yet. But with time, it should become more complete, as users can submit their entries to augment the database.

ShootingPlaces.com employs Google mapping technology that automatically maps the location of all search results. Each shooting facility (returned by the search) is shown by a “bullseye” tag on a regional map. Click the name of a particular facility, and the display switches to a site-specific layout with details about the facility, plus a street map you can use to get there. See example below:

ShootingPlaces.com vs. WheretoShoot.org
Credit Stan C. for working very hard over the last couple of years to create a database that is comprehensive, powerful, fast, and easy to use. ShootingPlaces.com is a great resource for shooters throughout the USA and Canada. ShootingPlaces.com is a genuine rival to the well-established WheretoShoot.org, an online database of shooting facilities, maintained by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF).

You may be thinking, “OK, if ShootingPlaces.com and WheretoShoot.org both locate shooting venues, which online directory should I use?” Well, it depends… ShootingPlaces.com is “faster” but WheretoShoot.org is “deeper”. If you simply want to locate and map a shooting range, ShootingPlaces.com is hard to beat for speed and ease of use. However, if want to find out what kind of programs and facilities are offered at a particular shooting range or club, then you should use WheretoShoot.org. The typical site profiles on Wheretoshoot.org are more detailed. For larger clubs, you’ll find details such as range yardages, disciplines supported (silhouette, high power etc.), and specific facilities (clubhouse, on-site camping).

Because ShootingPlaces.com and WheretoShoot.org both have their strengths, we suggest you bookmark both sites. Use ShootingPlaces.com for super-quick searches, and then switch to WheretoShoot.org if you want additional details on specific programs and site facilities.

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