Yes. I went. Yes. It was hot as hell. And YES, I had a great time.
The field was very cool. If you didn't watch the vids I posted in the last post, check em out for a little visual stimulation.
Here's a shot of an area of the field called Babylon at the Jericho Airsoft Field in Lake Elsinore, CA.
So here's a basic rundown of my day at the event last Saturday...
I load my car in the morning, plug in the field address into my Droid's Google Maps Navigation App, and floor it out to Lake Elsinore, CA. Normally my navigation is spot on, but today of ALL DAYS it decided not to show up for work. My navigation tells me that I've reached my destination and that it is directly to my left. Well, as I'm driving past where Google is telling me my destination is, all I can see is trees, and no entrance to any kind of field or other establishment. So I'm already a bit late, and now I'm pissed. So I called the number on Jericho's website and who answers, but Mr. Jericho himself, Rick Lowe, who I found to be a pretty cool dude. He was more than happy to give me directions. Turns out, the field was down the road another two to three hundred yards or so. Sweet. So I find a park and get geared up. Registration was quick and easy, allowing me just enough time to get back to my car, grab my guns and join ranks with the Desert Fox side, who were designated the OD Green team. Jericho's side was the TANFOR. Truth be told, I was still getting ready during the briefing, so I did not get the memo on what our objectives were. HOWEVER, I didn't care what they were because MY only objective was to shoot as many bad guys I could. If I knew what the objectives were, and I had my team with me, usually I'll play along and grab some objectives, but when I'm rolling solo, I just put fools on blast. And that's it. So, for a bit, I did just that. The problem I ran into eventually was that it was blistering hot already. This was only about 9:30/10ish in the morning. Turns out, Southern California was having a record heat wave. Los Angeles experienced its hottest day EVER at 113 degrees Farenheit. I think I mentioned this in the last blog, but I heard it was about 105 in Lake Elsinore that day. So, with that in mind, my M14 DMR that I was running didn't do too well because I have the Guarder IFTU motor pulling back a 150 spring, which creates some decent heat on the motor, then add to the fact that the gun was baking in the sun, and what do you get? A Cheetah MOSFET giving me the Overheating alert and shutting down the rifle. So, I switched to pistols for a bit, but with the field as spread out as it was, I preferred to have a rifle. You could manage pistols, but you've really gotta be able to move very quickly and often, which just wasn't going to happen for me in that heat. So I went back to the car real quick and grabbed my faithful VFC HK146 CQB that I spent some time on the blog telling you all about. See that here. This was an excellent decision. She shot beautifully and sent many a TANFOR back to their respawn point. So the games went on for the duration of the morning and around noonish, they had the various event-sponsor competitions. I competed in two of about 4 competitions or so. The first event that I entered was the WE 1911 GBB pistol takedown competition. Basically, you had to strip a 1911 MEU GBB pistol down to eight pieces, with everything laying on the table, you have to take your hands off and say, "done" to the ref. He then immediately signals the OK, at which point you have to put it all back together. I knew about the competition ahead of time, but was foolish in thinking that I didn't need to practice under competition conditions with a timer. The other element is it was a head-to-head competition, and therefore you had to beat the guy next to you. If you were able to beat your opponent, you won a hat. If you had the fastest overall time, you won an actual WE/SOCOM Gear 1911 GBB Pistol. While I did pummel my opponent with a time of 46 seconds, I believe the overall winning time was around 30 seconds or so. I did not have a flawless run-through. Practicing under similar conditions ahead of time would definitely have helped, for sure. Anyway, still got some hardware, so I was satisfied.
The next competition I entered was the Steel Target Stress Test. Basically, the shooter starts about 15 yards from the firing position. When the ref gives the go ahead, the shooter sprints to the designated firing spot, at which point he is to unleash hell on a series of four steel targets spread out at various close-range distances. After the shooter hits the first two targets, he must complete a mag change before proceeding to the 3rd and 4th targets. Once the 4th target is hit, the timer is stopped. I clocked in at 17 seconds with flawless mag change. I didn't stick around for the results, but when I left, there was only one time faster than mine at 15 seconds. So I'm just going to tell myself and others that have no way of proving me wrong that I got 2nd place. Not that 2nd place is any good because if you're not first, you're last. Still makes me feel like a boss anyway.
- Heat (not the event managements fault)
- There was a certain section of the field that is used for paintball and therefore, I got paint on my stuff (e.g. guns, gear, ego, etc). I hate paint and I especially hate it on my beloved Airsoft goodies.
- I really liked the field structures that were set up to look like a town you might find some insurgents in. You can see from the video that somebody spent some serious time making that field look good.
- Plenty of room for movement and longer range engagements, while still offering the chance for close-quarter engagements as well.
- Staff was fairly professional and appeared to actually enforce the rules for everyone's safety.
- Mini competitions were a nice touch, especially since I needed some cool-down time, given the high temperatures at that time of the day.
- Lots of cool vehicles for inserting players into the game.
- There were over 200 players in attendance, but it did not feel over-crowded on the field.
As you can see, the pros far outweighed the cons, and therefore I will definitely be returning for more action to the Jericho Field. Mad Airsoft props go to Rick Lowe, of the Jericho Fields, for heading up this event. I do know that Jet, of the Desert Fox Fields (MOUT & CQB), had a cooperative hand in putting this event together as well and should not be overlooked. Well played, fellas.