Clay Pigeon Shooting
The picturesque Scottish Highlands beckon visitors and residents alike to come outside and enjoy the spectacular scenery, fresh air, and rugged landscape. There is no place in the world like the Highlands of Scotland for those who want a holiday with variety in a tremendously diverse environment. All kinds of outdoor activities are available in the Highlands, ranging from extreme and strenuous to more relaxing or skill-based. While some outdoor sports are relatively new to the Highlands, others have been going on for centuries. Clay pigeon shooting has been taking place in the Scottish Highlands in one form or another for many years. Clay pigeon shooting is the art of shooting at a special flying target, called a clay pigeon, with a shotgun or firearm. Clay pigeon shooting today has at least twenty different forms or disciplines, and is a very popular sport worldwide. As a sport, clay pigeon shooting derives from the popularity of grouse and pheasant shooting in Victorian times. The first clay target was introduced some time between 1883 and 1887, which enabled people across social strata to enjoy target shooting without all the trappings of hunting for grouse and pheasant in the Scottish Highlands. Clay pigeons also allowed hunting parties opportunities to practice and hone their skills, and shooting schools developed as a result of the clay pigeon. The precursor to the clay pigeon was actually a glass ball, and glass ball shooting was all the rage in America during the time of Buffalo Bill Cody and Annie Oakley. Clay targets are thrown from a machine called a trap, and it wasn’t until the 1980s that battery-powered automatic traps were developed. These traps throw the targets in a more realistic position, and the discipline of Sporting in clay pigeon shooting has become the most popular and widely-developed because of them. Clay pigeon shooting is a sport for men, women, and children, and it is one of the most rapidly-growing sports in all of the UK. There are clubs and centres all over the Highlands of Scotland which offer coaching and lessons, opportunities for practice, and competitions. You can book a lesson or a “have a go” day at most of them and decide if clay pigeon shooting is a sport you wish to take up, or just something to do once in awhile when you are up visiting the Highlands of Scotland. Clay pigeon shooting is a very social sport, as well, and there are many clubs all around the UK and the rest of the world. If you come up to the Scottish Highlands and give it a go, then decide you’d like to continue, you should have no trouble finding support and a centre near your home. Activity and outdoor centres which offer clay pigeon shooting will provide you with the level of coaching needed for you to have an enjoy hour or so of shooting, or longer if you prefer. Shotguns will be available for hire, as well as cartridges. At a centre, you can be sure that all shooting will take place under the strictest of safety conditions. Many centres will also offer more than one discipline of clay pigeon shooting, such as overhead, down the line, springing teal, or driven grouse. Clay pigeon shooting in the Scottish Highlands is a great day out for experienced shooters and novices alike. Most centres cater for all levels of experience. It is a great activity in the outdoors which requires concentration, good eye / hand coordination, and fast reaction. Clay pigeon shooting is also a relatively inexpensive activity to try as you generally pay either by the clay (25 or 50) or by the hour. If you want to experience the Highland life and traditional country sports, try an afternoon of clay pigeon shooting. You may discover you have quite a skill for target shooting, and make some new friends at the same time. Clay pigeon shooting is often available to the public on some of the spectacular Highland estates, so this is also a great way to see how the Laird might live! Situated in the heart of the Scottish Highlands, many clay pigeon shooting centres, clubs, and estates will not only provide you with an excellent target shooting experience, but also spectacular scenery. Book your clay pigeon shooting adventure today and enjoy a true taste of the sporting Highlands.
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