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If you are new to shooting, or if you already enjoy time on the range and want to introduce someone, here are some tools to help get started. From archery to rifle, pistol and shotgun shooting, there are so many different ways to enjoy your time on the range!
Iowa has a variety of archery and shooting ranges across the state. These ranges are a great place to learn the basics or increase your skill under the guidance of trained experts. Shooters of all skill levels are welcome. The map below shows the locations and amenities at both public and private shooting ranges located in Iowa. Click on a range below to find more information for each range.
If you notice information is incorrect, or would like a range listed on the map, please notify us in an email to IowaShootingRanges@dnr.iowa.gov.
1. Treat all the firearms as if they are loaded. By treating every firearm as if it is loaded, a habit of safety is developed.
2. Always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction. A "safe direction" means that the gun is pointed so that even if an accidental discharge occurred, it won't cause an injury. For rifles and shotguns, shooters will traditionally carry their gun with the barrel to the sky. Pistol shooters will unload their firearm and keep their gun in a range bag or pointed down range.
3. Always keep your finger off the trigger. Rest your finger outside the trigger guard or along the side of the gun until you are actually ready to fire.
4. Always know your target and what is beyond it. For outdoor shooting, make sure you have an adequate backstop for your bullets to impact. Know what's beyond that backstop and keep your shots within the safe shooting zone.
Always keep the bow pointed in a safe direction.When you nock your arrow, keep the bow aimed at the ground until you are ready to shoot.
Never draw your bow until you are ready to shoot.
Always know your target and what is beyond it.
Pistol shooting is made up of action shooting and precision shooting. Precision shooting is focused on accuracy and precision where athletes shoot handguns at paper targets at fixed distances and set timeframes. The National Rifle Association (NRA) has many different sanctioned matches at a club near you. Action shooting is focused on precision, power and speed while shooting at steel plates. Organizations like the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA), International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) and Cowboy Action Shooting have matches with different classifications and disciplines at a range near you.
Rifle shooting is made up of action shooting and precision shooting. In precision shooting, athletes are trying to achieve as many points as possible by hitting a target closest to the center. The National Rifle Association (NRA) has many different sanctioned matches at a club near you. Action shooting is focused on accuracy and speed while shooting at steel plates and targets. Organizations like the United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) or International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) host matches with different classifications and disciplines at a range near you.
Shotgun shooting is often focused on shooting a clay pigeon. American trap is shot on a trap field where the clay targets are all launched from a single machine and the targets are thrown away from the shooter. American skeet has two different machines that throw single and double targets from each machine. Sporting clays are designed to simulate hunting. Targets are thrown to represent different birds and game species. Sporting clays is played around a course like golf, where the athlete is presented with different targets at each station.
Archery is made up of target archery, field archery and 3D archery. Target archery is focused on shooting a bulls eye style target from a predetermined distance, ranging from 18 meters up to 70 meters in distance. Field archery takes place on courses that are often compared to golf courses. The number of targets is set, but the distance from the target and the angle of the shot can vary greatly from target to target. 3D archery is designed to simulate the hunting experience. The course is similar to field archery and the scoring is determined by each target.