If you're reading this after it was completed, like all blogs, it makes more sense if you go to the earliest date and read posts in chronological order.
Photos that arrived after this was done:
Texas Tiger, Ladies Wild Bunch Traditional World Champion (again) and Ladies Wrangler World Champion (again). shown with the new trophies given to World Champions. She and husband and gun cart driver English Lyn also received well-deserved Regulator badges.
Details in the July Journal
.June 24, 2012, Sunday
The start of a Wild Bunch shoot off match, Robber Baron on the left, J T Wild on the right. Robber Baron won
The main match shootoffs had exploding targets for stop plates. Here Texas Tiger has hit hers, and Half a Hand Henri is still running towards hers after some sort of problem.
The NEW! IMPROVED! trophies
The awards were given out by the Dooley Gang, beginning with a mascot, either that or a guy with a definite hormone imbalance
The NEW! IMPROVED! buckles
All in all, EOT 2012 was NEW! IMPROVED! Most of the improvements were quite good, and if you missed it, well, you missed it. Be there next year. I will if I can.
June 23, 2012, Saturday
Made it to the next to last stage clean, then got 3 misses in the last two stages, losing 2 places in the process. I believe that's happened to me on the last few EOTs. Hmmm...
Texas Gunslinger shot superbly all week, clean, no mistakes. Cerveza Slim shot very well and clean, too. Unfortunately one shooter missed the last shot of the match, shooting clean until then. Tough day.
The winner of the Best Guncart award, a 1905 Oldsmobile replica, built mostly from scratch. Outstanding craftsmanship and engineering.
Okay, here's a better view of the new flag. Quit complaining. No, I don't have an uncensored version. Sorry. Talk to Straight Shot Jane.
Punxsutawney Phil, from the NRA Museum, with some of the Movie Guns of the NRA Museum on display at Founders Ranch. Phil shot the Wild Bunch match shooting traditional in a 1916 uniform. The .45 tore up his hand enough that he quit after the first day, but he was neat to watch with his period correct shooting stance.
Tucker T. Fudpucker shot on my posse and sold most of the knives he brought to EOT
Bob Mernickle shows off the prototype for a Wild Bunch loading strip that will hold a magazine as well as 6 shotgun and 10 rifle. Some time back I suggested this after seeing Lone Rider Leather's version with a horizontal mag holder. At the time Bob nixed the idea because of the difficulty and small market. Yet, here it is. Give Bob a challenge, and he's likely to come through. The final version will be ambidextrous in the magazine mount, a good thing since he's spent $500 on the mold for same. If you need an extra magazine for, say, a 35 round pistol stage, you can just put this where you can reach the mag and have instant access to another mag. When there's a production version, you'll see it here.
There's a man ready for the Saturday night party
The party was by the Dooley Gang. Photos of it came out blurry and indistinct, much like my memories of same. It was very loud, and with my ears, I couldn't understand much. People with good ears told me they had the same results. But they gave away a LOT of stuff. It seems General U.S. Grant came up with a lot of stuff that had been leftover and put in storage. Since I couldn't understand the numbers being read off I probably missed out on a Colt SAA.
Speaking of Colt SAAs, the winner of the 3 night poker tournament won a Colt SAA .357. No kidding. The Facebook rumor that everyone at the party won a Colt SAA was a slight exaggeration.
June 22, 2012, Friday
A gun cart in the best gun cart contest
The daytime costume judges and The Redhead, who was the greeter/registrar. The judges worked very hard at this match, as usual, and did a tough job very well. L-R: Grannie Getyourgun (sp?), Captain Cooper, Copper Queen, and Sloan Easy. The Redhead. Creek Harding judged the gun carts as usual
Diamond Kate, Buckarette, has only been shooting for less than a year. She shot very well, very confidently. She has a great future in this sport, at least until she discovers boys, or they discover her
Texas Jack Starr
I forgot to write about Friday night. We shot on the late shift and had to get our posse photo taken. That ended after 1700. There were other posses just coming off the range and getting their picture taken. An announcement on the loudspeaker at 1702 stated that the daytime costume awards was starting RIGHT NOW in the Belle Union. It was on the schedule for 1700. So I put the gun cart on the range road by the admin office and went inside unarmed. People were on the podium and wandering on and off the stage, but, of course, the awards didn't start. I knew that if I took the cart to the shooters parking lot I would miss the entire program. I figured fifteen minutes at least to run the cart to the shooters' parking, get the guns and cart inside, and get back even at a dead run both ways. The awards wouldn't take that long, and I would miss them completely. I had missed the Thursday night awards, and as a result, Big Dave's award wasn't recognized. I wouldn't have accepted the award if I'd been there, of course, since I would know it was the wrong category. I felt some guilt about that. I made it almost through the awards when a polite gentleman interrupted Cat's presentation repeatedly and hauled me off in handcuffs and leg irons* before she finished speaking. By the time I posted bail all the good seats in the Soiled Dove contest were taken, and I didn't get any photos of same. This bothered at least one person on Facebook. There's a simple cure to that. If you want good photos of the Soiled Doves, be at the event. Artie Fly was taking photos of cowboys and soiled doves outside the Belle Union for only $20, or $1000 if he didn't send them to your wife.
One constant of End Of Trail is that the late shift ALWAYS finishes late. Every year I've been at Founders Ranch some posse has been stopped by security and hassled about their guns before they could get off the premises. One year I was awaiting the tram when hassled. Last year one posse member was forced to push his cart to the shooters parking lot and then up the road, around, and over to the VIP lot where he was legally parked rather than push his cart through town. Last year most of my posse was stopped at 1715 within fifteen feet of leaving the range road.by the Belle Union. As long as shooting is going to be late, I would respectfully suggest that awards events not be scheduled before 1800. Allowing late shift contestants to get off the range and to their cars with dignity and without activities that require their presence would improve the atmosphere immensely.
*Okay, slight exaggeration for effect. Sue me.
I did win the WB costume contest and was able to accept the award before being hauled off. I was unable to get the names of the other winners and, last time I checked, 0730 June 29th, they weren't posted.
Somehow Friday night I wound up at Fly's. He has a gasoline powered blender for making Margaritas. If he invites you over, grab your ear protection. It has a motorcycle throttle. I have a really disturbing video on my iPhone. Haven't been able to download it for some reason, so you're spared it here, at least for now. If I put it on I'll edit it down for time.
Speaking of Margarita machines. Ours died a few nights ago. The Redhead called Margaritaville Cargo, and they're sending a rebuild, and we're to pack this one up and send it back in the same box. It's way out of warranty. That's Dillon-like service!
June 21, 2012, Thursday
The main match started. We were on the early shift, and the weather gods were kind to black powder shooters. It was overcast and windy. We started on 12. As luck would have it, Larsen E. Pettifogger encountered a pistol knockdown that wouldn't go down because the lifting rod had stayed up. This screwed up his stage. It looked like a good reason for a reshoot, but I didn't want the appearance of favoring one of my best friends, so I called for the CRO's on duty, Lassiter and T A Chance. They agreed and put up a sign for other posses to hand-set those targets. We hand set a lot of targets after that.
Then a target broke, and communications just didn't communicate. Eventually I told the posse to shoot where it was, and we tried to get back on time. Eventually a new target was provided.
Larsen, Dan Diamond, and Texas Gunslinger did the timer operation, leaving me free to look for potential problems. I used an expeditor where possible. Cerveza Slim liked that job and was quite good at it.
The costume contest was Thursday night. This was, I think, an idea that shouldn't be repeated. Turnout was way below normal. This didn't mean there were good costumes, though.
Wild Horse John repeated his Best Dressed Gentleman win dressed as the owner of the Cheyenne Social Club. He has a lot of details, down to a pocket clothes brush.
Sweetheart Magdalena brought this magnificent anti bellum outfit from Italy. It is authentic down to the dyes and stitches. A considerable amount of historical research went into it, and the craftsmanship was museum quality
Dixie Bell certainly made this photograph with her beautiful (1880s?) outfit. For those of you not up on the history of US uniforms, I did not defect. This is the full dress uniform of a cavalry captain under the 1872-1880 regulations. Specifically this is a 10th Cavalry captain at Fort Concho, Texas in 1879. Yes, that helmet is a bitch, but not as much as the beard was for General Lee. Coon Creek is selling the General Lee outfit complete with hat, belt, and sash. They did a super job on this outfit. The outfit fits perfectly and is of high quality wool, making it more comfortable than you would expect. The 1860 cavalry officer's sword hangs nicely. After 10 years I might have learned how to wear a sword. Just remember, in the 19th century your waist was your navel, not your hipbones. There was a 1872 sword, but an officer out on the frontier wouldn't have bought a new one. I wore 1859 pattern "ankle" boots for the same reason. You didn't go to war in this uniform. It was strictly for parties and parades. The Army kept a separate uniform for dress mess until recently when they made the dress blue uniform into the class A uniform, with different shirt and tie for full dress occasions. Senior officers, of course, have a mess dress jacket. I say that because no lieutenant or captain would buy one unless forced, either by assignment or by his wife. I never even got captain's shoulder boards for my dress blues because I knew I wouldn't be wearing it where I was stationed, even when I got back to the States.
I apologize for not having more photos of contestants. As they say, I got tied up.
I was still "tied up" at the costume contest when the side match awards were given out. Creek Harding came over and told me I had won second in Plainsman Modern. I made some comments about the scoring must be screwed up, as I remember Blue Mesa, Stone Creek Drifter, and The Brisco Kid shooting getter, maybe others. But I went next door, and the nice ladies gave me the second place medal. Somehow it got pinned on the uniform, and a photo has appeared on Facebook of me with that medal on. Later I found Tex and asked, and he said the medal was for second place Traditional, which I didn't shoot. It belonged to Big Dave. I have a thing about people wearing medals they weren't awarded, real ones awarded by the military, not EOT, but still I shouldn't have let my picture get taken with it.
June 20. 2012. Wednesday
Creek Harding loading his Plainsman rifle
4 Plainsman stages, then a posse marshal meeting, then the opening ceremonies.
As usual at the opening ceremonies was the national anthem. Singin' Sue did an outstanding job. SASS seems to always find superb singers for this job. Perhaps those major league parks that hire rock idiots to screw up the Star Spangled Banner should just contact SASS.
Bighorn got the Top Hand award. I guess they've forgiven him for tearing up the foundation for the Long Hunter Saloon and totaling the unloading table with the recalcitrant rental Bobcat ;)
At the opening ceremonies, as always, the current class of regulators was inducted. Long overdue were Larsen E. Pettifogger, Weaver Gal, and Dan Diamond. Others that I remember from the long list were Blue Ridge Ranger, Texas Tiger and English Lyn. Singin' Sue, who should have gotten one just for the Star Spangled Banner, had no clue about the petition for her, despite emails going to her husband, Shanley Shooter with the title, "NOT FOR SUE'S EYES." Misty Moonshine, Pig Pen and True Grit Gary were among the others. If the final list looks a bit Arizona heavy, it's because AZ clubs have, for years, been ignoring their hard workers. Last year a group started trying to correct that. and there were a lot of Arizona names on last year's list, including most of the upper hierarchy of Winter Range. At the time I complained because Larsen, Weaver Gal, and Dan Diamond weren't on the list because I knew how hard they worked on Winter Range. Obviously others did the right thing and sent in their names instead of just complaining. Larsen left with a handful of badges to take to some well-deserved Arizonans who weren't at EOT. I won't spoil the surprise for the ones whose names haven't been leaked by others. One of the reasons I don't remember more of the names is, to my complete and utter surprise, one of them was mine. I don't remember a lot after that.
An engraved Colt SAA was given out in a drawing of shooters' names. J. T Wild won.
June 19, 2012. Tuesday
Shot three stages on the warm up, then had to leave to go to the VA. Had an appointment with Audiology and ENT. Audiology had an audiologist I hadn't seen before, not as impressive as the ones I've worked with before. The ENT doctor wasn't there and had changed the appointment to next Wednesday. It's really hard to get a decent audio gram when steam is coming out of the ears of the subject.
June 18, 2012, Monday
I've shot the rifle from the bar then grounded it on the opposite side from where I'm going to run down range. Then I shot one mag from the pistol, dropped it, and have the replacement mag in my right hand. Pistol is pointed up and down range, finger outside the trigger guard, which is easy with a left-hander since I drop the magazine with the trigger finger.
Tex took both of these pictures of me. This one looks very impressive, gun in full recoil and the plate falling. It would be a lot more impressive if I hadn't missed the other plate WITH THE RIFLE. That was the story of my match, hit the hard ones and screw up the gimmies. The tombstone targets were all pistol targets shot from the bar.
The new Long Hunter Saloon, one of two of Hipshot's new masterpieces. The new sets are very well designed for shooting. The posse was so good I didn't have to do much..
Note the upper windows in the saloon.
Wicked Felina wore most of a 1916 uniform. Assuming Coon Creek had a shirt small enough, she wouldn't wear it because of the pockets. She would sew up the right pocket to prevent it from catching on the rifle. Half-A-Hand Henri, aside from shooting very well, worked her tail off as timer operator. So did Evil Roy. I like to have other timer operators when I'm posse marshal for several reasons, not the least of which is it puts me in a neutral position for most decisions when the shooter complains about something the timer operator did or didn't. But these guys worked very hard. I didn't have a big pool of WB ROs to fall back on. I timed a few, but they carried the posse.
The Kiwis: Twill Willie Kiwi, Bumble, King's River Kid, Kiwi Witch Doctor. Watching the two kids handle 1911s was inspiring.
Camp Baylor Square. One the left is Wild Horse John's Class C with 2 flags, then Dan Diamond's Class A facing east, then the two sprinter based class Cs, Larsen E Pettifogger's in the back facing south, and Weaver Gal's in front facing north, then Camp Baylor. The next 3 spaces were reserved for Big Lou who has a Big trailer and can't fit in the Founders Club rows, but he never showed up. This left a big hole in what was a popular row, 5, the first available to non-Founders Club members and not a bad walk to the Belle Union. George S. Patton is trying hard to join the party
Weaver Gal and The Redhead
Wild Horse John and Weaver Gal
Larsen E. Pettifogger and Taz
I found a pair of over-the-ear electronic ear plugs I'd almost forgotten about. A few years back I sent in my in-the-ear plugs to SportEAR, and they lost them. Replacement was going to take a while because I had to go w-a-a-a-y across Phoenix to get my ears remolded, and Winter Range was about to start. SportEAR nicely sent me a pair of over-the-ear plugs to use while I was waiting. They work very well, but the foam in-the-ear plug is both uncomfortable and difficult to insert. But they worked and got me through the day's shooting. Then I went to a vendor, Hearing Ear Services, and Mark Reid molded me a pair of molded ear plugs that these over-the-ear units could plug into. This is much more comfortable and unlikely to come out. The hearing is going up and down daily. It seemed a little better today than yesterday.
Margaritas were had by many in the evening. The "Frozen Concoction Maker" from Margaritaville went tango uniform at about 2200. Fortunately The Redhead has a blender and knows how to use it.
June 17, 2012, Sunday
First day of the Wild Bunch match. The ear plug and hearing problem was driving me crazy. As posse marshal I have to talk to a lot of people. When I pulled the ear plug out I could carry on a conversation, but then someone would shoot, of course.
June 16, 2012, Saturday
Pecos Clyde giving the briefing before the warm up
Evil Roy placing his long guns perfectly
Slick's Sharp Shooter shot very well. This was the only picture of her shooting that didn't have Crazy Kurt so close to her that he blocked the shots.
Nellie Blue shot very well
Dixie Bell, who always shoots well
Joe LaFives in 1898 uniform
Tex in 1916 private's uniform
Added the new flag to the flag pole. "Naked Cowgirls Shoot Clean." 2 on the pole was too many. The naked cowgirl kept slapping me in the face, so I took off the Margaritaville Pirate Flag and gave her the whole pole.
Shot 5 stages of the Wild Bunch Warm Up. There were 6, but I had to leave at 1500 for the posse marshals' meeting, which took a couple of hours. My hearing was on a low ebb, and my right side electronic ear plug went tango uniform, leaving me really not able to hear much.