First 800yd trip
I was hoping to get my first (serious) tries at 800, 1000, and possibly further today but when I arrived at the property I realized A) there was too much wind to bother over 1000, and B) the crop setup was going to really limit where I could shoot. I found a nice elevated position to shoot parallel a powerline cut, and sent my willing brother-in-law on the 3-mile drive to set up targets. An hour later, after fighting the wind with the big boxes we were using, the target was set up.
The first problem was my Bushnell 1500 would not range anything where he was; we'd planned for him to drive the truck there but he had to stop short. So we ranged 2 of the powerline towers and assumed they were equi-distant from each other (oops). We estimated 1050 yds and that was the only spot to set up.
I fired two shots with my factory 300WM Sendero, waiting for him to walk in and check the target...no holes! My drop at 300yds had seemed on with the ballistic calculator so it was fishy, the backstop was plenty big to make up for my stupidity with the wind (I did have a meter). So I fought the brush and fields to get closer and climb a tower to get a range...turns out it was 862 yds, not 1050! Duh. Dialed down and fired another, 30in right. A little far off but ok. Dialed back to zero wind, which I thought odd as I was giving half value to a 10mph wind blowing to the left. Figured I should be right on, so I made another mistake in firing at the right-most bullseye on the target, which did not leave much room for error to the right and still hit but I figured I was set for zero wind, with a wind vector to the left, so I was good to go. I fired 7 more for a group.
The reason for the long-winded post was that even with appropriate gadgets the real world can be a humbling experience. Turns out I should have ASKED what the wind was like at the target since I had the convenience of a man downrange. When I arrived down at the target, I realized the wind down there (and for virtually the whole flight path of the bullet)was exactly opposite what it was up on my hill; the trees and landscape forced the airflow to a different direction up there I could see in retrospect. I still shot right 12 inches, enough that 3 of my 7 shots were off the backing.
The good thing is that of the 4 total shots on the backer, the vertical difference was under 4 inches (hurrah for my handloads!!). The three shots from my group that were on the backer were about 3 inches spread vertically and less than an inch horizontally. I regret that I didn't get to see my whole group but it looks like it was MOA or better.