Colorado

Jan 18, 2013 8:31 PM by Kirsten Bennett

El Paso County shooting range opening Wednesday

The Cheyenne Mountain Shooting Complex opens to the public Jan 23 at 1:30 p.m.

The shooting complex, which is the largest outdoor shooting range in the State of Colorado, is a joint project between Fort Carson, El Paso County, the U.S. Forest Service and Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

Shooters can use the range free of charge from 1:30 - 4 p.m. on Jan. 23. Rates for a daily pass are $10 after that.

The 400-acre site is located on Fort Carson land near Interstate 25 just off mile marker 132. The entrance is just outside Fort Carson's Gate 20 security perimeter. Because the entrance to the shooting range is outside Gate 20, visitors will not have to enter the military base or register their weapons with Fort Carson to utilize the range.

The opening marks the completion of the first of a three-phase construction plan. The complex currently consists of seven shooting ranges with approximately 120 covered shooting positions. Three ranges are designated for rifles with distances from 300 to 500 yards. There are also four designated pistol ranges and one multi-position range prioritized for law enforcement and public safety training purposes.

A small archery range will also be on site with plans to expand it as funding becomes available and a five-stand trap range is expected to be available in the spring for shotgun enthusiasts.

The second phase of the project will include the construction of five skeet & trap ranges and a clubhouse. The clubhouse will in­clude a retail store, classrooms and offices.

El Paso County has established a nonprofit organization called the Soldier's Friend Foundation to raise funds for the next two phases of the complex. A web site under construction will allow for donations to help fund the two additional phases of the project.

One 1,250-yard-long shooting range will be for the exclusive use of law enforcement, Monday through Friday, but open to the public on weekends.

The range complex will be staffed by military and civilian personnel. Profits from the range will be used to fund the Fort Carson FMWR program, which supports Soldiers and their Families.

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