Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Alex And The Slingshot



Song:  Gandalf's Fall

From:  Lord Of The Rings



I wish to expose Alex to the world around him...
not just through his mind...
but through his body.

To this end...
I am introducing him to various outdoor implements...
tools and weapons for use in the outdoors.

I bought Alex, and I, a pair of some of the most powerful slingshots made.

Today, after his studies...
Alex, and I, had walked up a neighboring ridge...
and I had set up a can for him to shoot at.




His target...the green can in the gravel.

I had underestimated the draw weight of these slingshots.
They take a tremendous amount of force to draw back.

Alex was simply unable to draw back on his sufficiently
 to launch his stones farther than a few yards.

After a sufficient amount of time of missing the can...
we decided to just hike up to the top of the ridge to see what we could see.

I will be saving this slingshot for when he gets older...
and in the meantime...I will be getting him a lighter draw one.


Our neighborhood directly below (elevation 5,300 ft.)


The top of the ridge (elevation approx. 5,600 ft)


The view of the gateway to California through the Sierra Nevadas.




On our way back home.

We are going to go back to the ridge side soon...
 so I may teach Alex the fundamentals of Archery.

When I was 6.5 years old...
and we had just moved to the, soon to be, Silicon Valley... from Japan (1966)...
I would always be exploring the great forests (orchards)...
the great rivers (creek)...
I would trek across great deserts and plains (nearby field)...
and through it all...
I would have my trusty slingshot in my pocket.

I would later expand my field weaponry to include a bow and arrows...
a homemade sword...
a homemade spear....
and for those long tricky shots...
my boomerang  :)

I would be gone for hours...
attempting to locate and take down the great bears and tigers of the valley
(only to realize later that the only wild animals were jackrabbits...
and I could never get one of those either  :)

However, it was through the use of my imagination and the connection
to the land through my body and the tools I had carried and had used...
that I remember so fondly.  

I will be giving Alex some fundamentals in hand held field weaponry...
including various ballistic weaponry, to give him the basics of body 
and eye coordination and the ability to mentally calculate trajectories
and distance, which will come into use in other field craft besides shooting.

I wish to get him to the level of being able to accurately hit an object...
at a range of at least 25 yrds.

These are emergency survival weapons...
(especially when modified to launch broadhead arrows)
and a way to connect with the land other than merely through the eyes.

Slingshots are inexpensive...the ammo is free...
and a slingshot is simply a lot of fun to just plink objects with while camping.

I expect times in our future when we will just sit down near a river...
and for just hours at a time...
pick out targets (not animals) and just plink away...
while we just enjoy the surrounding mountains as the sun sets...
all the while we will be talking of affairs close to the heart.

See what two little slingshots can do?  :)

2 comments:

  1. Looks like you have a lot of great places nearby to practice the slingshot. Looks like another good father and son activity. It is nice to share experiences with your son that you enjoyed as a child.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, and Alex will enjoy it a lot more when I get a slingshot which he will be able to operate with greater ease. Then, we will carry ours to every outing.

    ReplyDelete

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