A Lesson in Sporting Clays at Nemacolin Shooting Academy

Posted By Jeremy in Explore


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Getting out into nature can mean a number of things, be it hiking, doing adventure activities, or for some, hunting.

We're not really hunters, but we do appreciate getting out into nature to enjoy sporting clays. At the Nemacolin Shooting Academy in the Laurel Highlands, we got just that!

A Large Shooting Academy at Nemacolin

Sporting Clays at Neomacolin Shooting Academy

The shooting academy occupies 140 acres of property near the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and boasts 35 shooting stations each with two or three traps to challenge guests.

During our visit we were able to try eight of these stations which were selected by an instructor (extra charge) to provide a cross section of the various challenges shooters face.

Trying my hand at sporting clays in the Laurel Highlands

Photo Credit: UncoveringPA

As a novice shot gun shooter myself, this led for a great opportunity to learn more skills in following the clay pigeons in their various different flight patterns.

I've got front to back down, the same as back to front, but no matter how many times I go shooting, the ones that fly straight across the target zone always seem to elude me- although the instructor's assistance certainly did allow me to hit one or two from time to time.

One of my favorite parts about visiting shooting academies is the rabbit course. In this one instead of launching a disc into the air to shoot, a fortified disc is rolled across the ground, bouncing and jumping across the landscape whenever it hits a rock or grade change.

Skeetshooting in Ohiopyle

I was always terrible at these, but with a bit of instruction from my guide at The Shooting Academy I was able to hit a few which drastically helped increase my shooting confidence.

What is the Best Option for First Timers?

The Sporting Academy at Nemacolin offers a number of different options ranging from 25 targets to 100 targets. As you'll likely spend at least six targets at each station, this means that you'll be able to visit about 4-16 stations in any given outing depending on the package you purchase.

For amateurs, we recommend either the 50 or 75 package as that is enough shots to find your groove and improve, but not too many to either lose your interest or become sore at the end of the day. (I can't speak for anyone else, but I start losing my grip and aim after about 60 shots.)

For first timers, we recommend upgrading to the instructor led sessions to get additional tips to ensure you hit more targets. I've had one every time we've gone out clay pigeon shooting and my ability to hit the targets has gone up substantially by having the guidance of an expert.

Overall, The Nemacolin Shooting Academy was a fun day out while staying at Nemacolin Woodlands. The clay pigeon course is a safe environment for this kind of shooting, and the various stages allowed for a different experience at every stop.

Whether you are an avid hunter or simply want to try your luck at the clay pigeons, this one is assured to be a great time out!

The Nemacolin Shooting Academy is part of the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. We participated in sporting clays as part of a media event. As always, all opinions are our own.

Looking for more things to do in the Laurel Highlands? Check out hiking at Ohiopyle State Park or white water rafting the Youghiogheny.

To book a room at Nemacolin Woodlands, click here.

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