2020 2020 STEEL SAFARI

June 5-7, 2020 at Logan, NM

The Original Hike And Shoot Match.

The Steel Safari is the archetypal "hike-and-shoot" long-range rifle match. It tests a wide spectrum of skills involved in getting to a shooting location, identifying targets, and engaging long-range rifle targets with only one shot each. Some of these skills include target recognition, ranging, wind doping, ballistic data management, marksmanship under field conditions, non-standard shooting positions, rudimentary trail skills.


What do these ratings mean?
   Physical Difficulty: 3 (Moderate)
   Marksmanship Complexity: 8 (Very Hard)
  • 3-day match
  • 25 total stages (nominal) spread over 3 field courses
  • 3 miles of hiking per day (approx) through rough desert terrain
  • each stage will have 6 target opportunities
  • only one shot to engage each target opportunity
  • a time limit of 5 minutes per stage (includes target ID, ranging, and shooting)
  • movement between stations during each field state will not be timed;
  • local altitude of 4000'
  • carry gear used during the courses of fire
  • target distances 100-1200 yards, most within 250-700 yards.
  • most targets are approx 1.5 - 2.5 moa at distance
  • fantastic geographic features for a hike-and-shoot match
  • Mandatory check-in by Thursday at 1800.
  • T-shirts will be available for a reasonable price prior to the event
  • ALL COMPETITORS MUST BRING A RELIABLE STOPWATCH - RECOMMEND a cheap Casio digital watch, or other digital watch, to be worn by one member

RIFLE DIVISION: Any 243/6mm up to 300 Winchester Magnum. 3200fps limit. ONE SHOT PER TARGET.
223 CARBINE DIVISION: 223/556 ONLY in short-action AR-15 only. 3200fps limit. UNLIMITED SHOTS PER TARGET.
Shooters can use any ancillary equipment as long as such equipment is carried during every stage. (See Rules for details.)

The Steel Safari is one of the best true field/practical long-range rifle matches in the world. It's been going on since 1998 and we've been running it since 2008. The Steel Safari is one of four core matches of the Competition Dynamics season, and we continue to develop new match concepts. The Steel Safari may be the longest running match of its type. The Steel Safari has helped to shape the concept of what field shooting means and helped to forge the strong tradition of practical shooting that runs deep in the Rocky Mountain shooting community.

An average competitor will be able to make hits on targets at random distance out to 1000 yards on his home known-distance (K.D.) range and will have some experience with shooting positions other than prone. He has no problem walking 3-4 miles a day on uneven terrain at 90-105 degrees.

The winning competitor will be able to locate steel targets scattered out in natural terrain with ease, usually without using magnified optics. The data for his rifle will be dead on at every range out to 1200 yards. He will have a lot of expertise determining the most stable and efficient shooting position to use when confronted with an awkward field shooting problem. He will have excellent efficiency of motion.



Posted By: Zak Smith on June 9, 2020

Congrats to all competitors for a safe and fun match. Here are the results:

1. Connor Dowd
2. Tyler Hughes
3. Andy Reinhardt

1. Mike Dowd




Virtual Match Briefing and Shooters' Meeting for Steel Safari

Posted By: Zak Smith on May 19, 2020

We are doing a “Virtual” or “Online” Match Briefing and Shooters’ Meeting for Steel Safari. All competitors registered to date have received a link to the VIRTUAL BRIEFING page. If you have not received this link, please email me at zak@competition-dynamics.com


The 2020 Steel Safari is a GO.

Posted By: Zak Smith on May 9, 2020

At the present time, NM guidelines, dictums, orders, etc, permit outdoor activities provided that participants maintain “social distancing” of 6 feet, and most states’ strict “stay at home” orders have been lifted. Thus, the Steel Safari can continue provided we incorporate some procedural and organizational changes.

These changes will not affect the “Spirit of the match” or the shooting challenges, it will mostly be administrative and lessening the amount of interaction between competitors and competitors/staff.

We will be writing up a detailed list of specific guidelines and procedural changes and sending it out before the match. Here are some of the most important things to know NOW:




— People who have already paid but cannot come due to any of these reasons will retain a credit towards a later 2020 CD match or a 2021+ CD match.

4. We will have a temperature-check station on-site on Thursday. People with Temperatures higher than specified by our consulting medical personnel will not be able to compete and will have to leave.

5. It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED that you take your temperature and monitor your health closely leading up to your departure for SS. It would suck to drive the whole way only to show up with symptoms.

6. Everyone on-site will be required to maintain SOCIAL DISTANCING of 6 feet at all times. This is for safety and to prevent us from being shut down in case the guidelines in NM are not relaxed and L.E. stops by. The 6′ rule will be enforced at all times with the exception of people who have traveled together the whole trip, and those people are to not have close contact with others.

7. Check-in will be mostly “virtual” or electronic with minimal interaction on-site. We will provide the waivers for you to complete and deposit on-site.

8. We will not have a regular SHOOTERS MEETING– it will be VIRTUAL. Prior to the SS, Jimmy and I will put together the Match Briefing Packet and a video and/or audio recording of the normal briefing and send these out via email. It will be your responsibility to understand this material. Present questions BEFORE THE MATCH via PHONE or EMAIL. This way we can eliminate more on-site 1:1 interaction.

9. We will have procedures to limit the handing back and forth of score cards.

10. Masks of some sort will be required when in the FRONT RANGE and parking lot areas. They will not be required out on the trail but that’s up to you.

11. While on the SS trail courses, especially the waiting areas, the 6 foot distancing interval SHALL BE FOLLOWED.

12. Bring your own pens, timers, and hand sanitizer, etc.

13. In the parking lot, maintain more inter-car spacing than usual.


15. We reserve the right to make public safety related decisions that affect competitors’ status.

16. There is a prize table but its scope is a little limited due to so many company shutdowns so far in 2020. We are working this hard to get it back up to normal spec.

17. We will extend the trophies to 1-10th place.

18. We will have specific CHECK-IN TIMES and ZERO-CHECK times for all registered competitors– this will depend on your shooter # and we’ll let you know what this is a week or so out.

19. We are working on having some virtual/on-line briefings / Q&A sessions, especially for NEW STEEL SAFARI COMPETITORS. Stay tuned.


Registration is now kind of a mess, with everything on hold, checks not cashed immediately due to potential cancellation, etc. Please bear with us to get this straightened out. Here is the current status”

1. Those who currently have a CONFIRMED/PAID status and already had your check deposited are good to go.

2. Those of you who submitted a check that was not deposited until now, but recently had a status change from pending/delinquent TO CONFIRMED/PAID will have your check deposited in the next few days. Call me ASAP if you need to withdraw and I should not cash the check. This includes IRVAN, GARAY, WESTHOFF, MCCRAY, VALDETERO, OSTAFF, SHEPHERD, WHITE, RILEY, WELLS, MAY, LONG, JAMARIK, PICKERING.

3. Other than those people in categories #1 and #2 above, no other checks have been received to date.

4. We are still accepting NEW registrations, but ONLY FROM STEEL SAFARI veterans. This is to limit the potential 1:1 interaction at the match. So if you have friends who have shot it and might want to go, please let them know.

5. Please note CD’s new mailing address on the online registration pages.

6. WE WILL NOT BE DOING ANY ON-SITE REGISTRATIONS. So register online if you want to come.

7. The last day we can receive and log-in payments before we head to the SS site is Friday May 29th. Let’s get payments squared away ASAP, it’ll make it easier for everyone in the long term.

We are also looking for a couple more “Course Starters”–please contact Jimmy or I if you’re interested. You can’t be a “course starter” and a competitor, though you’ll have plenty of time to shoot for fun on-site as a staff member.




Posted By: Zak Smith on May 8, 2020

Steel Safari is a GO!

We will update the registration status and have a message detailing the various changes required by the COVID19 situation posted in the next 2 days.



Posted By: Zak Smith on May 2, 2020

We are making final inquiries with local authorities and will have an answer with regard to STEEL SAFARI status by SAT MAY 9th.



Posted By: Zak Smith on March 28, 2020



Here is the impact of the COVID19 situation to the 2020 Competition Dynamics season (all four matches):

1. No matches are cancelled or rescheduled “YET.” We will not run a match if the COVID19 situation has not substantially resolved and the “stay at home” orders that are present in many states (including our home state) have been lifted.

2. We will make a final determination for each match NO LATER THAN one month before the match would occur.

3. If a match cannot take place at its normally-scheduled dates, we will attempt to reschedule later in the year, depending on the public health outlook and all other schedule considerations. IE, we will try to reschedule a match if we think it can work.

4. Processing of all registrations is suspended (effective 3-4 weeks ago). That means we will not approve/accept registrations, accept checks, deposit checks already sent, etc until some resolution is in place.

5. We will hold or destroy, at your request, all checks that have been sent/received and NOT YET DEPOSITED. Of those that we logged in but had not yet deposited, I have downgraded your online registration to “SLOT GRANTED”.

6. Of those who sent checks that were deposited and are marked as “CONFIRMED/PAID”, you have several options:

a) wait to see what happens; OR
b) have us write you a check, now or if/when we have to cancel; OR
c) in the case that a match is ultimately cancelled, we can roll your registration into any future CD event (eg, 2021 season)

We are happy to do any of those, or make other reasonable arrangements.

I would ask that you consider option (c) because it would help us cover fixed, sunk losses for 2020, such as insurance, that we can absorb through 2021. If this is the case, we will leave your “CONFIRMED/PAID” registration in place in the 2020 match database and use that as a key to future credit.

Please do not send a request for a refund check UNLESS you can confirm you’re still marked as “CONFIRMED/PAID” — AND — your bank shows the check has cleared. I have been holding checks for the last about 3-4 weeks as the situation has gotten hotter.

Please send refund requests with your name, match name (SS, BOTC, SAC, TS), and registration number.

Thank you and if you have any questions, please contact us.
– Zak & Jimmy

GPS coordinates for the parking area / front range:
UTM 13 S 645794 E / 3904352 N (Lat/Lon: 35* 16.409' N / 103*23.823' W)

Lodging is available in Logan.
Match staff will be staying at the Budget Inn Express.

1400-1700 CHECK-IN and Sight-in/Check Zero (Front Range) - ASSIGNED TIME ONLY

0700-1300 Course of Fire (Start @ Front Range)

0700-1300 Course of Fire (Start @ Front Range)

0700-1300 Course of Fire (Start @ Front Range)
1400-1600 Award Ceremony and Prizes

Shooters must be present for all days of the shooting portion of the match and shoot during their scheduled time-slots. There is no "shoot through" at this match,


This section is the 2017 Competition Dynamics Unified Safety Rules for Shooting

  1. USPSA safety rules are the baseline for safety at this match.
  2. Violation of any safety rule will result in match disqualification (DQ).
  3. The Match Director has the right to disqualify any competitor for Unsportsmanlike Conduct based on his judgement.
  4. Competitors shall practice good muzzle control and firearm safety at all times. Competitors that do not handle their weapons safely will be disqualified from competing further in the match with no refund of match fees.
    1. Do not ever allow the muzzle of your weapons to point at anyone.
    2. Do not load your weapons until directed to do so by a range officer.
    3. Do not put your finger on the trigger until your sights are aligned with your target.
    4. Obey all Range Officer commands immediately.
  5. In addition to the USPSA definition of an Accidental Discharge, the stage RO may call an A.D. using his own judgement, e.g.: if the competitor was clearly not engaging a target. Any round that does not impact within 10 yards of the target the competitor is engaging, or impacts in an unsafe area or direction, is declared to be an AD.
  6. The entire competition area is a "cold range."
    1. No firearms may be loaded at the match site except under the direct command of a RO.
    2. Long-guns shall be kept unloaded in cases or on a designated rack, and carried muzzle up or muzzle down and the action open.
    3. "Sweeping" any person with a weapon's muzzle will result in immediate D.Q.
  7. All firearms must have a functioning safety, subject to verification by an RO at any time. (A pistol that has not had any factory safety devices disabled will be considered to have a safety for the purpose of this rule.)
  8. Any firearm or ammunition deemed by any RO or match staff to be "unsafe" for any reason may not be used in the match until a determination is made by the match director that it may continue.
  9. All firearms must be able to be completely unloaded without firing a round.
  10. Any firearm that can be demonstrated by any RO or match staff to have a hammer/striker that will fall without the trigger being pressed shall be deemed unsafe and may not be used in the match until repaired.
  11. Any rifle slung must have an empty chamber, unless directed by the stage RO.
  12. No person shall consume or be under the influence of alcohol or non-prescription drugs at the match site. Any person found to be impaired and unsafe as a result of legitimate prescription drugs may be directed to stop shooting and requested to leave the range.
  13. Safety glasses and ear protection are required to be worn/used at all times by competitors and spectators when in the vicinity of any weapons being fired.
  14. No person shall place a rifle in such a position that it points at any other person. Find a safe direction if you need to set your rifle down! If you find out there are people passing or downrange, wait until they are clear and then relocate your rifle.
  15. This match may include dynamic shooting in natural terrain. Match staff will communicate what are safe directions to point firearms while shooting, or while waiting. This will typically be presented during a stage or match briefing. The competitor shall note and obey the safe muzzle direction guidelines.
  16. Ammunition must not cause unusual target damage or cause a fire or other safety risk.
    1. No steel jacket or core projectiles
    2. No armor piercing, incendiary, or tracer bullets
    3. Ammunition that must be "fired" to be unloaded once chambered is declared to be unsafe and may not be used in this match.

Steel Safari Specific Rules

  1. While shooting a stage, the action may only be closed and the safety off when the rifle is aimed at the target array, and between the two left/right lateral limit flags.
  2. Rifles shall be loaded only upon the command of an RO. Rifles shall remain unloaded at all other times (no magazine present). Rifles may be carried between stages with the bolt forward (to prevent a lost bolt) provided it is unloaded and no magazine is in the rifle.
  3. Rifles shall only be carried muzzle up or muzzle down. Horizontal carry of the rifle is prohibited. Any time the rifle is set down on the ground, it must be pointed in a safe direction.
  4. When setting your rifle down, always have the action open and pick a safe muzzle direction such that nobody will be downrange of your muzzle. If you discover that people are downrange, or may be, wait until nobody is downrange and then pick up the rifle and choose a better direction. While on the field courses, the best direction to point rifles is generally at the target array for that station.


  1. The competitor may use only one rifle during the course of the entire match.
  2. Rifle Division requirements:
    1. Minimum caliber: .243/6mm
    2. Maximum caliber: 300WM
    3. Maximum muzzle velocity: 3200fps
    4. Ammunition subject to verification by chronograph at any time
    5. Bolt-action is a typical choice, but not required
    6. (This section is the 2017 Competition Dynamics Unified Rifle Definition)
  3. 223 CARBINE DIVISION requirements:
    1. Calibers: ONLY .223 REM or 5.56 NATO, NO WILDCATS
    2. Maximum muzzle velocity: 3200fps
    3. Ammunition subject to verification by chronograph at any time
    4. Firearm must be a "short action" AR-15
  4. Rifles must be equipped with a sling suitable for safely carrying the rifle muzzle up or muzzle down.
  5. All equipment used including, but not limited to spotting scopes, range finders, bags, bipods, tripods, slings, tripods, shooting sticks, gloves, or other shooting support devices, etc are permitted, but must be carried for the entire match (clothing and consumables excluded).
  6. Since each competitor will serve as the Range Officer (RO) for the competitor following them, it is essential that they be competent and adequately equipped to spot bullets hits or misses on targets at long range. This requires that each competitor have good binoculars.


  1. Each target that is called a "hit" by the RO shall score one point.
  2. A "hit" is a bullet that the RO judges to have impacted on the correct steel target plate. The RO's judgment on hits or misses is final and not subject to appeal. However, if the RO has doubt about his call the benefit should go to the competitor. For example, if the RO observes the target move slightly upon a shot, but is unsure whether it was caused by an edge hit or a hanger strap hit, a hit should be awarded to the competitor.
  3. Targets not located and/or engaged, targets engaged after time has elapsed and targets missed shall score no points.
  4. The competitor with the most points after completing all courses of fire shall be the winner.

Steel Safari Stage Procedures

  1. The competitor shall be completely prepared and ready to begin the course of fire at their assigned start time. Late competitors will be moved to the last start time for the day. The competitor shall start on the course of fire immediately when directed by the Match Staff. The Match Staff may advance the start times if the course is running ahead of schedule and competitors are requested to cooperate in this regard.
  2. Competitors are expected to walk directly from stage to stage without excessive rest stops. Those that do not keep up and thus delay other competitors may be required to skip one or more stages and/or fall back as required by the match staff to maintain the match schedule. Competitors will receive no points for stages skipped nor will any match fees be refunded.
  3. The trail for each course of fire shall be designated with a specific color of survey tape. The competitor shall follow the trail between stages by traveling from ribbon to ribbon and shall not take any short-cuts.
  4. Each competitor will serve as the Range Officer (RO) for the competitor following them on the courses of fire.
  5. Each stage shall have a Holding Area. The Holding Area shall be designated with two strips of yellow safety ribbon. The competitor shall not wander about nor advance beyond the Holding Area until directed to do so by the RO.
  6. Upon arrival at each stage, the RO will read the stage description to the competitor. When directed by the RO, the competitor will load their weapon then immediately assume the start position.
  7. Unless otherwise noted, the start position shall be as follows
    1. Standing at first shooting position
    2. Rifle loaded, with safety engaged, held at port arms.
    3. Pack on back with all gear and equipment on your person.
  8. Each stage will have one or two shooting positions. Each shooting position shall be designated with a stake, painted mark or other object. At two-position stages, the competitor will locate and engage the 3 targets from the first position, "safe" the rifle appropriately, proceed to the second position, and then re-engage the same 3 targets.
  9. The competitor shall remain within arms' reach of the position designator when engaging targets. If requested by the RO, the competitor will demonstrate that the position designator is within arms reach by touching the spot without moving his torso.
  10. The targets for the stage are visible when standing on the first shoot position and looking between the two left/right lateral limit flags or markers.
  11. Upon the start signal the competitor shall have a fixed amount of time (5 minutes unless otherwise noted) to locate, range and engage each available target with only one round from each shooting position. All targets will be located so as to be visible from the start position unless otherwise noted. (CARBINE DIVISION SHOOTERS may engage a target with unlimited rounds to get a hit.)
  12. The competitor is responsible to communicate to the RO as to which target he is engaging so that the RO may direct his attention to the correct target and properly observe the shot.
  13. After each shot, the RO will immediately advise the competitor whether it was judged to be a "hit" or a "miss". No other information may be provided to the competitor regarding the location of the bullet impacts until the after the competitor has engaged all of the targets for the stage.
  14. Upon request, the RO will provide the competitor with information concerning elapsed time or time remaining for the stage.
  15. The RO will announce when the stage time has elapsed at which point the competitor shall immediately unload the rifle and demonstrate to the RO that the rifle is cleared of all ammunition.
  16. The RO shall then move clear of the stage area to allow the on-deck competitor to be briefed and shoot the stage without distraction.
All information and rules subject to change. Be sure to check periodically for any changes. Steel Safari LLC reserves the right to penalize or disqualify competitors that cheat, fail to follow the rules or behave in an unsportsmanlike manner. Note: rules are subject to change up until the match date.