If New York City had an official bird, it would have to be the ubiquitous street pigeon. Some people call them city doves, others think of them as rats with wings. As for me, I like them a great deal. I have even been known to share my pizza with a pigeon or two. Cupid, my cat, would eat one if he could.
The truth is that the city is swarming with these birds. There are an estimated 1 million wild pigeons in the Big Apple. Some people believe in culling their numbers. However, the fact of the matter is that it is illegal to kill a pigeon in New York City unless it is a nuisance, which pigeons typically are not. They know enough to give us humans our space. Never pushing their luck and always willing to yield the right of way.
Most New Yorkers are humane enough to tolerate the docile pigeons. However, if the day should come when the City of New York were to offer a bounty on the head of every pigeon, aka open season, sentiments might change completely. Cupid would hunt pigeons for free. I would start once the price reaches $100 per bird.
I know just the place to go for practice. That would be Thunder Mountain Trap and Skeet in Ringwood, New Jersey. Ringwood is a rural community of 12,000 plus residents situated in Passaic County, approximately 43 miles outside of New York City. That’s just about a one-hour car ride.
Thunder Mountain is a shotgun and clay target shooting range. The beauty of the facility is that all you need is a driver’s license and you can shoot. Inexperience is no obstacle. An NRA certified instructor will assist you the entire time. They will even lend you a rifle. All you pay for is your ammunition, and clay pigeon targets and the fun can begin. Or, as their literature reads “Just show up and shoot.”
So, that’s today’s day-trip-recommendation. With expert supervision, skeet shooting is a safe and fun activity. Thunder Mountain is open for business year-round, and they have lighting which allows for evening skeet shooting as well. A few visits a year will make you a proficient shot in no time. Skeet shooting is one of those things which I highly recommend that everyone experience at least once. I’m sure you will enjoy it, even if you would never hurt a fly.
You can reach Thunder Mountain via public transit. Click the moovit link here to plan your trip. I recommend hiring an Uber for the last leg of your journey.