If you're like me, sometimes the hardest part of being a gun owner is simply finding a place to shoot. In a world of ever-encroaching development and urbanization, it can be hard to find a range that's a.) close to home, b.) not overcrowded and c.) doesn't require huge amounts of time and money to join.
In truth, unless you own your own land and can build your own private shooting range, finding that "perfect" place to shoot is a lot like searching for the Lost City of Gold. We're not even sure if it exists, but we're hopeful that we may find it someday if we keep looking.
A lot of state game departments maintain public shooting ranges, and shooting is allowed on literally millions of acres of federal public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service. Some of those ranges can be found on NRA's National Registry of Places to Shoot, an online database of shooting ranges, both public and private, across the country. You can access the registry here; just enter your zip code, set your radius and check the "Places to Shoot" box. From there you can obtain key information about each range, such as its address, contact information, hours of operation, facilities offered and whether or not it is public or private.
It's a helpful service provided by your NRA, and I'm sure you'll find ranges nearby that you didn't even know existed. At the very least, it will help to take the guesswork out of finding a range the next time you want to sight-in a new hunting rifle, practice your marksmanship or introduce someone new to the shooting sports.