Reed City trap shooter on the mark at sportman's clubs

REED CITY — Hugo Rinke spends a lot of time at the Reed City Sportsman Club, and for good reason.

The Hersey resident has been a member of the club for 34 years. He graduated from Farwell High School and has lived in Reed City since 1977 and presently is employed at Yoplait.

At the sportsman club, he runs the trap shooting events. The Amateur Trap Shooting Association has sanctioned tournaments, which Rinke handles locally.

“We’ve had them as often as every month in the past,” he said. “But now we’ve cut back to two per year, generally in the spring and fall.”

The last such event at the clubgrounds was in the first week of June. The next one is Sept. 22.

“People from all over the state of Michigan come,” Rinke said. “We have people coming from Charlevoix, Grand Rapids and Saginaw.”

The last shoot attracted 20 entries.

“Which was down, it had been raining everywhere around us and that kept people away,” Rinke said. “We’ll usually have 40 people. It’s a mixture of both local people and from other cities.”

Rinke has also done extensive traveling to test his shooting talents.

Rinke has a plaque signaling him as among the 10 top shooters in the state. As a result of that, he receives all-state trap shooting honors and has been on it the last five years.

Nationally, he’s also placed 10th in the Southern Grand American Handicap at Tampa. He tied for the state handicap championship about five years ago. He’s also the Class AA champion high overall winner in the state. “Of a combined total of all events, I was the high shooter in everything,” he said.

Rinke started shooting back in the 1970s.

“There were some years in-between when I didn’t shoot at all,” he said. “Now I’m shooting probably as much or more as ever. I like the camaraderie. You get to know a lot of good nice people. You almost become like family. The socialization after the shooting is a big factor.”

Rinke said he enjoys challenging himself actually, more so than others.

Hunting, not surprisingly, is usually on Rinke’s agenda.

Bow hunting for deer and also grouse hunting are among Rinke’s favorite pastimes.

Rinke’s name is in the record book for Commemorative Bucks of Michigan as the all-time 34th largest deer taken with a handgun. His was taken in 1979. It was an 11-pointer with a 131.7 Boone & Crocket score.

Most of his hunting is in the area. The deer population “is definitely down,” he said. “All the doe permits they’re issuing are definitely hurting.”

A hunt Rink would like to take sometime is for moose in Canada.

Rinke said he’d like to fish more.

“My wife loves to fish,” he said. “During the summer time, I’m so much involved in trap shooting, it’s hard to find the time. Most of my fishing is in the winter through the ice.”

Rinke likes Haymarsh and Burgess lakes, plus Rose Lake, for fishing.

“We get some nice ones every once in awhile,” he said.

Rinke is hoping he can stay in competitive shooting for a long time.

“We’re getting a lot of new shooters, which is really encouraging,” he said.