Mammoth Sniper Challenge 2020 Discussion

Austinjunks

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Feb 2, 2019
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As far as my pack goes, currently the plan is to run an Osprey Aether 70L without the top lid. I still need to work on getting a rifle strapped to it and getting that all dialed in.

A question I have for those who've gone to these before is what do you do for a rear bag if anything? The other night I weighed my pint sized game changer and it was around 3 pounds. I found that bag really helpful at the Guardian event that shot at, but I'm not humping around an extra 3# if I don't need to. I was thinking about opening up a corner and letting the fill out and replacing it with something much lighter from a hobby store or something.
I'm running an Armageddon gear fat bag, I believe they are also offering an ultralight filling for all of their production bags as well.
 

jeffbtripp

aim small miss small
Hessian
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Mar 4, 2018
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we got signed up we are shooting regular division figured id see what it was about before completely jumping off the deep end.
we have stared to put together our gear. some i have some i am upgrading and the rest i am picking up.
 

ClangClang

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As far as making ruck times goes, am I looking at this wrong. I get the idea of tracking devices now in the preparation phase, but once you get there won't there be a somewhat large group of people all starting the ruck at or about the same time? I know the pace I need to be at, but also know that if we're in the middle of the herd we're probably going to be in good shape as far as making time goes. I get the point of worrying about a way to track and time yourself now, but once we get there won't it be pretty easy to see if we're falling behind the herd?
Not necessarily. The entire squad could be below the required standard and about to miss the time hack. That's unlikely, but still possible. I had a basic GPS watch (Suunto) and being able to see my distance and time was helpful, especially later in the event as everything started to hurt. It let me know when we had to hustle and when we had plenty of time cushion.

PS - No real need to buy a watch or a Garmin. Any modern smartphone can track GPS and mileage with free apps like Endomondo, MapMyRun, or Strava. On a 45 minute movement, you just need to pull your phone out and glance at it 3-4 times to ensure you're moving at the right pace. That said, any of the Garmin Forerunners or Suunto Ambit watches will be more than adequate for this event and set you back around $300, but sales/deals are always findable. You can spend more and get a fancier watch (Garmin Fenix 5/5X) if you want the additional features, but it's truly not necessary for general rucking.
 

jeffbtripp

aim small miss small
Hessian
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Mar 4, 2018
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Yea I just ordered a Garmin instinct. I found it for 250 and being I am a card holder at bestbuy I have 45 to return if I don’t like it. But I does two things in which I wanted . Distance pace and has a big screen for a timer when you get on stage. I believe you can set an alarm if you start falling under pace as well.
 
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slick19

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Aug 8, 2018
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What is everyone using for pacing, time tracking and mileage? I am looking at a bunch of runners watches from Garmin as well as the Garmin Fortrex 601. Currently all my tracking is being done via stop watch and google earth route mapping and I'd like to get more accurate data.
They tell you a time limit. I just go as hard as I can to shoot for completion in 2/3 of the time, and just keep track on my watch. I also know that i average a 13 minute mile and if im really sucking a 14 or MAYBE a 15 minute mile. So I just do the math.
 
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slick19

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Not necessarily. The entire squad could be below the required standard and about to miss the time hack. That's unlikely, but still possible. I had a basic GPS watch (Suunto) and being able to see my distance and time was helpful, especially later in the event as everything started to hurt. It let me know when we had to hustle and when we had plenty of time cushion.

PS - No real need to buy a watch or a Garmin. Any modern smartphone can track GPS and mileage with free apps like Endomondo, MapMyRun, or Strava. On a 45 minute movement, you just need to pull your phone out and glance at it 3-4 times to ensure you're moving at the right pace. That said, any of the Garmin Forerunners or Suunto Ambit watches will be more than adequate for this event and set you back around $300, but sales/deals are always findable. You can spend more and get a fancier watch (Garmin Fenix 5/5X) if you want the additional features, but it's truly not necessary for general rucking.
Also this, I remember in 2017 a few of us made it pretty early, but a majority of the people shooting the match came in with very little time to spare because it was up an incredibly steep and iced over hill. And a similar thing happens every year because everyone just paces off of each other. So, you really need to watch yourself, and can't rely on everyone else.
 
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TACC

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Yea I just ordered a Garmin instinct. I found it for 250 and being I am a card holder at bestbuy I have 45 to return if I don’t like it. But I does two things in which I wanted . Distance pace and has a big screen for a timer when you get on stage. I believe you can set an alarm if you start falling under pace as well.
Please tell us how the battery life lasts. Some reviews are claiming 5 days only instead of the 14 advertised.
 
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teddy12b

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I've still been having some great luck with my samsung health app. I do a "new workout" for hiking each time I practice ruck. My last #trainingformammoth workout was pushups, situps, kettlebell, battlerope, then a 3.7 mile ruck and on the second half I shuffled all the uphills and my pace was still at 15 minutes per mile. That's the part that scares me on the whole event because where I'm at in North East Indiana it doesn't get much flatter. I'm sure it's going to have more hills at Ft Gordon than where I've been training so that's part of why I've been jogging up the hills.

On my last ruck I had my bag of salt in my Mystery Ranch Selway 60 instead of my Alice Pack and wow what a difference a pack can make.
 

enichols

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Probably a stupid question, but have the dates/location/registration been released for the 2020 challenge? G3 Dynamics' website has the pre-reg option as "sold out", and no info listed that I can find. Much appreciated!
 

teddy12b

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Probably a stupid question, but have the dates/location/registration been released for the 2020 challenge? G3 Dynamics' website has the pre-reg option as "sold out", and no info listed that I can find. Much appreciated!
The match is full with a waiting list. If you didn't get signed up within the first day or two it was available you may be able to get on the waiting list, but the odds aren't good you'll be in the 2020.
 

slick19

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The match is full with a waiting list. If you didn't get signed up within the first day or two it was available you may be able to get on the waiting list, but the odds aren't good you'll be in the 2020.
Yeah, that’s all closed. It’ll be at Ft. Gordon, and I’m not sure what the dates are, but Registration for the match is closed. It filled up in pre-registration. There is a waiting list you can get on, but unless everyone who made it during pre registration drops out, you probably won’t get into the match this year. UNLESS you get on and watch their FB page and hop on someone needing a partner
 

jeffbtripp

aim small miss small
Hessian
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Mar 4, 2018
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Please tell us how the battery life lasts. Some reviews are claiming 5 days only instead of the 14 advertised.
so after using the garmin instinct i have found that i really like it. i let it charge over night and have had it on for 4 days now using it and still have a full charge. i did turn off notifications from my phone and did change some setting such as the black light to save on battery. the hike feature is exactly what i was wanting and you can customize the read outs from 2 fields to 5 fields..i have mine set to show a heart rate - timer - pace - avg pace - distance this allows me to see my current pace and then the overall pace.

you can save the data to your phone and log the info.


i also finally decided on a pack which should be here next week.. Eberlestock X1E
 
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bonesaw00001

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Sep 15, 2019
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Hey y'all, for those who've run the competition before, it sounds like it's possible to have a semi-auto secondary rifle in 5.56.

1) What level of accuracy do you need in your secondary rifle to be reasonably competitive? Will 1.5 moA cut it?

2) What do you recommend as far as secondary rifle scopes go, with a budget under $750?

Thanks!
 
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slick19

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Hey y'all, for those who've run the competition before, it sounds like it's possible to have a semi-auto secondary rifle in 5.56.

1) What level of accuracy do you need in your secondary rifle to be reasonably competitive? Will 1.5 moA cut it?

2) What do you recommend as far as secondary rifle scopes go, with a budget under $750?

Thanks!
First, let me start off by saying that I am very glad you’re interested in the match!

Secondly, I’d like to talk a little about managing expectations. I’ve shot the match for three years, and I have seen AR-15s at the match. BUT, they didn’t do particularly well. If “reasonably competitive” means that you have a shot at 1st, then sure. In the same respect that if you buy a lottery ticket you have a shot at winning. If “reasonably competitive” falls more under mid pack, than you’re probably about there. I’d say that a 1.5 MOA AR could stand a good chance at MAYBE 1/2 of the targets. Past that, it’s probably more luck than anything.

That all said, if you shoot mammoth, and make every ruck, and miss every target out there, you will still walk the prize table, and before anyone who didn’t finish (if they even get a chance to walk the prize table at all).

Lastly, if you’re looking for a $750 optic, I’d suggest looking for a used Viper GenII, or at Athlon. The Ares BTR scopes aren’t terrible, and they retail right around that price I think. Lots of people compare the Ares BTR to a Viper. Similar glass, worse turrets. Tracks fine for that price range.

P.S.

I don’t mean to discourage you, I’m just being honest here.
 

TACC

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First, let me start off by saying that I am very glad you’re interested in the match!

Secondly, I’d like to talk a little about managing expectations. I’ve shot the match for three years, and I have seen AR-15s at the match. BUT, they didn’t do particularly well. If “reasonably competitive” means that you have a shot at 1st, then sure. In the same respect that if you buy a lottery ticket you have a shot at winning. If “reasonably competitive” falls more under mid pack, than you’re probably about there. I’d say that a 1.5 MOA AR could stand a good chance at MAYBE 1/2 of the targets. Past that, it’s probably more luck than anything.

That all said, if you shoot mammoth, and make every ruck, and miss every target out there, you will still walk the prize table, and before anyone who didn’t finish (if they even get a chance to walk the prize table at all).

Lastly, if you’re looking for a $750 optic, I’d suggest looking for a used Viper GenII, or at Athlon. The Ares BTR scopes aren’t terrible, and they retail right around that price I think. Lots of people compare the Ares BTR to a Viper. Similar glass, worse turrets. Tracks fine for that price range.

P.S.

I don’t mean to discourage you, I’m just being honest here.
Thanks for your honesty and experienced information. Was hoping for some clarification on the AR 15 point. Were you suggesting that an AR 10 in 6.5 CM could be used for better long range targets, or should both shooters on the team stick to bolt guns?

Also should both shooters try to use the same caliber ammo to aid in ballistic calculations.

Thanks
 
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TACC

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so after using the garmin instinct i have found that i really like it. i let it charge over night and have had it on for 4 days now using it and still have a full charge. i did turn off notifications from my phone and did change some setting such as the black light to save on battery. the hike feature is exactly what i was wanting and you can customize the read outs from 2 fields to 5 fields..i have mine set to show a heart rate - timer - pace - avg pace - distance this allows me to see my current pace and then the overall pace.

you can save the data to your phone and log the info.


i also finally decided on a pack which should be here next week.. Eberlestock X1E
That battery life you have been experiencing is with the GPS turned off correct?
 

slick19

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Aug 8, 2018
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Thanks for your honesty and experienced information. Was hoping for some clarification on the AR 15 point. Were you suggesting that an AR 10 in 6.5 CM could be used for better long range targets, or should both shooters on the team stick to bolt guns?

Also should both shooters try to use the same caliber ammo to aid in ballistic calculations.

Thanks
Sorry, I thought you were just talking about an AR-15 in 5.56/.223.

A good AR10 in 6.5CM would not be a bad choice, IF it can keep under 1MOA out to about 700/800. If it can do that relatively consistently you will have no problem at all. Just remember, the Secondary shooter has to use .223/5.56 or .308 in Tough Man.

The first two years I shot it, my Team's Primary Shooter shot a Bolt gun in 6.5CM and an AR10 in .308. Last year we both shot bolt guns, one in 6.5CM and one in .223 (really hot load). I would say that if you want the secondary shooter to use .223/5.56 it needs to be a bolt gun, otherwise the velocities and accuracy just wont be there (more than likely). If you are leaning toward a gas gun for the secondary shooter, I would suggest a good .308 with a decently long barrel for some added speed.

If you both wanted to shoot .308 so the dope is the same, that's fine, but you'd be leaving the Primary shooter behind the curve. Most guys out there are running a pretty hot round in 6mm or 6.5mm something.

I think now that the way to go is two bolt guns. Primary shooter using a 6mm or 6.5mm round, and the secondary shooting a hot .223. Although a good hot .308 could be as effective too.

Something that i think really gives Civilians a leg up in this match is the lack of real "sniper/Spotter" training. I've practiced with a couple snipers and they always get on my ass about giving the shooter their dope and corrections when you're spotting. What I have found works best is to function as two separate shooters, who happen to be spotting for each other at times. Usually the best way to manage your time, is that whoever shoots first gets a good position set up, while the other shooter gets ranges to targets. Once the shooter is set, he reads his own DOPE, but gets corrections from the other shooter, who has built up their shooting position, and gotten all of his/her ranges for their targets as well. This way, there is as little downtime between shooters as possible. (This assumes that both shooting positions are close to each other, if they are not, the individual who is spotting first will leave to get their position set before the first shooter is finished firing WITHIN REASON)

There is a real art to managing the time between two shooters. Sometimes the Primary shooter has a better chance at hitting their targets, in this case you should allocate more of the stage time to them. the same logic goes if the secondary shooter has a better chance, depending on the stage. Also, if you start shooting and cant hit a damn thing, get off the gun and give the other shooter a chance. Obviously you arent doing something right, so try to be a good spotter and walk the other shooter in to get as many points as possible.


Usually, first round hits count for more points, so take your time on that first round, usually a first round hit will count for two or three followup hits.


Sorry, that kind of turned into a small rant.

Happy to help with any other questions
 
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TACC

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Wow, lots of great info there. I noticed in an earlier post there was mentioned scope power of 7-35, on both the primary and secondary gun, what would you suggest as a minimum variable scope to use for each. Even my razor Gen 2 3-18x50 is tough to confirm target ID if you are looking at facial attributes on PICTURES at extended distance. I would think a 4.5-27 x56 is a minimum.

Also you mentioned that the second shooter be getting his range distances to targets as primary shooter is setting up. Do they allow LRF such as the leica 2400, or LRF Binos, or are they giving you the size of the target and then you are calculating using mils in your scope/binos?

Thanks
 
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bonesaw00001

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Sep 15, 2019
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First, let me start off by saying that I am very glad you’re interested in the match!

Secondly, I’d like to talk a little about managing expectations. I’ve shot the match for three years, and I have seen AR-15s at the match. BUT, they didn’t do particularly well. If “reasonably competitive” means that you have a shot at 1st, then sure. In the same respect that if you buy a lottery ticket you have a shot at winning. If “reasonably competitive” falls more under mid pack, than you’re probably about there. I’d say that a 1.5 MOA AR could stand a good chance at MAYBE 1/2 of the targets. Past that, it’s probably more luck than anything.

That all said, if you shoot mammoth, and make every ruck, and miss every target out there, you will still walk the prize table, and before anyone who didn’t finish (if they even get a chance to walk the prize table at all).

Lastly, if you’re looking for a $750 optic, I’d suggest looking for a used Viper GenII, or at Athlon. The Ares BTR scopes aren’t terrible, and they retail right around that price I think. Lots of people compare the Ares BTR to a Viper. Similar glass, worse turrets. Tracks fine for that price range.

P.S.

I don’t mean to discourage you, I’m just being honest here.
Slick19, thanks for the great response! I'm definitely interested to try to make it in the mid-pack shooting-wise my first year and just try to crush the rucking aspects to make sure my teammate and I can't get dropped. I'll see what kind of accuracy I can squeeze out of my current AR-15 in .223, and maybe I'll spring for something in the 6.5mm category. My partner will be using a .308 bolt gun (savage 110 tactical), so there's a definite possibility of switching which rifle is primary and secondary.

I'll start looking into scopes. I second TACC's question about what range of variable magnification is required for primary and secondary rifles, considering the distances involved.
 
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teddy12b

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In all the talking about Mammoth this is the first time I've really seen the ranging come up. How critical is it going to be that both shooters have a laser rangefinder, or will one of them with a mediocre one be good enough? Are any of the distances given at any of the stages? Our plan is to take my bushnell elite 1600. I've used it to range out to 1,000 yards accurately many times.
 

NGCSUGrad09

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On distances, it's varied on info provided. Have at least one good rangefinder or rangefinding binoculars for the team to share. When distances are unknown, having a good laser and knowing how to use it in various target presentations (in woodlines, for targets standing tall above the ground, skylined targets, etc) will make a huge difference. Additionally, ranging errors can be compounded when shooting something slow like a .308 as the cartridge requires more precise ranging due to the additional bullet drop as distances increase...whereas something faster like a 6 or 6.5 are not as critical of having a perfect range due to flatter trajectory.

Regarding scopes, get the best glass you can afford. When you're looking for and ID targets, spot for impacts, etc, the extra magnification is worth it assuming the glass is good. Additionally, you'll want something that can hold up to being dragged around in the mud, taking hits, etc and hold zero through the entire match. While a 16x could be used to complete the match, I'd consider at least a 25x or more for both guns.
 
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slick19

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TACC, Bonesaw0001, and Teddy12b,

Firstly, on the magnification subject, I used a 3.6-18 MK5 last year and never felt like I needed more. I won a 5-25 there so I have that on my 6.5 and my 3.6-18 on my .223. I think that’s a pretty sweet combo. I haven’t had a chance to use the 7-35, but knowing how my 5-25 is on max, I cannot imagine the 7-35 is terribly forgiving (for the MK5 at least). Personally, I recommended the rest of my shooting team go with the 3.6-18. I feel that the price point vs quality is spot on for that. (On another thread, there is tons of talk of the 5-25 vs. 3.6-18. The 5-25 has better geometry, and appears clearer and brighter bc of it.) ANYWAY, point being, too much magnification can be a real pain when you have huge transitions and have to get off the gun, or if you’re shooting off of your buddy, or at a90* angle and can’t get a great sight picture bc it’s too wobbly.

Tl;dr: I think 3.6-18 is great for secondary and 5-25 great for primary.

As NGCSUgrad09 said, LRFs are allowed, and I’d say they’re required. One good one is necessary, two is better. We used a Vectronix and a Leupold 2800 and we liked that combo. I used a 1600 bush bell a few years ago and it shat the bed on me. I’ll never buy another bushnell LRF. And we were lazing targets at 1300 the day before the match. Shooting starts and I can’t get anything past 400 to this day with it.

But still, it sounds like there will be some milling stages this year, so bring the mildot master.

I also agree with the budget glass comment. Buy the best piece of glass you can afford. Unless you’re going this year you have quite a while before the next Mammoth comes around. Shop on EBay, the PX here, and a few other places. Bushnell HDMRs and DMRIIs and a few other pop up for good prices every now and again. If you wait sometimes you can find great glad at great prices. I bought a MK5 and haven’t looked back.
 

jeffbtripp

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Hessian
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Mar 4, 2018
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Blounts Creek nc
That battery life you have been experiencing is with the GPS turned off correct?
No I have kepted it on normal mode I also kept Bluetooth to my phone I am going on 16 days and I just hit my last bar tonight. I did shorten the back light to and brightness and turned off notifications from my phone.
 
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teddy12b

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On the rangefinders, I've been slowly upgrading equipment over the years and at the time the bushnell elite 1600 was a big upgrade for me, but now it seems to be on the lower end of the quality spectrum. I've always heard of Leica rangefinders as the standard all others are judged by.

Our secondary shoot is using my Rem 700 in 308 with PST gen 1 6-24x, I'm running a custom with Razor 4.5-27x. I couldn't agree more on getting the best glass you can, but fair warning about getting the good stuff is that you'll never want to go back. I still love my PST's, but since I've been using the Razor for a while now when I look through the PST's it's just not the same.
 
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Austinjunks

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I'll preface by saying I'm a ton more comfortable on a gas gun then a bolty boy. Last year I ran mammoth with a 22 inch 308 bolt gun topped with an HDMR, it felt very slow for me, and I felt confident the gun was plenty for the stages(I made plenty of mistakes on my own). This year I will be shooting secondary and running a 14.5 inch .223 gasser, topped with the same scope. I'm fairly confident this gun will get it done if I can do my part.

As for needed accuracy out of an AR platform, a 1.5moa gun will just not cut it no matter the caliber. I would hesitate to bring a gasser running at 1 moa, with a solid barrel and good fundamentals you want to be able to get 3/4 or better results. There are deffinately some tough targets at mammoth, but the situations and fatigue make them tougher. Bring a rifle that alleviates that stress as much as possible.

When it comes to optics, I like the value found in the Bushnell Elite Tactical line up. They can be had for great prices on the secondary market with solid reticle options and features. That said, there are many optics out there that are great and it's a very personal choice.
 
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