Hilltop Gun Club

Firearms and concealed carry training, near Athens, Ohio

Hilltop Gun Club offers concealed carry certification, and array of firearms training, sales & service, in Athens County, Ohio.

Call or email for more information.

  • We are listed on Buckeye Firearms as the CCW instructors for Athens County.
  • Full time year around combat training in the shooting arts including CCW, shotgun and home defense.
  • Our trainers are former and current Law Enforcement and Military and we are all NRA Life members.
  • Athens County’s only certified gun range.

GUN RANGE UPDATE & The Furgueson Issue

HillTop Gun Club advising board recently met to discuss the up and coming opening of the weapons training facility. The board has decided that the facility will remain in the hands of private ownership and that the property and training areas will always be private and off limits. HillTop Gun Club training facility will be accepting various levels of memberships in the near future. Our current levels of membership is Associate Member, Full Member and Board Member. Each level of membership has its own perks and range usages. All members must apply to a current member to be vetted and voted on to be allowed to join. Memberships cost will have various levels and all members must pass various firearm shooting disciplines such as pistol, rifle and shotgun, archery, Air soft and thrown weapons. Our primary objective for the range the members and invited guests is SAFETY! Safety is in effect at all times. Member must agree to abide by the club rules and take a firearms course. Currently the range areas are being cleaned (this property had 2 burnt up full size modular homes, 3 buildings, a dumping ground and had not been mowed in 10 years) thus it has taken hundreds of hours of labor and many thousands of dollars in cost to clean the place. Our next work session is this coming December 6-7 and we will be bush hogging the upper meadow and clearing out the lower creek bottoms and hillsides for future range development. Our engineer is drawing up plans for our remote control moving targets stations and we are in the first phase of building a shelter house with shooting benches, packed gravel floor and sound abatememt ceiling and roof. Many new target holders have been made and will be set up December 7. Week 3 of December we will be in discussion with the boundry and security fence installers and electricity from American Electric and Power. Hilltop will have high post night security and training lights set up. Please contact us with your training needs.

New gun range construction

Development on our new gun range is coming along nicely. Here you can see our process of heavy excavation, road-building, and strawing and seeding.


Our family hired HillTop Gun Club for a private instruction series in Personal Self Defense and the Handgun Basic Level 1training. Everyone was treated very professionialy and with great respect although none of us had ever seen or touched a handgun our instructor said after a very tiring training on the gun range that we are all now “Gunners” We were informed by others that the chief instructor doesnt give the title of gunner out freely. Some in our family travel and others are at home. Being alone can offer trememdous opportunities for mischief or worse. We thought it was in all of our best interests to learn about the storage shooting and carrying of a pistol.. After 12 hours of HillTop Gun Clubs 1 on 1 training I am no longer afraid of actually holding a handgun or shooting one. They are trememdous instructors. Elizaberh. 11-11-2014


HillTop Gun Club Chief Instructor Kevin Martin will be conducting the last Concealed Carry Weapon class of the year 2014 December 13 Saturday from 8 AM to 8 PM. Class room instruction will be held at 8156 Salem Road Athens and the firearm training will be conducted at our new range facility. Course requirements include hearing and eye protection, proper dress because we train on the range no matter the weather condition, hydration fluids, handgun, 200 rds of ammo for your handgun and 1 box of 9MM for the instructor. All classes require a $50 deposit no later than December 3. Class cost is $125 per student. Discounts apply to current and former military – fire department – law enforcement and school teachers and groups. HillTop Gun Club Basic Handgun Level 1 training is is considered the most challanging and demanding in Ohio especally due to our shooting requirements and testing. All students must pass 4 levels of handgun shooting on the range to recieve a certificate. Please contact us as soon as possilbe about your CCW training.

Large frame woman with a small frame handgun or vice versa?

I had a private Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) class recently for a select group of women. One of the most interesting question from all of them was the issue of fashion and a woman carrying a handgun rather they were of large or small body shapes. Women are far more aware of their appearance especially when carrying a handgun. As professional instructors we attempt to convey during the short 12 hour CCW session that you must try on multiple holsters and firearms and a spare speed loader or clip and “feel’ if what you pick out is going to work. Carrying a chuck of loaded steel and or steel and plastic for 1 hour or 12 hours is an arduous task especially when the majority of women do not wear a belt as men do. Woman on the whole do not wear pants that require a belt. So where do they carry their handgun and how to do in fashion? Our thoughts are for women to get a very small handgun either a semi auto or revolver and carry it in a purse or tucked into the hem of their skirt or pants. If wearing a dress then that’s a bit more complicated. Back in the old days women wore garter belts and that was an easy way to carry their handgun. But that isn’t too much of an option any longer. So to make a long session short you the ladies have your homework cut out when you decide to carry a handgun and where are you going to carry it upon yourself or purse or waist band. None of us had a true realistic answer as we are men. SO my question is to our students is if you have a comment or suggestion please contact us so we can post an update on where do women carry their pistol?


The owners of HillTop Gun Club are excited to announce the up and coming new training facility on Pearl Wood Road Athens County Ohio. This state of the art training facility will offer private and public year around training in multiple combative disciplines. HillTop Gun Club is Athens Ohio’s only professional full time training organization offering education in the firearm, edged weapons, thrown items, archery, BB, Air Soft, hand to hand and self defense systems. Our instructors offer world class instruction especially our current and former law enforcement and military personal.
HillTop Gun Club is currently devoting a lot of materials, resources and time at the facility to have it open by early 2015 as long at there inst 10″ of snow on the ground and its -23 below zero.. Current the 125′ shooting lane and slot if finished with 25′ side embankments and the Shoot House bunker is also finished. The Lower range is nearly complete and ready for training. In December Phase 1 of the archery walkways platforms and tree houses will be constructed and ready to use.
Please stay in touch with out website for future updates and contact us for your questions and comments.


HillTop Gun Club is currently in the process of developing a new state of the art gun range in Athens County Ohio. The range will be developed using the National Rifle Association of America Range Development Guideline Manual. Our intentions are to create a 30 person Handgun, competition handgun, shotgun, rifle, archery and air gun ranges. The property currently is in the early development stages and heavy equiptment should start earth moving in late September. Some ideas for the archery range will be walk up platforms with landings at various heights and easy to access trees stands {more like small tree houses} along with shoot lanes. The rifle range may be up to 300 yards. All pistol ranges will utilize stationary and movable targets and will be set up for competition shooting. Shotgun ranges will use the Wild Rabbit and Jungle Lane style to challange shooting along with sationary shooting open air houses. In addition our most interesting range will be the shoot house. Most often firing ranges offer no training or facility for an acutal mock up house or building to enter and leave while engaging targets. We intend to make the shoot house the pemier training house in Southeastern Ohio. In addition there will be ample partking, a restroom and possible a club house. Interested shooters must become a private club member and qualify on the range through which ever shooting discipline they wish to train and shoot. HillTops range will work along side the township trustees, county commissioners and state agencies for enviromental inpact mitigation, local and state laws, good neighboor standing and to bring in local law enforcement people to train at the range. The range will also utilize sound reduction barriers to mitagate firearm reports. Please in touch for future updates.


Our CCW class will be held the 22nd of this month. Please check in for available slots and futher information via email..

Comments from some recent classes at HillTop Gun Club

  • No improvements needed. It was a fantastic class
  • The live fire and safety and the excellence of the teachers was most beneficial
  • The class was very informative and enjoyable and fun
  • I need more hands on experience with my handgun on the gun range
  • Why are there no open to the public firing ranges in Athens County
  • Training in the safe handling of the handgun was driven and redriven into us by Kevin. He never lets up
  • The course was very educational in many aspects of the concealed carry law and in gun safety
  • I didnt know there were so many holsters and places to carry a handgun concealed
  • If  you are offended by swear words then bring your hearing protectors as Kevin is a cusser and he says he does it to shock us out of our own little protected innocent world as bad people cuss and scream and swear much worse
  • The visit the gas stations to watch for narly people is a real eye opening experience
  • Moving while firing was extememly beneficial
  • Im worn out, I am 76 years old. The instructors dont allow us to have excuses and they make us push ourselves through the course as they said if something bad did happen and we had to use our handgun then this is nothing to compare to
  • My daughter has cancer and is in treatment, we travel to Columbus often and around the hospital is a very bad part of town. We are all scared when we get out of our cars, however I carry my LCP with me everywhere and Im confident
  • It was interesting to read in the recent Athens News newspaper in the Womens section as to how many women in SE Ohio are trained to use a concealed carry weapon and speak out in favor of doing so
  • A 1 12 hour day is long perhaps it if was split into two days
  • The shooting drills were fasanating
  • My trigger finger is sore, my hand is sore, my body is sore and I am sore
  • Great course
  • I give Kevin an A+
  • Have a better selection of breakfast food, more various drinks the day was way toooo long but it was an interesting day
  • HillTop Gun Club instructors train us in the snow wind hail rain 104 degrees. No matter the weather we train
  • I learned real quick to not be a “dumb ass’ for keeping my finger on the trigger
  • The most beneficial part of the class was the shooting range and learning all the part of my handgun. Not to mention the laws on actually carrying the gun and where and when

A recent handgun training by the staff of HillTop Gun Club

Recently we conducted a very long Fall season intensive handgun training clinic. The objectives were many and we actually shot through 33 various “what if’s.” You ask what is a “what if?” A what if is what if we were at a gas station or truck stop or fast food restrauant of a coffee shop even a school and what if the bad person or people were intent on robbing harming shooting you or worse and what if that happens what are you going to do to defuse or stop the “What if!”

A tremendous amount of training schools in Ohio and the US concentrate on military and law enforcement tactics as we do also, however our teachers are known to bring in common since and to think outside of the box. As we have said before we are not going to throw a MULE pack on some 90lb woman and then expect her to shoot out the target all the while dragging a 300 pound man that has a bad heart and knees to a safe zone. We just dont expect that to happen in real life around here very much. However what if that did happen,, what if the 90 pound woman and her husband were robbed beaten and he was shot at a gas station and she was the mobile one? What does she do to protect him and herself with her handgun at that time of crisis? Our instructors come up with very safe secure defensive tactics for the class to practice learn and simulate.

Over the 2 day course we also had each student try various handguns and we swapped each others guns so that everyone had the opportunity to see how other handguns operate and if they could use them especally under duress.  One very good learning experinece was to see how handguns have evolved from a 5 shot 38 Special Smith & Wesson to a brand new Kahr with a decocker a single double action a loaded chamber indicator a slide and trigger lock and a another loaded chamber indicator that pops up and is painted red!! Our thoughts are that the newest handguns with all the locks and indicators and de cockers are going to get someone badly hurt of killed if they dont practice with them often.

Some of the more intensive tactics we covered were the shoot and move and exchange your magazine or use a speed loader, go behind cover or concealment to shoot, shoot miss return and shoot the same target, prone shooting, weak then strong hand shooting, shooter down – return fire and shooting in the dark.  Our students were exhusted but very satisfied and more prepared for their own self defensive needs after this class. A good question to you is when is the last time you shot a firearm in total darkness? What could you not see 3 seconds after the muzzel report of about 5′ blinded you?

If you, family, friends or a group are interested in more firearm training give us a call or text or email to find more details and information as to how we can help you in your training needs. HillTop Gun Club offers much more training than involving firearms so give us a contact and let us know how you can become safer and secure.



Chief instructor Kevin Martin, aiming pistol
Chief instructor Kevin Martin
Tactical pump shotgun
Tactical pump shotgun
CCW Certificate
Sample Certificate
"I find him interesting and fascinatingly dangerous"
-Quote from a female from the concealed carry weapon course about chief instructor Kevin Martin.