Keeping Muzzleloading Alive

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Bushfire

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As a former newbie, it was way easier getting into this hobby when the members on this forum answered questions, even if my questions were dumb. I really appreciate that and feel that I can confidently pass on information on muzzleloading to new people.

To those of y’all saying you hate kids and don’t want to bother teaching them because they are “disrespectful” and lack an attention span, YOU will be responsible if muzzleloading dies. There is no excuse to say screw it and give up, unless you’re physically unable to. I’m sure when y’all were children y’all were difficult as well, THATS THE NATURE OF BEING A CHILD. Anything worth teaching or passing on will be difficult, and there’s no way to ensure that it’ll stick with today’s children, but at least an effort will have been made to preserve our passion.
Agreed on both accounts.

If you have an issue with kids you have the ability to change it. I'm bringing my boys up not just with BP guns but I hope with respect. Maybe it's not the norm these days maybe it is. But I if I have the power to influence at least a few ill do it.

And I find my kids very interesting even at 4, 2 and 0 years old!
 

granth

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I'll offer my perspective of being a young man (17) whos new to muzzleloading myself. For those saying that "kids are too lazy these days" or "they have no interest", you're wrong. Kids are willing to learn, but many do not know where to start or don't have parents who are willing to support their interests. It also doesn't help that muzzleloading has a high barrier of entry and finding things such as powder and caps can be a challenge. The one thing that will save this sport are good mentors who genuinely want to teach and grow interest. There's my two cents.
 
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I can't think of anything that doesn’t cycle around. Bringing back black powder shooting is up to us the shooters to encourage new people that show interest, not P&M about how it is dying. I was in my mid 20's when I got involved in black powder and was as green as green can be. I had an older shooter take pity on me and showed me what I was doing wrong, (there wasn't much I was doing right) he helped me greatly. for the next 10 years I would travel throughout New England competing in black powder events and meeting a lot of awesome people. I am now in my mid 60's and looking to get back involved. I was disappointed that many of the event venues no longer have organized black powder events. I have just joined a new range and I will do all I can to have the range host a black powder weekend event. If we all try to get thing rolling again instead of lamenting how thing used to be, perhaps new interest can be generated. It's up to us.
 
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I belonged to an astronomy club, much like muzzleloading, populated with older guys worrying about it’s future. It always seems that way,
Muzzleloading will persist, it’s more of a market function, I don’t know the % of shooters that shoot black powder. My assumption is that it is a small but persistent number. This art will last 1000 years, the guns we build today will join Jacob Dickerd’s work as treasures. But it may always be a few old farts like me that make up it’s ranks.
Shadowalker
 

Skeggs

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I'm pretty sure criticizing your target audience, kids, let's say, will not help getting them involved. If you shoot at Perry or Anniston, you may notice the many, many kids involved. Diverse in every way imaginable. And damn good shots.
The climate and environment of these places is very positive.
The eras of match, flint, and cap were harsh times between and among many people. How this is treated can certainly turn off many, especially youth and their families and parents who guide their children.
I shoot and have shot many disciplines and I have noted than many of the BP/old time events are shrinking.
Gee, I dunno, maybe those that use "injun" targets and such should reconsider.
Same goes for events, social media, and YouTube filled with all sorts of politics, religion, and flag waving.
What's the point?
Stick to the hardware and the shooting, encourage safety and fun, and our numbers will grow.
 
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In our local club there are a dozen or so kids who regularly show up to shoot shotguns, handguns and .22 target rifles. Granted, we are officially rural, although there are more and more Telsas on the roads every day. I don't see many of the problems with kids described above. If you asked them what they would really like to shoot they'd probably say an AR. When I was a kid the "back to the earth" movement was fresh and exciting, and learning the old ways was 'cool.' After more than 20 years of the War on Terror, school shootings and increasingly restrictive firearm and hunting laws, to say nothing of history classes that hardly touch on the Fur Trade, it's no wonder that the messy, relatively slow and relatively expensive hobby of muzzleloader shooting is out of fashion.
 
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Yes.. forget about the Boy Scouts. There is an organization that in Wyoming at least is worthy of us getting involved. 4H ! You want to help keep this sport alive contact your nearest 4H leader and ask to volunteer. Many 4H programs have muzzleloading as one of their sports programs. They have local shoots and at the end of the year they travel to a "State shoot". They are enthusiastic and are spreading the word to their friends. Some from the city and some from the country,,, but they all agree.... Muzzleloading is FUN!
 

dave951

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Yes.. forget about the Boy Scouts. There is an organization that in Wyoming at least is worthy of us getting involved. 4H ! You want to help keep this sport alive contact your nearest 4H leader and ask to volunteer. Many 4H programs have muzzleloading as one of their sports programs. They have local shoots and at the end of the year they travel to a "State shoot". They are enthusiastic and are spreading the word to their friends. Some from the city and some from the country,,, but they all agree.... Muzzleloading is FUN!
While I like 4H, let's be completely honest. Compare membership numbers and where's the largest group? Also, 4H decided that they won't recognize either the NRA nor the NMLRA cert. Why? Not dissing 4H but where can we make the biggest impression and reach the largest audience?
 

Gordoncourtney

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As I see it most Kids arent rural or learning to be self sufficient anymore, they're big town /city and want to be entertained not challenged; its all about shoot em up video games etc.

Am I going to waste my too finite resources and BP shooting time on trying to inspire and educate someone elses problem child ? NOPE.

As for the Scout movement they went PC /Woke and closed out the Shooting element so theyre already a lost cause.
Seriously WTH should we be wasting our days/months/years on an already lost generation ?

That said thankfully theres a goodly chunk of rural country kids who have been/ are being raised by like minded parents, my thoughts are focus on them because at least theyre already receptive and actively orientated in the right direction.
In reply to kids and scouts. We lived in Nigeria back when kids were 4&6 scouts was setting up animal traps to catch food which they ate , probably rats, ha ha. and tracking wild animals And survival re snakes Yes becoming bush masters. Scout master was an old white Bushman They did not like uk scouts said it was so boring very upsetting for scout master

The goodies want to get rid of Farms they want them called like “ animal welfare homes “. Farms can upset children Both my kids have shot birds and rabbits and gutted and cooked them. They are 80% vegetarian these days 49&51 only for health reasons as I got cancer but both like a good steak

Enjoy
 

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Dave Dworshak

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I'm trying to get our local 4-h shooting sports club restarted in muzzleloading. Had three this year- next year hopefully a few more. I like to make it the "fun" event that the younger kids want to participate in. I only will hunt muzzleloader with the grand son (9). Muzzleloader is the only firearm he has ever used. But kids can't be forced to do what they dont wan't to do.
 

Mustang65

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As I see it most Kids arent rural or learning to be self sufficient anymore, they're big town /city and want to be entertained not challenged; its all about shoot em up video games etc.

Am I going to waste my too finite resources and BP shooting time on trying to inspire and educate someone elses problem child ? NOPE.

As for the Scout movement they went PC /Woke and closed out the Shooting element so theyre already a lost cause.
Seriously WTH should we be wasting our days/months/years on an already lost generation ?

That said thankfully theres a goodly chunk of rural country kids who have been/ are being raised by like minded parents, my thoughts are focus on them because at least theyre already receptive and actively orientated in the right direction.
Wow! That was very inspiring.
 
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I'm trying to get our local 4-h shooting sports club restarted in muzzleloading. Had three this year- next year hopefully a few more. I like to make it the "fun" event that the younger kids want to participate in. I only will hunt muzzleloader with the grand son (9). Muzzleloader is the only firearm he has ever used. But kids can't be forced to do what they dont wan't to do.
Good luck! I’m looking to start doing some postal matches with my kids, so if you want to swap info and set one up with us, shoot me a message.
 

SwanShot

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I shoot with a club that shoots many different disciplines, in including unmentionables. My experience with most, but not all younger shooters, is that want power and speed in their cars and guns. That's just being young.
 

Tn mtn man

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I believe Dave is right here. Many kids are constantly outdoors and love to go hunting, fishing or hiking. Given a chance many would be very interested in traditional muzzleloading. It takes the right kind of person to teach kids. It’s true, some kids are lazy however is that because the kid is really lazy or because that kid is surrounded by lazy adults that refuse to put in the time and effort that proper instruction requires? Writing off a whole generation won’t do us or the kids any favors.
 
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