Today I decided to check out a State Gameland that is more or less on the way home from where I go to college. Since I have only hunted there once very briefly in the past I have very little knowledge of that gameland, but from what I saw today it looks like it will be a promising place to hunt during the October muzzleloader season. The game land seems to have quite a few trails cut through the woods. The trail I followed today went to a grown up field and right before I reached the field I jumped two maybe three deer. In addition to those deer I saw a few other deer tracks here and there, so it looks like it might be a nice place to hunt.
Now with PA’s October muzzleloader deer season coming up it will be important for me to have my sights exactly on. So, I spent some time today shooting my flintlock and adjusting the sights to dead center. Before now I had adjusted the sights some, but that was not as important as just getting used to having sparks flying next to my face without flinching any.
Shooting off a bench rest at 25 yards I got the gun sighted in so that it put a round ball in the bulls eye pretty much every time. My next step will be to switch to my sabots and fine tune them at 100 yards.
Another interesting aspect of shooting today was that it was raining while I was shooting. At first I figured rain and a flintlock would not work out for more than a few shots, but I was actually able to do a lot of shooting.
According to my calendar just one month from today will mark the start of the October muzzleloader season! This will be my first opportunity to take my CVA flintlock deer hunting. In preparation for the deer season I have been working on different loads to see what will be best to use.
The 1 in 48 rifling twist of my barrel I have found does not accurately shoot a round ball very well past about 50 yards–so bad that in a pattern of three shots at 100 yards it is likely that at one or more of the balls will completely miss the target. I have found however, that the T/C saboted bullets, that Trader Horn sells, shoots pretty accurately even at 100 yards. So, that means that I will not be shooting round balls for the most part when it comes to deer hunting. For a hunting load with the 24o grain sabots I have been using 100 grains of 2FF black powder, which gives quite a bit of kick. Because of the kick I have limited the amount of target practice I have done with the sabots and focused on shooting round balls with 60 grains of 2FF since that load has a relatively light kick. Because, my gun’s 1 in 48 twist is still slower than the 1 in 28 rifling twist that most guns designed for shooting sabots have, I am using 100 grains of powder to give the sabot maximum spin. In the future though I will have to experiment with lesser loads of powder to see if it shoot as accurately.