Hunting with muzzle loaders
Ian with .50 cal Pedersoli Country Hunter and impala



By Ian Meaker



I like to start my hunting season by shooting my meat quota with my 375H&H, after which the real HUNTING starts!


Hunting with a muzzle loader makes one a better stalker, “bushman” and generally improves your skills.  You have to, or you won’t shoot anything!


The fact that you generally only have one shot, one chance, makes you more careful of shot placement and distance.


I hunt springbuck with my .45 Kentucky rifle and I like to not shoot further than 100 meters.  I use a round ball with 85 grains of black powder as this seems to work well and is consistently accurate.


I carry a shoulder bag with the necessary kit to the “veld” once I have found my “place”.  I pack containers of powder, each previously measured out, and a small bag of patches and balls in my bush jacket pockets, should I have to move around or take a couple of shots, I am equipped, yet not impeded with too much baggage.


The secret is to practice, practice and practice, know your rifle and know where your shots will land at different distances.  Confidence in your rifle and yourself are the secret to good hunts!


Black powder hunting and bow hunting have a lot in common, i.e. closer shots, better camouflage, knowledge of the animal’s habits and knowledge of the terrain.


I hunt bigger game with my .50 calibre and prefer to use conical points for the sheer stopping power effect!


The reward of selecting your animal, walking, stalking and shooting, once the smoke clears and your “kill” is good, has got to be in my mind, similar to catching your first trout on a fly rod.


Warning!!  This is a very addictive sport and you will soon be thinking up better and better reasons or excuses not to be stuck at home with your free time!




Should you have any questions feel free to contact me at



The Pedersoli .72 calibre double rifle, driven by its owner, Mike, took this porker