A Review of the Crockett Rifle

By Gary Lewis

Gary Lewis Books and DVDs

A Review of the Crockett Rifle

Gary Lewis Crockett Rifle.JPGIn 1835 Davy Crockett ran for a seat in Congress for the state of Tennessee and declared that if he lost, the people in his district, "may go to hell and I will go to Texas." He lost. And he ended up at the Alamo. 

In those days hunters from places like Tennessee and Pennsylvania and Missouri relied on small bore rifles because they were economical to shoot and a 32- or 36- or 40-caliber rifle could be used to good effect on red squirrels, whitetail deer and for home defense. 

I think a muzzleloading hunter is ill-equipped if they do not have a small caliber rifle. 

Consider the squirrel rifle named after David Crockett. The Crockett Rifle, a 32-caliber half-stocked percussion gun from Traditions, is faithful to the game-getters carried in the 1830s and 1840s for small game on the frontier. A good starter load consists of 20 grains of FFFg behind a .310 patched round ball. My favorite load is a bit stouter at 30 grains of FFFg. The round balls I carry are melted from lead fishing weights. I don't shoot this gun for its economics, but it is cheap to shoot. 

The Traditions Crockett comes with a 31-1/2-inch barrel, a half-stock, brass hardware, a percussion lock and double-set triggers. Weighing in at 6-3/4 pounds, it is easy to carry with a barrel-heavy heft. 

We can put a small game critter gitter to use for sage rats, rockchucks, rabbits, gray diggers, nutria and other varmints. Spring is my favorite time to hunt with the Crockett.

Some guns are inherently accurate. The Crockett pitches the round ball right where I want it. I'm sure I've missed with it, but what I remember is how deadly it is on any squirrel. Belding's ground squirrels and gray diggers are the regular quarry. 

One shot I remember most of all. It was toward the end of a day spent shooting sage rats when the wind kicked up. A squirrel climbed out of its mound and stood up tall. 

I had a round ball in the pipe and a cap under the hammer already, and with a stiff crosswind, held four inches of Kentucky windage left and three inches of Tennessee elevation high. With an economical puff of smoke, the Crockett rifle spoke and another eastern Oregon sage rat had made his final stand. 

Check out the Crockett Rifle here. 

To build a Crockett Rifle of your own, check out this kit.

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