Riding fast and shooting guns, what could be better? | TheFencePost.com

Riding fast and shooting guns, what could be better?

Jody Miller of Wetmore, Colo., saw the mounted shooting demonstration at the 2011 NWSS and decided that she wanted to become a mounted shooter. The Colorado Mounted Thunder competition at the 2011 Denver Horse Expo was her fourth event and she says "it's a blast."

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

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Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.

Riding fast and shooting guns is at the core of mounted shooting and it is definitely the allure of the fastest growing equine sport in America. The sport has come a long way from its invention in 1991 in Cave Creek, Ariz., by Jim Rogers. There are currently 92 shooting clubs in the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association (CMSA). Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association is an AQHA alliance partner and all points are eligible for existing awards There are two CMSA clubs in Colorado, the Colorado Mounted Thunder in Peyton and the Colorado Regulators in Berthoud, Colo.

Besides the CMSA, there is another organization, the Mounted Shooters of America (MSA), which has its national headquarters in Colorado. There is a lot of overlap in the two organizations and many people are active members of both. Everyone who competes in mounted shooting is excited about being able to compete in a sport that is so much fun.

Do not mistake this for Cowboy Action Shooting. The two are totally different. Cowboy Action Shooting is from the ground and uses various types of replica guns and live ammunition. Authentic and replica period clothing is required and as much emphasis is put on the clothing and equipment as on the shooting. While participants in Mounted Shooting can wear period type clothing, it is not required. The single action Colt .45 is the only type of gun allowed, and there is no live ammunition allowed at any CMSA event.

Use of the single action revolver, which must be cocked by the rider before it can be fired, adds another level of difficulty to the competition, but guns and ammo are standardized. Kevin Perry, President of the Colorado Mounted Thunder, explains, “Two revolvers are required and they have to be single action, caliber .45, long colt. The only ammo that we shoot is .45 long colt based blanks. There are no special loads. The ammo at every event is supplied by the event. Everyone has to take their ammo out of the same box, so that everyone is on an equal plane.” Perry continued, “there is no projectile of any kind, including any wadding. What is breaking the balloon is hot, burning black powder. There is nothing in the end of the shell casing. The brass shell end is crimped and holds in the compacted, high powered black powder.”

One of the biggest appeals of mounted shooting is that the whole family can participate. “It’s a huge family oriented sport,” said Kevin Perry. “There are more examples of couples and families that do this together than individuals who go down the road on their own.” Mounted shooting events are divided into skill and experience levels so that people are competing against others at their same level.

There is even a Wrangler Class for kids. From five to eight, kids are led through the course by a parent. If they can handle their own horse they can ride the course on their own. Until they are 12, they point at balloons with their fingers or use cap guns and compete based on time only. At 12 they are allowed to run the course and to shoot.

Colorado Mounted Thunder is a very active club and regularly holds events and clinics for new or less experienced shooters. “The Colorado Mounted Thunder works very hard to recognize the beginning shooters and to give them incentives to grow with the sport.” Perry said, “We try our very best not to let everything go to the top shooters.”

In keeping with the club’s commitment to education, the Colorado Mounted Thunder held a clinic in conjunction with a shooting event at the Denver Horse Expo. The clinician was Kenda Lenseigne, the reigning World Champion and genuine superstar in the mounted shooting world. Kenda is the four-time World Point Champion Cowgirl and holder of six World Records. In 2009, Kenda became the first woman in CMSA history to win the Overall at a World Championship. Just six months later in April 2010, she again made history by becoming the first woman to win the Overall at the National Championship. In short, Kenda Lenseigne is not just the best woman shooter, she is the best shooter – period.

“The timed event aspect of this sport really appealed to me, and there is a definite skill level that both my horse and I need to have to be able to perform,” said Kenda. “I feel good that I’ve been able to blaze a trail for the cowgirls and open up that door to prove that this is a co-ed sport and that both men and women can compete equally.”

But even a champion like Kenda can not talk about mounted shooting for long without getting to what attracts people to this sport – and that is that it is just plain fun! Mounted shooters tend to smile a lot when they talk about their sport and Kenda was no exception when she said, “It’s just a fun thing that brings back the flavor of what America was started on and kind of keeps that alive.”

Although the gun is important, everyone agrees that this is primarily an equine event. Bill Beamin is the Vice President of Colorado Mounted Thunder, and calls mounted shooting the “most strenuous, most demanding of any equine event in the world.” Bill has some authority to say that since he is a retired PRCA Steer Wrestler. “The horse is running, stopping, turning, pivoting, and a guy is on their back shooting a gun.”

Even with all of this going on, most solid, ranch broke horses take to mounted shooting quite well. “It’s a horse event for sure and all breeds are welcome in the sport.” Lenseigne said, “My personal preference is the Quarter Horse because of their athletic ability.” When first starting, the rider would be wise to keep in mind Kevin Perry’s tongue-in-cheek comment, “The big joke in our sport is that you can shoot off any horse … ONCE!!”

If mounted shooting sounds like something you and your horse would like to try, the CMSA web page (CowboyMountedShooting.com) has contact info for all of their clubs.