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Hunter

Hunters Corner: Check out LHR’s new muzzleloader

New Hampshire has a rich and proud heritage in firearms production. One of the trend setters was the former Thompson-Center Arms formally of Rochester. Before the transforming revolution in muzzleloading rifles, there were only two in the beginning: Thompson-Center Arms and CVA, a Spanish manufacturer.

The challenge of muzzleloader hunting took the country by storm, especially in the Northeast. Eventually New Hampshire led the way with Maine and Vermont following suite. New Hampshire had its season before the regular deer season and Vermont and Maine after their regular deer seasons. Thompson-Center had an amazing run until it was bought out by Smith & Wesson and production was relocated to Springfield, Mass. The thought of relocating to Springfield from Rochester is not exactly a tempting thought.

In May of 2012, LHR Sporting Arms was formed by a cadre of four individuals with more than 80 years of experience. Michael Garland has 22 years of experience holding CFO positions for both Thompson Center and Horton Archery. Karl Ricker has more than 22 years experience with Thompson Center, designing rifles and managing quality control. Mark Laney has 35 years experience in firearm manufacturing and design. Laney is a named inventor on many successful firearms patents and chances are you may have one of his many designs in your gun cabinet. The fourth member is Patrick Hanley, who brings a wealth of knowledge of a wide variety of firearms and has assisted in creative design and innovation of many of the market’s leading products.

Their first offering is the Redemption and, to be fair, it would appear to me to be a real trendsetter. The heart of any muzzleloader is the capability for accuracy. LHR has teamed with Green Mountain Barrels to design the Cloverleaf barrels. The Cloverleaf is a 24-inch fully rifled barrel with a 1:28 twist that will accommodate both bore sized and sabot bullets. External threading accommodates lubrication and cleaning. Armornite internal coating keeps the barrel accurate over time by preventing pitting and corrosion in the lands of the rifling.

There is amazing marriage between the trigger and the striker. The trigger is crisp and a light pull. The Stealth Sticker is designed to be easy to use, with a decocking button when a no-shot is the choice.

The Adapt breach system is a patent pending innovation adapter that eliminated the need for threading inside the barrel, which is the leading cause of seizing breech plugs. The stocks are Armornite in composite, camo and walnut. To get the real feel and eyeball what may be the next generation on inline muzzleloaders, visit them at the Barnstore of NH in Salisbury, Morse Sporting Goods in Hillsboro, and Riley’s Gun Shop in Hooksett.

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Next weekend (April 27-28) marks the 9th annual youth turkey hunting weekend. Last year youth hunters took an impressive 521 turkeys, or 14.2 percent of the total spring turkey harvest. To be a legal turkey for the spring season, the turkey must have a beard. There are some basic safety rules to remember and follow to keep turkey hunting accident free:

∎ Never stalk a gobbling turkey. Your chances of getting close are poor and you may be sneaking up on another hunter.

∎ Don’t be patriotic. Avoid red, white and blue, as well as black. A tom turkey’s head has similar colors.

∎ Stick with hen calls. A gobbler call might draw another hunter.

∎ Avoid unnecessary movement. This alerts turkeys and attracts hunters.

∎ Place decoys on the far side of a tree or rock. This prevents you from being directly in the line of fire should another hunter mistakenly shoot at your decoy.

∎ Don’t hide so well that you impair your field of vision.

∎ Always sit with your back against a tree trunk, big log or boulder that is wider than your body. This protects you from being accidentally struck by pellets fired from behind you.

∎ Never shoot unless you’re absolutely sure of your target.

∎ Wrap your turkey in blaze orange for the hike back to your vehicle. Consider wearing orange yourself when coming and going.

“Nothing generates more compliments, letters of thanks and photographs of proud parents and beaming kids, than our youth turkey weekend,” said Mark Ellingwood, Wildlife Division Chief. “We take great pride and satisfaction in providing young people and mentoring adults with the opportunity to learn safe hunting practices, to put lean, healthy natural (food) on their family table, and to enjoy the spellbinding wonders and beauty of New Hampshire’s spring woodlands.”

(Bob Washburn can be reached at hunterscorner@aol.com.)

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