BPI picked a hell of a day to showcase their rifles. The night before the shoot, a huge thunderstorm moved through North Texas. At least one tornado touched down, golf ball-sized hail was scattered along a 50 mile area, and it was the start of three days of hard rain.
Still, along with Bergara, one of BPI Outdoors’ major brands is CVA, makers of some of the best modern muzzleloaders in the world. If you want to show off the reliability of your front-stuffers, firing them dozens of times in a row without cleaning during a downpour is the way to do it.
Despite the weather, all the CVA guns ran all day long. I was impressed.
I’ve always considered the modern muzzleloader an abomination to God. The muzzleloader I hunt with was made shortly after the Bill of Rights was ratified. As for the new front-stuffers, with their primers and working actions, well…I found their lack of flint…disturbing.
That was then, however. This is now. After center-punching 400-yard steel targets in heavy rain and wind — repeatedly — with the CVA Paramount HTR, I’m hooked on the modern muzzleloader concept. It’s just a different kind of shooting, and a fun one.
It’s also extremely effective. That rifle launches a 225 grain .40 caliber bullet at over 2,700 fps. That’s plenty for any animal in North America, and probably in Africa as well, depending on the bullet construction.
I had to admit to the company’s CEO that I had never shot a CVA rifle before. We changed that by shooting every single gun they had available, centerfire and break action muzzleloader alike. I’m very much looking forward to reviewing more of them.
The biggest news at the shoot was the smallest gun offered. The new Bergara Small Batch Sidekick. For those of you who have followed TTAG’s own Jeremy S. and Chriss Heuss, this is going to look very familiar.
The Sidekick features a Black Collar Arms Pork Sword chassis under a Bergara barreled action, chambered in 6.5CM or .308 Win, both with a 10.5″ threaded barrel. We were shooting the 6.5CM version, fitted with a suppressor and mounted on a tripod. With a micro red dot optic, I pushed the hits out to 400 yards.
The Sidekick is the first in a pretty interesting project by Bergara, their Small Batch Series. Each Small Batch Series model is entirely different, and will never be repeated. Only about 300 of each model will be created and sold. With the Sidekick, a branded Eberlestock pack is included, as well as a challenge coin cut from the barrel blank.
The Bergara Premier Competition rifle was also on site, and coincidentally enough my review of that exceptional rifle had posted on the same day as the shoot. We pushed it out to the range’s limit of 800 yards with multiple shooters. It was just as much fun to shoot at the event as it was to review. I miss that rifle.
Bergara also featured several of their rimfires, in .22LR as well as .22WMR. These included left and right-handed versions of their Bergara Micro Rifle. I shoot a .22LR rifle almost every day, and I was more than happy to spend as much time as I could using all of their ammo on these excellent rifles.
It’s pretty rare that I go to these kinds of events, and even more rare that I enjoy them. Not this time. BPI showed off some interesting guns, with a very wide range of applications and price points.
I’ve already requested several of the CVA and Bergara rifles for full reviews. I’m looking forward to shooting all of them, and if it gets here in time, you’ll be reading about a hunt with a CVA muzzleloader in the near future.