View Full Version : Muzzleloader Season Rules In Your State

March 15, 2007, 11:47 AM
In the vein of what is most popular to hunt and how much it costs to hunt, I figured I'd start this.

I know that muzzleloaders in hunting are very contentious. Some people want nothing but buckskins and roundball-shooting flintlocks. Others say, as long as it loads from the front, I'll allow it.

But I'm not worried about that here. What does your state F&G or DNR or whatever list as a legal muzzleloader and what restrictions are there?

I'll start:
Under New Hampshire regulations, if it loads from the muzzle, it's a muzzleloader. Pelletized powder, OK, saboted bullets, OK, scopes, sure, inlines and break-action inlines (like my Encore), we'll allow it. I'm pretty sure the Savage 10ML is legal as well.

The restrictions are that it be over .40-caliber and single-barreled. A hunter may only have one muzzleloading rifle and one muzzleloading pistol (also single-barreled and over .40-caliber) on them during the hunt.

There are no extra tags issued for the muzzleloader permit; you must use your regular firearms deer tag. Muzzleloader season runs for about a week and a half before the start of firearms deer season in November. If you don't fill your deer tag during the muzzleloader season, you are free to fill it during rifle season after.

What's it like everywhere else?

March 15, 2007, 11:53 AM
Washington. The primer/precussion cap, has to be exposed to the elements. No 209 shotshell primers allowed uless it fits like a precussion cap and es exposed. You must choose muzzeloader when you buy your tag, and you can only hunt for that animal in muzzelloading seasons. For deer it must be 45 caliber or larger, other big game is at least 50. No pistols allowed for hunting. No other firearm may be in your possetion except for muzzelloader. You may have more than one barrel but during muzzelloading seasons you may only have one barrel loaded. No copper jacket bullets. No scope or optics. Fiber optic open sights are ok. I think thats about it.
Season is significatly longer than modern firearm. But a little shorter than archery. It overlaps archery often. The early and late seasons for deer are each like 3 weeks I beleive.

March 15, 2007, 01:51 PM
In SC, you can use a ML during the rifle season but not during bow season. Basically anything goes: in-line, 209 primer, sabots, pelletized powder, jacketed bullets, scopes, etc. Guns (long or hand) must be .36 cal or larger IIRC and single-shot.

The season overlaps some or all of bow season in many game zones (but not all). There are antlerless-deer (doe) days where you can harvest a doe and you can buy up to 4 doe tags for use on other days for $5 each. In some zones you can use all four and in other zones only 2. For all seasons combined in my zone, you are allowed 5 bucks total. I haven't tried to figure out how many does I could kill or how many total deer I could take if I hunted in the other zones. Suffice it to say that you'd need a dump truck. :) You can also take two deer per day.

March 15, 2007, 03:45 PM
a. In-line muzzleloaders are legal.
b. Must be single-barrel that fires a single round-ball or conical projectile
the length of which does not exceed twice the diameter.
c. To hunt deer, pronghorn or bear, they must be min. of .40 caliber.
d. To hunt elk or moose, they must be min. of .50 caliber.
e. From .40 caliber to .50 caliber, bullets must weigh min. 170 grains.
f. If greater than .50 caliber, bullets must weigh min. 210 grains.
g. Shotshell primers are legal.
h. Pelletized powder systems prohibited in muzzleloading seasons.
i. Cannot be loaded from the breech in muzzleloading seasons.
j. Only open or iron sights allowed in muzzleloading seasons. Scopes prohibited.
Fiber optic sights and fluorescent paints are legal. Artificial light,
batteries and electronic gear are illegal.
k. Sabots are prohibited in muzzleloading seasons. Cloth patches are
not sabots.
l. Smokeless powder prohibited in muzzleloading seasons. Black
powder and black powder substitutes are legal.
m. Only legal muzzleloaders allowed in muzzleloading seasons.

March 15, 2007, 05:26 PM
Depends on the unit, game, and hunt.

Traditional is the only one I have done, its side lock, granular powder, no sabots, and iron sights only.

March 15, 2007, 05:40 PM
In NC, all inlines are legal as are saboted bullets, pellet powder and optics. You can't carry any sidearm (blackpowder or otherwise) during the muzzleloader or bow seasons. You can carry a muzzleloader during the rifle season. You can carry a bow during rifle season. You cannot carry anything but a muzzleloader during the one week muzzleloader season (timing varies by region, but its sandwiched between bow and gun). Muzzleloading pistols may not be used to take game of any kind.

March 15, 2007, 08:48 PM
Wow, things are WAY different here in PA!!
We have a early doe only season for two weeks that you can use inlines. But the "real" muzzleloader season starts the day after X-Mas and runs for a month. NO inlines...oldschool, flintlock only, no scopes, no fancy Muzzleloaders that don't load from the muzzle, no 100 yard shots....it's iron sights, flint striking steel and then you pray then when the smoke clears you hit what you were aiming at (and thats IF it actually goes off) Anyone that has used a flintlock knows the challenge...it's the only type of muzzloader I want to hunt with!

March 16, 2007, 01:07 PM
PA also allows the use of crossbows during both the muzzleloader seasons. I use the crossbow for the doe only season and a flintlock for the late season.