I wanted a lever-action rifle since I was a kid. I can remember watching the Old Wild West Movies in the afternoons and then running outside to play with my Lever Action Cap Rifle.
Over time I noticed lever actions popping up in some of my favorite movies: Dances With Wolves , Night of the Living Dead, Legends of the Fall and more recently in Firefly and Django Unchained planting the desire to own one firmly in my psyche.
Then one night, I awoke to a midnight commercials for Henry Rifles on late night TV and I couldn’t stop watching. At the time, we couldn’t fathom that we would soon own our own little piece of heaven but every time the commercial played my wife would always promise “one day honey, one day when we have a Farm, you can get your Henry”.
A year later that day arrived.
I was like a kid again. I couldn’t wait to take the rifle to the Range.
The steel receiver, the perfectly rounded blued barrel, the multiple groove rifling all coming together in one finely crafted rifle.
As I shot the first few rounds, I used the Ghost Ring for aiming and noticed the smoothness of the action. Now, I had heard stories about the Ghost Ring and to be honest I didn’t believe them at first. I was convinced my next investment would be for a scope to fit my Henry but after my first round of shots I can honestly say I am a believer. The Ghost Ring is all you need, no scope for me.
I loved that I could say it was 100% American made and I couldn’t find enough people to tell about its accuracy, straight out of the box (tag still on as I was too excited to remove it).
.30/30 Steel with Round Barrel
I put the rifle away, hoping to take it out to the range again soon, but as luck would have it, the holidays hit and months passed instead.
Then one night, not so different from any other, I got a call from a neighbor telling me to get my rifle because the hogs were rooting up the Orange Grove.
I ran past my wife, and I grabbed the .30/30 out of the safe and ran out the door, loading it in mid step while walking towards the grove.
We had been trapping in the grove for weeks but my trail cams had spotted a particular hog I had set my sights on.
As luck would have it, the neighbor had seen her and he called me out to get her.
Ready to go, I walked slowly, past the first row of trees. The night was dark, no moon to help or hinder the hunt. I rested the rifle on my wrist for balance, while holding my green filtered flashlight with the other hand. Nothing.
I made my way past the second row of trees and found more disappointment. The thought that my neighbor was a bit of a prankster crossed my mind.
I move past the 3rd row, then the 4th, still nothing. Disappointment began wash over me but dissipated when I heard a low grunt.
I stop and listened for a moment. The sound was coming from the rows I just passed. I slowly backtrack my way over to the 3rd row.
The sow was there. She must have hidden between the trees when I passed. She was about 60 yards in to the right, coming out from between the trees. She looked up and at me for a moment.
I didn’t hesitate. I drew my rifle up, my good eye found the ghost ring and I shot.
For a moment, in the diminishing din of the shot, I thought she was gone and that I had missed, but as I drew closer, I saw my aim and my shot were true. (click here for image)
I keep retelling the story, never leaving out my trusty Henry and can honestly say if you’re a farmer, hunter, or just shoot for fun, you want a Henry Rifle by your side.
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