CVA is pushing every boundary in blackpowder technology, and after some firsthand experience, we'd say it's working.
Throughout history, several of the most famous firearms manufacturers have inevitably become married to a certain lane of weaponry, which is typically a sign of high quality. Instantly, you think about storied brands associated with revolvers and lever guns, but the connection between CVA and muzzleloaders is just as undeniable.
While CVA has led the blackpowder market for years, its recent advancements in technology are what's revolutionizing the way we look at a genre of firearms we once considered traditional.
Sure, the same manual loading methodology that brings a nostalgic allure to blackpowder shooting isn't going anywhere. But the limitations that come with that traditional shooting method could soon be a hurdle of the past.
With its new Paramount Series, CVA is bringing timeless muzzleloading traditions and long-range shooting to the same bench. Plus, the new Paramount HTR model is bringing that combination to the backcountry, too.
I got an insider's look at the new Series at a special event in Decatur, Texas put on by the folks at CVA, and the big takeaways could represent a new muzzleloading revolution.
When I arrived at the range, I fully expected to be shooting somewhere between 100 and 200 yards. But never would I have imagined myself shooting a 4-inch group from 400 yards with a .40-caliber bullet.
In 2020, CVA added the Paramount Pro, which already boasted mind-boggling long-range consistency, but it also has a particularly sturdy design with a familiar look and feel.
With the same barrel action as the Paramount, the Pro added a lightweight Grayboe fiberglass stock in hand-painted camo, a matching Cerakote finish for the barrel and a TriggerTech premium trigger. Additionally for 2021, CVA made the Pro available in both .40 caliber and .45 caliber offerings, as well as a specially configured .50-caliber version equipped with a Williams peep sight for Colorado elk hunters.
New for 2021, the Paramount HTR is essentially identical to the Paramount besides its stock, which offers some nice hunting-oriented features, starting with the new Realtree Hillside camo pattern.
The stock is also slightly lighter and has an adjustable comb to allow for perfect alignment from eye to optic, minimizing the risk of any mistakes in the field.
An internal aluminum chassis gives the Paramount HTR a tough foundation that can stand up to high-volume shooting, as well as natural elements.
Similar to the Paramount Pro, the HTR is also available in both .40 and .45 calibers, but we spent the day with a prototype chambered in .40.
And, like all the Paramount models, the HTR is designed to handle super-magnum charges of Blackhorn 209. With the maximum recommended propellant charges, the HTR can produce muzzle velocities that rival centerfire rifles, which opens the door for those long-range capabilities.
In fact, when paired with PowerBelt ELR 225-grain .40 caliber (which we used), the HTR can push muzzle velocities up to 2,740 FPS. The same bullet in a 285-grain .45-caliber offering will produce up to 2,560 FPS.
By packaging that type of performance, the tried-and-true quality of the Paramount line and a few additional hunting features all in one gun, CVA seemingly set a new standard for hunting muzzleloaders.
When I brag to my friends that I hit a 400-yard bullseye with a muzzleloader on my first try, I have to follow that with a few disclaimers about how easy it is with a CVA gun. I wish I oculd take more credit, but that's unrealistic considering how well made and easy to shoot these muzzleloaders are.
And that's what it's about: bringing the tools of our shooting and hunting heritage into the the 21st century with smart, modern innovation.
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