Roy Stroh Custom Muzzleloaders
I was lucky enough to hunt with Roy's traveling rifle, "Runaround Sue"
on the 3rd leg of her journey. I used Sue to hunt wild pigs on the
Merced River, near my home in Winton, California. The West Coast
was getting hammered with rain storms when Sue arrived. The first
afternoon it let up a bit, I hit the river with Scott, my hunting buddy.
There were plenty of pig signs but we didn't see any animals. We knew
that the pigs were becoming more nocturnal now, due to hunting
pressure. It was going to be tough to run into one. Right at dark we
heard a pig scream from across the river.
A couple days later we took advantage of the Southeastern wind and
slowly walked the river’s edge. We surprised a large pig, which let out
a long, loud grunt to let us know how unhappy he was to be disturbed. It
couldn’t smell us but probably had heard us. Only 15 yards away, we
couldn’t see the pig through the thick berries and brush. After a minute
of loud huffing, he finally made his escape into the river.
The next afternoon December 22, 2010 found us at the river again. The
wind was light but was now behind us. Not the best way to hunt pigs
because their sense of smell is so keen. We decided to slowly walk the
edge of the thick berries and be as quiet as possible.
About a half hour into the hunt, I spotted a large sow coming out into
the open, about 35 yards away. I didn’t waste any time bringing the
rifle up and placing the silver front sight behind her black shoulder.
While the pig was busy rooting in a grassy area, I squeezed the trigger.
It was the first time I fired Sue. The rains and wind had kept me from
spending any range time with the rifle. I loaded Sue with 100 grains of
FFg, a .600” cast ball, and pillow-ticking patch, smeared with Swampy’s
When the smoke cleared, the pig was gone. I felt real good about the
shot so I decided to reload and let her lay down. Guess I was a bit
nervous ‘cause I forgot where my thumb is supposed to go when cutting
the patch. Now I had two blood trails to follow.
At the spot where she had been standing was a branch with a bullet hole
in it. I was pretty certain that the branch wasn't in front of the pig when
I shot. I found no blood or hair. A few minutes later Scott found her
laying in some thick stuff, only 10 yards away. The .62 cal ball had split
in half, taking out her heart and half of it exiting to hit the branch. The
other half of the ball was found stuck to the rib cage on the opposite
Roy built a beauty of a rifle but she's made to hunt with. Her .62 caliber.
40 inch barrel is serious medicine for any big game. And, she's a pleasure
The Traveling Rifle is a great idea and I’m proud to be a part of it.