Merlin Marauders Cowboy Action Shooting Posse History


It was the year 2002, and the four Cowboy Action Shooting families had made their weary way up the Jefferson Trail (I-5 and parts of I-99 Highways) from Ukiah, California in search of new lands. Arriving in the Grants Pass area, they immediately went to the Josephine County Sportsman’s Park to do a little match shooting with the other cow-folk. Alas! There was no C.A.S. at J.C.S.A.!! “This’ll NEVER do!” they shouted in unison. And thus, Lonesome Rose and Tiny Tank, Two-Tone and Paradise Patti, Sam Walker and Kate Brinning, Merlin Maverick and Molly B’Dam formed the Merlin Marauders. Member #9 was Ten Sleep Good Guy and was quickly followed into the fold by Gaye Abandon and Sweetwater Jack.

The first year, the Marauders stowed what targets they had gathered in the bunker across and downrange from the (usually muddy) field at Walker Mountain. In 2003 funds were gathered up from members and a work party assembled to construct the current Range House, getting our targets and donated computer out of the weather. Conquering our drainage problems didn’t keep folks from referring to our range area as “Fort Swampy”, but did make it a lot more pleasant to set up targets. Soon after, we built railroad tie berm walls to protect ourselves and our shooting neighbors from lead spatter.

The Marauders’ first Annual Match, named “The Battle of Rogue River”, was held in 2005. It was a one-day match. After the second “Battle of Rogue River”, the decision was made to expand to a full two-day, Saturday and Sunday main match event, with a nember of side matches shot on Friday. In late 2009, with a member count in the 60’s and having wanted for a long time to build a “false-front town” at the range, we were joined by a group of new arrivals from Utah, the “Runnin’ Wild Ranch”, with the expertise and spirit to get the town project moving. The shooters competing in “The Battle of Rogue River 2010” were presented with the newly completed and named old west town of “Fort Swampy”!

The Merlin Marauder’s first Club President was Howard Arnold (Merlin Maverick), followed in succession by David Taylor (Ten Sleep Good Guy), John Hudick (Rogue Rascal), Rick Smith (Bear Bone Smith), Heike Arnold (Molly b’ Dam), Art Ferranti (Britt Ponsett), and now Rhonda Peltier (Bobbin Along Daisy).

In 2002, the club’s first and so far only, Territorial Governor was “elected” when Sweetwater Jack (Gary Hanson), who was the only club member holding the required qualifications for the position at the time, stepped out of the room to heed a call of nature, and was elected in absentia.