The Castle Gate Posse has been shooting Cowboy Action since 1991.
Our founding members were Buck, Stargazer, Cowboy Murder’n Maude, Pinnacle Pete, Ranger Wade, Out of Ammo Annie and a dog named Hank. Buck heard about this organization called SASS and sent away for a membership and a book on how to become a SASS Club. His number is 4257!
They followed the rules of SASS Shooting for our twice monthly shoots. Pinnacle wrote scores with a bullet on scrap paper. Maude and Annie got with the ‘Spirit of the Game’ and wrote some hilarious matches. In those days it was one pistol and share everything with everyone.
Wade came down out of Price Canyon one day and said, “ I got a great name! Lets call ourselves the Castle Gate Posse, after the old mining town of Castle Gate!” And so things progressed.
All their tiny fees went for making tiny targets that fell over when you shot them. By the late ‘90s they were getting the hang of it and saving their nickels a little. They decided it was time to affiliate with SASS. The proof of insurance went in and they were off and running.
Imagination and determination had them setting up with a string firing line at the old dilapidated gun ranges around Price, Utah and annuals out in the San Rafael Dessert with horizontal wind and rain. They dreamed up and built little false fronts that could be torn down like a stage set. Piled it all in a trailer and off to the State Championships with our stages and targets. Held co-annuals with their sister club, The Rio Verde Rangers in Green River, Utah. Times were challenging and fun.
Starting in 2002, members of the Castle Gate Posse were deeply involved with a committee of shooters from throughout the area in planning and building a shooting facility. Monies were found through Gas and Oil Royalties. In 2005, Carbon County purchased 640 acres south of Price and an architect was hired. Cowboy Action Shooters could look forward to a "town" and campground to stay in for the shoots.
Cowboy Murder'n Maude was sent out to find the perfect spot for the "town". What she found was a box canyon just big enough to fit 15 shooting bays in a horseshoe shape. She did some preliminary drawings including real bathrooms with flush toilets, a shaded patio and a kitchen/meeting room,
The false fronts were designed to reflect an old west town and was given the name of Castle Gate after a mining town founded in 1886. Buch Cassidy, of outlaw fame, robbed the payroll of the Pleasnt Valley Coal Company on April 21, 1897, making off with $7,000 in gold.
In 2007, the Castle Gate Posse moved home to the North Springs Shooting Range's, Castle Gate Town. Every aspect of this fine town was designed with Cowboy Action Shooting in mind; from the graveled street, to the wide boardwalks, to the hundreds of Evil Roy targets. Even spectators have a separate common area to visit and watch the action from. The 15 shooting bays have 10 with false fronts and custom designed load/unload tables welcome all.
History of the local Carbon County area is incorporated in the names of some the "buildings". Knight's Saloon is named for "Uncle" Jessee Knight who established the mining town of Spring Canyon. A devout Mormon, he forbade saloons and gambling houses and even penalized his workers for too much carousing. Naming a saloon in his honor, even a pretend one, is a tongue-in-cheek example of Maude's sense of humor. The barber shop is named for Toy Atwood, a local barber from a family who settle in Carbon Count back in the early days before law and order were properly established. The blacksmith's forge is named for Vern Barker, a member of the Castle Gate Posse who build the bell that hangs in the tower at the Church in Castle Gate Town.
CAS with Style! Gather with us on the 4th Saturday of the month (check the monthly schedule for dates and times)
and get folded into a fun posse. Fargo Kid or The Wolf of North Springs may be your posse leader. These folks will keep you moving and keep you laughing for 5 fun stages. We encourage the junior shooter to come play with us at no charge. If you come to watch you will be invited to shoot. And yes, we still share our guns with new shooters. Afterwards sit and gab or pull out the long guns and try your luck in the Buffalo Canyon. That black dot is a buffalo at 780 yards!