Back to the Old West

By MIKE McCLEARY | Bismarck Tribune | Posted: Saturday, August 3, 2013 11:30 pm

BISMARCK, N.D. — When Jim Iverson was a young boy, he wanted to be a cowboy in the Old West.

These days, the Gettysburg, S.D., carpenter is playing out that dream.

"When I was a little kid, every picture my parents had of me was I had two pistols strapped on my belt," Iverson said. And every Saturday night, I couldn't wait for 'Gunsmoke' on TV."

Last month, members of the Cowboy Action Shooters of the Bismarck-Mandan Rifle and Pistol Association gathered for a competitive target shoot at a rifle range staged as a town of the Old West near Moffit.

The Dakota RoughRiders competitors dress in clothing of the era and shoot single-action revolvers, lever-action rifles and shotguns. The timed shooting scenarios involve accurately hitting silhouette steel targets through windows and doors of the storefront facades.

Safety is the utmost priority for the group, with loading and unloading safety stations located on each side of the scene.

The family-oriented activity lightheartedly requires nicknames for each member. There's Rough Rider Ray, Doc Neilson, Doc Hell, Rod-Iron-Rip, Little Gunder, Bird Colonel and Wild River Rose, to name a few.

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