updated: 07/21/2016


One early morning in 1981, 5 friends from Pueblo, Colorado, gathered for a breakfast shoot.
After about the fourth shoot, the founders decided to make it official.
Bell's Fort Free Trappers and Muzzle Loaders was founded early in 1982.
After 23 years, we are an insured non-profit corporation, still going strong by the friendships we have built within our organization and the friends we have made along the way from other clubs.
We all share a love of history and re-creating the days of the Fur Trade 1830-1840.
During the past 24 years we have been involved in countless classroom lectures about the Fur Trade and living history demonstrations.

Several of our members consulted and/or provided items (clothing and firearms) for the Tamarack production called "Pikes Peak and the Blue Mountain". During our first 18 years we were actively involved with the Frontier Days and the El Pueblo Museum's Annual Mercado, living history demonstrations at the Nature Center, Royal Gorge and several schools.

We hold a yearly Rendezvous for all who would like to see and participate. A couple of our founders are still with us and we have members that have been a part of our club anywhere from 10 to 24 years. That says a lot about the dedication and respect we have for our club and the little part of history we represent. We continue to be very active but maintain a manageable membership base.

Families as well as single individuals make up our organization.


Club Picture
Parade Float

About Our Organization

We are a family-oriented club that strives to learn, teach and explore traditional muzzle loading shooting through pre-1840 living history. Club activities offer you the opportunity to learn about this little known time in history, "The Fur Trade". We educate and make possible the experience for all who would like to learn about life during the Fur Trade era. We hold an authentic pre-1840's Rendezvous each year to re-enact and teach about the ways of the past and the hardship of the Mountain Men and explorers who found their way across the wilderness to seek out life, adventure and walk the unspoiled ground of the Western / Southwestern frontiers.

We live the history, so history is not forgotten.

Listed below are some of the activities you can be involved in.

  • Primitive crafts and skills.
  • Learning about trapping, buckskinning and the Mountain Men and Women in the Fur Trade era.
  • Primitive camping.
  • Primitive cooking.
  • Promoting the interest of our heritage through living history demonstrations.
  • Monthly muzzle loading shoots & knife and hawk throws.
  • Rendezvous participation and information.
  • Monthly club newsletter.
  • Association with other muzzle loading and buckskinner clubs.
  • Association with the Colorado State Muzzle Loader Association.

Everyone is welcome to join us at our meetings or our club shoots.



The first Thursday of the month at  5:30pm

Mailing Address

1745 CR. 358

Westcliffe CO. 81252

Shooting Range 

2211 Overton Road 

Pueblo, Colorado


  • President — Dan Hoffman
  • Vice-President —  Bob Cannon
  • Secretary —  Michelle Hoffman
  • Treasurer — Joe Perry 719-369-3827
  • Historian/Editor—Bob Cannon
  • Range Officer — Joe Cacciatore
  • Newsletter — Bob Cannon
  • Board Members  — Denise Tristano
  • Linda Cannon and Steve Myers
  • Contact Bells Fort


Scheduled at least once a month or as needed except December, January and February. Best to call ahead to confirm.

Annual Rendezvous

32nd Annual Rendezvous, Bear Basin, near Westcliff
August 3-7, 2016  [flyer and map]   Site pic 1   Site pic 2
Redezvous is happening. All fires must be contained and each camp must have buckets of water and fire extinguishers

Turkey Shoot held in 2011

Scrap Book

Turkey Shoot held in 2012

In Memorium

Useful Links

2012 Rendezvous Picture

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