Friday evening, the Ravalli County Fairgrounds had a large audience watching some of the best competitors in Mounted Shooting contests. Riders on horses and mules maneuvered through a a rodeo arena course in a timed event, shooting balloons at every turn. (see photos below) The pistols are loaded with black powder, no bullets. The spray of hot black powder explodes the balloon... if the shooter is on target. Speed and accuracy are the name of the game. The "Blast in the Bitterroot" Friday demonstration raised money for Sapphire Lutheran Homes. Competition continued into the weekend at the Hamilton fairgrounds.

A successful shot. )Steve Fullerton, Townsquare Media)
Beginning the course at the Ravalli County Fairgrounds arena. (Steve Fullerton, Townsquare Media)