Talk to me about bow hunting

Discussion in 'Hunting and Fishing' started by Kevo, Oct 31, 2018.

  1. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    Alright, I've got it stuck in my head. I want to learn to hunt, and more specifically, bow hunt. Trouble is, I'm starting from scratch with no guidance. What do you guys recommend to start out here?

    Gear?
    Quarry?
    Books?

    I have a couple of archery pro shops near by, but I'd like to educate myself a bit before following a blind recommendation. I've also located a free range to get as much practice in as I can stomach. My hope is to get enough confidence to start off with some small game hunting, then work towards deer in the 2019 season.
     
  2. Mountainmistwanderer

    Mountainmistwanderer Member

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    What kind of bow are you interested in?
    Compound?
    Takedown recurve or longbow.
    No matter which you choose the one thing you want is the ability to change out your limbs for a heavier or lighter weight and this is automatic with a takedown. All the older people I shoot with have gone to a lighter weight bow (40ish# to 50ish#) and still get the kills.

    Don't over weight yourself or you will have a hard time holding steady.
     
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  3. Mountainmistwanderer

    Mountainmistwanderer Member

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    Just curious as to where you live
     
  4. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    Right now I'm leaning towards a compound bow setup. I've seen several that advertise quite a bit of adjustments, but have no idea what goes into that. I'm in northeastern IL. From my reading, it looks like the minimum standard is 40lbs draw within a 28" pull.
     
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  5. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Member

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    Look up how to measure your draw weight. You also want to learn about arrows etc but to start you need to start shooting. 40lbs is good to start with but isn’t strong enough to go deep in big game. You can hunt small things with it though. I have a bear Cruze compound that is nice, lightweight and isn’t terrible expensive. I am getting more into primitive archery lately with a recurve
     
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  6. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    Thanks for the info! A couple that I've been looking at have an adjustable weight from 50 to 70ish. My end goal is larger game, so I'm hoping to find something that'll grow with me.
     
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  7. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Member

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    Many are able to be adjusted. I think my cruxes has a similar range of poundage. When you do a takedown recurve you can buy different limbs to change the weight. Your draw length is important for proper arrow length and you get it by measuring from middle finger tip to middle finger tip. Divide by 2.5 and round up to nearest half inch. Most info I have deals with recurve bows and arrows.
     
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  8. RocketmanDane

    RocketmanDane Member

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    @Kevo I cannot tell you much about the bows themselves. As far as the practice and hunting I am more familiar. I know ALOT of people who bow hunt and their preferred method is from a tree stand. Walk and stalk can be hard for newer bow hunters because there are to many factors shooting from a unknown distance etc. They much prefer to set their tree stand and learn the distances to predetermined spots .

    As far as practice their preferred method is Hay bail targets and paper plates. No need for fancy picture or printed targets.

    They also keep 2 sets of arrows. A Good hunting set and their practice set. Arrows that are used for practice tend to get boogered up and and can be made highly visible (can be pretty easy to loose arrows) They practice with the same type of arrows they plan to hunt with just different tips.

    If you plan to hunt from a elevated position such as a tree stand, practicing shooting from a elevated position is a MUST!

    Never dry fire your bow..

    For pulling a arrow from a target one of those jar lid removal grippy tools works wonders( the cheaply rubber/ plastic ones that you might get as a freebie somewhere)

    And never shoot at a hard object. That may sound obvious but they do sell arrow tips called “Stump Thumpers” to shoot at well stumps.... I tried this about 2x my first aluminum arrow bent badly and the graphite arrow I tried exploded... So it is unclear to me why they would even sell them.

    Making targets can be a fun and interesting project if you get creative. Instead of investing in expensive targets they can be crafted from left over shipping or packing material.
     
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  9. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    @RocketmanDane Lot's in here I didn't think about. Love the grippy tool idea!

    I'm sure I'll get around to a tree stand eventually. Right now I have a small ground tarp/blind setup, which hasn't served me very well, but that's more user error than anything.

    Anybody have a hunting book recommendation?
     
  10. shaneadams90

    shaneadams90 ESEE Knives Marketing Director Staff Member

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    Man, as a bow hunter, get ready to go down a rabbit hole....I bow hunt almost exclusively and love it....it's hard, and there are way easier ways to put meat in the freezer....but here are a few things I've learned.


    1. The importance of a good bow tech/bow shop is WAY underrated by most new archers....you NEED a good bow tech and a place with an indoor range is advantageous. A bow must be set up FOR YOU by a Pro, someone that knows what they are doing. Bow set up is as important as buying hiking boots that fit. Proper bow fit is imperative. I would shop for a bow shop/tech FIRST and a bow second.

    2. Get instruction....even just a few lessons. This is not intuitive and a few bucks on instruction will set you down the right path. A good bow shop/tech should be able to help you here..(See #1)

    3. Buy Used. Bow technology loves to recreate itself.....buying a use bow package that is a few years old often gets you into a great set up that is complete and often a higher grade set up. (But is must FIT....see #1)

    4. Once you have purchased your bow set up....shoot the bow....A LOT....leading up to archery season I might be shooting 100 arrows a day at various yardages. Shoot...and shoot a lot, in all conditions...if you are hunting from a stand, shoot from your stand.

    5. Hunting efficacy....based on your performance and practice, set a max range you are comfortable with and do not go beyond it....

    6. Hunting with a bow is different, harder, but more rewarding to me personally....no matter the size of the quarry you take there is a feeling of accomplishment....I got a new bow this season RIGHT before the season stated and I am hunting less with the bow and I miss it...but I won' t take it into the field until I'm 100% comfortable with it...those are my rules for myself.

    14370320_10209812075332779_7183674855669164037_n.jpg 14650235_10209944396400723_6798338015477094787_n.jpg IMG_2640.jpeg IMG_4537.jpg
     
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  11. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Member

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    Note to self... don’t anger Shane...
     
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  12. shaneadams90

    shaneadams90 ESEE Knives Marketing Director Staff Member

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    I’m all bark.
     
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  13. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Member

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    I saw your grouping in that photo... plus you’re all about hunting for the sport and challenge. I’ve read the most dangerous game... ;)
     
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  14. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Member

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    Anyway on topic... Shane is right. Fit matters most and after that it’s practice. I was self taught on a recurve and it was frustrating. That was in middle school. I stopped for awhile got back in a few years ago and let me tell you, YouTube can be a great resource. It can also be miserable. Having a pro help you while you practice is best if you can do that locally. I think you are on the right track wanting info before finding a “pro” but start with a bow. Shoot it a few dozen times. Have a pro fit it to you then see if it shoots and feels better then you have a keeper lol
     
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  15. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    I feel pretty lucky in that it looks like I have 3 pro shops within about 30 minutes of the house. One of them accepts firearms as trade fodder, and all 3 have indoor archery ranges. I'll definitely be taking a look around at all 3 and spending some time talking to the techs there.
     
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  16. shaneadams90

    shaneadams90 ESEE Knives Marketing Director Staff Member

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    you are fortunate....now go and ask questions!.... and see who has patience and also who is willing to spend some time teaching AFTER they make the sell...

    Learning to shoot a bow on your own is like learning to play the violin by yourself....just TOO many variables and too much unknown to learn on your own....YouTube is a great source ONLY IF you have a clue....too much BS and bad juju out there and no way to vet them if you are ignorant to the process....

    Like I said earlier, shop for a bow shop/tech first....a good bow shop/tech will likely sell great bows too and there are so many good ones out there....I am Local Loyal and do 100% of my archery business at my local shop and have gotten paid. back in spades in service...
     
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  17. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    Makes perfect sense. I'll have to inquire about lessons.
     
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  18. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    I got my hands on a few books and started diving in on the hunting technique side of things. Planning on visiting a couple shops this weekend and spending some time out in the bush sneaking up on animals.
     
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  19. Strigidae

    Strigidae Moderator Staff Member

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    Well done sir. Spend a lot of time out in the woods just watching and moving and seeing the results. A lot can be learned from "dancing" with the deer. If you can hunt with someone that will help. Ive learned a lot from many mentors over the years but nothing has compared to failure season after season. It does take time or at least it did for me.
     
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  20. Kevo

    Kevo Member

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    That's exactly what I was thinking. Firearm deer season here is short and permits are doled out via lottery and on site name-in-a-hat pulls, so i figure being out there, being quiet, and watching the animals will do me more good than waiting in line and taking up a tag. At least for now until I have my skillset and gear set more properly sorted.

    Unfortunately, I haven't befriended any local hunters yet. I'll be doing my best to mingle at the shops though and take any advice I can get.
     
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