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2714 Views 5 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  kenton6
Anybody here take advantage of the expanded archery season up here in Maine? I have never hunted using bow but when I get more time in the years to come I would really like to get into the act.

Maybe some experts can tell me what are some of the major differences when using a bow than with a rifle or even blackpowder?

Is it all the same until it's time to fire? If so, where do you aim with a bow as opposed to rifle? I know I aim for the largest part of the deer but when it comes to shooting bow do you need to aim higher, lower, same place??
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I'll take a stab at this one. I've bowhunted for 16 years, and shot pro-class 3-D for 4 of those. Most bowhunting is either treestanding or ground blind. Usually, you set up over a trail between a bedding area and a food source that's seeing action. Your effective range is where you can guarantee a hit in the heart/lung zone. You don't really aim in any different place than with a rifle, but you have less leeway on marginal and tough angle shots. Slightly quartering away is the money shot, a good arrow with a reliable broadhead, in the lungs is the best bet.

Nowadays, there's a lot of hype and marketing associated with speed. Speed is good, as long as it's quiet. At 20yds, an arrow needs to be traveling over 350fps to beat a deer's reflexes and I guarantee you, that ain't happening! You need enough arrow mass to ensure a good, clean kill, and a heavier arrow will quieten your bow, too. That said, I'm gettin' on my soapbox......Use 8-9gr/lb of draw weight as a starting guideline. This will give a 560-630 gr arrow for a 70# bow. Sounds heavy and slow, right? I can tell you, it'll be quieter and you'll get penetration you wouldn't believe....... Gotta go to dinner, I'll resume my rant later

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I love this kind of information. It's hard to get it out of some people.
I have a question Canerod.
I used to shoot a lot of bow when I was younger - mostly recurve but I spent a fair amount of time with a compound. I got so I could shoot into round circles pretty consistently. I never shot at anything live.
Since back surgery and I have a terrible back, I've never even tried to draw a bow.
What do you think?
OK, here's my take on having to pull 70=# to deer hunt. It's a crock! I personally know a fellow in WV who loves trad archery, has had numerous shoulder surgeries and had waited his whole life to elk hunt in Montana. He shot a 6x7, just under Pope&Young requirements, in 2003. His gear? A recurve pulling 49# at his draw length, a 650gr arrow and broadhead combo, with a 2 blade, cut-on-impact head (a Grizzly). Now, keep in mind, he limited himself to a 25yd shot, wouldn't attempt anything further, and it took two trips for him to get his bull. He came back home the first time with some nice pictures and a better understanding of himself.
Maine state law says 35# draw weight and a broadhead with 7/8" cutting diameter. That's it..... And IF you put a good bradhead riding on enough arrow mass in the boiler room at 20yds, that will do the job.
OK, soapbox time again..... I believe it is the hunter's obligation to use the most draw weight they can comfortably shoot. This doesn't mean you can pull it to anchor once or twice at the shop, but that you can draw it fully to anchor, after 5 hours in your stand, at freezing temps with your hunting clothes on. More draw weight allows you to shoot a heavier arrow, and mass, behind a properly constructed head, is what gets the job done.
OK, now I know everybody has a buddy's cousin's brother-in-law, that killed a monster buck at 80yds, with a compound shooting 310fps, or something like that. Those things do occur from time to time. People also win the lottery, beat incurable cancer, and climb Mt. Everest blind. But I prefer to leave as little to chance as possible. You owe it to the game you hunt and the sport you represent, to kill in a clean, sure manner. So, why doesn't everyone just rifle hunt? It's a matter of finding your personal niche. I bowhunt. I hunt with a flintlock. I hunt grouse with a muzzleloader. I flyfish with bamboo flyrods that I make, with flies that I tie. Does this make me morally superior? HELL NO! Just my way of doing things.
Some folks are reduced to hunting with a crossbow, if they want to bowhunt. This may be due to disability or other circumstances. Does this make them less of a bowhunter? In my view, if that's the only way I could still bowhunt, I'd do it. But if, due to health issues later on down the road, I have to go back to a compound, I'd do that before I picked up a crossbow. Bowhunters, either compound or traditional, must discipline themselves and practice to be effective. I think this is one of the factors that drew me to the sport. No more laser rangefinder and .300 Weatherby Mag. Just me, a deer, one stick with a string and another with some feathers. If I miss, spook the deer, whatever, it's my shortcoming. By the same token, if I connect, that's all me. Takes away some of the excuses.

And remember, this is all just my opinion. Nothing more, nothing less. Just mine.

So, to answer your question, yes. Go to a local shop, try some different bows and see what you're capable of. Even if you never hunt with it, archery is a great sport. If, after shooting for a while, you feel comfortable with your abilities, go for it and have a great time. Because if you're not having fun, why do it??

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I think the bow hunting is the native in us all. Something about the bow hunt is more primitive in nature, giving us almost that sense of connectivity to the land and animals. Blackpowder is not so primitive but enough you still sense the challenge and at the same time restoring and passing on values this country was founded on. High powered rifle hunting is keeping up with the technology and passing that on...

Other than that it is just plainly your preference. Hunting is a sport and there is nothing wrong with that, so I see why we can't find enjoyment from it.

As for bow hunting, I think the last time I shot a bow was in boy scouts :lol: :lol:

I think I missed the hay barrel completely!!! :wink:
Thanks, Cane.
Well, you sure got my juices flowing. I think I'll head to a shooting range and do some experimenting.
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