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Author Topic: New to archery  (Read 769 times)

Offline weaksauce

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New to archery
« on: August 24, 2017, 11:35:31 AM »
Turned 40 this year, fiance was nice enough to buy me a nice bow for the occasion.  Been practicing at my local range, feel comfortable and confident out to 30 yards.  Plan is to head out to 49 degrees and hunt the first week of archery season.  I've been hunting for the last several years, harvested two elk in muzzy in my first few years.  I've hunted out of a tent in the freezing cold with rain for days straight and decided that wasn't for me, so I will be praying I can find a place to drop a 27 foot trailer. Don't think it will rain too much but I want to be comfortable.

I've never harvested a deer - I hunted whitetails in modern hard up in Entiat unsuccessfully a few years ago. Saw a few but was fairly green at the time and couldn't get a shot off.  I am getting the hang of the bow but the way the whitetails are I feel like I am up for a huge challenge being limited to 30 yards.  I plan on dropping a few cams and salt blocks the day I get there spending a few days before the season scouting.  Is face paint ridiculous or should I go all in?  :o   I've put WAY more than my fair share miles on my boots, any pointers logistics wise are GREATLY appreciated.

Offline pianoman9701

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2017, 11:40:56 AM »
Camo up and use a mask for your face. Sounds like you've been doing your homework. Spend time in the woods, watch the wind, and you'll converge with wildlife sooner or later. Best of luck and welcome to the forum.  :tup:
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Offline OutHouse

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2017, 11:56:17 AM »
Face paint is a great idea. Oils in the skin can have a reflective effect and make your face look very bright compared to the surroundings. I know people who do it and those who don't. Don't have to paint the entire face, I usually just apply several strokes across the face to break up the outline. I do it because I know a guy who swore up and down that a shiny face can send an animal running especially if they had contact with humans in the past. When I started doing it I noticed that if you're still, whitetails won't even know what you are. You could have a group of does come right up to you for a look and smell. Now, when you blink at them up close, they get the picture!

Offline weaksauce

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2017, 12:17:03 PM »
I called an Elk in I couldn't shoot in the first 15 minutes of muzzy last year, the thing stood right in front of me 5 feet away and didn't see me. Nothing makes you trust your camo more and make things real to a guy than to have an experience like that.  We were on the side of a large stump where we had setup a 'stick' blind that I wasn't super impressed with but boy did it along with our camo do the job. 

I can say that I haven't done a real good job in paying attention to the wind, that's something I am going to focus on more this year.

Also wondering, is rattling a thing? I've read mixed comments on it with deer.  Proof was in the pudding for me on elk on calling.

Offline bracer40

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2017, 01:00:52 PM »
Way more important than face concealing and camo is the wind! Especially when bow hunting!

Rattling works during the rut.
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Offline Whobuff

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2017, 01:06:51 PM »
Make sure you set up in front of a full background of trees or shrubs. This will break up your profile and also allow you to have room to come to full draw. Don't look at them in the eye, always from the corners or periphery.

If you go to any Army Surplus store (there is one on Division) they have cheap army camo.
It always gets you pumped up when you put on camo paint. Takes you from civilian to warrior mode!
I am an Army vet and we would always act slightly more wild with a coat of paint.
Good luck man! If you are like me, you are going to love Archery!!! :IBCOOL:

Offline OutHouse

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2017, 02:09:04 PM »
I called an Elk in I couldn't shoot in the first 15 minutes of muzzy last year, the thing stood right in front of me 5 feet away and didn't see me. Nothing makes you trust your camo more and make things real to a guy than to have an experience like that.  We were on the side of a large stump where we had setup a 'stick' blind that I wasn't super impressed with but boy did it along with our camo do the job. 

I can say that I haven't done a real good job in paying attention to the wind, that's something I am going to focus on more this year.

Also wondering, is rattling a thing? I've read mixed comments on it with deer.  Proof was in the pudding for me on elk on calling.

Rattling whitetails is best during the rut but  you will find plenty of youtube/online stuff about how bucks will respond to rattling even in the early season. Use a white tail grunt tube during any season and they will respond to that. The one I have can be set as a doe call all the way up through various growth stages of bucks from yearling to full on mature masher.

Wind matters. Because of that I recommend using Dead Downwind products. Use the whole line of products they sell it in a package usually. Probably 40 dollars and will last all season. If you use it religiously, getting winded will almost be a thing of the past. Got a buck last year from a blind with my scent carrying right toward the buck; did the same thing still hunting in 2014 with a prevailing breeze carrying my scent right toward the buck who was at most 20 yards away. From my experience, de-scent products absolutely give you an advantage in those situations. Good luck!

Offline Jpmiller

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2017, 06:37:24 PM »
I personally don't like face paint so I wear a mask. I also don't like breathing into my mask but deer seem to notice me a whole lot less when my face is covered. I had a doe whitetail notice me when I was up in a tree not moving without a mask on.

Offline DJ_Mack

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2017, 06:45:24 PM »
If you don't face paint you can't get into character. Do it!


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Offline brew

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2017, 07:03:31 PM »
if YOU feel more confident wearing face paint then do it ...i've killed probably 25 or so blacktails with my bow, some with face paint and some without... as said before wind is the biggest factor...closest one i killed was without face paint--was sneaking along a deer trail at the top of a clear cut just after first light..there was a big tree down over the trail and as i stepped up on it a doe stood up just on the back side of the log...i can still remember seeing the drops of dew on her eyelashes and whiskers as i drew my bow and didn't even aim as she was about 5 feet in front of me...she went about 15 yards before piling up...keep the wind right and you will be eating backstraps this fall
beer---it's whats for dinner

Offline weaksauce

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2017, 12:08:57 PM »
First I wanted to say thank you to everyone for the pointers. 

Thanks Whobluff for the warrior mode comment, I picked up some camo paint.  It's so cheap why not. My thought on it is that some deer are used to humans and some aren't, so for the ones that aren't a little paint won't hurt.  I'm a little worried about using it in the heat, but I am going to give it a shot.

Thanks Outhouse.  I picked up some of that Primos powder to keep in my pocket and check wind.  I have some other products that I can use for scent I will use more diligently.

I had an interesting weekend, my "friend" decided to dry fire my bow.  I took my eye off of him after I handed him the bow because he didn't have my release on, but the next thing I know he is pulling it back with his fingers and releasing!  :bash: :bash: :bash:

Upper cam is now starting to roll over.  7-10 days for the part from bowtech, I can't find it locally.  I went back to the shop that sold me the bow and they sold me a cheap bow at cost just to get me on the road.  Spent the weekend driving around getting the bow looked at, buying a new one, and spent a few hour on the range sighting.  Had to go buy a new sight because the one on the bow was true garbage.  Will be spending the next two days after work sighting and practicing hoping to be ready to leave by Wednesday.  What a weekend.

While I was spending so much time at various stores I was looking at treestands.  I was thinking they would be a good idea for whitetail because they are so skittish - but I'm so used to spot and stalk I'm not sure I should invest the $100 bucks on it.  Thoughts?

Offline boneaddict

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2017, 12:23:42 PM »
Thoughts....I'd beat my friend over the head with the broken bow. Lol

Treestands are an effective tool, especially when it is as dry and crunchy as it is.   That being said, I rarely use a stand.   Certainly a tactics that can be used across most species.
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Offline pianoman9701

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2017, 12:25:29 PM »
Treestands for whities are a good idea if you know where they're moving and when. And rattling can work great on them just prior to and during the rut.
"Restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens based on the actions of criminals and madmen will have no positive effect on the future acts of criminals and madmen. It will only serve to reduce individual rights and the very security of our republic." - Pianoman

Offline Whobuff

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #13 on: August 28, 2017, 02:13:33 PM »
I had an interesting weekend, my "friend" decided to dry fire my bow.  I took my eye off of him after I handed him the bow because he didn't have my release on, but the next thing I know he is pulling it back with his fingers and releasing!  :bash: :bash: :bash:
That is terrible luck this close to the season!!! Anytime I hand my bow over to someone I suspect has never held one, I tell them, DO NOT pull this back! Trust no one to handle it!

Thanks Whobluff for the warrior mode comment, I picked up some camo paint. My thought on it is that some deer are used to humans and some aren't, so for the ones that aren't a little paint won't hurt.  I'm a little worried about using it in the heat, but I am going to give it a shot.
Your welcome, the heat will definitely make you sweat and you will wipe it off or smear it, so you might have to re-coat after a few hours. Your gloves & fingers will smell like camo. But no biggie.

As far as a tree stand goes, I have never used one, but I do use a ground blind for deer and turkey. Deer don't mind them as long as you have them in place and blended in well before you go to hunt in them.

Good luck man

Offline Seahawk12

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #14 on: August 28, 2017, 02:45:53 PM »
I hope your friend offered up some cash.
I bought a tree stand this year. I don't know if it will get used yet. It's something i bought "used" as another tool in the arsenal that i will bring to camp. If the right situation seems to be presenting itself then i will use it.
I suppose i have two quick pieces of advice for you.
If you decide to buy a tree stand for use this hunt then get it now, get it set up and take some shots. Watching other people use them on tv is way different than trying it yourself. At least, that was my experience.
Second, don't go back to camp for lunch. Use the midday to work on still hunting.  The better you can get at this skill the better you will become as a bow hunter. It trains you to move silently, to spot small parts of deer, to plan your route through the brush, to tune in to your environment, etc.

Best of luck on your season.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2017, 05:07:42 PM by Seahawk12 »
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Offline weaksauce

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #15 on: August 28, 2017, 03:24:41 PM »
This won't be the first time my friend paid me back for something he did wrong.  I bailed him outa jail once and I had zero expectation of getting the money back.  One day he popped up on my doorstep with every penny - no better way to solidify a friendship than that.  :tup:

Seahawk12 I totally agree on the back to camp for lunch thing.  When you say still hunting, you don't mean in a blind - but more of a very slow spot and stalk approach?  I may have been doing things backwords - spending too much time in the am in a blind and moving more during midday.  On the other hand, I've read that this time of year they are shedding velvet and may bed for 2-14 days after shedding where 'still' hunting may not work.  Maybe I should try a combination of the two approaches to find the technique that works?

Offline Jpmiller

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #16 on: August 28, 2017, 04:06:25 PM »
Bow hunting out of a stand takes a special kind of patience. I've never been able to sit for more then an hour and a half or so. You can't see the same amount of country as sitting from a ridgetop so I go stir crazy. I have spotted deer moving on a different trail and climbed down, caught up and arrowed one though.

My dad can sit in a tree all day and always ends up with a deer so it's not a bad way to go.

Offline Seahawk12

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #17 on: August 28, 2017, 05:05:07 PM »
This won't be the first time my friend paid me back for something he did wrong.  I bailed him outa jail once and I had zero expectation of getting the money back.  One day he popped up on my doorstep with every penny - no better way to solidify a friendship than that.  :tup:

Seahawk12 I totally agree on the back to camp for lunch thing.  When you say still hunting, you don't mean in a blind - but more of a very slow spot and stalk approach?  I may have been doing things backwords - spending too much time in the am in a blind and moving more during midday.  On the other hand, I've read that this time of year they are shedding velvet and may bed for 2-14 days after shedding where 'still' hunting may not work.  Maybe I should try a combination of the two approaches to find the technique that works?
The three methods of deer hunting are:
1) ambush hunting from a blind or tree stand. This is best used when the deer are moving in the dawn and dusk hours.
2) spot and stalk. Going high with optics and looking for the deer. Once found you stalk close enough to the deer for an ethical shot.
3) Still hunting. This is basically stalking the woods looking for the bedded down deer or deer that have been pushed by other hunters. Still hunting doesn't have the highest success rate, but it is still higher than if you are sitting back in camp.
When still hunting the things to keep in mind are to move slowly. One or two steps and a pause to look carefully into the nooks and crannies for flicking ears and tails or antler tines. A step or two. Repeat. Deer know the cadence of a human walking. One or two steps and a long pause to look carefully breaks the cadence.
Noise discipline is important when it comes to unnatural sounds like metal on metal or Velcro. Do whatever you have to to eliminate those noises completely. A snapping twig isn't a big deal though if you pause for a bit after the snap. Sit in complete silence for an hour or two in the wilderness and it becomes a noisy place.
Pay attention to the wind. Keep the wind hitting your face. Stick to the shadows. Don't move into the open or outline yourself on a ridge or hill.
In the early season with the hot weather the deer will look for tall timber and/or north and east faces of hills for shade during the day. Be a slow motion ninja going into these areas.

Some hunters will do Ambush hunting in the dusk and dawn hours then still hunt the hours in between. Just be careful not to spread your scent all over the area you are ambush hunting or the areas leading to and away from the ambush site. (Gets tricky depending on the wind.)
Some will rely on Spot and stalk. Getting up high to their spotting locations pre-dawn so they can be glassing when the deer are moving. Watch them until they bed down so you know where to stalk to.
There are many combinations of these methods. Part of the fun in hunting is trying different tactics until you find the tactics you enjoy.
For some hunters going back to camp for lunch and hanging out with their hunting buddies is a great time that they wouldn't want to give up.
I personally love to still hunt the afternoons. It takes a lot of practice to get it down to a point where you're not gritting your teeth and thinking you sound like an elephant wearing corduroy jeans stomping through a field of rice krispies, but it does pay off after enough time.
 :tup:


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Offline bracer40

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #18 on: August 28, 2017, 05:10:28 PM »
I grew up hunting whitetail in upper Michigan. The most successful hunters I knew and have known hunted from a stand. Back then (70s) only bow hunters could hunt from a treestand. The rest of us had to be on the ground. So when I say stands, I mean we found natural funnnels and trails to watch as the sun rose and for at least several hours and again, in the evening. Sometimes it was a simple stump or log to sit on or against. Sometimes we would brush them in.

I've enjoyed hunting WA whitetail the same way. Unlike mule deer, I've found them VERY difficult to stillhunt. In my opinion, hunting from a well chosen treestand is the most effective way to pursue them, particularly during archery season.
Just my  :twocents:
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Offline longstevo

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Re: New to archery
« Reply #19 on: August 28, 2017, 06:03:38 PM »
Treestands for whities are a good idea if you know where they're moving and when. And rattling can work great on them just prior to and during the rut.


At first read I thought you meant "tree stands for whities" meaning us hunters with lighter skin.  Haha  :chuckle:
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