Are Crossbows Becoming Too Efficient for Archery Season?

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Talk' started by Bowhunting.com Staff, May 28, 2019.

  1. Sota

    Sota Legendary Woodsman

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    Fletch, when I mentioned the lower 50% I am talking about those hunters are just too damn lazy to get proficient. I am all for people that can no longer draw a bow using a crossbow.
     
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  2. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

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    I know Sota, I am just playing devil's advocate a bit because there are so many assumptions made about crossbows. A lot of guys simply don't have the time to devote to becoming proficient with a vertical bow. They have jobs and families and volunteer on community boards, at church, coach baseball, whatever...... But, they want to experience deer hunting outside of the gun seasons.

    I can tell you that after one season of being limited to a crossbow, it was certainly not the experience I expected. I was not looking forward to using one at all and ended up with a whole new perspective. I thought I would be "cheating" and found it to be a pain to use. I speak from first hand experience and it seems that many of those that are most vocal about hating on crossbow shooters have never hunted with one themselves. It was the most awkward thing to handle. Horrible to deal with in a stand and required WAY more movement than my vertical bow. That part really surprised me. I actually hated sitting in a stand with one. Blind hunting would be my preferred method for using one. They are ridiculously accurate and extremely easy to sight in and shoot. They do in fact have better range if you have your hands on a high-end model. They are very heavy and good luck getting a second shot. Lots of pros and cons, but certainly not a magic bullet that many believe. All that being said, I am anxious to see if I can get back to the vertical bow this summer. But I definitely have a new respect for those that either must use a crossbow or simply choose to. They are no threat to me or my enjoyment of the outdoors.
     
  3. Fix

    Fix Grizzled Veteran

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    I'm not a fan of crossbows and I have hunted public here in NY and hated it and thought it was like thundedome. I hate the thought of sharing bow season with a different breed of hunters.... But before you all poop your pants in a hurry to slam me know this. I have reached out to multiple guys on this site to come hunt NY on my private ground. 3 have so far and I expect more. I have even invited crossbow hunters without a stipulation of weapons used. My question is I already share rut with crossbow hunters and now it looks like it will turn into even more perhaps the entire season if ppl don't voice their opposition.
    Have gun and crossbow share a season and it ends the debate.... I understand and am not opposed to using a crossbow via permit during all of bow if injury or handicap or even age dictates.
    Bring the dislikes and cry elitist... Your butthurt fuels my resolve.
     
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  4. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

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    Fix, how does it negatively impact you and your hunting? More people in the woods? Should the fact that you shoot a vertical bow guarantee you a season with less competition? If so, why or why not? Because it's "harder"? Why is it more fair to make the crossbow crowd hunt during the most crowded part of all seasons? With numbers of new hunters on a solid decline, is it selfish to want to have the woods to ourselves?

    You are fortunate to have private ground. Are the crossbow shooters taking some of the deer that you think you might get a chance at on your ground? If not, how could it be a concern to you? Is calling a crossbow shooter a "different breed", elitist in any way?
     
  5. Fix

    Fix Grizzled Veteran

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    Up here it's arguably the most hunters per square mile. Gun season a perpetual war zone. With the pressure deer are more and more skittish. Which drives ppl to shoot further and with less than optimum shots. This is translating into archery due to crossbow. All archers push the lines of practical distances. Some more than others. Now throw in a scoped Cbow that groups at 100 and idiots are shooting at anything.
    And tell me this... How is the case of defense being imposed. This happens with politics too. It's a change to the normal and established. Shouldn't the burden be on the imposers (crossbow advocates) to prove?
    I can use my bow and you can use your crossbow during any gun season.... Isn't that enough? If I don't fight this now what's next...air powered , drone strikes, entire season of gun?
    All the ppl that argue the pro crossbow side ( that I noticed) always point out their circumstances to validate it's use. Be it age or injury. Tell me.... Why point that out?
     
  6. Justin

    Justin Administrator

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    I'm perfectly able bodied (possibly up for debate) and have hunted with a crossbow several times each season since it was made legal in IL. I've yet to kill a deer with one.

    I'll be sticking with my compound. Way easier.
     
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  7. axtell343

    axtell343 Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I'm just glad I can shoot at deer over 40 yards now.
     
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  8. Fix

    Fix Grizzled Veteran

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    Valid point.... Until the last sentence
     
  9. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

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    Originally I pointed out my individual circumstance because I felt like I was "cheating". Because so many guys that have never even hunted with a crossbow had told tales of their magical killing powers. Then I actually hunted with a crossbow and figured out that it is far from cheating. In many ways, I would much rather have my vertical bow. They are in no way leaps and bounds above a vertical bow when it comes to being more efficient at killing deer. I have now done both and can speak to that from first hand experience.

    Idiots have always taken poor shots. Again, I would guarantee you that an idiot with a crossbow is going to cripple far fewer deer than an idiot with a vertical bow. That gets them tagged out and out of the woods. Better than more vertical bow shooters staying in the woods and continuing to cripple deer all season long. The only "normal" has always been change in technologies. The sky has been falling for several decades due to the next great advance that is going to wipe out the wild game populations. Hasn't happened yet. Irrational fear is a funny thing. You will have crossbows in archery season as will most all of us at some point. It's a natural progression that will be the new normal.

    Again, all I really get out of your argument is the fact that some more deer might get killed and you might have to share the woods with some hunters that you don't think belong there. The "different breed". Just stick them in a gun season. That has to be fair to them, right.
     
  10. Mod-it

    Mod-it Weekend Warrior

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    I agree with Justin on this...for deer seasons. It is up to the F&G to analyze if crossbows change the success rate enough during archery only seasons that it is an issue to allow them. With that being said, they are not allowed to be used in anything but the "any weapons" seasons here in Idaho. It would effect the deer season around my area very little, as it is already open for any weapon during the rut in a lot of units and there aren't any big advantages to archery only deer season except maybe being able to sit in a stand early in September when they are still in their summer feeding patterns (I'm too busy elk hunting during this time to take advantage). Heck, changing the rut to archery only...even with crossbows being allowed, or even muzzleloaders too...would be an improvement over the "any weapons" seasons that we have now.
    I feel they would be a definite advantage during archery elk season though. I far and away have more shot opportunities blown from either the elk catching me drawing or not giving me the shot angle I need before I fatigue too much from holding the bow drawn to make an accurate/moral shot, than I do from anything else (how's that for a run-on sentence). Completely different style of hunting compared to sitting in a tree waiting for an animal to pass in range. I'd be very surprised if the success rate for archery elk didn't jump at least 15-20% if crossbows were allowed, due to the greatly increased number of hunters that could now simply buy a weapon that takes the same skill as a rifle to shoot accurately, the lack of movement necessary compared to a bow when an animal is encountered, and the increased range. I do think it would improve the gun season though by reducing the number of folks hunting during that season.
    If they did make them legal for archery elk season, I feel it would all but ruin the season compared to what it is now. Much higher competition for camping spots, hunting spots, animals getting extremely call shy from every Tom, Dick, & Harry out blowing on a call 1 minute after shutting their atv off, and calling in other hunters constantly. If they allowed crossbows I would completely alter my hunting strategy. No more calling except really soft cow calls when close to elk, and more than likely just start hanging stands on wallows.
    Look at my avatar...as big as the elk country is here, it turns into a zoo during gun season on public land...and crossbows would do the same to archery season IMO.
    Archery elk hunting for me is not only the chance to put some of the best meat out there into my freezer, but an escape from work, reality, stress, deadlines, crowds, and a recharge my sanity batteries. I love how few people there are in the woods at that time.
     
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  11. Fix

    Fix Grizzled Veteran

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    Gun season is a all encompassing season. A catch all. You (if rifle is legal) can hunt with all guns, bows, and other. So yes it's a great spot for them. Change will happen and I have to and will roll with it. But I don't have to sit quietly about it. You should understand that fletch you are far from underspoken. Whether you admit it or not I doubt you would argue this if infact you did not have the need for one.
    And Thanks BHOD for stirring the pot with 123 days until most of us can kill something.
    I can't change your ( pro cross ) guys to my opinion and until I get hurt you won't change mine
     
  12. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

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    I actually became more pro-crossbow when I saw others benefit from their inclusion in our archery season and saw that the impact on our herd and hunters was negligible. Probably not even measurable. Once I actually hunted with one, I saw first hand that a crossbow is not a huge advantage in killing. Only a huge advantage in the time spent to become proficient. Most arguments against are unfounded and irrational. Nearly identical to the cries I heard when the first compounds came to market and again when trigger releases came to market. I'm old!
     
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  13. buttonbuckmaster

    buttonbuckmaster Grizzled Veteran

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    Illinois made crossbow legal for everyone 2 years ago ( I think)? I still have yet to encounter another hunter using one. I'm sure that will change soon. New crossbows can be bought for about half the price of a new compound bow. That fact alone will have many longtime bow hunters picking up a crossbow in the future IMO.
     
  14. GregH

    GregH Grizzled Veteran

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    Thanks for the laugh Fletch. You know this is nothing more than your opinion and not a fact that you can guarantee...... right?

    My question is...... why would an able bodied person choose to use an xbow over a vertical bow if they are way more of a pain in the ass to use?
     
  15. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

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    I've used a crossbow a few times the last couple of seasons. Primarily during firearms season, and last season after I injured my shoulder. I can say with 100% confidence I'm much more confident in my vertical bow than the crossbow. Maybe it's just not enough experience with one, but they are really awkward and difficult to swing around in the tree while getting the clearance you need. I missed a buck last year with the crossbow that I'm 99% sure I wouldn't have missed with the vertical bow.

    I agree with fletch, for someone that has very little experience with a vertical bow a crossbow will probably get them crippling less deer and with less practice. But if you're pretty proficient with a vertical bow I just don't see an advantage. I likely won't carry mine much this year at all except maybe firearms season?
     
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  16. buckeye

    buckeye Grizzled Veteran

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    My reply has nothing to do with this debate but rather just your reply here.

    From what I have seen from you in the past, a bad day of shooting a bow for you would still smoke 90% of other archers best day.

    Your experiences, I doubt would mirror the general hunting pouplations.

    Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
     
  17. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

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    Believe what you want, laugh when it feels right. Why would anyone go to the trouble to use a muzzleloader rather than pick up a rifle during regular gun season? Why would anyone go to the trouble of learning to shoot a recurve with fingers rather than a compound with a release? Why ride a bike when you could ride a motorcycle? Fortunately, not everyone wants the same experiences. To push that line of thinking is like a vegan pushing their lifestyle on meat eaters. To think that the only reason anyone would use a crossbow is because it is "pushing the easy button" is illogical at best.

    How many deer have you killed with a crossbow? Have you hunted with one?
     
  18. Bone Head Hunter

    Bone Head Hunter Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Sounds like Ohio has a lot of dumb asses to me, and a few self proclaimed elite individual that are worthy of chasing whitetails with arrows no matter what weapon they are launched out of.....
     
  19. Fix

    Fix Grizzled Veteran

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    Why aren't we addressing the $hit stirring from BHOD. I can't wait for the next article
    Whats better Fixed or Mechanical.

    I see what you did there guys and I'm calling you on it.
     
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  20. GregH

    GregH Grizzled Veteran

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    I see you answered my question with a whole lot of other questions. Deflection? My question is still unanswered.

    As for your question...... At 62 years of age I'm still capable of shooting a vertical bow so I have not purchased, hunted or killed with an x bow...... Yet. When the need arises I will join the x bow crowd.

    I laughed because of what you claimed to be a guaranteed fact. Any links or studies to support your statement? If not, it is just your opinion.

    Here's one of mine...... X bows will increase the number of after hours violations because they are silent and can be fitted with laser or night sights. I guarantee it AND bet you a million bucks!

    Fact or opinion?
     

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