Justin’s FB post on Distance

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Talk' started by Shane0709, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. Shane0709

    Shane0709 Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2014
    Posts:
    1,664
    Likes Received:
    1,745
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Illinois
    [​IMG]

    This exploded on fb. I am in strong opposition to the message of the post, but I respect the opinion very much. I really think there’s so many contributing factors and that it’s a judgement call to be made by the person according to the conditions and skill of the Hunter. With every shot, the hunter is responsible for the arrow after it is released, regardless of the distance. Each experience should be learned from.
    Wind, brush, deer alertness, position, angle, light, confidence, Hunter skill and much more have as much of if not more weight in a hunters judgement call on whether to take the shot or not in my opinion. I have killed deer past 40 yards with a 50 pound women’s bow, and they have died ridiculously quickly.

    I don’t personally think ethics or responsibility is dependent on distance, but rather a whole picture; one that inevitably includes distance as A factor, but not the WHOLE factor.
    I have passed so many shooter bucks inside of 40 for so many different reasons, where as I have also taken the shot past 40. I don’t think one can delineate or set any ethical parameter on any Hunter, as it is such an individual call. I’m not saying that’s what Justin is doing necessarily, but definitely some of the commenters on FB. I mean the post is about whitetails, but we also watched a video of decroo shooting 93 yards at a bull elk and missing the first shot. Not a knock on him at all. But what’s the difference? It’s bigger? They’re both living breathing targets with movement and endless variables. It’s hard to tell someone like Lee lakosky, tim wells, or Levi that they can’t shoot at a whitetail past 40 due to ethics. Should morons like chris brackett take that shot? Absolutely not.
    My opinion is to make a judgement on a shot based off of all around ethics, and don’t make a judgement on ethics from simply shot distance.

    Apologies for the incoherent rant. But this one really got me.

    Again, Justin, if you see this, no disrespect meant here. You’re still my bestest friend in the whole wide world.

    What do you all think about this?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
    Bootlegger likes this.
  2. Kfili

    Kfili Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2015
    Posts:
    1,125
    Likes Received:
    980
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Lynchburg VA
    Im not gonna address every point you made in the rant but one that needs to be mentioned is

    Many many differences between elk (and tons of other animals that are hunted) and whitetail. The reactions a whitetail make at a sound or sight are way different than elk, elk dont "flinch" or pull up their legs to blow outta there.
    Justin adresses this as well, which is why he says whitetail instead of animal.
     
  3. Kfili

    Kfili Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2015
    Posts:
    1,125
    Likes Received:
    980
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Lynchburg VA
    For what its worth Im not disagreeing with your post, but using elk distance as evidence is an invalid point IMHO
     
  4. Shane0709

    Shane0709 Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2014
    Posts:
    1,664
    Likes Received:
    1,745
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Illinois
    That’s fair, makes sense


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
    Kfili likes this.
  5. slickbilly-d

    slickbilly-d Weekend Warrior

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2017
    Posts:
    715
    Likes Received:
    770
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Indiana
    The decision is very dependent on all the details that make up the scenario and each scenario is different. Some people shoot tighter groups at 60 than other people at 30, but that still doesn’t automatically give the green light on the shot.

    What I think the ideal scenario would be:
    Hunting a field edge or food plot, deer comes out 60 yards away, doing its normal routine, no signs of nervousness, head down eating, off wind blowing and rattling the crispy fall leaves, evening traffic singing away on the highway a mile or two off, and being able to range it to get exact yardage.

    Dang, I almost thought I was in the stand for a second.
     
  6. Marauder

    Marauder Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    Posts:
    2,694
    Likes Received:
    634
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Tomahawk, WI
    Not a fan of shooting whitetail deer at long distances. Sure it can be done but ask yourself why must you shoot so far? Why not get closer? Is it too much to handle to wait for a better shot? Of course archers can pull it off but not everyone. I’ve read too many damn posts of idiots in the heat of the moment taking bad shots and then complain later how it was a bad idea and asking if anyone has a tracking dog. If you factor in ability, not everyone can make those shots. Factor in equipment, not everyone has their equipment setup to be successful at a long range shot. It just opens opportunities for bad things to happen.


    Sent from my iPhone using Bowhunting.com Forums
     
    NEW61375 and copperhead like this.
  7. gri22ly

    gri22ly Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Posts:
    1,278
    Likes Received:
    780
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Mouth of a holler
    After 60+ kills, my longest shot has been at 33 yards...I've never had to shoot over 40 yards.
     
    Mr.O, cantexian, Wiscohunter and 3 others like this.
  8. slickbilly-d

    slickbilly-d Weekend Warrior

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2017
    Posts:
    715
    Likes Received:
    770
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Indiana
    Same here. My past 3 deer have been 5 yards, 15 yards, and 7 yards. That being said, I still shoot my bow at 60 yards on a regular basis. I know what kind of groups I can shoot at that distance and would feel confident at that yardage if all other factors fell in to place. I have one stand that would allow that long of a shot, but the deer don’t appear out in the middle of the field, the have to past by the stand at 20 yards or less
     
    Mr.O and copperhead like this.
  9. virginiashadow

    virginiashadow Legendary Woodsman

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Posts:
    16,375
    Likes Received:
    7,954
    Dislikes Received:
    12
    I've maybe killed 40 deer with my bow. Longest shot was 34 yrs and that felt entirely too long. I'm a 15 yard and under guy. Lol.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
     
  10. copperhead

    copperhead Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2014
    Posts:
    3,381
    Likes Received:
    605
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Apex, North Carolina
    There are plenty of people that are fully capable of considering all of the factors and making a calculated risk. However there are plenty that don't consider the risk but just acknowledge that they shoot paper reliably at longer distances. Emphatically stating that everyone should adhere to the 40 yards or less is not realistic but not really a bad thing either. Realistically some people shouldn't be shooting farther than 20 but what can we do to ensure more people consider the various factors? Posts like this and what Justin put on Facebook are wonderful ways to hopefully get the point across, that being just because you can punch paper at long distances doesn't mean you can reliable kill animals at longer distances.

    Ultimately the hunter has to live with the results in the end. If they own it was them and don't blame their equipment I can respect that. Anything else not so much.
     
    Shane0709 likes this.
  11. copperhead

    copperhead Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2014
    Posts:
    3,381
    Likes Received:
    605
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Apex, North Carolina
    Me an you both brother !! :tu:
     
    virginiashadow likes this.
  12. Rick James

    Rick James Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Posts:
    5,000
    Likes Received:
    709
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Location:
    N. Illinois
    I've killed deer over 50, and missed them under 10. With that said, the nature of how a whitetail reacts really doesn't lend itself well to 40+ yard shots and I really can't think of a situation I'd take one in these days. I can't promise I won't do it, but I've passed a lot of them over the past few years just because it doesn't feel right.

    I also don't think that it applies the same to all animals, different animals absolutely react differently at the shot. I have no first hand experience but I've seen on TV and heard from many close friends that muleys and elk just don't turn inside out on the shot where I've seen it over and over with whitetails. Last year I had one duck the shot hard at about 33 yards and I ended up wounding him in the backstraps. He was completely unaware until I grunted him to stop, so he really wasn't on pins and needles at all. In hindsight even that shot at 33 yards was probably too far, the older I get the more I realize it's just not worth it on shots like that.

    There will always be another day and another opportunity, but what I'd give to take back a few of the bad shots I've made over the years on whitetails.........
     
    dnoodles and NEW61375 like this.
  13. Justin

    Justin Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Posts:
    8,561
    Likes Received:
    2,051
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Algonquin, Illinois, United States
    Certainly seems that I kicked the hornet's nest with that one. :lol:

    I will continue stand by what I said in that I believe archers should not be taking shots at whitetail deer over 40 yards. I also understand that most people don't give a rip what I say or think and that's perfectly fine with me. However since we're on the subject I'd like to elaborate a bit on why I feel this way and respond to some of the most common arguments I hear in favor of long range shots.

    First, taking long range shots at whitetails has absolutely nothing to do with the accuracy of the archer taking the shot. That's probably the most common response I see. "I can shoot groups out to 80 yards so why can't I shoot deer at 60?" Well, I believe we've all seen time and time again that the reaction speed of a whitetail to "duck" at the sound of a bow going off is unlike any other big game animal on the planet. In the time it takes an arrow to travel 40 yards a whitetail deer can absolutely move far enough to cause either a clean miss or a poor hit. As that distance increases so too does the amount of time a deer has to react and move. IMO beyond 40 yards you're flirting with disaster as it's impossible to accurately predict what is going to happen once that arrow is in the air. I don't care if you're Levi Morgan, Tim Wells, John Dudley or anyone else. Accuracy does you no good when the target you're shooting at has moved a foot before your arrow gets there. This unpredictability is the #1 reason I am against long range shots.

    I've also heard the argument that the further away the deer is the less likely they are to respond to the sound of the bow going off. My opinion is that this is purely anecdotal and I've yet to see any footage of long range shots on whitetails that supports this. Shooting deer at 60 yards is just as unpredictable as 40. And if you're shooting that at 80 or 100 you're possibly beyond help.

    Second, I hear quite often that modern archery equipment is better than ever and allows us to shoot further than ever. My response to that is the same as what I posted above. The vast majority of bowhunters are shooting setups at or under 300 fps. We're fooling ourselves if we think that's anywhere near fast enough to compensate for the speed of a whitetail to dodge your arrow. And we've been shooting those speeds, give or take a little bit, for well over a decade now. I can definitively say when I bought my Bowtech Allegiance back in 2005 that 60 yards shots weren't anywhere near as common as they are today. And my Triax is maybe 20 fps faster than that bow was 13 years ago. It's a hell of a lot quieter and more enjoyable to shoot, but not all that much faster.

    Third, I firmly believe most archers overestimate their ability to execute long range shots under the pressures and conditions of real world hunting scenarios. I've shot with a lot of people over the years and the amount of them that were accurate enough at 40-60 yards to cleanly kill a stationary whitetail 9 out of 10 shots with their hunting setup has been pretty small. Hell, I see people each year at our local conservation qualifying event that can't hit a target at 20 yards when they're under a little bit of pressure. And that's standing on level ground in a pair of shorts and a t-shirt during warm weather. Drop the vast majority of bowhunters in a treestand on a 30 degree day with a few layers of clothing on and a 150" buck in front of them and I'll put money on the fact that most of these Internet marksmen miss the mark at distances over 40 yards. But when it comes to the Internet everyone is an expert archer and has killed dozens of whitetails at 50+ yards without ever missing, wounding or making a poor hit. Apparently there's a lot more world class archers out there than we all realized. The amount of manly boasting about shooting ability on that post is pretty comical.

    Fourth, and this is a personal pet peeve not necessarily an ethical dilemma, is that I believe the core allure of bowhunting is the challenge of getting close to your game. Bowhunters routinely talk about how gun hunters have it too easy and it's not a challenge to kill a deer with a gun all while seeking to shoot deer at longer and longer distances each year. It's a very odd thing to me. I remember a time when we bragged about how close we got to an animal that we killed and used that as a measuring stick of how good a bowhunter you were. Now we're bragging about how far the shot was, which to me simply indicates we've lost the value of what it means to get close to your animal. Being a good bowhunter means putting yourself in a situation to get as close to your prey as humanly possible. Period. If you can't get closer than 60 yards to your animals you should worry more about becoming a better hunter and less about being a better archer.

    These days it seems people are more concerned about pats on the back and "likes" on their trophy photos than they are about actually being a better hunter. Far too many people simply look at the outcome of the hunt, regardless of how they got there, as the measuring stick of a good hunter. But to me a guy that cleanly kills a pile of 12o" deer at 15 yards is a significantly better bowhunter than a guy who kills 160's at 60 yards.

    Fifth, I'll say that I have been amazed at the hypocrisy of many of the responses on my post. So many people saying we shouldn't be allowed to have an opinion on what other hunters are doing. That if someone feels comfortable taking a shot it should be their choice and we should just shut our mouths. Yet if we see hunters taking head shots or quartering-to shots then it's okay to have an opinion - even if the person taking the shot felt comfortable with it. I understand very well that the decisions we make in the field are ours alone, but that doesn't absolve us from having to adhere to some sort of code of ethics in those decisions.

    Finally, I'll say I've yet to see any sort of compelling argument that says we should all be running out and taking 40+ yard shots at whitetail deer with our bows. Just a bunch of posturing, bragging about accuracy, bragging about equipment and telling me I'm no better than Peta. :lol:
     
    GregH, Mr.O, kspseshooter and 12 others like this.
  14. Justin

    Justin Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Posts:
    8,561
    Likes Received:
    2,051
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Algonquin, Illinois, United States
    Of course distance is only a single factor in the ethics of a shot, but at what point does it become the determining factor as to whether or not you should shoot. If my 40 yard mark isn't your limit, then what is? 50? 60? 80? Or is there simply no limit or distance we shouldn't shoot a whitetail at?

    Seems to me like people have a hard time drawing that line in the sand and sticking to it. Everyone wants to put parameters on it and leave it open-ended. Well if the deer is calm, and the wind is calm, and it's sunny, and I ate a good breakfast that morning, then I guess I'll shoot one at 80 yards. But if I didn't have a good night's sleep the night before I may just stick to 60 instead.

    IMO we all should pick our number and stick to it. Stop being so wishy-washy about it.

    Why not? We do this in other aspects of hunting - shot angles, lighting, moving targets, brush in the way, etc. Why should distance be the one factor that's off limits for us to set some parameters around? Shot distance absolutely plays a role in the ethics of an archery shot whether people want to acknowledge it or not.

    Furthermore, we set ethical parameters in all aspects of life. Why should this be different? Most of us are okay with a little bit of speeding - maybe 10 or 20 over on a highway. But almost everyone will agree that 100 mph on a public highway is excessive and dangerous. Cheating on your spouse isn't illegal, but it's an ethical decision that most people frown upon. And the list goes on...

    Why am I drawing a blank on this? When did this happen? Man I hate getting old. My brain isn't what it used to be.

    But to answer your question yes - an elk not only presents a larger target but does not react at anywhere near the speed of a whitetail to the sound of a bow. There is a lot less unpredictability when it comes to shooting at most Western game like elk, mulies, antelope, etc.

    Why is that hard? Do ethics not apply to people with TV shows? The laws of physics all still apply and their bows don't shoot any faster than mine or yours do. Why hold them to any different standard that we hold ourselves?

    And not that I'm a Brackett fan by any means but he can shoot as well as any of those guys on your list. Except Levi. He's possibly the best archer the world has ever seen. It's not even fair to compare him to anyone else.

    Its okay - I was once young and full of piss and vinegar myself. The older I get the more I realize what an idiot I was and how little I really understood about how the world works. If anyone ever invents a time machine I'll most assuredly go back and kick my own ass a couple times.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
    Kplow23, dnoodles, cantexian and 6 others like this.
  15. CoveyMaster

    CoveyMaster Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2013
    Posts:
    9,436
    Likes Received:
    2,368
    Dislikes Received:
    17
    Location:
    MO/KS state line
    Past 40 yards is for target shooting and braggerts, I care not for either aspect of the sport. I completely agree with Justin. Seems like it's more of a maturity thing. I took and made some long shots when I was young, I was fortunate and talented enough to make it work and the few fails I had luckily were clean misses. People are free to do as they please, I certainly did...but I can't honestly say I'd encourage it. I never shoot past 30 now and find I have no need to but my standards aren't super high either. I'm happy with a mature animal for meat or tag soup though if I get serious about it...I never have tag soup. Sometimes I have bigger priorities than killing for food I can buy cheaper. I think that's part of the issue here is that hunters often get anxious or frustrated they can't get deer within 40 so they finally say screw it and just start lobbing darts and using hope as a strategy.
     
    Okiebob and greatwhitehunter3 like this.
  16. Shane0709

    Shane0709 Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2014
    Posts:
    1,664
    Likes Received:
    1,745
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Illinois
    In season 6, on episode 26 at about the 17:15 mark, Justin talks about rectors shot. “Well it’s a little bit of a poke, not a shot I’m personally comfortable taking but then again I shot my mule deer at 48 yards so that’s only 4 more yards. You certainly cant fault him for taking that shot I mean he put it right in the heart”

    So the justification was made by comparing it to a Muley. And you talked about “you personally” which I completely respect. I thought the shot analysis was very fair. Why? Because you spoke for yourself and not every hunter. Tyler’s shot was great. It was ethical, and he knew what he was doing. To fault him for that would be idiotic, much like millions of similar circumstances that allow for a shot of that distance. He was 12 yards outside your ethical parameter but it was both aired and rewarded. Which it should have been.

    However both the muley justification as well as the “personally” stuff is completely incongruent with your previous statements regarding this matter.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  17. Shane0709

    Shane0709 Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2014
    Posts:
    1,664
    Likes Received:
    1,745
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Illinois
    So I just don’t see how one could cite the lessened unpredictability of western game animals as reason to exceed the perfectly drawn line in the sand of exactly 40 yards to justify and commend the 12 yard over your own ethical line on a whitetail by one of your own staff members. Just doesn’t make sense.

    My bad, the elk thing with Dustin happened in season 7. He did miss the first shot, and smoked him on the second. The shot was past 60 yards.

    Why should I have to draw a set in stone line in the sand? It is very circumstantial and it would seem ignorant to place all archers on one playing field in terms of what goes or doesn’t go. “Well it’s only 4 more yards” seems to be extending the line that “shouldn’t be moved”.

    Yes some facebookers did, however, I never came here with some masculine assertion of my accuracy or skills. I didn’t proclaim to be some expert archer or marksman. I simply stated that my situation or confidence is different than yours or anyone else’s given the circumstance that you are placed in. I think you are looking at it as if there should be some universal hard unchangeable algorithm that covers all Bowhunters. “Okay so I shoot 253.7 feet per second so that means I can shoot from 37.33 yards on inward, but not a Hair more” it doesn’t work that way. It’s not wishy washy. It’s just called situational. Breakfast quality is such an over-exaggeration of the situational examples that were provided.

    Not all factors are created equal. Certain ones play larger roles in certain situations.
    Who ever said that ethics don’t apply to people with tv shows? Certainly not me.

    Your line in the sand logic makes very little sense in my opinion. You say that it should be hard and set in stone. You also say that the unpredictability of a shot is the same at 60 and 40. Yet you go on to use the example of the speed of a car in terms of how much over is “okay”. So 100 over is just as okay as 5 over? Makes no sense. That’s like you telling everyone that 10 over is okay but it must be stuck to, as 11 over is just plain wrong.

    Lastly, I feel that my age is irrelevant in the discussion of distance opinions. I don’t know everything. In fact I’m pretty ignorant. However, my opinion isn’t budging based on your line. I have mine. You have yours. Great.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  18. Fix

    Fix Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2016
    Posts:
    2,087
    Likes Received:
    1,552
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Western NY
    Shane you have a great opinion and you present it astutely. I'm personally impressed at your intellectual approach to each point and counter. For the record though I would have to agree with the hard line premise. All factors in the whitetail equation grow exponentially and (I believe) apex into higher risk/ reward around 40 yards.
    I hate when people speak for a group but dare I say, for a large percentage of "us" we choose Bowhunting because of the difficulty and proximity involved.
    Time and life experiences is what have molded my opinion here as even 10 years ago I would shoot and brag about shots in the 50s and 60s.
    I even rationalized my misses says well he was 57 yards out.
    But I digress. Who am I to tell y'all what to do.
     
    Shane0709 and Swamp Stalker like this.
  19. Justin

    Justin Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Posts:
    8,561
    Likes Received:
    2,051
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Algonquin, Illinois, United States
    In the last 2 years my opinion on ethical shot distance on whitetails has changed. Much like I'm sure your opinion on various topics will change throughout your life. Opinions can and do change based on thoughts, feelings and experiences. That's what makes them opinions. For some reason people seem to feel like once we say something at some point in our lives that our belief is written in stone and can never be changed, which is far from reality.

    I think we're getting a little off topic, but I'll go with it. His shot was great because the deer dropped into the arrow. If you review the footage in slow motion the arrow would have missed under the deer had it not moved. So while the outcome was a good one, the shot itself was low from where it was intended to be. Had it been perfectly on course it would have likely been very high lung or spine. Focusing on the outcome and not the event itself gives us a false sense of accomplishment. It's really no different than purposely taking a hard quartering-to shot and recovering the animal the next day. This is the "well it killed him and I recovered the deer so it's okay" argument which holds no water with me.

    This is where you start to lose me. What are these millions of circumstances that make a shot of 50+ yards at a whitetail immune from the fact that the whitetail has a very high likelihood of moving a significant distance before the arrow arrives? I've yet to hear a solid argument that addresses this one core point that I keep making.[/QUOTE]
     
    StanfillKY likes this.
  20. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2013
    Posts:
    8,856
    Likes Received:
    6,488
    Dislikes Received:
    28
    Location:
    RI
    ^^^THIS^^^
     

Share This Page