Bow hunting is a fun and adventurous way to hunt wild game. Many who have experienced success at it will tell you that there’s nothing quite like it.
Whether you are looking for information on bow hunting for beginners or even a seasoned veteran, we hope to provide you with helpful bow hunting tips to help you in your quest to become a better bow hunter.
Check out the FIVE archery video tips below to get valuable information on how you can be sure you have an arrow that’s “Just Pass’N Through!”
Bow Hunting Tips: #1 – Bow Maintenance | Avoid Freak Accidents Like This One…
When you see this freak archery accident, you’ll want to learn what you can do to help prevent the possibility of it ever happening to you.
Bow hunting is more than just flinging arrows. bow maintenance checks in the off-season, as well as before your hunt, are an extremely important part of being sure you are able to bow hunt safely and avoiding injury.
In the first of our bow hunting tips, we’ve got details on how to do preventative bow maintenance, so you can avoid unnecessary accidents like this one when shooting your bow…
A freak archery accident caught on film, and what you can do to help prevent it from happening to you. Stick with us for the N1 Outdoors N1 Minute.
Archery Accidents And How To Avoid Them
Today we take a look at some incredible slow motion footage submitted to us by Ty Eubanks, who experienced a broken bow cable during a recent film shoot.
While we’re certainly thankful Ty was not hurt, it does provide us an opportunity to go over some simple safety checks that can be done to help you have the best chance at safe shooting during practice, as well as during the hunt.
Now, I know some of you are shooting your bow year round, but some of you put it into storage during the off season and because the temperatures can change in those environments, it’s very important to check bowstrings cables as well as your limbs before shooting.
Bow maintenance checklist [Before You Shoot]
Be sure before every shoot that you check your strings and your cables for any signs of wear or fraying. Anything like that can be a potential for a broken string or cable during a hunt just like in the video we’ve shown.
Be sure you check your limbs very carefully. You want to be sure there’s no signs of splintering, bubbling, or cracking.
As we said, extreme temperatures and sometimes even storage can cause these things to weaken limbs. And, you don’t want to have one of those limbs be damaged or break during a shoot.
You also want to be sure all your screws and any bolts are tightened properly, so that you don’t have any of your accessories loose during a shoot.
It’s also a good idea to check your cams. Be sure you don’t have any nics or cuts that would affect your string in any way, whether it be to cause a fraying or a cutting of the string, or else damage to a cam, where your string may actually even come off the track.
There are also several other things you can check, such as rest alignment and cam rotation. You want to make sure that you get the proper arrow spine for your bow set up. Those things we recommend you take to your local bow shop and have them look for you and inspect that, so that you can have the best chance of a safe shoot.
Thanks again to Ty for submitting his video. We also want to say thanks to Centershot Specialties in Anderson, South Carolina for their input on this video. We hope you have a great week and remember… “where the moments happen, we’ll meet you there.” We’ll see you next time.
Pre-Shoot Checklist For Your Bow:
Check bow string and cables for any signs of wear or fraying
Check bow limbs for any signs of bubbling, splintering or cracking
Be sure all screws and nuts on your bow are tightened. (Replace any rusty ones.)
Be sure your bow cams are free from any type of nics or cuts that could wear out or break your bow string.
Check your cam rotation, ensuring that it is smooth and not warped.
Be sure your arrow rest is aligned properly
It’s always a good idea to let your local bow shop to inspect your bow as well.
Thank you Cole and Mike, and thank you for joining us for this edition of the N1 Outdoors N1 Minute. If you’d like to view other hunting and fishing tip videos, you can visit our website at N1outdoors.com and click on the videos section. The whole library is there. You can also pick up N1 Outdoors apparel and also, now, you can participate in hunting and fishing and outdoors forums on our website, N1outdoors.com
We hope you have a great week, and remember, where the moments happen… we’ll meet you there! We’ll see you next time.
Tip #3 – Aim Small Miss Small [Improve Your Accuracy]
In the third of our bow hunting tips videos, 3D archery tournament shooter, Cole Honstead, shows you a “small” tip that could help you BIG during hunting season! (hint: Aim small miss small!)
This small tip could help you big this coming turkey season. Stick with us for the in N1 Outdoors N1 Minute.
Today we go back out to Colorado to Cole Honstead with another tip help you become a better bow hunter.
I’m Cole Honstead with the N1 Outdoors archery tips. First tip of the New Year is something commonly heard in archery… “aim small, miss small.” And with turkey season right around the corner, we’re about to put that to use.
Thanks again to Cole Honstead with another great tip. If you’d like to see more of these tips, you can visit N1 Outdoors.com and click on the videos section. And while you’re there on our website, be sure to check out our brand new shirt designs, because we’ve got some things you’re really going to like. Also connect with us on social media; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
We hope you have a great week and remember, “Where the moments happen, we’ll meet you there”. We’ll see you next time.
Tip #4 – Hunting Stances Can Make Or Break A Bow Hunt [So, Know Them All!]
In the below N1 Minute archery tips video, learn about various stances that can help you in all types of bow hunting scenarios.
(Archery Stances video transcript)
How to be ready for every bow hunting scenario. Stick with us for the N1 Outdoors N1 Minute.
For those of you who have bow hunted any amount of time, you know that some things can happen during a hunt that simple target practice can’t prepare you for. Today we go back out to Colorado to Cole Honstead, who has some archery tips to help you be best prepared when your moment of truth comes.
Archery Stances For Bow Hunting
I’m Cole Honstead with the N1 Outdoors archery tip. Today’s tip is practicing hunting stances. These can be used for everything from spot and stalk hunts in the West to using blinds and tree stands in the east.
For tree stand hunting, try your best to get to the elevated position. This is as simple as finding the hill and using the bed of a pick-up.
For spot and stalk hunts, try practicing using incline and decline slopes. When shooting from a blind, you’d better get used to sitting in a chair or kneeling position.
Practicing these stances throughout the off season will give you that confidence for a shot of a lifetime.
Thank you for joining us for this edition of the N1 Outdoors N1 Minute and thanks again to Cole Honstead for the archery tips. Be sure to check us out on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and go by and visit N1outdoors.com. We hope you have a great week and remember “where the moments happen, we’ll meet you there”. We’ll see you next time.
Tip #5: Off-Season Bow Practice [You’ll Hunt Like You Practice]
In this N1 Minute, learn some bow hunting tips on how to to keep your archery skills polished and sharp during the off-season so that you can maintain proper archery form.
You know for us bow hunters, this is the time of year that we practice and practice for. But what about when the season’s over? How do you keep your skills sharp? Today we go out to Colorado to hear from 3D Tournament shooter Cole Honstead, with a simple tip to help you do just that.
I’m Cole Honstead with your 3D archery tips. Here’s a simple tip to keep those muscles active after hunting season and all it takes is a simple exercise band.
So many hunters put away their bows, after the fall, through winter, until turkey season. With, one of these exercise bands, you can practice your draw cycle throughout the winter and make that first draw in the spring a little easier.
Simply grasp one end of the band with your front hand and with your drawing hand, pull the band back to your anchor point. Repeat this ten to fifteen times and then switch hands. This will work both your back and shoulders. A few sets of this draw cycle exercise a day, and you’ll be ready to hit the mark on your next 3D shoot or Spring turkey hunt.
Thank you again to Cole for sharing that archery tip with the N1 Outdoors audience. If you’d like to check out our apparel, you can do that at N1outdoors.com.
We hope you have a great week and remember, “Where the moments happen, we’ll meet you there”. We’ll see you next time.
There are a lot of deer sounds and noises I like to hear in the woods. But, there’s one I usually don’t like to hear, especially when I’m walking to my hunting stand. More on that below…
This is the story of some deer sounds that led to a dandy South Carolina archery buck… It’s unforgettable moments like this one that spurred us on to start the N1 Outdoors brand…
In this article, you’ll hear the following deer vocalizations:
Deer blow (snort)
Estrous doe bleat
Tending buck grunt
Note: You can listen to the above deer sounds throughout the article as well as at the bottom of the page.
A New Deer Hunting Property
The 2010 deer season in South Carolina held some great memories for me. I had been granted permission to hunt some new property that was only 3 miles from my house!
The catch? It was bow only property. No guns allowed.
The South Carolina archery only season was already over and we were getting some consistent colder weather. But, the truth is, I really wasn’t disappointed to be hunting with my bow during gun season, because deer hunting just makes me want to say “Bowhunt Oh Yeah!” In fact, I hadn’t even hunted with my rifle since 2009.
Deer, sound the alarm!
It was a chilly, November 18 morning, and the rut was in full swing. I had seen a fair amount of rutting activity, but had not seen any bucks that got me very excited. But, when you love to bowhunt, it’s a great time to be in the woods.
I had parked my truck and was making the walk to my stand on the downwind side of where I would be hunting.
My stand location was in a head of hardwoods that contained several white oaks. I’ve always loved hunting locations that contain white oaks, especially in early fall, as the acorns are falling. But although the deer love them, by now, there weren’t any left for them to enjoy.
Nonetheless, it was a good location on the edge of a fairly large clear cut that the deer would typically transition through on their way to the other side of the property.
There was a gate opening that I needed to walk through to enter the woods where my stand location was.
The Deer “blow” or “snort” Sound
I had gotten about three steps through the gate, when the head of woods I was about to enter exploded with the sounds of deer blowing. It was still too dark to see, but it sounded like a small army of whitetail had just left the building. I stopped and listened, as the sounds of their escape got farther and farther away.
PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT A DEER BLOW / SNORT SOUNDS LIKE… LISTEN TO OTHER DEER SOUNDS FURTHER DOWN THE PAGE)
Well, there I was (and they knew it). I had that sick feeling that might have made one want to just go back to the truck. But, this was the rut, and I love to hunt whether the deer blow me up or not!
I found my tree and got in my stand and got settled. By now, it was first light but the sun was not yet up.
The whitetail doe grunt
After sitting for 10 minutes or so, I thought it might be a good idea to give my grunt call a soft doe grunt. My thinking was, “maybe if they hear this, they’ll think things have settled down and are safe again.”
So, I blew on my grunt call softly, making a “social grunt” noise.
Press play above to hear what a doe grunt sounds like… (more deer sounds further down the page!)
A fast appearance
It had probably been only 10 seconds after grunting, that I could see a deer appear about 100 yards away, on the field edge. Even at that distance, I could see his horns and I was interested!
No sooner than he appeared, he began running toward the head of woods I was in. He got to a well traveled path at the edge of the hardwoods and slowed down, turned, and began walking toward me.
By now my heart is racing pretty good, because I can see this deer is a shooter, and I have gone from heartbroken to hopeful in a matter of minutes.
This is where I have to say that the buck walking toward me had one of the better set of antlers I had seen in my area of South Carolina. In recent years, SCDNR bag limits had been high. Many believe that these high limits, coupled with poor deer management, had resulted in fewer mature bucks in South Carolina.
All I knew was, the age and size of the deer walking toward me was not commonplace in my area.
I had my bow in my hand, but didn’t feel I was going to be able to stand up without messing something up. My archery stance on this deer was going to be… sitting down. I sat and watched him inch closer.
Prior to getting in the tree stand, I had put some estrous scent on a tree limb about 20 yards away. He walked right past it. But, the worst part was that in about 3 more steps, I knew he would be downwind of me, and be gone!
Come on daylight!
I couldn’t believe I was about to watch the biggest South Carolina buck I had encountered leave my life. But, unfortunately, it was all but over.
Just as I thought this hunt was coming to an end (for the second time in minutes), he stopped, turned around, and walked back to the tree limb where I had put the estrous scent.
I knew this was my chance. So, I quietly went to full draw. I thought, “ok, aim small, miss small.” But, there was just one, really big, problem. I looked through my peep and saw, well nothing. It was still too dark in that head of woods to clearly see the buck.
If this buck would stay for a few minutes, there would be enough light through the trees to see his vitals clearly. But, I knew with chasing does on his mind, he probably wasn’t staying much longer. And, I knew that in that particular location, the wind had a tendency to swirl from time to time.
The prayer, the draw, the release
I can’t remember everything that was racing through my mind at that point, but I know I probably prayed a few fast words. It’s amazing how fast I can get to a prayerful state of mind when a big buck is nearby (amazing and shameful!)
As I was still at full draw, I moved my eye outside of my peep, so that I could see the buck through my site pins. Then, I slowly looked back through the peep and could see the target… barely.
I released my arrow and he gave the ‘ole donkey kick. He bolted down the draw and out of sight. I sat for two hours, wondering how this whole story was going to end.
The wait and the search
So far that morning, I had heard deer blow and deer run… now, all I wanted to hear was, “wow, that’s a nice buck there in the back of your truck!”
During those two hours, I scanned the ground endlessly, hoping to see a bloody arrow. I saw nothing. Of course, then the doubts set in… “did I make a good shot? How far did he go? Will I ever find him?” It was agonizing.
Finally, I decided to get down and go look. I walked out 20 yards to where I had shot him and I saw my arrow lying on the ground, the arrow shaft and my broadhead half-covered by the forest floor. My arrow had been Just Pass’N Through!
I picked it up and immediately got some encouragement… bright pink, frothy blood on my fletches. Things were looking up!
I followed along the faint blood trail. It wasn’t significant, but it was enough to keep me moving to the next spots of blood.
After 150 yards or so, I reached a small creek that ran through the property. I was till intently focused on the ground near my feet, checking for any small clue I could find. The blood trail had stopped.
I looked up and about 30 yards away, in the creek, was the buck. I held both hands high and thanked the Lord for answering my desperate (yet somewhat shallow) prayer.
The shot turned out to be a double-lung pass through. (We love pass throughs so much, we even made a shirt about them!)
I was by myself with no one to help me drag this deer out. I could either drag him about 200 yards uphill, or try to drag him through the muddy, swampy mess of a creek. So, I chose option 2.
I was able to use the shallow creek as assistance and slide the buck through the area for the long 300 yard trek back to the truck.
A short drive and a few pictures later, I had officially sealed the deal on one of my most memorable N1 Moments.
Deer sounds: The key to this N1 Moment
Looking back, I’m glad for the deer noises I heard that day… the deer blowing, the deer running, and finally, the deer sliding through the creek bed on it’s way to my freezer and my wall.
Listen below for more doe and buck noises
Buck Grunt Sound
(PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT A BUCK GRUNT SOUNDS LIKE)
Doe Bleat Sound
(PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT A DOE BLEAT SOUNDS LIKE)
Estrous Doe Bleat Sound
(PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT AN ESTRUS DOE BLEAT SOUNDS LIKE)
Buck Tending Grunt Sound
(PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT A TENDING BUCK GRUNT SOUNDS LIKE)
Buck Bawl Sound
(PRESS PLAY ABOVE TO HEAR WHAT A BUCK BAWL SOUNDS LIKE)
People interested in managing their land for wildlife are continually seeking better and more efficient ways to improve the habitat so it can support more and healthier animals, particularly deer. As is so often the case, nature has already figured out the best ways – sometimes it just takes us a while to recognize them.
Let me give you an example.
Hardwoods: Then And Now
Deer hunters head to the woods for many reasons, not the least of which is escape. And most of us, at one time or another, have lamented that perhaps we were born a century or two too late. As we slip through the local woodlot, which is little more than a vestige of days gone by, we wonder what it must have been like before men and metal changed the landscape.
The first Europeans that set foot in the New World, and those that followed for several centuries found a forest that, rather than being patchily distributed on the landscape, stretched on unending for miles. Canopy openings that allowed sunlight to reach the forest floor nurturing small glades were sparse, and usually caused by natural events.
The understory beneath ancient towering hardwoods was much more open as less sunlight could reach the forest floor during growing season. But the biggest difference might well be what covered the ground after the growing season ceased. Rather than the carpet of acorns we’re now accustomed to seeing in the fall, the forest floor of 120 years ago would have been littered with green pods that more resemble some spiny sea creature or alien spawn than the fruit of a plant. Inside each, one would find several chocolate-hued nuts.
Chestnut Trees – King of the Forest
Prior to the turn of the previous century, and for millennia before, American chestnuts (Castanea dentata) dominated the eastern hardwood forests of North America, growing 12 stories tall and wide enough that two men could not reach around their base and touch fingers.
The nuts they dropped in
voluminous quantities were a vital food source for countless wildlife species,
and later for humans, who could shovel up bushel baskets full of them in short
Yet in the geologic blink of an
eye (roughly 30 years) they were effectively wiped out by a blight.
Oaks ultimately filled the empty ecological niche once occupied by chestnuts, dominating the overstory and providing an abundant source of hard mast.
A 20-year-old chestnut can produce as much as 20 pounds of mast per year. On a per acre basis, that’s as many carbohydrates as corn, but without all the labor and expense of replanting every year.
Research has even shown that whitetails prefer acorns over just about any other widely occurring natural food. The deer don’t know the difference, but as you’ll soon learn, this stand-in source of mast doesn’t quite stand up to their forerunners. Fortunately, like healthy seedlings of the once mighty chestnut, hope springs eternal.
Back to the Future
In the early 1950s, James Carpentar discovered a large and very healthy American chestnut in Ohio that appeared to be blight resistant. He sent budwood to Dr. Robert T. Dunstan, a well-known plant breeder in North Carolina, who began grafting and later cross-pollinating American grafts with a mixture USDA-released Chinese chestnut selections.
Are acorns really a whitetail deer’s favorite? Keep reading!
After selecting individuals with the best hybrid characteristics, Dr. Dunstan crossed them back to both the American and Chinese parent trees, creating the Dunstan chestnut, a breed with the optimal combination of blight resistance and production of large, high quality nuts.
The business started largely as a commercial chestnut orchard.
“Until fairly recently, most of the millions of dollars worth of chestnuts sold each year were imported because there were no commercial orchards in the U.S.,” said Iain’s father, Robert Wallace.
And like any start-up, they encountered their share of obstacles.
“We had deer in our orchard every night during harvest season,” he said.
He further elaborated that one of his biggest problems for commercial orchardists is deer eating the nuts before they can be collected. However, the elder Wallace quickly recognized it not as a problem, but an opportunity.
Trying to compete with the mighty oak might seem a particularly risky business venture, until you learn about the chestnut’s nutritional superiority. They contain 4 times the carbohydrates of a white oak acorn; possess 2.5 times the protein and only a fraction of the fat found in acorns.
Chestnuts also have less tannins, making them a much sweeter, and thus more palatable (no-one ever wrote songs about acorns roasting on an open fire). And though chestnuts have not been present on the land for more than 100 years, the ability to instantly recognize their nutritional superiority and palatability is still permanently encoded into the deer’s DNA. They know a good thing when they smell, and taste it.
There are other advantages chestnuts hold over other mast trees that might be of particular interest to those looking to plant wildlife mast orchards.
Chestnut trees grow faster and bigger, sometimes bearing in two to five years, where a white oak might not bear for 20 years. Eventually, chestnuts can grow a dozen stories tall, becoming prolific producers of the caloric carbs wildlife like deer are so dependent on for their winter survival. They also lack the boom and bust cycles more common to oaks, and their blooms come out later in the spring so they are far less susceptible to broad scale mast crop failures caused by late freezes.
Why Plant Trees For Deer?
Before we go further we should probably back up momentarily as some readers are probably wondering why you would plant trees instead of just building food plots like everybody else. Regardless of what you plant, your goal should be not just to attract animals like deer during a particular part of the year (hunting season), but to hold them there as close to year-round as possible. Why? Because the more time they spend on your property, the more comfortable and habituated they become. And the best way to do that is by providing the optimal year-round habitat, the components of which include food, cover and water.
Building and maintaining food plots with annual or perennial herbaceous crops is a very popular way to increase available nutrition for wildlife, but can result in nutritional gaps during certain parts of the year. It can also be costly and labor intensive, particularly with annual crops that must be planted every year.
Your property will be far more attractive to, and beneficial for wildlife if you can strive to keep fresh food sources available for as long as possible throughout the year. Mast orchards represent an alternative or complement to your food plots, and after the initial investment and establishment, will provide increasingly more food indefinitely, and with a great deal less cost and effort compared to food plots or even feeders. They also provide a means for landowners to fill potential nutritional gaps, ensuring there is plenty of the right food throughout the year.
As previously noted, chestnuts offer several advantages over other hard mast sources by growing faster and larger, bearing fruit at a younger age and providing a more nutritious nut. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plant other species, like varieties of red and white oak. Variety is the spice of wildlife, and the more you provide in the way of food, the more attractive and productive your land will be. But don’t stop there.
All too often, landowner’s focus on fall foods and forget about the rest of the year. As previously alluded to, the more deer and other species are present on your property in the spring, summer and winter, the more likely they’ll be there in the fall. Visitors become residents as feeding areas become home ranges, and home ranges become core areas. And it shouldn’t be just about deer either.
Provide Well-Rounded Nutrition
You can further fill the void with species like grapes, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, at the same time attracting a broader spectrum of upland game and game bird species, not to mention non-game animals.
Again, you improve the habit quality over a wider time span by providing greater variety of soft and hard mast plant species, particularly those that help fill gaps in the nutritional calendar.
For example, plums provide fruit as early as May and June in southern regions, and a little later further north. Pears, which ripen from mid to late July through August, depending on variety and location, can fill the next gap as herbaceous plants mature and lose palatability but hard mast has yet to fall.
Which Trees Should You Plant?
Next on the nutritional calendar come things like apples and persimmons, the latter of which come in early-drop and late-drop varieties and are an incredibly powerful deer attractant, particularly during ear to mid-autumn archery seasons. By then, hard mast should start dropping and, if you’ve planted enough variety, will continue providing fall attractant and winter survival food at least through the end of the calendar year, and quite possibly through the winter.
Now that you have an idea of the types of mast-producers you’d like to plant, you need to select a variety of species from each group.
Chestnut Hill Outdoors offers an array of both soft and hard mast producers in several different size containers. Furthermore, they will help you select the optimal varieties for your specific site conditions, including landscape level variables like plant hardiness zones and regional climate as well as local variables like slope, aspect and soil type and moisture regimes. And they don’t stop there. In order to ensure you receive the maximum benefit from their products, the Chestnut Hill Outdoors staff also provide sound advice and instruction on proper site selection, planting and care.
They even continue seeking more effective and efficient ways to get products to their customers. Planting larger, and thus older trees helps shorten the waiting period until your mast orchards produce fruit, but large trees can be expensive to ship. That’s why Chestnut Hill Outdoors teamed up with Walmart to provide a more convenient and economical distribution hub for larger trees. They now ship Dunstan Chestnuts and other mast orchard species to Walmart retail locations across the eastern U.S. And they are scheduled to arrive at the optimal time for planting in different regions.
When it comes to planting mast orchards for wildlife, about the only down side is that it will take a few years before you begin realizing the benefits of your investment.
The upside is that with little or no additional input from you, your initial investment will continue paying benefits indefinitely. Short of buying land, it’s one of the soundest long-term investments you can make for yours and future generations of people who appreciate and enjoy wildlife.