How To

Tuesday’s Take Your Best Shot: Archery Pronghorn

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Image by Mark Kayser

Image by Mark Kayser

Scenario: Pronghorn quartering toward a bowhunter who is sitting in a ground blind. Animal is down a steep hill.

Bow: Mathews Halon compound

Range: 15 yards

Conditions: Sunny, 85 degrees, breezy from left to right

Archery pronghorn season is in full swing in Wyoming, and your waterhole setup has been less than active. Suddenly, you spot a buck approaching fast. Will he give you the shot of a lifetime, or just a passing glance?

He’s coming down the hill on a mission, and you see the shot outside of your ground blind window at only 15 yards. Think fast – what do you do? Shoot now? If so, which aiming point is the best? Or do you wait? The clock is ticking . . .

Made your decision? Alright then, let’s see how you did:

A. Shot angle A is doable. You have relatively little bone structure to work around and a straight shot into the heart and blood vessel region. Unfortunately, the buck is moving and quartering toward you. Wait it out. This aiming point less than perfect.

B. Whoa – and then no – on this shot. A slight miscalculation in either direction means hitting leg bone or the huge scapula; either can deflect or redirect an arrow.

C. Here’s another shot to rein in. You might hit one lung, but you won’t get both, which means a long tracking job is about to begin. The same is true if your arrow travels through the buck’s paunch.

The best decision here is to let down the draw on your Mathews and wait for a broadside shot when the buck finally does reach the waterhole. He’s coming in and not aware of your presence; calm down, breathe, and prepare for a better shot opportunity.

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