I’ve found that one of the most common mistakes bow hunters make in the off season is failing to keep up with their shooting practice. More specifically, their realistic shooting practice. Most bow hunters consider shooting at ground level with the target broadside at 20-30 yards to be adequate practice to prepare them for the real season.

Bow hunters should ask themselves when was the last time that they had an encouter with a giant whitetail , on the ground, he stood broadside and was close enough to throw a stone at. I would strongly reccomend that while practicing your archery hunting skills to prep for the hunting season, incorporate some situational shooting: set up “real life shots”, possible scenarios that you may encounter while hunting. Take practice shots from tree stands, with limited shooting lanes, and in variable distances 23-47 yards and anything in between. You should even practice at 60+ yards, if you feel you are confident enough.

You owe it to yourself and to the deer to make sure you are confident, consistent, and always on target with every kind of shot that may arise while hunting, no matter what the situation may be. After all , the last thing you want to do is wound a 180+ whitetail just to feed the coyotes and foxes!

Photo: Benjamin Gray

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