Two years ago I decided to shoot a long bow for only one season. You could not tear the dang thing out of my hands now. I absolutely love shooting traditional equipment. Nothing against guns and compounds and crossbows, nope. The first year I killed a doe, maybe two. The second year I killed a couple of does and a really nice buck. I’m hooked. But, this year I decided to “increase my fun” by making a primitive bow out of Osage wood.
I hired a bowyer named Clay Massey to help me. This guy has forgotten more about bows than most of us have ever known. He’s a gentleman too. Clay worked with me for a solid week on my “first” self-bow. Finally, we put a string on it and I was in business. Sorta.
Even though the bow was a sweet shooting stick, it did not hold up. As I reached my anchor point one day, it cracked. That was that. I hung it on the wall as a museum piece, and started over. Working like my life depended on it, I was once again shooting within the week. The bow held up and has become my stick of choice for the time being. As the summer wears on, I will continue to shoot this self-bow in hopes that I can carry it into the hunting season. So far it is a great shooting bow that brings me enormous joy each time I pick it up and draw the string.
I am a believer! I believe hunting with traditional bows and primitive self-bows is just plain more challenging and more fun than the law allows. I want to use this forum to urge you. Try shooting a traditional bow. Then, make your own bow. You will be pleased and you will never return to cables and wheels. I promise! You will soon be a believer also. Bill Spears (2014)
Not many of us can look at a piece of property and know what needs to happen, if anything, to make that place a quality deer sanctuary. The first thing most hunters think of is food plots or mineral stations. And, those things are usually very important components of a well-managed piece of property.
There is a biological science available to regular folks like us. The science comes to our property through the trained eyes and expertice of professional wildlife managers. Cody Altizer does a very good job of educating us about what to look for when we begin working with a wildlife biologist. A good click.
Bringing in the Big Guns: Professional Wildlife Consultants | Bowhunting.com Blog.
Have you thought of creating a series of “Mineral Stations” on your property? Creating these jewels is definitely an idea worth seriously considering. It helps the deer herd and it helps you collect data on your herd. Both are important.
Back in the old days, we would go to the feed store, get a block of salt that we used for cattle and take it to the woods. The deer would usually devour it, and in the process dig a hole in the ground. Later, we replaced the salt blocks with mineral blocks, and in some cases we put out both mineral and salt blocks.
With the dawn of trail cameras, it did not take long for hunters to create a “place” to hang a camera. At first we simply threw out some corn or other attractant. However, with the advances made by quality deer management organizations we began a more scientific, data gathering approach. Many good things have come from creating mineral stations. The following click about starting and developing mineral stations is a good read.
Mineral Stations: Creating a Summer Big Buck Hot Spot on Your Property | Bowhunting.com Blog.