First Trip In Bow Season


October 3, 2005, 03:46 PM
Michigan's bow and arrow deer season started Oct. 1.
Oct. 2 my younger son and I were out on a friend's land.
We had a good time, but the trip reminded me of one my great uncle used to tell me about.

George was one of the early bow hunters, starting as soon as Michigan had a season. Back then, he told me, archers put their names and addresses on arrows. (The sport was under a microscope for a while after it was started here.)

He hunted about 20 miles from his house in town near the lake where he had a summer cottage. One day he stalked up through the woods above his camp with the bow. No deer appeared, but he saw coveys of grouse and some rabbits. After a few hours he went back, had lunch, and traded the bow for his 12 gauge.

That afternoon all he saw was deer. No small game at all.

We saw (in order of appearance) an eagle which flew over the van as we drove to the woods. A bunch of red squirrels, a large gray squirrel, an easy shotgun shot, a grouse which stood on the trail looking like a stick until I got to about 40 yards, another grey squirrel, and a grouse that flushed from the hill to our right and flew down into the swamp.

My son thought he heard a deer snort once but we never saw it. The squirrels and the grouse were also legal game, but we never really had a shot at any of them.

I'm wondering if we went back with shotguns if we'd see nothing but deer.

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October 3, 2005, 03:54 PM
ACP230 - I think the animals know the deal. If my shotgun is loaded with lead, I practically trip over ducks and the geese fly low and directly overhead. If my shotgun is loaded with B-sized Hevi-shot, woodcock routinely flush in front of me.

The other day, I was bowhunting for deer and had two grouse in the open on the ground within 10 feet of me. Yesterday, when I was grouse hunting, they were flushing 30 yards away through thick cover and never presented a shot.

Just because they have pea-sized brains doesn't mean that they aren't smarter than me. :o

October 3, 2005, 05:16 PM
Yep, they have an innate sense of what we're carrying, and what we're after, that day.....

I was bowhunting here in Maryland on Friday and Saturday (September 30 and October 1), saw 15-20 gray/foz squirrels both days! Almost got a shot at a doe at about 22 yards on Friday, but a little too thick, so passed on the shot.

BUT, I also carry a couple of blunt tips to fool the squirrels on my bowhunting days.....missed three shots at about 20 yards, but it's a blast to see the squirrel leap into the air when an arrow THUNKS into the leaves next to it! :evil:

Question for you bowhunters - do you find that your blunt tips fly any differently than your broadheads? I believe that I missed all three squirrels just low and left, could be me but I'm thinking I may need to try my blunt tips at my Block target......any comments?


October 3, 2005, 05:38 PM
Your broadheads will fly different than your blunt tips or field points if your bow is slightly out of rig. Also, arrow balance with broadheads is just as important. You should spin your broadheaded arrows to see if you have any wobble. If so, you might want to switch broadheads on the arrows to get a better balance.

One other thing I do is to make sure the blades are in line with the fletchings. Just adds in a bit better arrow flight.

October 3, 2005, 09:20 PM
My son had a field point when we started out.
He took a couple of practice shots and bent the shaft on a rock on the last one.
I would have tried the grouse on the trail with a broadhead if I could have gotten close enough. I'm not sure it even spooked because of me. It may just have decided to walk off into the cedars. I tried to get my son set up for a shot at both squirrels but no dice.

A friend made an almost-perfect shot on a grouse with a broadhead, years ago. We were walking an overgrown, abandoned, narrow gauge, railroad grade looking for deer and walked into a covey. He got off a shot at a grouse about eight feet away and would have pinned it to the ground except for the grouse-colored maple stump about four inches wide and six inches high. The grouse's head and tail stuck out on either side of it and my buddy centered the stump.

I didn't get off a shot and it took us 10 minutes to get his broadhead out of the stump.

October 3, 2005, 11:38 PM
My bad guys, I didn't state clearly as I could have......

On the Block target my field points and broadheads are right on, but I have two of those blunt tips where theres a flat-tipped field point, and four prongs sticking out to keep it from burying too deep in ground or stump. I've missed a couple of squirrels and had the blunt tip stick into the stump a little bit, and the prongs bend a little - so I'm wondering if the blunt arrows might be flying a little different after thundering into a couple of stumps and bending the prongs......either I bent the head, or perhaps slightly altered the shaft? Have you guys had that happen?



October 4, 2005, 12:04 PM
Ah, your using the gamestoppers. I haven't used them before so I can't help you there.

Sounds as though it might have tweaked the arrow a bit. Roll it on the edge of a table and see if you have any wobble.

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