Working overtime early this year while in Ohio allowed me to set my sights on a new bow. Well, that along with the fact I sold my 2008 Bowtech Guardian to my friend and was in need of a bow before Summer rolled around and practice time would be at a premium. Having shot different brands and models of bows the past few years while debating on updating what I had, I knew I liked the way Hoyt's balanced not just during the draw cycle and the shot but also just while holding and carrying around. As you'll hear in the video below, I shot numerous Hoyt models once I had decided that my next bow would be one and really liked the way the Vector 32 felt in my hand. I could continue to type out the pros and con (yes there is one slight con about the bow now that I have been shooting it but I believe I can get that taken care of) but I'll let the video of me talking do the, um, talking instead. Enjoy!
That's right, you did not read the above title wrong, this week I have TWO videos to share with you. I ran across them via blind luck when I clicked on a link found in the signature of forum member flinginairos on Archerytalk. Doing so led me to said member's website and blog that he and his friends operate; they are Xtreme Pursuit Outdoors. A quick email asking for permission to post was answered with a enthusiastic "We would love for you to share it!" and here we are. Hope you guys enjoy these two videos on bow tuning and if the guys post anymore up you can be sure that we will post them up for you to see. Thanks to L.G., Jared, A.J. and Larry for letting me share these on this blog post and please go visit their site as it is extremely well-laid out and full of good information, writing and videos that really show the passion for the outdoors and all that comes with it that we enjoy so much.
View of the oak plateau I hunted on Friday
As Paul wrote the other week, deer season is now open in NC, with archery opening mid-September and the Eastern muzzleloader season opening this past Saturday and the Western one opening today. With it being the 1st of October, most other states have opened at least one of their seasons as well so I hope everyone is being safe while pursuing those whitetail that we love so much (or mulies, blacktails, pronghorn, elk, etc.). I know it's a little - ok, wayyyyyy - late getting this hunting recap up but hurried housework before I left for and work up here in Southwestern Indiana has kept me running around like a chicken with its head cut off. None-the-less, I wanted to let you guys know how my first hunts of the 2012 season went.
I've been wanting to get more multimedia on the site for a while now and after finally getting around to doing so (also known as not being lazy), I've decided that a weekly thing would be a good thing to bring to our readers. With that said, from now on, Wednesdays will see us bringing you the video of the week. Either something Inside Out Outdoors has put together or a video we found online that we really think you would like to see, hopefully you'll like what you see. And if not, as always, leave us a comment on the blog post and tell us what you DO want to see from us. Also, be on the lookout on Friday's for the picture of the week. The same idea as the video of the week, it'll be a picture that either we've taken or found online and want to share with you guys. Up first for video of the week is a quick little clip of our buddy Chris and myself shooting our bows last summer that I put together while bored and working on the road earlier this year. Oh, and be ready to feel like you are in the 1910's as this clip has no sound (if only it was the next Casablanca!).
I'd like to share with all of our readers the story behind my first and only bow buck...so far! I had just turned 16 years old and was in my second season of hunting with the bow in New York state. In New York my hunting is a bit different than what Cory and I do here in North Carolina, hunting mostly private land in NY. My family and I have been hunting a large parcel of land that a family friend has owned for over a decade now. We have taken some great deer off of this land but this is still one of my most memorable moments of hunting to this day!
It all started on a morning hunt in late October back in 2000. I headed to my favorite stand and my step father Doug headed to another stand. Our plan was to hunt the morning and leave the woods around 11 a.m. as we had to head to Owasco Lake to help my grandfather take the dock and boat hoists out of the water for the quick approaching winter season!
I got into my stand while it was still dark and got situated, my new PSE Nova bow in hand. I had practiced for the last two summers and was confident I could take a deer this year if one gave me the opportunity to do so. The weather was fair, a cool morning but the skies were clear.
Around 8 a.m. I had two deer come right past my stand, a doe followed by a 4-pt buck. I came to my feet as the deer passed about 20 yards to my right, however I never drew my bow as they were walking at a quick pace. I tried to grunt a few times to get one of them to stop for a moment so I could draw and take the shot but that buck had one thing on his mind...and the doe another (get away!). As the deer went by, I came to the conclusion that I had made the right choice to let them pass. However my "deer fever" took about an hour to come to a rest and for me to stop shaking!
About two hours later, around 10 a.m., right in front of me all I saw was the largest whitetail rack I had ever seen! His nose was to the ground and he was right on the trail of the previous two deer that had passed me a couple of hours earlier. I came to my feet once again and the deer passed within about 15 yards to me. He was walking very slowly and came to the opposite side of my stand that the deer had come to. I drew my bow and placed my pin just behind his shoulder, settled my breathing and squeezed the trigger on my release...the arrow took flight and I saw it connect! A good shot! Right where I wanted it, with any luck the arrow pierced both lungs. I watched with great intensity as the deer ran off with my arrow still in its side. I looked on and noted the path the deer took so that I could track it.
I think this was the most excited I have ever been in my life! I was just standing in my tree in shock, I could not believe what had just happened. About a minute later I heard Doug shout "Hey did you just shoot that buck?!?" I turned around and there was Doug standing only about 75 yards behind my stand! He had watched the whole thing, he was coming to get me so that we could head to the lake and saw that I was standing with my bow drawn so he stopped in his tracks and waited to see what was going on - good thing he did! He said that he saw my shot placement and that it looked promising.
We decided to let the deer sit for about a half hour and then we started tracking. The buck was leaving a very small blood trail as the arrow had not passed all the way through. We came to a rough conclusion for me. "Lets go to the lake, take the dock out and let this deer sit for the afternoon. We'll come back and finish tracking later." We found the half of the arrow that broke off while the deer was running and marked the last blood with some orange trail tape. We headed to the lake and informed everyone that we needed to make the dock a quick job so that we could go find my buck!
We returned to the woods around 3 p.m. and started tracking where we left off. We found ourselves in the swamp that borders the North end of the property and the blood was very scarce. I stood at the last spot while Doug and my grandfather started making circles around me getting on spots of higher ground and scanning the forest floor looking for the deer. All of a sudden I hear Doug say "THERE HE IS!" I'm not sure if my feet ever hit the ground! I ran to the spot and saw my buck; he was larger than I thought he was! A beautiful 9-pt! I did my first field dressing and drag of a deer! Hey if you shoot it you have to be ready to do all of the work that follows! Of course, given my small stature I needed some help to get that deer out as he had run a couple hundred yards from where I had shot him.
After multiple stops to show off my first buck we were back at the house and I was still pumped up! We gave our friend a call to see if we could get the cape right in to get mounted! About three months later the mount was ready and currently resides above the fireplace at my parents' house. I've attached a couple of photos of the mount as well as one from the field. Please forgive the quality of the picture from the field, I think this was still taken on a 35mm camera, digital cameras were still a thing of the future, at least one that was affordable ;).
And that my friends is the story of my first and only bbow uck...so far!
Today I deviate from my gun collection to showcase my bow, a 2008 Bowtech Guardian. I knew whenever I first shot this bow that I would have one; it has a smooth draw cycle, felt good and fit me well, is dead-in-hand and is extremely quiet. I have my 50-60# limbs maxed out, giving me a draw weight of around 62#, which is plenty enough to zip my arrows through the rib cage of an unsuspecting whitetail.
My bow is decked out in Realtree APG and has the inVelvet finish, which is supposed to protect against dings in the bow's aluminum riser and limbs as well as keep things quiet if you hit the riser against, say, your stand, while a P&Y 8-pt is standing right below you. I will note that while it does help to dampen noise in a dull "thud" fashion, the camo portion of finish is rubbing off in certain areas, especially around the grip (but not the inVelvet itself).
This bow is a family member, along with the General and Commander, of Bowtech's 2007 and 2008 top of the line, binary cam bows that feature Center Pivot technology. I won't go into the specifics of what this means as far as performance as you can follow the link to see all about it and decide for yourself, but I will say that this bow is considered by many (from what I have read online in both articles and forums) to be one of the finest shooting bows ever produced and I have to say I agree. (Why do you think I chose it over the Matthews DXT and Fred Bear Truth when it came time to make a decision on what to spend my hard-earned money on?)
The bow may not be a speed demon, its birth certificate has an IBO speed of only 308 fps at 60 pounds, but I am able to produce enough arrow speed and kinetic energy to use expandable broadheads. As for what accessories I have on the Guardian and what I shoot, I'll just post up a list of my set-up below:
Sometimes the great ideas that we have just need something to bring them to the forefront. The Inside Out team will be putting our talents to work and sharing our knowledge and love of the outdoors with anyone who wants to listen.
Curran's Outdoor Adventures
GoBlog (Get Outdoors)
Grants Blog (Growing Deer TV)
Hunt Like Your Hungry
inFOCUS (Campbell Cameras)
inMotion (Heartland Bowhunter)
Make It Happen Outdoors
Taking a Walk on the Wild Side
The Rivah Blog
The Will to Hunt
Wired to Hunt