Shooting lanes. Necessity or Liability

This is an article sent in to us from John Reid out of Pennsylvania. It isn’t about a successful bow kill but instead he shares with us an important lesson and offers cialis order some great advice for all of us bow hunters out there. His timing is actually impeccable as this topic about clearing shooting lanes has caused a lot of bickering and discussion around our hunt camp this season. So much so that it is going to premiere in our pilot video blog in a couple weeks. Stay tuned for that soon! In the mean time read on about John’s unfortunate series of events and thanks to John for sharing! 

Earlier this spring the natural gas industry installed a new gas line down over a steep and formerly unhuntable hillside. As my best friend, Ken, and I started down over the gasoline cut where we spotted a few doe browsing in the undergrowth.

We quickly decided put a stalk on the deer eventually getting within bow range. As we were setting up for a magnificent “double” the does decided something wasn’t right and snorted and ran away. Most often when this happens we would pack up and move to a different location. But I convinced Ken that we should keep going onward to where the new gasoline met the river passing through the bottom of the valley.

After setting up I only sat for about 25 minutes when I spotted a beautiful 8 point coming my way. He approached cautiously but was headed right where I had envisioned him to walk.

Here’s where I learned a huge lesson. I had pre-ranged my shooting lanes after sitting down so I didn’t feel the need to range this buck. As he walked into about 35 yards I pulled up my mission crossbow and held the 30 yard pin on his vitals and fired.

When does having good cover mean too much cover
When does having good cover mean too much cover.


As I released my arrow the crossbow kicked sideways and the arrow flew low and back on the buck and hit him for the dreaded “gut shot.” After analyzing the shot what I discovered had happened was that my crossbow limb hit a log I was hiding next to and threw off my shot.

This coupled with my indecision on whether to use my 30 or 40 yard pin resulted in a bad shot. My lesson and advice for those crossbow hunters who hunt from the ground is…always range your target and always ensure your crossbow has clearance from any obstructions. A lesson I learned the hard way as we never found the buck after giving him 18 hours to bed and expire.

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1 Comment

  1. Great Story by John,
    I to learned the hard way when I had a similar situation while trying to take out a coyote! The only difference was the only one wounded was me. The crossbow limb hit a tree and the bow bounced back in my face and left me with a bleeding mouth and two loose teeth! The message here is always check your limb clearance especially before that nice Buck or Doe are in your sites! By then it may be too late!

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