Big Game Bow Hunting

If you’re a bow hunter, you may have seen stories on TV about bow hunting in exotic locations, but have you ever considered that you could take your own trip to places like Africa, Alaska, or even all the way to New Zealand, just to go hunting. It may seem just too far or too expensive, but those that have felt the thrill of hunting exotic big game often can’t wait to go back again, and again.

Traditionally used as a term to refer to hunting Africa’s big five (lion, elephant, cape buffalo, leopard and the white rhino), the term ‘big game’ is now used to include a wide range of large animals in Africa and across the world, including tigers, antelope, moose, bears, and bison.

Big game hunting has a long human history. Cave paintings portray early man hunting mammoths in groups with spears or rocks. Two of the most popular hunting methods, using a tree stand or spot and stalk, are both popular with big game hunting. Blinds may also be used at some times of year, usually in the dry season when animals visit the watering holes more often.

In Africa, there are up to ten big game species available at any one time, and you can expect to shoot around six animals during a ten day hunt. You may not realize just how much variety you’ll find in both the animals and experiences. As well as those you hunt, there are other exotic animals you can simply enjoy being so close to.

Africa also offers a wide range of climate and terrain to give you the best experience available. Some private ranges are set up specifically for bow hunting, and so give the best quality game and conditions available. The main bow hunting season runs from late May, through to September/October, with July and August being the most popular months to visit. This is because they are the driest months, and so animals visit the watering holes often. Many of the animals rut in late May to June, and so this can also be an exciting time to hunt.

Many visitors are surprised to find out how modern the infrastructure and accommodation is in some African countries, giving you all the comforts of home. There are also other hunts available for those who would like to experience the ‘old Africa’ and hunt in a more rugged environment, including hunting and tracking on foot. The climate and terrain of African ranges make them ideal for bow hunting with either method. Many groups and agencies now offer specialized guided tours for big game hunting. These tours often include guides who are highly experienced with big game hunting, and the type of animals in their particular area. They will also often have their own blinds or hides set up in the perfect places.

Before you’re getting ready to go, remember to check the minimum equipment requirements with your tour group. If you are not already, you should get comfortable with taking shots from hides and elevated positions. Shots can be made from around twenty yards, but follow up shots could also be made from more than thirty yards. When bow hunting in Africa, accuracy is definitely key.

Another amazing location for bow hunters, and an easier trip from mainland USA, is Alaska. If you’ve never visited before, the scenery on its own is worth the trip. From snow capped mountains and glaciers to blue water and amazing tundra in the summer, you’ll want to make sure to bring your camera. You may want to consider more than one trip to take advantage of all the different game available at different times and locations.

One of Alaska’s most sought after big game is the brown bear. Here, they grow larger than anywhere else due to the abundance of food available, in particular salmon from the annual spawning. The bears average around 8 and a half feet, but can be over ten feet, and weigh more than 1,800 pounds. The longer daylight hours in Alaska make for an amazing brown bear hunt.

Grizzly bears are also abundant in some parts of Alaska, and there is one area that is open for grizzly hunting year round. The best time to visit for grizzlies is June, August, and September. Alaska also offers hunting for moose and black bear. Just like the brown bear, Alaska’s moose are the biggest available and the occasional one has reached over seventy inches. Hunting moose can also give the added thrill of travelling to the hunting grounds via airboats and jet boats.

During July to September, the tundra gives unprecedented access for hunting black bears. It’s not uncommon to see over forty bears in a single week in early spring. Other species available for game hunts in Alaska include Sitka deer, mountain goat, dall ram, wolf and wolverine (some may require additional licenses).

New Zealand is a destination that many bow hunters may not have thought of, but it’s well worth a look. As well as spectacular scenery, it offers big game animals that you may not experience anywhere else in the world, including stag, deer, wild boar, goat, ram and water buffalo. The main trophy hunting season is from March to September, but bow hunting is available year round, and so there’s plenty of opportunity for any non-hunting members of your family or group to enjoy other activities too.

Hunting in New Zealand can involve traveling over some challenging terrain in all weather conditions, and so you’ll generally enjoy a hunting trip here more if you’re fit and in good physical condition. However, many safari groups have alternatives available for those who need it.

When going on any big game bow hunting safari, you will want to be very well equipped for any situation, perhaps more than you are going hunting locally. Each area will have minimum regulations on the draw weight, and crossbows are also illegal in many countries. There may also be restrictions on the materials and length of arrows, as well as the type of broadheads used. Some broadhead arrows can only be used on particular species.

Once at many of the safaris or guided trips, particularly in Africa, you’re unlikely to be able to purchase any equipment or emergency bow supplies. It’s therefore recommended that you bring along a good supply of arrows, bow strings, and any other spares you think you may need. Good camo colors for here are usually muted gray, brown and yellow.

As well as your bow and arrows, other recommended equipment include an arrow bonnet to protect arrows while travelling, more than one release, gloves, arm guards, a mask or face point, small set of tools to make bow repairs on the go, a sharpening tool, wax, lubricant, glue, a pocket knife, binoculars, a range finder, and a small day backpack.

You may also want to consider a portal bow press, extra strings and cables, peep sights, arrow rest, sight, stabilizer, limb dampeners, silencers, shafts, vanes, nocks, weight tubes, and targets. You will be unlikely to able to buy any spare parts once you’ve arrived, and having a broken bow on the trip would be a disaster.

So, next time you see a big game hunt on TV and wonder what it might be like to experience it, grab your computer and check out some of the safaris available. Many tour operators put together special bow hunting trips or group packages, making a trip to hunt exotic big game more affordable than ever.

A big game bow hunting destination you may not have considered is Australia. Like Africa, the country offers beautiful and diverse landscapes. Although big game hunting in Australia is generally restricted to the water buffalo, the hunt is a fantastic experience for bow hunters, and a different trophy than many will experience. The remote location in the north means that you can hunt in truly unspoiled wilderness. The animals are unpredictable and need to be treated with caution, making for a challenging hunt.

Elk Hunting Basics – The Keys To Success

Elk Hunting Basics – The Keys To Success

When asking guides, outfitters and experts for their number one piece of advice for elk hunting, there’s one consistent answer: physical conditioning.

Physical conditioning is a critical element in getting ready for an elk hunt or any big game mountain adventure. If you’re planning to hunt elk, there are two great reasons why conditioning should be a top priority.

First, there’s no doubt that the better your physical condition upon arrival at elk camp, the better your chances will be for taking an elk. It’s as simple as that. You can be a great caller or a great shot, but if you can’t get to where you need to be, it will never matter. Elk live in steep, rough country and the more prepared you are to tackle it, the more opportunities you’ll give yourself.

Second, being in good physical condition will make your experience significantly more enjoyable. Even in good shape, hunting in elk country is a challenge. But when you’re not prepared, it can be downright miserable. Being it great condition will allow you to focus on the scenery, the beauty and the thrill of hunting elk, rather than the pain in your legs and lungs.

The bottom line is, work to get in the best physical condition possible. Here are a few tips that can help you prepare:

    • Start training well in advance of your hunt. Allow several months to work yourself into shape gradually.
    • Establish a realistic workout program tailored to your own ability that you know you can stick to.
    • Chart your progress. It’s a known fact that tracking progress will generate a sense of accomplishment and help motivate you to push even harder.
    • Get out and do some hiking in your hunting boots and a pack with weight on your back. If you can combine this with some type of shooting practice, better yet. For example, practice shooting at soft stumps with your bow. For rifle practice, you can use an air rifle with pellets. The key is to do some shooting with your heart rate elevated.
  • Aerobic exercise is great for stamina and dropping a few unwanted pounds but you also need to add some interval and strength training if possible. The interval training will help simulate hunting conditions where you may have to hike up a hill quickly, catch your breath and immediately get steady for a shot. Strength training is also important, as strong legs will help you climb steep terrain.

In summary, keep your training within your personal limits and realistic. Arrive in camp in the best shape possible. Colorado elk hunting is hard work and will test you. Good physical conditioning will help you make the most of your hunt and enjoy it to the maximum.

Basic Information About Big Game Hunting and Deer Hunting

What exactly is big game hunting? When did humans start to indulge in this? How do humans hunt big game? Is deer hunting considered part of big game hunting? Big game hunting is essentially, as the term implies the hunting of huge game. The type of big game that used to be associated with such a term were those that were found in Africa, and this included elephants, lions, buffalo, rhinos and leopards. These animals are now on the endangered species list and are protected from hunters by law however, other big game, like deer, antelope and moose, are still on the list of targets that hunters can legally go after.

While hunting may seem like a modern past time, due to the use of modern equipment like rifles and semi-automatic guns, it is actually an ancient activity that man has been doing for thousands of years. Evidence of such an activity is found via the wall paintings found in caves which depict men hunting mammoths with the use of weapons like spears and rocks. You can even see evidence of men killing these animals by way of scaring them and running them over a cliff.

Modern Big Game Hunting Does Include Deer Hunting

As mentioned earlier, one of the animals that people are allowed to hunt when it comes to big game hunting is deer. Deer hunting can only be done during certain times of the year and in certain areas. For you to be able to indulge in this sport, you need to have a license to do so. You will also need to follow certain deer hunting season schedules that your State puts out every year.

Hunting deer can be a very challenging endeavor since these animals have a very keen sense of smell and rather sensitive hearing. If you are not adept at this particular enterprise, you may find yourself rather frustrated the first few times you try your hand at it. You will need to do some research on how to effectively hunt deer, ask experts for advice and practice your hunting skills before you can find yourself successfully bagging your first big game.

You will also need to have the right equipment when you go deer hunting. This will include not only the right rifle or bow, but also the right clothing and protective gear. You might even need to bring with you something that can help you mask your scent so that your targets won’t know that you are nearby. Since deer do have a very strong sense of smell, scent masking sprays for deer hunting should always be part of your gear.

Big Game Hunting is Not Only About Hunting Deer

While deer hunting is indeed considered one of the more popular big game hunting activities people indulge in, these creatures are not the only animals included in the list of targets that you can hunt in the US. Depending on where you are in the country, you will find that big game hunting can include such targets as elk, moose, antelope, turkey and big horn sheep. You will also find that some states include black bears, bobcats, coyotes and mountain goats in the list of prey that you can hunt during certain times of the year.

Different types of targets require different strategies when it comes to hunting, which is why it is sometimes advised that you choose one or two specific creatures for your hunting plans. You will also need to check the many different rules and regulations that cover the hunting of each specific type of animal listed as something you can legally hunt in order to avoid problems with the law.

While game hunting, and deer hunting in particular, may cost you some money to start doing, some people do find the investment worthwhile. Don’t spend too much on your first few forays into this endeavor however and start with the basic equipment most beginners use first in order to gauge if you are indeed cut out for hunting. Once you have ascertained that big game hunting is for you, you can then slowly invest in better equipment and improve your skill as the seasons come and go.

The Proper Mental Attitude for Successful Hunting Elk

The Proper Mental Attitude for Successful Hunting Elk

When you leave the comfort (or confinement) of your office, fly across the country, land in Montana then drive into the mountains, are you prepared to take down an Elk? Are you confident not only in your abilities, but mental toughness? Can you walk across miles of rugged terrain, and then have the inner calmness to focus, relax, aim and slowly pull the trigger?None of that is said as a negative; since hunting Elk can and should be an exhilarating, possibly life-changing experience; something you’ll look to many times over the years. Will this be your first Elk hunt? Have you thought of calmly squeezing the trigger on a seven hundred plus pound animal?

The Five Second Rule

Why is hunting Elk both exhilarating and difficult? One is the terrain, Elk enjoy being in the high difficult to reach places; two is their inherent sense of life and their continued living of same. If they see or sense you, you possibly five seconds before they will disappear, and the miles you walks may have been for naught. Be prepared both mentally and with practice to “take the shot” when the time is right. If you’re hesitant, your opportunity will be gone.

Know The Distance

How far can you shoot accurately? We’d all like to say or think we’re the best, but be honest. Can you get a bullseye at two hundred yards? And is that bullseye on a paper target? If it is, then know that when you sight your Elk, your blood will be pumping, you’re emotions will be taunt, your finger may twitch, breath, relax, squeeze slowly for the kill. Even with that and even with experience taking aim at an Elk more than two yards out is a fool’s shot; and I know you are not fool. Instead of taking a shot at three hundred yards plus, and possibly missing or wounding the animal, improve your hunting skills and move closer.

The One Shot Kill

Are you on the hunt for Elk or bragging rights? Now I’m not saying a bit of braggadocios is bad, but “one shot kills” are not the norm. If your rifle has a good rest, and your site line clear enough for the first shot, then take a second shot too. Better to be certain your Elk is dead, then tracking him for two days; that’s no fun for either of you. Your shot may be perfectly placed right behind the shoulder, but if you can take the follow-up shot, experience has proven that is the right call.

You’re in their domain, so when either skill or luck gives you an edge, take advantage and make your shot (both shots) count. One thing is certain, if you find yourself tracking a wounded animal, each mile will seem longer and longer, and the trip back to camp like a million miles.

The Primeval Call

Elk are an animal with strength and cunning for preservation that verges on supernatural. From the throated primeval bugles to the aggressing ruts, an Elk is a spectacular hunt. Learn to utilize finesse, skill and patience and your hunt will be the memory (and trophy) of a lifetime.

Before The Hunt – How to Prepare for Your Big Game Hunt

Big Game Hunt

There really isn’t anything too overly complicated about hunting. The mission is to go find an animal in its natural habitat, and bring home some meat for your family. To make sure this happens, preparation is key in assuring a successful hunt. I have come up with a few tips to help improve your odds of bringing home the big game you are looking for. Here are three tips I would like to focus on before you embark on your hunting journey.

PREPARE YOUR BODY. Preparing my body for the hunt is something I had to learn the hard way. Most of my hunting trips involved a lot of hiking. During one of my black bear hunts, we hiked 14 miles while carrying 60 pounds of gear on our backs. Needless to say, I didn’t prepare well and my hiking experience ended up feeling more like a death march. In some areas, ATV’s are not allowed, so hiking is the only option in some cases. One thing you can do to combat the terrain and hiking is to work on your cardio. There are numerous work outs available online to help structure your work out. I start to prepare my cardio a month in advance of the hunt. This will give your body enough time to adapt to what your training it for. Also, a workout I found to be useful was packing up my pack with more weight than I expected to take, and walked a few miles every couple of days during month leading up to the hunt. You can accomplish this by just walking in your neighborhood. Another way of getting your body right is to be mindful of the food you’re eating. Eating fast food in the days leading up to your trip may cause you to be sluggish on the hike to where you will be Big Game Hunt.

PREPARE YOUR WEAPON. Whether you are bringing your rifle or bow, preparing your weapon is the key to ensuring a successful hunt. One of the biggest concerns you should have while hunting is making sure your weapon is accurate. To help you accomplish this, you need to practice. By practice, I do not mean just shoot your rifle at 100 yards. You need to practice shooting at the maximum ranges of your weapon. Out of all the big game hunts, the shortest range I have had between me and the target animal was 250 yards. This means you need to be comfortable shooting at ranges of around 300 yards or more. You need to know how high or low you may need to aim on the kill zone of a target. Also, aside from just preparing your weapon to be accurate, which should go without saying, weather proofing your weapon can be a great investment. One of the biggest problems I had on my hunting adventures was rust. I would recommend a weather proof coating to cover the metal components on your weapon. There are many different coatings available online for purchase.Big Game Hunt

PACK LIGHT. This is without a doubt the best advice I can give from experience. Always pack light when you are having to hike out for a hunt. If you are getting flown to a location or able to drive an ATV, you can afford to bring more comforts from home. When hiking out for a hunt, you have to think ahead. I would only recommend packing 35 to 40 pounds of gear. You have to accept the fact that you’re going to get smelly and dirty. Having multiple changes of clothes is not necessary when you’re hunting. Bring only one tent, depending on the amount of guys tagging along on the hunt. The tent can get very heavy, and can add 10 pounds by itself. So bringing only one tent can open up the possibility of sharing the load between those hiking with you. Packing the right food is important for the total weight of your pack. Try to pack the lightest food you can find. I found that oatmeal is a light snack that is perfect for breakfast in the early mornings. The most basic rule in packing your gear for a hunt is to pack light. Only bring what you need.

Big Game Hunt

Following these simple steps will get you closer to your hunting goals. Good luck on your hunt!