Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Traditional Quest

No gadgets, no crazy technology, no nothing. Just me and a bow. The way archery was.

A handful of years ago I became interested in traditional archery. I purchased a Martin recurve and began testing myself. I couldn't believe the world I had entered. When you start removing cams, wheels, sights, let off, and so on, you're left with nothing. Except for a bare bow. I had no idea what was in store for me. I shot and shot. Then I hunted and hunted. My success hunting with traditional gear was minimal. I have harvested a few deer with my recure, two of which were with cedar shafts. The deer I harvested were yearlings, none the less, trophies.

Last season I never even brought the recurve on stand. Mainly because of my lack of confidence in my shooting ability. My groups were very inconsistent. Feeling like I gave up on something I loved, I have began shooting again. Researching shooting methods and learning them has boosted my shooting confidence. Gap shooting is the method I have been memorizing. I wouldn't say I'm going to be winning any tournaments, but I have never shot this good with a bare bow. Ever.

The time is now. The weather, as we all know, is getting nasty. The deer are transitioning back into feeding patterns and herding up. I have began to sit with my recurve beside me. A fear that haunted me was the fact that if Mr. Large and in Charge came along I would be devastated not to have my compound. Let him come. I would love to take a hog with traditional. If he passes out of range, do to my even shorter shooting range, then that's life. If you don't do it, you won't do it. One of my biggest goals in life is to take a bear with my recurve. I've been too afraid to blow an opportunity to use the recurve. I just need to let it happen. This will be another story come next September.

This past weekend, my recurve and I, had some encounters. A doe fed her way to me at sunset. The wind was suppose to switch from SW to SE. It did. At the worst possible time, like always. She was 40 yards and then her nostrils filled with human funk. She stood like a statue for all of 10 minutes until she turned and gracefully headed away. All the while, a spike buck was on my right side at 25 yards. He didn't like her body language and began to leave slowly as well. I passed him. I have never shot a buck of any caliber with my recurve. A would like something a bit better than a 4 inch spike. I would honestly be happy with a 1 1/2 year old 6 or 8 point. I say let'em go and let'em grow if you won't truly be 100% happy with your harvest. I truly would be happy with a good 1 1/2 year old at this point in my traditional quest.

The next evening a small fork buck passed 8 yards broadside. This was so so hard to pass. The shot he offered was as perfect as I could have asked for. I will not reset my standards in which I have set. A buck I would be happy taking with the recurve or my tags will be filled with antlerless deer. Even at that, I would really like to shoot a tank of a doe also. I still have tags and plan to hunt as hard as ever.

The weather is suppose to smooth out and warm a tad by the weekend. Deer movement should be good and I'm excited to check my cameras and prepare for the week. My traditional quest continues. I will keep you posted on my camera results, encounters, or lack there of, and if the moment happens. You will know how it all pans out. To all my readers, shoot straight and give'em the shaft!

To be continued...

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