Don't make this mistake while bowhunting

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Africa' started by chiefdale, May 14, 2020.

  1. chiefdale

    chiefdale AH Senior Member

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    something weird happened on my bowhunting trip to south africa. picked outfitter that had couple hides and some experience with bowhunters.spent the 5 months preceding hunt in anticipation shooting 50 arrows a day . my set up does not have a string loop.get to africa first day go to blind and low and behold its a pit blind that when in it ground was shoulder high I am 5 ft 10 .didnt see a single photo on their web page of a dang pit blind. so after 30 minutes by waterhole a group 3 non shooter wildabeast come in and I turn to my guide with a big smile I AM IN AFRICA! 30 minutes later what I later named the daily kudu party would come in to drink and feed (10 to 25) so after calming down picked good bull at 20 yards pulled back shot and arrow dropped two feet and alot vibration . arrow barely clipped the lower lungs. kudu layed down thirty yards away go out blind twenty minutes and put second arrow in him percent no drop no vibration. went back to blind to continue my hunt beating myself up as to how that arrow dropped so much.hour later shooter wart hog at twenty yards shot percent no drop no vibration . two days later nyla at 20 yards shot arrow dropped two feet again lots vibration and loud snap sound .( I did shoot twenty arrows every morning before going to blind).WHAT THE HECK. come back went to archery shop and they diagnosed it pretty quickly. since I do not have a loop the steep angle of the release on the string was pushing the nock forward on the string so thus almost a dry fire on those two shots because of angle on those bigger animals.things to consider practice shooting uphill and consider a loop if you do not have one god bless stay safe
     
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  2. kal

    kal AH Veteran

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    Thanks for sharing your hunt and helping others learn from you experience, glad you were able to get your animals and have a great trip. D loops help with nock pinch and other issues you discovered. I had a blind on the last trip that had a terrible window height, couldn't shoot from sitting and couldn't stand and shoot due to ceiling height. ended up taking a eland and nyala out of that by shooting with a wide foot stance to lower my standing height by a few inches.
     
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  3. Ryan

    Ryan AH Fanatic

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    Before D-loops became the common in the early to mid 90's your nock set up was the norm. The difference back then was the axle to axle length of bows made the string angle far less severe compare to modern bows so the likelihood of unnocking while drawn was low. A modern bow is in the low to mid 30 inches axle to axle and back then 40 inches was considered short. I know a couple target archers that use what they call a torqueless D-loop that has the arrow nocked above it like yours (picture below). But again, their bows have less string angle. With a modern short axle to axle bow, go with a D-loop.

    And I do think some blinds need to be reworked. I'm 5 ft 10 in ( 1.78 m ) using a fairly short bow (35 in/89 cm) and I had to crouch down a bit to avoid hitting a roof in two blinds in 2018. I don't know how a 6 foot plus person using an older, longer bow could do it. There would have been problems with the CP Oneida bow I used in 2013 in those blinds because of lack of height and it was still in the low 40 inches length. Extra height goes a long way. torqueless_loop_1.jpeg
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020

  4. Buffalo1

    Buffalo1 AH Member

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    With the change in length of bows and risers, it has definitely changed the string angle at full draw on bows. A D-loop is now a basic part of setting up a bow properly. A D-loop also help to prevent unneeded string twist which can greatly hamper shot accuracy.
     

  5. Bhfs300

    Bhfs300 AH Fanatic

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    I have about the same story. With one difference I shot a large Blesbok and a gold blue wildebeest from a blind where you were shooting at about 3-4 feet off the ground. Two great shot the wildebeest dropped in 20 yards.
    Moved to another blind that the opening was at ground level. Animals left were an Impala and the top animal a Kudu.
    The first animal to come in was a great Impala took the shot at 20 or less and the arrow only caught about two inches on the back. I learned why they were filming the hunt. I said did I shoot over him and my PH played back the video and showed me I definitely got skin.
    My Impala we looked not a drop of blood we didn’t even try to track him.
    Later a good Kudu finally came in at the same distance and I took the shot good hit but again high. The trackers an the two of us followed him for about five hours till it started to rain and then my two last animals were these two animals.
    We spent the last two days hunting the same hide and on the last day about 10:00 the Kudu came back in and I got a second chance at him I aimed lower but still hit him high.
    To this day I don’t know why those two shots went so high at that short of a distance.
    Got an Impala on my next trip to take the place of the one we didn’t even look for.
    Why so high at that short of a distance??
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2020

  6. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Legend

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  7. Bhfs300

    Bhfs300 AH Fanatic

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    Maybe but at that distance I don’t think so. The Impala might have moved but the Kudu didn’t have a clue that he was shot at. As he ran off he was bleeding down his side but we went right after him. He laid down in the first 100 yards but we bumped him and the chase was on.
     

  8. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Legend

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    This is where good dogs make a difference. Glad you got another chance at him.
     

  9. Ryan

    Ryan AH Fanatic

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    The impala may have string jumped. An animal drops down to spring away so string jumps are almost always high. The other is probably a second guessing on your part. If you're unsure of the yardage people tend to aim high. Its common, i've done it. We aim center mass, which is actually too high.
     

  10. chiefdale

    chiefdale AH Senior Member

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    just as a side note as to why I didnt have a D loop on my set up was that my archery shop prefers speed rather than shortening your draw length with a loop .thanks for every ones input hope this may help hunters who still are not shooting loops
     

  11. Dee S

    Dee S AH Enthusiast

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    I've posted this posted before, I'll mention it again.
    Websites show you the meals you'll eat, the rooms you'll sleep in, the dining room table, but where are the pictures of the bow blinds? What should the bow hunter expect? Sitting, standing, pit, tower, pop up? What kind of chair will you be sitting in and expected to shoot from. Scent control steps you need to take? There's nothing wrong with hunting from a pop up blind, just make sure it's big enough to bow hunt from. I love pit blinds, but they can pose a problem if you haven't practiced from one before. Take a target with you to that stand, shoot an arrow before you get settled in for the hunt. In fact, it doesn't hurt to do that from every stand you hunt for the first time. Pieter, my PH, had a broadhead target that we carried with us everywhere and I did just that, practiced a shot when we got to the stand. A bow hunter will know how important this is to being successful.
    It's why it's very important the the PH also be a successful bow hunter himself. It's not the same as rifle hunting setups.
     
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  12. observe

    observe AH ENABLER CONTRIBUTOR AH Legend

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    .....Bushveld Limpopo.....[Bow blind]

    20190729_170328.jpg 20190731_180159.jpg
     
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  13. VonJager

    VonJager AH Veteran

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    Done quite a bit of reading about bow hunting, and speed and weight of arrows. I have a bow and target shoot but have yet to try and hunt with it.

    From what I have read speed works pretty well on the small stuff, impala, whitetails, pronghorn, etc, but when it comes to tougher game eg. kudu, wildebeest, elk, heavier arrows are the recommended route.

    I read many of the lost bowshot elk are because people take their fast whitetail setups out and don’t consider that elk are much larger, tougher, and need a different arrangement.

    Thoughts?
     

  14. John J

    John J AH Veteran

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    I'm not a bow hunter but I have heard of this from other hunters. One particular guy used a recurve and never lost an animal. As he aged he needed a bow with letoff? (Whatever it is called after peak draw where it lightens up some). He lost numerous animals in a season. And I say numerous cause he never found a dead one but kept hunting and shooting. Not my favorite story to relay on ethics. John
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 31, 2020 at 12:09 PM

  15. Dee S

    Dee S AH Enthusiast

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    Like anything, it takes the right equipment and the desire to practice, practice, practice. I've guided many a rifle hunter on whitetail in south Texas and have had to follow/track many a wounded deer. Heck, I'm been guilty of making bad shots, rifle and bow, that I am not proud of, way more than I'd care to admit in public.

    There's a saying. "Train like you hunt, hunt like you train."
    Shooting on a bench with bags is great. Shooting your bow at 20 yards at the indoor range standing up is nice too.
    Any weapon, in the hands of the properly trained person, can be deadly effective. In the wrong hands, that same weapon can be worthless and ineffective.
    If someone is willing to research and learn about their equipment and decide on how they need it to perform on a certain species of animal, then they increase their odds of making a quick, ethical kill.

    My daughter was pulling 52 lbs with her bow on her trip to Namibia. We are firm believers in the GrizzlyStik arrow system. Heavy arrow, heavy two bladed head, with a High front of center. Her arrows weigh 580 grains and that includes the 200 grain single bevel broadhead. Many will already scoff and gasp at that. I don't care. She shot a Kudu bull. Complete pass through lung shot at 20 yards. It ran 40 yards. She shot an Impala, quartering too her, at 20 yards. She hit it in the front shoulder, going through bone. Complete pass through. Impala jumped over the water trough and hit the ground dead. The warthog, hit it a bit high at 27 yards I think, and another complete pass through. It ran about 150 yards and died. Her wildebeest. Mix up with the PH, he was ranging one and she shot another. The one she shot was quartering away slightly at 25 yards. Arrow hit the front shoulder bone, got about 10-12" of penetration. Arrow broke the right front leg. Animal ran on three legs and made it about 80 yards. None of these animals required a follow up shot.

    We could start a thread on "who has the worst story on someone wounding an animal, rifle or bow" and there would be a hundred posts within a week, with reports equally on both rifle and bow.
    We could start one on heavy versus light, again, rifle bullet or arrow, and the discussion would get heated and have numerous "scientific studies have proven ?" comments to further the argument.
    And for some reason, when it comes to arrows, arrow weight, broadheads, arrow speed, etc., things get ugly fast. While we can all agree that it makes no sense to shoot a cape buffalo with a 150 grain hollow point traveling at 3500 fps, that same argument is not considered the norm when it comes to arrows and animals.
    I don't want to start a heated argument over heavy and slow arrows, with a high FOC vs lighter, faster arrows with a lower FOC. I've learned to just let those be. People will decide for themselves and that's fine by me. You shoot what you want, I'll shoot what I want, and we're both happy.

    Side note, on the topic. My daughter is in College Station and recently took both her bows back to school with her. She went to a bow shop there this week for the first time and had them do some work on her bow. She went by herself and I had a talk with her before she went. I told her to expect them to ignore you at first but once they ask you what you need, tell them what you need. I told her, you're a young woman, with a bow, and they are going to assume you are pretty much ignorant and have never hunted with this toy of yours. I told her once they start to help her and they see her arrows, expect the "what the hell?" comments to follow. "A girl shooting a bow and her arrows are bricks! Are you f'n kidding me? Who told her to shoot this stuff?"
    Guess what? That's exactly what happened. No one would help her for several minutes, they just looked at her as she held her gear waiting patiently. When the first guy finally asked her what she needed, she began talking to him. He picked up one of her arrows and was shocked by it's weight. Then they all gathered around and the discussion began about why a girl is shooting a 580 grain arrow. I told her to expect that and to not fold to their way of thinking and to not try and change their way of thinking. Just tell them it's the system you believe in and ask if they are going to help you tune your bow are not? One of them said it was way to much arrow for deer and that's when she said she has them for plains game in Africa. Now that's when I wish I had been a fly on the wall. She said they really about fell over then and they started asking about her animals she had taken. I think they came to respect her at this point and showed her the proper attention every customer deserves. They helped her with her bow and made some tweaks to it and hopefully she made some new friends. They advised her of a local, outdoors archery range to which she has already paid her yearly membership dues and she hopes to start shooting there this week. It sounds like in the end, they where very helpful and I'm hoping she has found a place to go and have her bows worked on while also making some new friends in the process.
    But I get the same responses when I go in my bow shop. The guys that work there think I'm crazy for shooting such heavy arrows and other customers ask me all the time "what are you expecting to shoot with those?" My arrows weigh in at 665 grains and I wouldn't have them any other way.
     
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  16. Dee S

    Dee S AH Enthusiast

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    Man oh man, the arguments we could start. :V Dope Slap:

    I've learned that when it comes to internet discussions over arrow weight and broad heads, too many friendships have been ruined. It's not worth it to get started. I just know that I have been very successful using heavy arrow, heavy heads, with High FOC on any type/size of animal. AND PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE
     

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