Summer is here! It’s a great time to get outside and have a little fun with your bow. For starters, bowfishing season is in full swing. The best time for most people to bowfish is in the middle of the night from the bow of a boat. In Michigan, my friends and I use big strobe lights to locate carp and garpike in the shallows and then shoot them with a Cajun Archery fish point. Most people think of carp and garpike as garbage fish. I admit that as a kid most of the carp my dad shot ended up in the garden for fertilizer, but some people eat them.
Last year, I had the pleasure of bowfishing with Steven Rinella, the host of the MeatEater. Rinella cooked the backstraps of a gar pike. I have seen people can carp or even smoke it. Canning dissolves the bones so if you are into canning, this is a great option.
Bowfishing is an action-packed sport that is inexpensive, fun and a great way to introduce a kid to the sport of archery. If you are looking for a great bowfishing bow, check out the Mission Craze which is a bow that can perform double duty. It is great for adults to use for bowfishing and great for kids to use as a hunting bow.
Speaking of kids, summer is a great time to get kids involved in archery when they are on summer break. My six-year-old son has a Mini Genesis. Every day he asks me if he can go outside and shoot his bow. After he shoots ten arrows, he is usually ready to stop shooting but the point is he is starting to like archery which is the first step in preparing him to become a bowhunter.
Summer is also when most of us start thinking about fall and bowhunting. Although fall may seem like a long way off, if you want to be extremely accurate in the fall, you can never start shooting too early in the summer. An increasingly popular trend with hardcore bowhunters is to practice at 100 yards to fine tune their skills. Of course, most bowhunters who practice at this distance would never dream of killing something at this range but if you can keep a good group at 100 yards, there is a good chance a buck standing at 30 yards is going to be meat in the freezer.
Summer is a great time to test new gear like broadheads. Right now I am testing new heads from Sanford Innovations, the Ulmer Edge from Trophy Taker and The T-1 from Tru-Fire. One of these heads will be on my Mathews Hel-m in the fall. Now is the best time to find out which one flies the best instead of waiting until two weeks before I leave.
Whether you decide to bowfish, introduce a kid to archery, do some long range practicing or test new broadheads, one thing is certain: now is a great time to be outside enjoying God’s Great Outdoors.