Bow Hunting: Fine Tuning Before Deer Season (Episode 295 Transcript)

This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.

GRANT: Deer season starts in less than two months and it’s time to start fine tuning our gear.

GRANT: Arrows are one item that hunters may take for granted. In the old days that wasn’t true ‘cause we were all worried about wood or aluminum shafts being straight. But with carbon arrows, they almost always remain straight throughout the life of the arrow.

GRANT: For a bow hunter, arrows are where the rubber meets the road. You can do all the habitat work or stand location planning you want, but if the arrow doesn’t deliver a sharp broadhead to the right location, you’ll go home with tag soup this fall.

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GRANT: There are several characteristics of an arrow that impact its effectiveness and accuracy.

ADAM: And 353.9.

GRANT: Weight is a really important characteristic of arrows. You can have great shooting form, your bow can be tuned, but if your arrows are three or four percent different in weight from each other, it can cause you to throw a pattern worse than a sawed off shotgun.

GRANT: I like to weigh all my arrows on a grain scale before hunting season and make sure each of them are within about one percent of each other.

GRANT: I’m continuing to prepare for deer season. And one of the choices I need to make is which arrow I’m going to shoot this year. I could use a little heavier arrow – a little bit thinner, heavier, probably a little quieter and maybe better penetration – or a lighter shaft. The only way to know which one I’m really gonna prefer is do some testing.

GRANT: I’m gonna start this by shooting the BloodSport Impact arrow. It has a really narrow diameter, but thick wall, so it’s a heavy arrow. I’ll shoot three or four – see what a average speed is.

GRANT: 268.

GRANT: This season, I’m shooting the Prime Rival bow with a 29” draw length, set at 62 pounds.

GRANT: 268.

GRANT: Penetration – or kinetic energy – should be a huge consideration for bow hunters. A pass through shot almost always gives a quicker recovery and a better blood trail than an arrow that doesn’t exit.

GRANT: 268. Our Impact shot 268 or 269 feet a second and that’s out of a 62 pound bow, 29” draw and a 440 grain arrow. That’s a heavy arrow for that setup.

GRANT: Now, I’m gonna switch over to the BloodSport FPS Hunter. And this weighs 85 grains less. So, a lot lighter arrow, but a little thicker diameter – we’ll see how she flies.

GRANT: 293. Ooo, I think I saw some lightning come out of the back of that thing.

GRANT: 293 again. Very consistent.

GRANT: 293. All three shots – 293. That baby’s smoking.

GRANT: The FPS Hunter averaged 25 feet a second faster than the Impact. That sounds like a huge amount, but when you do the math – on a 20 yard shot – the arrow is gonna reach the deer only 3/100ths of a second faster than the slower arrow. And that’s just not enough for me to be concerned about.

GRANT: There’s a lot of debate about bow and arrow speeds. But there’s one factor that kind of levels the playing field. And that is the speed of sound. Speed of sound, under average conditions, is about 1,125 feet a second. So, when you look at the difference between 1,100 feet a second – is that deer gonna hear and react to the shot – and 300 feet a second, versus 275 feet a second, it’s a non-issue. I believe at 20 yards and further – if the deer is going to react, it’s going to react to either arrow.

GRANT: Since there’s not a significant difference in arrow speed between the FPS Hunter and the Impact, I want to do another test to help me make a decision.

GRANT: It was easy to see that the lighter arrows, that weighed about 85 grains less, shot about 24 feet per second faster. Now we’ll shoot at a brand new Morrell target – never shot before – and kind of compare penetration between the Impacts, the heavier arrows, and the FPS Hunters, the lighter arrows.

ADAM: Impacts first.

GRANT: Going with the Impacts first.

GRANT: Gonna shoot the light arrow which is the FPS Hunter.

GRANT: All right. Let’s check out our result. As soon as I walk up here, I can see there’s a three to four inch difference and the Impacts are definitely penetrating further.

GRANT: I really like a punch through shot. I like that great blood trail. I know I’m going on an elk hunt first thing this fall. That’s a big critter. I tend to be a shoulder hugger. So, for me, I’m gonna go with the heavier, better penetration arrow. It’s not really a right or wrong answer. It’s more about your hunting style and your preferences.

GRANT: Some authors that I really respect have reported that using heavier arrows is the best technique they’ve ever found for reducing the noise of a shot.

GRANT: Putting it all together, you’ll see the BloodSport Impact in my quiver again this fall.

GRANT: About a month ago, we shared with you some of our smaller food plots we’d planted with a new variety of soybeans called Whitetail Thicket. Whitetail Thicket has a small size seed. It has about 5,000 plus seeds per pound. So, if you planted 60 or 80 pounds per acre, you’d get twice as many stems per acre with Whitetail Thicket than you would most soybean varieties.

GRANT: That being said, I’ve planted conventional soybeans before at 100, 120 pounds per acre and never had ‘em look this good with this amount of browse pressure.

GRANT: If you look closely, every single bean out here has been browsed or nipped off multiple times – not just once. Each stem coming up has put out 5, 10, 12 different stems – trying to outgrow the amount of browse pressure.

GRANT: When we showed you some plots planted with Whitetail Thicket about a month ago, they were up and growing in some browse pressure. But the amount of browse we’re seeing now is incredible. Of course, it’s July, the native vegetation is starting to harden off and deer are really focused on these food plots.

GRANT: You can clearly see the difference of probably – I don't know – a foot or so, inside the utilization cage and outside the cage. But what you might not be seeing from that distance is deer have been reaching through. And inside the cage – even here – has been browsed off. Deer have a really long tongue and they're browsing this field so hard, that even though we’ve got a cage that used to be about four feet through, it’s all dented in and pushed up where deer have been getting the beans inside the cage.

GRANT: For any forage variety that’s this high of quality to keep producing with this amount of browse pressure, well, that’s a true winner in my book.

GRANT: Adam and I will continue monitoring the plots we’ve planted with Whitetail Thicket. It’s a group eight maturation soybean. That simply means it grows way into the fall before it starts turning brown. That’s a huge advantage for hunters, but we want to see how it pans out here at The Proving Grounds.

GRANT: Our plan is, even though they’ll probably still be green, is to either broadcast or drill Eagle’s Broadside blend right into the Whitetail Thicket. That means that whenever it does finally get killed by frost or turn brown, we’ll have green vegetation coming up right through the beans that have pods on ‘em to provide us the best of both worlds for a late season food plot.

GRANT: I hope you have time to test and practice with your gear before deer season, but most importantly, I hope you take time today to enjoy Creation and slow down and listen to what the Creator is saying to you.

GRANT: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.tv.