Intro to Archery: Springing into my second bow season

Last year, at this time, I was so anxious and eager to get outside and start practicing with my new bow. After deciding that 2014 was the year I would start bowhunting, I was sized up for my first bow only for temperatures to plummet and snow to fall until it was up to my waist in places. I remember how determined I was to shoot and lost my first arrow in my backyard the day before the snow fell only to have my daughter find it once the spring thaw arrived.

This year will be my second bow season and I am excited. The weather has finally decided to shift towards spring. The snow is very slowly being replaced with mud here in Vermont and I couldn’t be happier. This year I plan to work on increasing both my draw weight and the distance from where I feel comfortably and accurately shooting. I felt like last spring and summer were more stressful because I didn’t know what to anticipate as far as my first season, but with that behind me now, I’m ready to incorporate daily outside practice back into my life along with some basic scouting this spring and summer.

My progress from my first spring through my first fall is pretty interesting to see in pictures:

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Spring before my first bow season (2014).

Summer progress (2014)

Summer progress (2014)

Getting serious (2014)

Getting serious (2014)

Ready (2014).

Ready (2014).

I’m also considering switching my wrist release to a thumb or finger release, but I’m afraid that style may be too big for my hands. I plan to research that a bit more over the next few weeks and see if it’s worth it. Some archery experts I know told me to stick with what I was already comfortable using, but I also think that I’m so new at this sport that trying out other options is always a good thing. I might end up discovering that I’m happy to switch or end up sticking with what I already have.

One aspect that has carried over from last year is my daughter’s continued interest in learning archery and learning how to hunt, in general. I think it’s amazing to see her growing up and understanding that connection between field and plate. I love that archery is another activity we can do together. She gains a love of the outdoors through archery and bowhunting, self confidence in her abilities, and an appreciation for where her food comes, which makes my own journey even more worthwhile than I could have anticipated.

In other news, we recently bought a hoop house to extend our growing season and garden size this spring and fall, which is another first for us. We also adopted three ducklings that will hopefully give us some eggs later in the year and have a new puppy joining the family the day before Easter. It will be a full and satisfying spring.

Gratuitous duck picture (2015)

Gratuitous duck picture (2015)