Intro to Archery: Visit your local archery shop

Everyone should find a local archery shop that they like. Yes, big box stores sell bows, arrows and other equipment, but there is a huge difference between the two – and it’s not something that you may realize until you take the time to walk into your local archery shop. To be honest, when I first started this journey, it never occurred to me the value behind having an archery dealer you trust. Now, I not only value it completely, but cannot imagine taking my bow to be setup by someone I didn’t know.

IMG_9342 (333x500)Not only do the independent archery dealers seem to have a higher level of knowledge – which is essential in having your bow sized specifically to you – but their attention to detail and expertise is also more than any big box store can offer.

My husband and I visited our local archery shop last week to get my Eva Shockey Bowtech and his PSE Bow Madness 34 ready for the upcoming fall deer season. I cannot speak highly enough about our particular archery expert, Jim Despart. He is incredibly knowledgeable about all aspects of archery and bowhunting AND offers tips to improve accuracy and confidence when shooting a bow. I never feel dumb asking a question. That level of comfort is important for anyone who is a beginner (and anyone who isn’t).

IMG_9328 (333x500)While we obviously left with our bows tuned in and ready for daily practice at home, we also gained a whole lot more through the entire experience. It was incredibly neat when one of the shop’s regulars came in carrying a mount of a 10-point buck because Jim had offered to score it for him. We watched Jim measure and tally the rack, which is something I have never seen before.

IMG_9340 (333x500)We also had an in-depth food plot discussion with Jim, his father who happened to be there, and a few others in the shop, debating the merits between clover, buckwheat, corn and turnips. These conversations lead to others, in particular, where to find moose in Vermont. As a newer Vermonter, I assumed the reason I wasn’t seeing any moose was because most were located in the Northeast Kingdom (and I live in the southern part of the state). Jim used to travel the area and told us the habitat to look for as well as where specifically in the southern part of the state he had seen moose multiple times.

Visiting Flying Arrow Sports in East Greenbush, N.Y., easily turned into the highlight of our week! Thanks to Jim, my new Bowtech bow is ready to go and includes:

IMG_9335 (500x333)Are You New to Bowhunting? Check out my “Beginner’s Guide to Archery: For Women” DVD available at HERE.

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Blogs, Intro to Archery
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Kristen Schmitt

About Kristen Schmitt

Kristen writes articles on hunting, wildlife, nutrition, sustainable agriculture, and environmental issues and her articles have appeared in National Geographic, Modern Farmer, Deer & Deer Hunting, Food Politic, Mother Earth News, Modern Hunter, Utne Reader, Vermont’s Local Banquet, and Urban Times. Kristen and her family moved away from metropolitan Detroit and into the Green Mountains of Vermont for a realignment of priorities and a focus on family and sustainable living. A new bowhunter, Kristen recently completed a DVD entitled, “Beginner’s Guide To Archery For Women” that is now available for pre-order at http://beginnersguidetoarchery.vhx.tv/. She is a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America.

One thought on “Intro to Archery: Visit your local archery shop

  1. x60pilot

    Kristen, Archery Shops sometimes do not offer ongoing classes or allow for “fun” classes on the range since most shops have set events and a good base clientele so range space is limited. My suggestion would be to check out your Parks & Rec for ongoing classes and Discover/Explore Archery camps.

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