Locavore Blog: Creating an Indoor Archery Range

After receiving 15 inches of snow for Thanksgiving, we enjoyed a warm up over Christmas that meant temps in the high 40s, melting snow, muddy roads, and a break from trekking through knee deep drifts just to get the mail.

IMG_7768 (400x267)We took advantage of the warmer weather to cut, split, and stack wood for the wood stove thanks to the many trees that fell during Snowmageddon.

IMG_7922 (400x267)Can you spot my tree stand? I snapped this photo from the back road that runs behind our property. It’s pretty easy to spot now that the leaves have all fallen.

IMG_7856 (267x400)Speaking of my tree stand, I invited a reporter from Vermont Public Radio to join me a few weeks back during the second Vermont bow season. Here’s the segment that aired on Monday about being a locavore interested in hunting for organic meat.

While I definitely enjoyed the break from the bitter cold and the ability to walk across my yard instead of only along the paths we plowed, I know it is only a break – more snow and more cold is on the way. This means that I need somewhere to practice archery that is accessible and warm enough (as in, not the negative temps that will be here before we know it) during the next few months.

Setting up a Basic Indoor Archery Practice Area

Obviously outdoor practice is optimal, but if you need a break from the bitter cold, putting together a basic indoor archery range practice area is a good idea. If you already have archery targets and blocks, setting up an indoor archery practice area is pretty simple.

Step one: assemble your targets. It’s important to use what works for your space. While I have my 3D target to mentally prepare for  bow season, I think that the basic block target works better for the indoor setup.

IMG_5998 (267x400)Step two: clear a spot where you can set it up. For me, I’m using a section of my basement. My basement is one long room and allows me the ability to practice at about 20 yards.

Obviously basement photos are poorly lit, but you can see my basic setup.

Obviously basement photos are poorly lit, but you can see my basic setup.

Step three: set up your space. This can be as basic as you want it. I don’t have a lot of room and really just need a space to continue with my practice routine. To help save your walls, you could pick up a rubber horse stall mat that is available at Tractor Supply. My walls are cinder block and my basement is unfinished so I haven’t added this to my setup.

Step four: get ready to practice. Anyone can benefit from daily archery practice whether you’re new at archery or have been shooting for a long time. For me, it is not only enjoyable, but also relaxing — a way to get frustrations out after a long day. I’m looking forward to using this basic indoor setup throughout the next few months — or at least until the next warm spell.

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Interested in Archery? Check out Kristen Schmidt’s Video and Join the Fun!

Born and raised in metropolitan Detroit, Kristen Schmitt never thought she’d move away from everything she knew. But a conscious decision to re-evaluate priorities led her and her family to leave the city and move to the country where they could spend more time together, away from the hectic nature of city life. Her decision to pursue archery and bowhunting came after the move – and after talking with numerous women already involved with the sport. Inspired by their drive and confidence, Kristen picked up a bow for the first time a year ago and hasn’t looked back.

In Beginner’s Guide to Archery: For Women you’ll find:

  • An overview of the essential archery equipment and gear you’ll need to get started
  • Instruction on archery fundamentals
  • Coverage of essential hunting topics like scent control, safety, wild food vs. local food, and more
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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.

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