How To Combat The Wind While Bow Hunting
Many hunters prefer the style of traditional archery when hunting to make the hunt feel more natural and primitive, which is quite appealing to the more traditional hunters who want to be more in touch with nature.
Plus, compared to something as a rifle, which always goes with a loud bang every time a shot is fired, a bow is completely silent all the way. Hunters will likely get another chance to fire as the creatures will likely not have noticed.
Still, it’s not perfect. When bow hunting, hunters will rely on wind even more than usual. The best-case scenario is that there is a light breeze, wherein the wind is blowing your scent away from the game.
Reality, however, isn’t always that nice. Sometimes, the winds blow strong, discouraging many hunters, not just because of the high possibility that the wind will throw their aim off, but because it will likely scare many of the deer away in their hunting grounds. This uncertainty is what discourages many hunters from trying to go all in.
That doesn’t mean that you should give up too, however. This article will explore methods you can use to continue hunting in the wind.
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Having a steady aim, no matter the weather is what will bag you the deer, which is why being able to aim your shots steadily is especially important.
However, depending on the wind speed, you must be willing to change your strategy on the fly if necessary. For instance, leaving behind your tree stand might be a good idea if you can’t take aim properly from your height because of powerful winds. (Usually between 30mph-45mph)
While you will likely lose your height advantage in the process, you will at least be able to handle the wind better, as it won’t be as powerful as before to intercept your arrows due to all the cover surrounding you.
Bow and arrow setup
Not all bows and arrows are created equal. Depending on the type of bow you are using you will need to make proper adjustments on your aim depending on how strong the wind is blowing.
Using a heavier bow, for instance, will require more gripping power from you, but it also means that the wind is less likely to influence it and throw your aim off. And for arrows, a smaller arrow shaft has less surface area for the wind to influence it as effectively.
Make sure you understand everything about the bow and arrows you are using, as they are essential to being able to aim well and true even during a harsh and windy day.
You’re not the only one having a hard time under these gusty winds. Deer in the vicinity will have a hard time relying on their senses as well, as they will be assaulted by noise on all sides.
This might make them more prone to running away unexpectedly, but this also reduces their chances of noticing you in the area, as they will not be able to hear your presence as well.
Deer are also likely to choose a covered spot to sleep in to wait for the wind to pass, which will be the perfect opportunity for you to strike. And even if you miss because of the weather conditions, it is unlikely that the deer will hear your shot because of the wind literally blowing up its ears, giving you another chance.
Be careful of the wind direction, though! It might take your scent to any nearby deer’s nose if you are careless. Even the ones that are sleeping might suddenly run off if they smell that they are being hunted.
Go out in more open areas
If the winds are powerful, the leaves of nearby trees will likely be rustling, spooky any nearby deer away from the area. This would also make tree stands unable to help, as deer are unlikely to approach trees until the wind dies down.
To remedy this, it might be a good idea to move to more open areas early that still have suitable cover, but are not as close to the forest, if at all.
If positioned right, you can intercept deer that are trying to make their escape from the forest leaves, leaving them wide open for a shot. They will be running off early because of the noises of the forest around them, so you will have to react accordingly.
Moving out of the woods early also ensures that your scent does not stay around for too long or too strong, lessening the chance that the deer might be spooked with your presence.
Practice makes perfect
Practicing is the ultimate training tool here. To truly get accustomed with shooting in the wind, one must actually experience it first-hand.
It’s one thing to talk about theoretical possibilities on what to do when a specific scenario under the wind happens, and it’s another thing entirely to experience it and do the things yourself.
This will likely mean that you will have some difficulty during your first few attempts on hunting during high winds, as you attempt to grapple with the wind and hunt with your bow but that is fine. No one starts out as a prodigy without some trial and error.
To start with, that means actively seeking out windy days to practice your hunting skills with a bow, while practicing these tips.
It will take some time, but it will be well worth it. No longer will you have to call off a hunt and go home just because the winds are blowing harsher than what was forecasted; You simply need to adapt to the new circumstances, and you will be able to continue like nothing happened.
Windy hunting days test your ability to adapt and overcome when the odds are stacked against your favor. It tells you to instead use the environment to your advantage.
It also tests how well you really know the equipment you are using, as differences in things such as weight and type of bow may alter your accuracy and can mean the difference between bagging a deer, or losing all your arrows to the wind.