Archive for the 'Personal Blogs' Category

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Published by admin on 24 Aug 2010

Rockin’ the stage at the World Deer Expo

Rockin’ the stage at the World Deer Expo

Birmingham, Alabama

July 16-18, 2010 I was deep in the heart of Dixie for the 27th Annual World Deer Expo at the convention center in downtown Birmingham. Show promoter Bob Coker has hosted this show for almost three decades and his hard work shows by the large number of booths at the event. There were big crowds and lots of excitement in the air for this weekend. If you know Bob you know he’s working on this event year round, visiting other shows, making calls, and planning. It’s a family project and he had his wife and three daughters working too!

On Friday morning Bob and I drove over to the studio for the nationally recognized “Rick and Bubba Radio Show”. We set up the show right outside the studio on the terrace. I did a sit down interview with Rick and Bubba and then we did a few segments outside with my bow. Bob had never thrown for me but did a great job. To end the show I had Bob toss up three baby aspirin and I hit them the very first shot! Rick and Bubba were great and we had a good time during our almost forty minutes on air with them. Their show is #1 locally in the Birmingham market but also can be heard coast to coast on XM radio. Here’s the video clip:

http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/8310031

That evening I did a show for the audience and Justin tossed targets for me. I ran into Sam Stowe and Doug Rithmire at the show, they stopped by and watched the show. This audience was modest but we’d have big crowds Saturday and Sunday. I ran into Joella Bates at the show who was there doing seminars, Tim & Shirley Strickland, Eddie Salter and Chris Brackett. I had a booth on the show floor and met some new friends during my time there. The show featured some good seminars and two seminar stages.

I did some shooting for the local Fox Tv affiliate in Birmingham. Getting media attention is always good for a show and I was happy to do some shooting for them.

We had a huge crowd for Saturday’s performance. The upstairs room was packed! The audience was friendly and asked lots of good questions. I asked how many had heard the Rick and Bubba show and hands went up all over the room. Sunday I did my final exhibition and with Andrew tossing targets I hit the three baby aspirin with three arrows the very first shot! My Hoyt Formula RX bow is shooting GREAT. Special thanks to Justin, Andrew and Bob–my target throwers for the weekend.

I left Birmingham knowing why they call it “Sweet Home Alabama” and hoping to get back there soon. You can visit the show website at: http://www.birminghamdeershow.com/

Next Up: Deerassic Classic in Ohio and two appearances in the lone star state in Texas.

Until next time, Adios & God Bless.

Shoot Straight,

Frank

www.frankaddingtonjr.com

PS

Here’s a letter from show promoter Bob Coker I recieved via email after the show:

Hi Frank:

I just wanted to thank you for helping make this years EXPO the BIGGEST show ever. I have been trying to get on the Rick and Bubba show for a long time and finally I had an attraction that they felt worthy to interview on their show. Rick and Bubba are truly an icon in Birmingham and being on their show was a priceless marketing tool. Frank, you truly have a talent, a great message and a tremendous way with the crowd.

Hope to see you soon, your new friend,

Bob Coker

Promoter World Deer EXPO

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Published by admin on 02 Aug 2010

SUMMER SAUSAGE by Ted Nugent

 

SUMMER SAUSAGE                                                           by Ted Nugent
 
 

Ah, summertime, life is good and the living is easy. Dripping wet with nonstop sweat, but I’ll take it. The heat and humidity was brutal, but I had a day off from an even more brutal rock-n-roll tour schedule where we stormtrooped six nights a week with an animal ferocity the likes of which mankind has never imagined.
Trample The Weak Hurdle The Dead, nothing but lovesongs from your uncle Ted. Me and my boys were rocking at an alltime high intensity, and we only had eight more weeks to go before the official hunting season came on strong. I couldn’t wait. In fact, I won’t!
 
Spending my days working with my Labrador retrievers in anticipation of another upcoming wonderful waterfowl season, checking my varmint traps, exercising my arsenal and working on feeders and deer stands, there was no way I could fail to sit in one of my favorite ladderstands at the forest pond where the critters would surely have to converge for a little liquid refreshment before dark. There are swine in these here woods, and I need to get me some pork for the grill.
 
Big Jim and I loaded up the F250 backstrap hauler with bows, arrows, lightweight ScentLok camo, ice cold water, ThermaCells, vidcam and plenty of attitude. We quietly settled into our double ladderstands with a good cross wind from the southwest, and got ready to rock the three hours till dark.
 
I had placed some brand new Primo’s Swamp Donkey nutritional supplemental feed and attractant, both in granulated and palletized form, at the base of a few trees between us and the ponds edge. Following recent good rains, the little woodland pond doubled in size from slightly less than an acre to two acres, so we knew we needed something to improve our chances to lure some hogs into bowrange.
 
I often mention how the great outdoors “cleanses the soul”, but during my insane ultra rock tours, soul cleansing is essential for survival. As always, the beautiful Michigan woods calmed me and brought relaxation like no other. Crows yammered in the distance, woodpeckers harassed the wood bound bug world, and sand hill cranes crillled high overhead.
 
My old woods is emerald green in summer, and a slight breeze under the sun shielding canopy provided a welcome respite from the cooking ball of fire to the west. Jim videoed the beauty of sunrays cutting through the swaying  branches and a smiling old guitar player at home and happy on his sacred hunting grounds. A few golden deer skittered off in the shadows, but all was peaceful at our waterhole.
 
As dusk approached, I noticed movement to the south as three very handsome wild boar skulked along the forest edge headed for water. The good sized pigs took their time but eventually waded into the pond, crossing to our side. When they got a snout full of Swamp Donkey, they went for it.
 
As always, they ate facing us or facing directly away, not giving a decent shot for a long time. Finally, the smaller, redder hog, what I thought was a sow, turned broadside and I smoothly drew my lightweight 50# Martin bow without any of them noticing.
 
At twenty yards, I picked a spot and let er rip. The vidcam caught the zebra shaft smacking into the hogs ribs as the Lumenok glowed bright orange right exactly where I wanted it, in and out of the swine in an instant.
 
With a grunt and a squeal, the trio lit out of there like a punched piggy and disappeared into the dark forest behind us. Good Lord that’s exciting stuff! At 62 years clean and sober young, every arrow is more thrilling today in my life than ever before, and my big old pig killing grin on camera said it all. I knew my arrow was true, and it was just a matter of tracking my prize.
 
The bloodtrail was a dandy and in short order we recovered my prize. Though I thought my pig was the smallest of the three, it turned out to be a fine, heavy boar of over 140 pounds. A great trophy and killer grilling!
 
My 400 grain Nuge Gold Tip 5575 tipped with a scalpel sharp Magnus two blade BuzzCut head had zipped clean through the tough beast like butter. A graceful 50# bow is all she wrote, and in fact, Mrs. Nugent cleanly kills all her big game with a lightweight girly 40#. She has bagged big tenacious deer, rams, wildebeest, kudu, gemsbok, zebra, warthogs, impala, Aoudad, and an assortment of various big game around the world, proving the certain deadliness of lightweight tackle. I hope nobody keeps people out of our wonderful bowhunting lifestyle for the wrongheaded assumption that a powerful bow is necessary to kill big game. It isn’t. Stealth, grace and razor sharp arrowhead placement makes venison, not velocity or power.
 
We hauled my trophy boar out of the forest with a handy Glenn’s DeerHandle, loaded it up and after thoroughly cleaning and skinning it, hung it in our portable Polar King walk in cooler. The next day our buddy who specializes in smoking whole hogs picked it up for the final process for the ultimate wise use conservation of renewable pork.
 
Summertime-perfect. Hog hunting-perfect. Beautiful arrows-perfect. Dead hogs-perfect. Smoked hogs-perfect. Barbeque-perfect. Rocking like pork spirit powered maniacs the next night in Wisconsin-perfect. I call it the American Dream. Perfect.
 
For ultimate year round trophy boar hunting with Ted Nugent at Sunrize Acres in Michigan, contact [email protected] 517-750-9060, or visit tednugent.com
 

 

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Published by sarah on 25 Jul 2010

Tell me what you think of my artical. thanks!

 

HI! im sarah and im fifteen(:  i wrote this for huntinglife.com it got accepted and also got me on their prostaff. i was thinking about sending it to eastmans. tell me what you guys think.

The big day, October 2nd is here. The leaves are green with hints of yellow and the air is warm.  I hike through the woods to my tree stand; the warm air smothers me with a feeling of peace. Getting away from the grind of life and into the woods for a few hours brings me to an absolute bliss.  Although the weather is pleasant I get cold chills because the feelings the outdoors brings to me.  Even if I do not bring a deer home with me, I will not return home low-spirited but I will feel cleansed and refreshed. As the season goes by, I may kill a few deer but that’s not all that brings me excitement. Just seeing nature’s changes is enough to thrill me. Watching the leaves go from green, to yellow, orange, and red, then watching them slowly disappear off the trees and the ground transform into a red, orange, and yellow mixture. I’ve learned the beauty of the hunt can be just an exciting as the kill itself.

As a child, responsibility isn’t a strong point. But it may be gained much faster and stronger if the child hunts. Hunting is a sport that involves weapons and they can’t be treated as toys.  And as a child I was taught to treat every gun as if it was loaded.  I’ve learned patience and how to be stealthy. Learning all the ways to hunt such as walking quietly by rolling you foot, when to be ready to draw back, when to stand up, how to correctly use deer estrus, how to scan the area in search for deer, and many other difficult techniques.  I remember to practice these each time I go out and hunt. I want every technique I know to be mastered.  

Hunting has taught me about respect. Not the yes sir and no ma’am kind of respect that I was taught when I was young. But I have learned to respect the outdoors, to respect my states laws and people who own the land I hunt on.  I put myself in the landowners position and think “I wouldn’t enjoy people disrespecting my land.” And I remember to treat others as I would like to be treated. Wildlife is beautiful and I see it on TV getting ruined by oil spills or enormous clear-cuts.  It hurts me to think of all the beauty that humans are destroying through their greediness.  The woods that I know will never vanish in my generation are my sanctuary.  And I sympathize for the people who can’t enjoy the forest or animals in the wild because they live in the city. They just don’t understand how hunting truly can change a person’s life. 

My dad and I have bonded tremendously through the outdoors. We fish, hike, hunt, or anything else we can find that’s outside.  Really, all our time spent together is doing these activities.  He has taught me a lot of things from tying a strong slip-knot for fishing to how to shoot my boy correctly. My Granddad has also taught me many useful things. He owned a sporting goods store in the seventies and he was also a park ranger, he goes to Montana to shoot prairie dogs once a year and buys me books and magazines to help me learn as much as I can.  My granddad takes me out to the rifle range and we shoot skeet, pistols, and rifles. All the old men up there let me try out there guns. Without my dad and granddad I doubt I would know all I do. And without the outdoors, I wouldn’t be nearly as close with them as I am.

Another of the many great traits I have gained from the outdoors is hard work pays off.  Two years ago on my first hunting trip alone I missed a doe. I blame it on myself because I hadn’t practiced like I should have. That disappointment lit me up and I was determined to be the best shot I could be. All summer I shot and shot. Finally the chance came for me to prove that my hard work actually meant something. I shot at my second deer at 42 yards while standing on my knees, turned around backwards in my tree stand. My heart sank; I knew I had shot to low and missed. I pulled out my cell phone and called my dad to tell him to help me look for my arrow, it could be anywhere. He came down to the clearing where I had shot and we looked a long time for that arrow that was nowhere to be seen. I searched and searched, but I found something a million times better than an arrow. Blood.  A smile hit my face so hard that I couldn’t even speak. My dad noticed and he looked at me like I was crazy. I found the words and told him about what I spotted. That was the start of our night. I had barely nicked the lungs and he ran a little ways but eventually we found him. A little spike but I didn’t care; I had a kill under my belt. I was so proud.

Hunting isn’t for everyone, but if you love it and get out there you can learn some of the most important qualities a person can earn in their life. The beauty of nature, responsibility, respect, the value of family and friends, and that hard work truly does pay off. These aren’t the only things a hunter can learn, but they are some of the most precious characteristics.

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Published by admin on 27 May 2010

PRACTICE OR CRY by Ted Nugent

 

PRACTICE OR CRY 
by Ted Nugent
 
We’ve all been there. Indescribable sacrifice and all those muscle numbing months, weeks, days and hours on stand, trying to outsmart the backstrappers of our dreams, when finally that magic moment of truth arrives, and, we blow it. Curses!
 
We all know that us humans are painfully fallible creatures, but there is no way out from under the agony of a blown shot, regardless whether bullet or arrow.
 
And then, horror of horrors, often, it happens again.
 
I hate that.
 
Have you ever thought of just quitting? I certainly have on more than a few occasions in the past. In fact the memories are so painful I refuse to regurgitate the ugly details of any of them here with you now. Who needs it?
 
Being the hyper uppity, exposed raw nerve ending kind of bowhunting guitar nut that I am, it took me many, many very trying years to finally figure out this malady on my own, and if the professional, fulltime nutjob MotorCity MadMan can figure it out, I assure you, anybody can.
 
As human beings, it is likely that we will never totally eliminate the curse of bad shots, but there exists a pretty simple, proven system  by which we can remedy this damning phenomenon quite handily in a very short period of time, IF we truly apply ourselves.
 
Believe it when they say, it’s 99% mental.
 
Step 1-Stop, relax, take a deep breath, maybe look deep into your own eyeballs in a mirror, and tell yourself you are not going to miss anymore. And mean it. I am not referring to a casual note to one’s self. I’m talking about a hardcore, serious as a heart attack, clenched fist, moment in time contract with God. A solemn promise on a stack of Bibles oath kind of thing.
 
Up thoughtful review, in the  big scheme of things, if sounds ridiculously simple doesn’t it, maybe even too good to be true. But I am here to tell you, a serious psychological commitment to becoming a killer shot represents, for lack of a better description, the whole shooting match. Really.
 
Based on the level of migraine inducing torture I have personally experienced and witnessed by my fellow hunters after an inexplicable blown shot, my proposed remedy is a gimme.
 
For many years now, I have the good fortune of guiding hundreds of hunters each season in various hunting camps around the world, and what I see and hear is very telling. We make it a point to always shoot our bows and guns together, and watching someone shoot speaks volumes as to his or her capabilities with bow and gun.
 
Be it known that there are many archers and marksmen far superior to your humble guitarplayer out there, and we can all learn much from these dead-eye, precision shooters.
 
The best shots all have one thing in common; they look and shoot smoothly and comfortably, with a fluidity derived from many, many hours at the range. Simply stated, they are obviously one with their bows and guns. Their every move is confident, graceful and sure, their weapon a natural extension of their very being.
 
Conversely, the bad shots also have certain traits and movements in common that can best be described as awkward and uncertain. Too many riflemen squirm and gyrate in an attempt to find the target in the scope. They usually fumble with the bolt or lever action, seemingly uncomfortable with the feel and function of the gun. You can tell right away they have not invested adequate effort and time to become at home with their gun and the shooting process overall. That, my friends, is simply a choice.
 
When I see an archer struggle whatsoever when drawing their bow, I know we are in for some trouble. The curse of accuracy destroying, over-bowed bowhunters must come to a screeching halt as soon as possible.
 
Shooting a few bullseyes at the range does not an archer make. I see them looking to connect the arrow knock to the string, searching to find the string loop with their release caliper, bouncing the arrow off the rest, and basically shooting with inexperienced, clumsy, bad anti-archery form. To do so is also a choice.
 
It all boils down to the number one violation of not shooting enough to become one with the shooting sequence and feel for their weapon. It takes many, many hours, many, many days and many, many shots to develop a meaningful deadliness with bow and gun.
 
Add into the equation, the mind rattling intensity when in the heat of battle, when the beast is about to give it to us, it is imperative that our training kicks into auto pilot. Muscle and psyche memory from effective training through prolonged, intelligent practice will go a long way in reducing, and I believe, nearly eliminating missed shots on game.
 
I am well aware of the fact that hunting means different things in varying degrees to different people, in a multitude of ways. Some of us absolutely live for our cherished time afield, others approach recreational hunting as a casual get away from the yearlong daily hustle bustle of everyday life. And that’s all well and good. However, not only does a blown shot cause anger and an overall sense of frustration, but much more important than this personal consideration is the fact that a less than perfect shot can unnecessarily wound and possible waste a game animal that so much time and money has been invested in.
 
We all know that we can all make mistakes. It is up to us conscientious, reasoning predators to do everything in our power to make sure we make the best shot humanly possible everytime we unleash our projectiles at a living animal.
 
Prioritizing scheduling to maximize time at the range is a primary responsibility of every caring hunter. And if the nearest range is difficult to get too with any regularity, then there are alternative practice procedures that are available to everybody, anywhere, anytime.
 
We can derive much desirable familiarity with our bows and guns right in the convenience of our own homes. The living room, basement, backyard, even the garage can accommodate meaningful practice time. The simple act of drawing our bow, settling the sight, and squeezing off a controlled shot into a proper target is very effective even at ten feet in the garage or living room.
 
Handling, mounting, sight, breathing and dry fire trigger control can all be accomplished just about anywhere, and will go a long way in training us to be one with our deer rifle or weapon of choice. I won’t bother harping on safety considerations, just as I don’t feel its necessary to tell you to wear clothes when going outdoors. I have immanent faith in my fellow man.
 
As my old man used to tell me; practice, practice, practice, then practice some more.
 If we are sincere in our desire to avoid the horrible feelings of blown shots, then the answer is simple- put our hearts and souls into being the best that we can be by putting forth the effort needed to become one with our weapons of choice. More practice equals more backstraps. Go for it.

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Published by KurtD on 14 Jan 2010

DO NOT POST ITEMS FOR SALE IN THIS SECTIONS (Blogs and Articles)!

This section of Archerytalk is just for Blogs and Articles.

Please use the Archerytalk Forums TO POST A FREE CLASSIFIED AD

Thanks,

admin

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Published by justsayitsigns on 29 Dec 2009

looking for mod.for 26-27 in draw length

i got a used bow for christmas. it is a pro line dual cam wit 29 in draw. i need to find 2 matching mod to reduce the draw to 26 or 27. i can’t find any real in fo out there for pro line. i think it is a carbon pro line! please any suggestions or links would be greatly appreciated.

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Published by sarah on 22 Dec 2009

My very first hunting trip in the pouring snow

The weather man is calling for a twenty four inch snow storm here in Roanoke county Virginia.   more snow than we will have gotten in fifteen years, also setting records for the month of December!  Anyways, i decide it will be fun to hunt in the snow and i should get to my tree stand before it starts snowing heavily.  As soon as i start walking into the edge of the woods i can barely see through the sno

windburn :(

 
windburn 🙁

w. i don’t turn back.  By the time i get to my stand already an inch and a half of snow has fallen and the steps are slippery climbing up.  im sweating and i should have lived in that last moment of warmth.  finally hooked in my stand i start to feel the snow flakes and wind on my cheeks.  windburn was in my future. my big fluffy NON-waterproof coat was starting to turn white and so was the rest of my clothing. i had to stand up to get some of it off before it all soaked in.  this turned into a routine.  an hour has passed and I’m colder than I’ve ever been in my life, and it feels like the temperatures dropping.  it hurts to look to my left; the wind and snow are hitting me harder than ever.  the next two hours were miserable.  i hadn’t seen a a squirrle  much less a deer and i was about to die so i lower my bow down and descend down the slippery steps once again.  up the hill i fell more times than i can count and next time i WILL dress warmer!

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Published by sarah on 27 Nov 2009

Sarahs Second Bow Kill

me and my four pointer

me and my four pointer

my alarm goes off at 6:00am to wake up and head off into the woods behind my house in Bedford/Roanoke county Virginia. My dad still isn’t awake but i go ahead and start getting ready. once I’m ready to go dad still isn’t up so i tell him I’m heading out.
once i get to my stand the first sliver of orange over the mountains is starting to show. Three hours pass of miserable, freezing winds and i see nothing but woodpeckers. Finally i look over at the ridge to my right and see a deer running down the side. by the time i can stand up and raise my bow he is walking in from forty yards. thirty. twenty. i draw my bow with shaky hands. the buck fever was getting to me. deep breath. my glasses fog! i wait a few seconds for that to fade, and then i aim, and release. i see my arrow pierce into the four-pointers lungs. He rears back and runs about thirty to forty yards and falls. My second kill. i call my dad and tell him the good news. thank goodness for four-wheelers!

my name is sarah and im fourteen years old. when i get older i want to have a hunting show. i really am trying to get noticed. any tips or advice is appreciated!
thanks!

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Published by admin on 23 Jul 2009

Archery Apps For Iphone by Jake Richmond

I sat nearly motionless and listened….The sweet sounds of cows and calves permeated the air around me…It was mid morning, and I was thoroughly enjoying myself…It had been months since I had heard the sounds of fall…A single escalating bugle broke out, followed closely by…….laughter?? Yes..the laughter of my co-workers…

I wasn’t in the mountains, nor was it September..Its July and I was in my office…at my desk…cow calling, sweet talking, and bugling with my gleaming new iPhone.  The previous evening I successfully downloaded my very first app. from the good fellows at Primos Game Calls.  Now, at any given moment I can whip out my do it all mini machine and be scratching out the lonesome yelps and purrs of a rio hen, yip and yap like a hungry coyote, or blast out the high pitch scream of a frenzied bull… J  This cool little app. runs the gamut.  Waterfowl, elk, deer, hogs, turkeys and predator calls, all in the palm of my hand

primos

Further investigation into the world of iPhones, I found a plethora of archery, bow hunting and outdoor lifestyle apps.  Deer and turkey hunting games abound as do archery competition and fishing..Here is some of what I found to be fun…

One App. I found called Hunt Call Pro allows you to download a variety of calls to actually be used on the hunt (where legal of course).  A separate volume control lets you manipulate the sound to be used in real hunt applications.

huntcall

Archery Championship is a fun and realistic target archery competition.  You can choose from a mini hunting game, a practice round to hone your skills or go directly into competition!  What I thought was neat is that you aim by tilting your phone…Need to aim higher, tip the phone back, lower..tip it forward…I actually found myself caught up in this as I do any real life archery competition…Aiming hard..executing..checkingmy opponents score…Just as if I were on the line.

champion

iHunt 3D…now this one is probably my favorite so far…You get to choose your season.  As you hunt, you build up experience points and cash (based on the successful hunts) to move to the next level and purchase new and better equipment. Equipment upgraded rifles, bows, camo, optics and scent eliminators.  You use your index finger to navigate around your stand..scanning the surrounding area for that monster buck…Now, the deer could be 100yds or 30 yds…But even in close, don’t fool yourself..The Scope has a realistic amount of ambient movement built in just as if you were shooting in a standing position.  Add in the fact that again, you aim the crosshairs by tipping your phone/ipod, it can definitely prove to be a challenge….even in the easy game setting.  After you are done hunting, add your score to the leader board, and compare yourself to other online hunters from across the country…

3d

Bowmen…Now this game is just plain fun…You aren’t much more than a stick figure..Obviously more could have been done graphics wise, but that is part of the attraction of this little game…You are dueling with your chosen opponent, the cpu. or another person who shares the game with you…Simply put, you take turns shooting at each other.  The challenge is this:  You cannot see your opponent until you shoot!  So this means, you have to set the angle of the shot, and the force to get it there (you do so by dragging you finger across the screen) without actually having a point of reference or something to aim at!  For as simple as this game is, it is 10 fold with fun!!

bowman2

The above is just a small sample of apps. available for hunters..Bow and gun alike…Some are mere games, some are fun just to have, and some are much more serious tools…Like a highly detailed and accurate compass and a new GPS feature already come standard on your iPhone. (Compass/gps images)  Whether or not you’ll ever need to use these two features, nobody knows…But like I’ve said..Id rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it…

So all in all, the iPhone apps get an enthusiastic thumbs up from me…Even though I’ve barely scratched the surface in the world of apps, I know for fact regardless if you are a hardcore bow hunter, determined target archer or a backyard champion like me, if you take the time to look, you will find something you cant live without!

iphone-compass

Jake Richmond

Martin Archery, Inc.

Research and Developement

Pro-Staff Coordinator

www.martinarchery.com

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Published by airborne49719 on 08 Jul 2009

The Journey from Right hand shooting to Left hand!

 

    I was introduced to archery at a very young age. This was kind of expected of the boys from our family that grew up in the back woods of the eastern end of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. My first bow was a 30 to 50 LB Darton compound bow. My dad bought it for my 11Th Birthday. It had no sights and when I asked my dad why the bow didn’t have sights he replied with “you have to earn them” so I asked being young and naive “how do I earn them then” and that is when he told me. When you can put six arrows in a pie plat at 15 yards I will get you sights for your bow. I spent all summer shooting that year trying to put six arrows in a pie plate. This was a hard task to accomplish at my age and at times I got so discouraged I just wanted to quite but my passion for hunting at this age had only begun. As the summer went by I tried my best but could never really get the hang of it completely.  My dad would watch and coach me telling me that I was dropping my arm or I wasn’t keeping my anchor points the same it was ruff. Plus my fingers would hurt from shooting for hours.   

  

    Then one day my dad while he was watching and coaching me I got really frustrated I was at 15 yards and still could not get my group to get any smaller than the size of a plate. He started to talk to me about  when I was even younger and how he would take me with him some times to meet a group of guys that always came to the Upper Peninsula from Ohio to bow hunt. These guys were quite the group they loved to party and tell stories about when they were younger and all the trouble they got into as they grew up.  For a kid it made going to deer camp so much fun. But it was there at deer camp around all those guys and my dad that I had learned about instinctive shooting. All the guys would get ready for opening day by pulling out a hundred dollar bill and put them on the bail of hay. The first one to put the arrow in the center of the bill at 20 yards won that round then they would back up to 30 yards and do it all over again sometimes they would even go as far as trying to do trick shots. It was this day that I remembered all the guys out shooting at those bills. How could they do it, what were they doing that I wasn’t. Then I realized they were just honing there skills to make them selves better and having fun while doing it.

 

    My dad asked me why don’t you go back to 5 yards and shoot. I looked at him and said but dad I have already mastered the pie plate at those ranges. That is when he reminded me about those guys and him shooting at the hundred dollar bills at 20 yards.  He then told me that if I move back up to 5 yards.  I would need to start working at grouping my arrows tighter in the target and picking different points on the target to aim at and you will improve. I took his advice and moved back up to the 5 yard mark and shot at the target like he told me. I felt like I had started all over again. But to my surprise I learned pretty quick that my grouping was not all that great and when I picked different points on the target I would be a half inch to a inch off.   I finally got the hang of it after I went back to the 5 yard mark and started over.  It was the summer I turned 12. I finally was able to put the six arrows in the pie plate at 15 yards. I got my sights and to boot my dad got me the new ball bearing release.  

 

    I have shot my fair share of deer in the past years with my bows that I have owned. I joined the Army in August of 2001 and it wasn’t till I deployed in February 2007 for Operation Iraq Freedom that would change my life. While I was deployed in Iraq we lost our first Soldier in March 2007 to a vehicle born improvised device. It was a dump truck loaded with 16,000 lbs of explosives that put a thirty foot crater in the ground. Since that day we had minor casualties up until August 2007.  When a Black Hawk crashed and Fourteen Soldiers perished in the wreck from the 25thInfantry Division. It was the day of the memorial service for the fourteen. My whole Company went to the memorial service paying there respect to the fallen Soldiers. I am not sure to this day why I left early to go back to my office but I did. It was there at my office where I meet SGT Collins, CPL Cornell, and PFC Axtell. I let every one in the office mind you that our office was your basic tin garage package minus the garage doors.  I was sitting at my desk and just finished talking to SGT Collins and CPL Cornell as they turned to leave and PFC Axtell was just entering the building from smoking a cigarette.  When a 127mm Brazilian rocket land five meters from the building. SGT Collins was KIA instantly he also took the brunt of everything that would have hit me. CPL Cornell was seriously wounded he received multiple wounds to his legs and upper body. PFC Axtell was also seriously wounded both of his legs were severed off at the waste. I was not wounded as bad as everyone else due to SGT Collins being only a foot and half away from me and taking the brunt of the shrapnel that would have hit me. I was the only one to walk out of that building on my own two feet that day. CPL Cornell and PFC Axtell are both doing really good and are a big inspiration to me on how i live my life now. PFC Axtell now SPC is out of the Army and has competed in two triathlon’s since he was wounded.

  

  I was very lucky that day for I must of had someone watching over me. I received shrapnel wounds to my right eye, top of the head and down the left side of my body. I was medivac to ballad, Iraq were they did my first surgery on my right eye to remove a large junk of shrapnel from my cornea that was allowing the fluid to leak out from my eye. I was then medivac back to Brook Army Medical Center in Texas. It was at Wilford Hall in Texas that I meet a Air force Doctor (Dr. Lane). He conducted my second Surgery which consisted of removing the rest of the shrapnel that was in my right eye and draining all the bad fluid and blood, he also did a lens transplant and sewed my Iris shut this surgery took around three hours. Since then I had a detached retina surgery in June 2009 to boot.  The seriousness of the eye injury is why I am here writing today it has been almost two years since that day in Iraq and my shooting style had to change.

 

    I just recently purchased my first left handed Compound Bow a Mathews Hyperlite.  But it took me a long time to finally switch to a left hand bow but I am glad that I did.  When I first got back from the hospital in September 2007 I was stationed at Fort Riley, KS the home of Monster Whitetail. I went straight into trying to make pins for my hoyt bow that would allow me to shot my right handed bow. I went to home depot and purchased some threaded rod 1/8 inch and took the dermal and started to make the pins I then found a old cobra sight bracket it all fit together perfectly but the bow look hideous. I didn’t care as long as it worked. The second time out in the woods I forgot my glasses and I took a stick to the right eye walking out in the dark so that ended archery season that year for me. I was then sent to Fort Carson, Co in June 2008 I love it here. I got so excited when I got out here “Elk” was the only thing I could think of and archery season was coming. I got my hoyt out and started to practice but after shooting right handed with my left eye it started to feel uncomfortable and I wasn’t sure why. I passed up a spike elk that season at 36 yards because I started to doubt myself and the ability to shoot right handed with being left eye dominate now.

 

    So in February of 2009 I bought a Mathews Hyperlite. This bow is awesome and Bill set me up right in every way. I went in to the Archery hut here in Colorado Springs and talked to the owner Bill about my situation and explained what I was looking for in a bow. He pulled his bow out from the office and said this is my hunting bow a Mathews right handed Hyperlight. He says its smooth easy to pull and light for packing around after elk. He let me shoot his hyperlite and I fell in love with that bow. After I shot it I looked at Bill and told him to order me one in left hand 55 to 65 lb pull.

 

   

I have been going to the range every chance I get to shoot it.  Took only two weeks to make the switch completely of brushing my right arm with the string and get the form of left handed shooting down. I am now once again chomping at the bit for elk archery season to begin. I will say this much from shooting right handed to switching to left handed it takes practice and it can be done. I am now shooting as good if not better left handed then I was right handed all because of the growing pains that I went through as a kid and learning how to shoot instinctive.  If you are going to learn you must be able to step back and think about everything you are doing in all situations to be able to grow in life.              

  

SGT Bennett

United States Army

 

“An army of deer led by a lion is more to be feared than an army of lions led by a deer.”

Chabrias 410–375 B.C. 

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