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Hey Guys,

I'm curious what the mix is out there. I'm sure this type of thread has been done before but I'd like to get some interesting conversation about what makes a person the best bowhunter they can be.

I have long time been a bowhunter that bowhunted for 2 months of bow season then grabbed a rifle season for November rifle season. For this reason, I think my bowhunting (although well practiced and serious) has probably suffered.

I am really starting to wonder or consider what my hunting might change to if I only picked up a rifle once or twice a year for some specific hunts and started using my bow only and really putting time into bowhunting. For us up here in Alberta, its easy to grab a rifle and fill tags. Sometimes I guess that results in us 'not worrying' so much about bowhunting and just using it as filler.

So, what are your thoughts? Do you mix up your bow and rifle hunting quite a bit? Do you bowhunt only?
 

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Live Free or Die!
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Well, here in IL there is no rifle hunting. Shotgun and muzzleloader though. While I gun hunt, I bowhunt 90 percent of the time. Of all the deer i've killed, I'm running at about a 4:1 bow to gun kill ratio. Bow hunting is definitely a better experience IMO.
 

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I started out rifle hunting. I never gave bowhunting a second thought until the end of my first rifle deer season. 2 weeks was not enough time for me to get my "fill" of hunting. I checked the KDWP website and found that bow season went another month and a half! So, I bought a bow and practiced day and night with it. I got to where I could hit the small squares on my target out to 30 yards everytime, and went bow hunting.
My second year, there was a few weeks I went hunting with some friends during rifle season, but put the gun down as soon as I could and picked up the bow.
Now, I dont even break out the rifles except to go target shooting down at the river. Its all bowhunting for me now.
Nothing against any rifle hunters, I just prefer to bowhunt.
I personally dont care what a person uses to hunt, just get out and hunt!
 

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Started out rifle hunting, but added bow many, many years ago. I still rifle hunt out of tradition, but bow is my passion. I use my rifle time to really explore new areas for next year's bow season.

If we could use a bow during rifle season (WI) I would use the bow.
 

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I've been gun hunting for 38 years and bow hunting for 36. Being a bowhunter has made me a better gun hunter. When it comes to choosing I find they present different challenges that both appeal to me. I'd have to say bowhunting is my first choice but I'll also say a mature deer taken in late gun season is a more difficult challenge than one taken anytime during bow season.
 

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both r good

100_1451.jpg i live in Alberta too and have come across the same thing. i love bowhunting and it is a true passion of mine. i also really like gun hunting too. i think bowhunting has made me a better gunhunter in the fact that all of the sneaky get in close tricks i have learned are starting to pay off. i killed my first trophy buck with my Gun and i will never forget it. i have killed many deer but none as big as this one(179 4/8 Gross 170 even B&C). the only time i dont go out in rifle season is when i have filled my tags and havnt got any more to hunt for. ocasionaly ill go out with a few buddies if they still got their tags and do some scouting but thats it.
 

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last killed deer with a gun in 1972. Bow hunt, only when I get too old to bow hunt I might use a gun or I might just quit.
 

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Oh yea

Awesome buck Kodrym!!! Gotta love Alberta!!
some of the nicest deer in the world live here. dont think ill ever leave.
 

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I prefer bow hunting and if I kill a deer with my bow before gun season comes in i will probably not use the gun at all that year and just hunt with the bow all year. The only exception is when I hunt with my dad or a couple of friends who hunt only green fields. I will hunt with a gun if I have not got a deer in the freezer though. I expect as I learn my land a little better the gun will get used less and less each year.
 

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I rifle hunt a couple times a year, but usually only when my family wants to hunt since I'm the only bowhunter.

I don't have anything against it, but I feel safer and have more fun bowhunting.
 

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I gun hunt probably 3-5 times a year. I always do it nce on opening day, once in West Virginia, and once in our late season two day firearms season.

I say 3-5 because I always gun hunt during this time, weather permitting, more out of tradition with family and friends than anything else. I've been doing it for years.

That being said, I bowhunt several times a week, so it's not very proportionate. I usually bowhunt all through the gun seasons too, instead of bringing the boom stick.
 

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I started shooting a rifle when I was 8. I tried to start shooting a bow when I was 14, but I never could find one to fit me so I stuck with rifle hunting. After 27 years of rifle hunting, I finally decided to try archery again and found a bow to fit me. Haven't even shot my rifles since.
 

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I'd have to say bowhunting is my first choice but I'll also say a mature deer taken in late gun season is a more difficult challenge than one taken anytime during bow season.

What about a mature deer taken with a bow,,,, after gun season?
 

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What about a mature deer taken with a bow,,,, after gun season?
Easier because deer movement is back to normal and the cold weather gets them up and feeding.
 

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I'm not one to be picky about what weapon is used, I just like to hunt:darkbeer:
 

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I believe in 3 season hunting....bow, rifle, and muzzleloader. Bowhunting is my passion, but I have no problem using a rifle or muzzleloader either when time and season and terrain dictate it. Every year during 3rd rifle season I go out to a buddy's place and hunt with him and his kids for leftover private land only doe tags. I use my rifle and hunt with them. It's become sort of a tradition. I took a doe deer and horned doe antelope during muzzleloader season last year. Like I said, I love bow hunting, but I don't limit myself and don't consider myself less of a hunter because of it.
 

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I love to hunt... If they had a sharp stick season, I would sharpen one...
 

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Bowhunter first, muzzleloader 2nd, rifle lastly...

Here in New York, you can start bow hunting 2 years before you can start legally hunting with a rifle or muzzle-loader (although if you live in the sticks in northern, NY - no one really cares if your kid is 5 years old and shoots a doe, lol. I actually killed my first deer at 12 with a muzzle-loader, but being able to go out and get my own bow license when I turned 14 gave it just that little bit extra and got me hooked. Still love the .30-06 and muzzle-loader, but the bow is where my heart is...
 
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