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Yup, the older one gets the smarter they get. They quickly figure out that one doesn鈥檛 need the mule kick of a 30:06 to kill a deer. Ya also don鈥檛 need 80 lb. Draw weight to kill a deer. A 50 lb draw is more than enough.馃槈
This is what the old guys tell themselves that don't keep themselves in shape. You're only lying to yourself buddy! ;)
 

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67 here, I am a gym rat since I was 25, no aches or pains, did triathlons until 5 years ago, quit just cause I wanted to do more fishing. As strong now as when I was 25.

Edit for recurves, I was always shooting a 52 lb Palmer and Howatt, since 1984
Could still shoot them, only issue I had is my finger /tendons would get sore and cramp up, probably from lack of shooting with fingers. I could have either bought new bows or had these reduced in poundage but I just did not dedicate enough time to stay proficient and confident in hunting with them the last few years so I sold them.

Compound below

if we had the same bows now, then when we started 45 years ago, you would know what we are talking about
80lb bow with 30% let off, fling a 500 grain arrow at 225 fps, yes they had crono's back then.
now both my 50lb bows fling a 450 gr arrow at 260 fps

I can still pull a newer 70lb bow, but I could not pull a older 70lb bow, that is all the bow shop had last week with the new Bowtechs
you new guys have it so easy.

I down sized due to one time I was in a tree for hours with the wind blowing and 20 degrees, Shooter came by and I went to draw the bow and could not, looked the bow over and did the "shoot for the sky" draw, got it back and shot the buck.

this is the buck, and that is my sister

View attachment 7745197
There's a big difference between hunting out of a tree and western hunting 馃憤 I shoot 80 at 38 years old regardless of the weather. I broke my scapula a few years ago as well. I'm not sitting in a tree, shooting 20 yards at white tails though. Sorry for doubting you but I find it hard to believe anyone dedicated to the gym can't pull back a new 70-80lb bow. Like you said they're that smooth. I'm not a big guy by any means- I'm 6' 185-190.
 

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I'm not who you are addressing, but what's the point though? I'm out west as well, but just don't see any gain from extra draw weight. That said, I don't own sports cars either. 80# bows or big engines, they get you to the same place in the same amount of time in the same condition. It just costs you more to get there without any extra return. I'd rather put that extra effort into something that does give me a return on my investment.
have you lost an elk before? I lost my first animal this year. I want to eliminate as many variables as possible. I don't think you should pull back more than you physically can, but if you can I think you should. I also hiked over 100 miles this September. I could definitely hunt elk only being able to walk a mile a day but if I can do 10 a day it increases my odds of success. I look at it the same way. If you take hunting seriously you'll do everything in your power to eliminate variables. I shoot almost every day, and workout 6-7 days a week. Year round. I work a 56 hour work week, my wife works full time and we have an 18 month old.

If I hit a shoulder with a 400 grain arrow at 285fps there's a chance it might not penetrate, this causes the animal to suffer and more importantly my freezer to remain empty. If I shoot that elk in the same spot with a 580 grain arrow and 100 ft lbs of KE there's a much better chance it's blowing through and I'm successful. FWIW I drive a non-lifted pickup truck (bone stock), and a Subaru forester that doesn't even have window tinting. 馃槀

Your response to this might be "take a better shot". To which I'd reply again- there's a lot of variables in hunting and my goal is to eliminate as many as possible because there's some that you just can't.
 

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Ver, very, very few people out that much effort into anything, and I respect that.


But for most, as the draw weight increases, there comes a point where the chances of a bad shot does as well. For me, that's where the draw weight needs to stop increasing. Adding weight might be enough to make it a recoverable error. But it also means reduced time you can hold at partial or even full draw before you begin to loose accuracy, creating the situation you are trying to mitigate. So if you are netting more error's, you aren't really eliminating variables. When it comes to risk mitigation, rate of occurrence is as important as the outcome if the risk is realized. So risk mitigations that increase the rate of occurrence are poor mitigation techniques.

Maybe you can hold your bow at half draw for 15 seconds, or full draw for a couple of minutes without sacrificing accuracy. Most couldn't do that with an 80# bow though.
That's all part of pulling what you can 馃憤 I routinely hold for 2 minutes at full draw and shoot groups at 20. 2 minutes might be arbitrary, I can't imagine having to hold for more than a minute in any situation. Either way there's no discernible difference in my group size from normal shooting. I just started messing with a resistance release but haven't gotten completely comfortable with it yet. I'm sure it will make me better though.

I did a bunch of goofy tests before going from 70 to 80- Holding at full draw for 3+ minutes, drawing while sitting on my butt on the ground, etc. I'm definitely NOT advocating for drawing more than you controllably can. One thing I noticed is I'm more accurate with the holding weight of 80's vs 70's which was surprising. Of course you could also do this with a lower poundage bow with adjustable let off.

The bull I shot in 2021 had me at full draw for nearly a minute from a knee. Control is just as important. I'm always seeking to improve though. In doing so I've watched my success rates/shot opportunities over the last couple years sky rocket.

80% let off at 80lb is only holding 16 pounds. If you can't hold back 16 pounds are you strong enough to carry the elk out? 馃し Not trying to be an ass but I've struggled much more with the pack out then draw weight!
 
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