Saturday, February 4th, 2023
Saturday, February 4th, 2023

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Sportsmen Since 1967

It’s in the bag

Olympus Digital Camera

I first got interested in archery when I was in high school more than 60 years ago and, out of necessity, I made my own targets. I began by putting cardboard boxes inside each other, and later by stuffing rags into a burlap feed bag. This arrangement suited me well as long as I was shooting a fiberglass longbow with a 40-pound draw weight.

As my finances allowed, I kept upgrading my equipment until I bought my first top-of-the-line hunting bow, a Browning Safari. After the first shot with my new recurve, the arrow almost passed through my makeshift target and I realized it was no longer effective. It was clear I had to find something more suitable for stopping heavy fiberglass hunting arrows. The answer was a commercially made spiral wound grass target mat from Saunders.

The Saunders target was made from tightly bound marsh grass and covered with burlap material. It worked perfectly to stop the arrows shot from my setup, but it had its drawbacks.  I couldn’t leave it out in the weather and, before shooting at it, I had to wet down the grass with some water to prolong the life of the target.

Today shooters have a wide choice of high-quality targets that will effectively stop an arrow and will last a long time as well. There is a great deal of technology that goes into the making of a modern archery target and even the lowly bag target, as simple as it seems, shares that technology.

A portable bag or layered foam target is a practical must-have item for the overwhelming majority of archers because it allows for practice sessions either at home, in the woods, or at camp. A portable target will allow uphill or downhill practice sessions and it can even be placed near a favorite tree stand location for elevated practice sessions that simulate actual hunting conditions.

Modern targets are designed with attractive and even dazzling graphics and many dealers stock a variety of quality targets arranged in an eye-catching manner with a range of prices that appeal to a variety of customers. Manufacturers like American Whitetail, Morrell, Rinehart, Hips, Field Logic, Big Shot, and Delta are just a few of the manufacturers that offer a line of bag, foam, or 3-D targets that cover every price point and performance level. Whether you need a bag, welded foam, broadhead, crossbow, or a realistic 3-D target, shooters can rest easy knowing manufacturers have just about any possibility covered. If you have a particular target in mind and the dealer doesn’t stock it most dealers can get you the one you want with little trouble.

Because of their practicality and the fact that modern targets are visually stimulating with bright, eye-appealing graphics and realistic animal faces, shooters can look forward to more exciting and interesting practice sessions.

Crossbows have become increasingly popular and target manufacturers haven’t forgotten about this segment of the archery community. Today, most manufacturers offer a target specifically designed to stop the fastest of bolts shot from any crossbow.

Regardless of what you shoot, rest assured there is a target available that will meet your specific need.

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