Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

It’s not too early to prepare for bow season

You're been relaxing all summer, enjoying the generally mild conditions with accompanying rain showers, unusual for this part of the country this time of year.

You took the family on vacation, worked in the yard and garden, went fishing and have enjoyed life in general.

Wake up call, if you're a bow hunter....archery season begins in less than two months – opening day is October 1 - and if you haven't started the process of getting ready, you need to get hopping.

Becoming proficient when hunting deer with a bow and arrow is different from gun hunting. With the latter, about the only muscles that need exercise are the ones controlling your trigger finger.

With archery, it's a whole different ball game; back muscles, shoulder, upper and lower arm et al are all part of the package. It stands to reason then that these muscles must be toned and exercised to perform correctly when a bow hunter draws down on a deer.

Dan Preaus, Ruston insurance agency owner, is a serious bow hunter with an impressive measure of success in the 10 seasons he has gone after deer with "stick and string". He has taken 15 deer with his bow since he began archery hunting in 2003 and among these deer are two trophy bucks, a 10 point and a 12 point.

Preaus, played baseball at LA Tech during his college years and he compares bow hunting deer with preparation needed to be at his best on the baseball field on game day.

"Preparation is important whether you're playing baseball or getting ready to go after a buck with your bow. In baseball, physical conditioning is a key to being successful and the same thing applies to bow hunting," Preaus said.

"I start shooting my bow by mid-summer with the goal of conditioning muscles you'll use for shooting a bow as well as shooting enough to feel confident you can hit the target. I want my being able to put an arrow where I want it to become second nature and the only way to do that is practice shooting.

"Another comparison with playing collegiate baseball is timing. When I'm at the plate looking for a particular pitch and I get the pitch I want, instinct takes over and to hit the ball, everything has to be timed just right. The same thing applies to bow hunting. Your instincts tell you what the deer is likely to do and when he turns just right, you have to be ready; you might not get another chance," he added.

In addition to getting muscles and reflexes toned, Preaus is already spending time in the woods he'll be hunting in a couple of months, trimming shooting lanes, checking food sources, hanging stands and if needed, repairing stands he used last year.

"I take my bow hunting seriously. I study the deer I'm hunting by doing lots of scouting, especially using trail cameras. As a result, I can get a fairly good idea of where good deer hang out and the times of day they are moving," Preaus said.

"I also get to know the lay of the land as accurately as I can. I want to know the location of the food sources, bedding areas, trails and such so when I hunt, I want to be where the deer are more likely to be."

Think it's too early to start thinking about bow hunting? Preaus and other serious bow hunters already have the wheels in motion to insure that when that trophy buck or fat doe steps out, they'll have done all they can to be prepared.

Glynn Harris Outdoors is proudly sponsored by DSK, Ltd. of Minden.






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