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Trail-Starter Arrow

Trail-Starter Arrow

By Christopher Anderson

How often has this happened to you?

You've just shot a deer with your bow and arrow, and in your excitement, you've climbed down from your treestand to start blood trailing before taking note of exactly where the animal stood.

When you reach the spot where you thought the deer was standing, you have great difficulty finding it.

You're off to a bad start in the trailing process because everything looks different from the ground than it does from 20 feet or more in an elevated treestand. This is especially true in places where ground cover is thick, like where I hunt in Florida.

For these reasons, I carry an extra trail-starter arrow in my quiver.

Immediately after shooting a deer, I nock my trail-starter arrow and shoot it into the ground where the deer was standing when I shot it. This gives me a solid starting point of reference to begin my search.

I like to use an old arrow that I don't use much anymore, but isn't beat up too much to fly straight.

Also, I use a field tip on this arrow, and put it in the hardest-to-get-to place in my quiver so I won't mistake it for my hunting arrows tipped with broadheads.


Dog Food Bag Archery Target
Here's a great way to construct archery targets for field-tipped arrows by using empty dog food bags. You'll need two large dog food bags, the type that have an inside lining reinforced with plastic or a fiber grid, not just the paper kind. Open th...
 

Mineral Lick Trick
If you take trail camera photos overlooking mineral licks, sometimes deer don't cooperate as you'd like, especially during the hot, dry days of summer and early fall. I have a trick to entice deer to use the lick during dry months, and it's as inex...
 

Spur-of-the-Moment Hunt Kit
I love my job as the driver of the number 56 NAPA Toyota race car. The adrenaline rush of speeding around the track at 200 mph feels almost like drawing my bow on a big buck.
 

PVC Pipe Arrow Case
Recently I was in the market for a good hard case to store my arrows for transportation. I searched several sporting goods stores and found cases that were quite expensive, bendable and not exactly what I would consider to be well-designed.
 

Reflective Clothespin Trail Markers
If you've ever tried to find your way to and from a treestand after dark in a thick area, you'll know how easy it is to lose your bearings.
 

Bent Fletching? No Problem!
Like many hunters, I use a soft case to transport my bow from time to time. I often find my arrow fletchings have gotten bent from coming into contact with the sides of the soft case.
 

Ten Treestand Tips
Before each season, take a few minutes to check the integrity of your straps. Even if the strap looks to be in good working order, they should be replaced every year, especially if the stand is left in the elements for long periods.
 

Yarn Wind Indicator
Several years ago, I started using my wife's yarn to help me keep tabs on wind direction while I'm hunting. It's one of the easiest and cheapest ways to do so.
 

Homemade Waterhole/Salt Lick
A waterhole with a nearby salt lick can be one of the most productive areas to place trail cameras during the dry times of year. They are also great places to hunt, particularly during drought conditions, and in the early season, as well.
 

Back in Black
Black clothing can stand out nearly as much as white in the forest during daylight, but there is a place for black in the hunting world. I first learned the downside of wearing black in 2005, while bowhunting in Illinois. I'd accidentally forgotte...
 
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