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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.


All Deer Are 3-D
In the past we have talked about treestand shots and the possibility of hitting higher than we want to. That topic brings up another important point: shooting deer at angles -- and this information applies to bowhunters and gunhunters. First, not ...
 

Are We Having Fun Yet?
I had a pretty long streak of bad hunting luck during the 2000 through 2003 seasons. I think I tagged just one buck through those four long years, so before heading out to the woods in 2004, I decided to sit down and take stock of what I was doing...
 

It is Okay To Be Grounded
Treestands are, without a doubt, fantastic hunting tools. They help get you above a deer's nose and eyes, and today's models are comfortable enough for all-day vigils. Don't make the mistake of assuming that if you can't set up a treestand that y...
 

Shooting Lanes...Not Superhighways
If you bowhunt long enough, you're going to hit a limb with an arrow. Hopefully it happens while taking a shot a doe for the freezer and you can laugh about it later. Whether the shot is at a doe or the buck of a lifetime, though, the experience ...
 

Stop, Look and Listen After the Shot
We all put a lot of preparation into having our equipment sighted in and ready. As a community, hunters have done a great job of educating one another about the importance of making a good, clean shot. Many of us in the outdoors media have be...
 

Scent Control Begins At The Top
Most hunters are scent-conscious, but many overlook some of the key elements of scent elimination. The folks at Scent-Lok tell us that 30 percent of human scent comes from the head and mouth area, 30 percent comes from the body, and 30 percent com...
 

Scouting Is More Than Just Finding Deer
For many hunters, scouting is half the fun of hunting -- and with good reason. There's nothing like the feeling of finding concentrated buck sign and trying to picture the buck that made it. It's also fun to picture that buck on your wall.
 

Find A Location For A Quick-Dash Hunt
One of a buck's best defenses is having quick escape routes that offer fast and concealed exits from approaching hunters. Many good hunters key in on those escape routes to bag smart old bucks as they get pressured by other hunters -- but that's not...
 

Beat the Cold with a Few Simple Tricks
Staying on stand and alert is difficult when you're cold. Cold hunters walking to their trucks often get deer moving and push them to hunters who are able to stick it out.
 

Warm Weather Deer Care
Many archery seasons have begun across the country, and the way the weather has been the past few years, warm temperatures can carry on well into the gun seasons. Proper care of your harvested deer is essential.
 
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