Bow or Gun....Should We Share The Woods?on Oct 21, 2012
Story contributed by Brodie Swisher
Thinking back over some of my proudest moments in the deer woods, I often stumble across those cold, mid-November moments in the treestand when I’ve stuck it out with archery tackle and found success. I remember one year in particular, when I had been somewhat scolded for continuing to hunt with my bow, despite the fact that the General Hunting Season was now in full swing and I’d be “competing against the gun hunters.”
Shortly after dawn, as the first shots of the morning began to echo across the countryside, I remember for a brief moment questioning my sanity in packing a short-range weapon when the opportunities to reach out further were wide open. I thought about the scoffers. I thought about those that had said, “You’re an idiot!...you oughta be hunting with a rifle!” And at that moment, while soaking up the beauty of another cold and frosty morning in the deer woods, I was reminded of why it is that I continue to return to the woods with my bow in hand…even in the midst of a general hunting season.
I thought about the fact that for me it is a passion…not an obsession. I bowhunt because of the challenge to get “closer”. I don’t want to become an obsessed and out of control hunter that will do anything, at any cost, just to make a kill. I love the method in which I choose to punch my tags. There’s a satisfaction that comes with my bowhunting success that I’ve never felt when hunting with a firearm.
Does a requirement to choose a bow or gun helping or hurting the future of hunting?
There’s an intimacy with God’s creation that can only be experienced when you get up close and personal with that animal. When an animal is within range of the top pin, you see, hear, and smell things you never knew existed! That is why I bowhunt. That’s why I grow increasingly alarmed when I see and hear discussion from hunters pushing for bowhunters to be booted out of what some would choose to refer to as “firearm season.” I recently had the question presented to me, “Should archery equipment be allowed during firearm season? Is it fair?