Practicing with your bow in the suburbs

Suburban living is great for being close to everything.  You can drive 10 minutes and be close to pretty much anything you want.  Unfortunately, everything also includes the proximity to your neighbors.  Barking dogs, marital arguments, nosy neighbors... the list goes on.

These things are definitely annoying but something that is more annoying is not having a place to practice with your bow.  Deer hanging in your garage, fish being filleted in the driveway, a little bow practice after dinner... for some reason, these things aren't really politically correct.

With all these rules, what is an anxious hunter to do?  Your neighbors may look the other way when they see the deer hanging in your garage or the tub of walleye fillets on their walk but flinging an arrow in their direction probably won't fly.

This may sound depressing but the good news is that we do have options.  The first option is to go to a bow range to shoot.  This option is probably the easiest but also the most costly.  Trips to the range can cost ten to fifteen bucks a pop depending on the targets. 

The next option is to try to find some state land next to you.  You will have to check your local ordinances but most states allow bow practice on state land as long as it is not hunting season.  You may have to put up with other sportsman but at least they are not your nosy neighbors. 

The third option is to make your outdoor shooting as safe as possible.  This one will only work if your city allows it.  Some cities and subdivisions have rules forbidding the shooting of bows no matter how safe the shooting is being done.  If you are allowed to shoot outside, you need to make sure nobody has the chance to get hurt.

You could shoot into your garage, build a back-stop, shoot into an area with trees.  If you go this route, I would recommend talking to any neighbors that have the potential of seeing you shoot and asking their thoughts.

I am not a fan of this one because anything can happen when shooting a bow.  I have never missed a target by a wild margin but would hate to let an arrow get away from me.  That would be bad news and not worth the risk.

The last one is to shoot in your basement if you have one.  This may sound crazy but is probably the best option.  It is free plus you can shoot without your neighbors complaining.  As long as you have a ten yard shoot you should be good to go.  You can work on both your strength and muscle memory at this distance.

If you are nervous shooting at your walls, a good idea is to purchase some foam and lumber to build a back-stop for wild shots.  Being a sportsman in the 21st century is harder than it used to be but we cannot give up the sport we love. 

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Crossbow said...

Thanks for sharing good information ! I have never been hunting before. My uncle invited me to go deer hunting during the next deer season. I think that I am going to go. It will be a fun experience.

Emily Mia said...

Loved the article, I am actually a first time hunter and was planning on hunting in SHNF. Found this to be very informative, and would love to tag along with anyone heading out that dosnt mind helping out a first time hunter.

Madeline C. Duncan said...

What a post

Kevin Steffey said...

Nice and very helpful information i have got from your post. Even your whole blog is full of interesting information which is the great sign of a great blogger.

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