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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first season bowhunting, and after blowing a number of stalks, I finally took shots on two different occasions this week. Both times the deer jumped at the sound of the string and I made clean misses (thank goodness). I really rather not repeat this again, so I'd appreciate any advice.

Here are some details.

* 2015 Hoyt Charger with stock string and dampeners, 65#, DL 29", 330 spine arrows
* I practice with and use a rangefinder, and ranged these two deer almost exactly 40 and 45 yards
* I have pins for those distances and have practiced the distances a lot with a broadhead and arrow of same exact batch/type.
* In both cases the deer saw me or was trying to see me and looking in my direction, but hadn't spooked, was just curious and looking.
* I don't think I have target panic (as I understand it), because I also hunt with rifle and consistently hit animals where I aim.
* When I shoot, the string noise really is a pretty loud twang. The deer jumped immediately!

So, question is, should I stop shooting at deer that are looking in my direction? Get closer so they can't jump in time? Buy a different bow? Add sound dampeners?

Thanks!
 

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Dampeners could help, but without looking at your bow it is hard to say. I had a buddy who had one of his limb dampeners move which caused his bow to shoot very loud. When we adjusted it back to where it should be he was fine.

Have you taken it in to a local shop? I would also recommend waiting until they put their head back down or are not looking at you if you can.

Target panic is just jerking the trigger on your release when you get to the spot you are trying to hit vs. one smooth motion while adding back tension to make the arrow fire.
 

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If a deer has has a feeling that something is up and is looking in your direction you will get busted almost every time. like the other poster said, wait until the deer puts its head down or is looking the other way. Making a good shot when a deer is tense is difficult. I don't let an arrow fly out of 12 to 15 yards...but I shoot trad and feel much better being as close as I can. Making your bow as quiet as possible will also help a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
@nateysmith @Honeydew Thanks for the answers. I will take the bow to Wilde Arrow and see what they think about the sound level. And I will never again shoot anything but a really close distance at a deer that is looking (and maybe more importantly, listening) in my direction.
 

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Deer Facing You? I've done this along time, some say to long, I won't take a face on shot. I 'feel 58lbs will bring down anything we hunt in Utah. and do a great job...
 

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Anything over 20yds and they can react. Rememer the speed of sound is around 1125 fps, give or take on temp, elevation, etc.
So, 40 and 45yds are fairly longshots (except for those hunters on TV with their own shows). Much worse when the deer are tense or alert.
I've never gone over 23yds, but that is in the East.

http://www.americanhunter.org/articles/2010/7/14/the-science-of-string-jumping/
 

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35 to 45 yards is a tough spot to be in especially if a buck is looking at your way and knows somethings up. Almost every buck that has jumped my string was sitting in that range. If their closer they can't duck fast enough. If their further away the deer has a sort of delayed action because your not nessarily in the personal space so to speak.

Things you can do to quiet your bow. In this order
1. Shoot a heavier arrow
2. Bow timed correctly
3. String stoppers
4. String leaches
5. Proper stabalizers
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks everyone I really appreciate the answers! I will go back to trying to improve my stalking, and consider shots over 30yds something for the future. Unless the deer's head is in the grass and there is a lot of ambient noise...
 

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Thanks everyone I really appreciate the answers! I will go back to trying to improve my stalking, and consider shots over 30yds something for the future. Unless the deer's head is in the grass and there is a lot of ambient noise...
i agree with those that posted before. if they're already on edge, don't shoot over 30 if they're looking. even with a fast arrow they'll have you beat. if you can wait them out, they may go back to whatever they were doing and give you an opportunity. if not, it wasn't meant to be. try a better hide or a slower stalk with better cover.

my problem seems to be getting caught out in too little cover or no clean shot in thick cover. last year i was moving from a hide to watch a big buck when some elk came walking up. i went to full draw on a knee as soon as i saw the horns. i waited out in the open for a couple minutes that way as the elk just stared me down. i unwisely took the shot when he was already on edge. turns out he followed the white rabbit and took the red pill because he pull some stuff out of the Matrix. Neo hopped out of range and looked back for a few minutes just so he was sure i knew the score. my bad, this agent won't try that one again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
@APD Amazing story! And I now believe it. How long was that shot at the elk do you think?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So last night I was working on my invisibility cloak, trying to let the deer come to me. Unfortunately I have so much energy, sitting still is not my idea of fun. I got fidgety and started creeping around, felt some eyes burning into my back... There was the buck staring me down. Need to learn patience.
 

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@APD Amazing story! And I now believe it. How long was that shot at the elk do you think?
about 60 yards out. had i not moved out of my spot, i would have had the pick of the herd. patience is a virtue that i lack in certain aspects of my life. i've learned it in some areas and have been practicing at it in others.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks @phorisc, good video. I forgot about the free meateater videos on youtube, looks like I have some new ones to watch!
 
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