Archery Shooting Tip: Avoid Stacking (and Breaking) Arrows

Using an archery target with multiple bull’s-eyes is the smartest way to avoid breaking arrows.

Archery Shooting Tip: Avoid Stacking (and Breaking) Arrows

For some reason, bowhunters love to see how tight they can stack arrows during practice sessions. Of course, shooting the smallest groups possible is THE goal with benchrest rifle competitors, as well as those deer hunters who hit the gun range prior to opening day, but this mindset is costly for bowhunters.

Let’s face it: Bowhunting can be expensive, so it only makes sense to look for ways to ensure we aren’t wasting money. For me and my bowhunting buddies, this means buying and using archery targets with multiple bull’s-eyes, and always firing one and only one arrow at each bull’s-eye.

The only time I don’t adhere to this advice is when practicing from long range. Rather than wreck or lose arrows in the grass because I’ve missed a target’s corner bull’s-eye, I’ll aim for the center circle. I’m not exactly Levi Morgan on the line, so my arrow group size opens quite a bit as I step far back from the target. My chance of one arrow crashing into another is quite low at long range, so I aim for the center bull’s-eye and take my chances.

In my basement bow range (maximum shot distance is 17 yards), I have the following three targets. Each one provides multiple bull’s-eyes for close-range work.

Morrell Keep Hammering Outdoor Range Bag

This target stands 31 inches tall and is 29 inches wide, which is certainly overkill for my basement range, but I take it into my backyard woods when I want to really stretch my practicing distance.

It is designed for field points only, and is priced at $119.99. It has numerous bull’s-eyes and stands solidly on flat ground because it weighs 54 pounds. I often shoot six to eight arrows in a row, and the primary target face (above left) features nine bull’s-eyes. Pulling arrows from the Morrell Keep Hammering Outdoor Range Bag is super easy.

Block Classic 22

The 22x22x14-inch Block Classic 22 is a two-sided target featuring the company’s proven open-layered Compressed Friction Foam design. It stops arrows of all diameters and speeds, with field points or broadheads (fixed and mechanicals).

One side of the Block Classic 22 provides four bull’s-eyes, plus the letter “O” from the word “Block” works well as a fifth bull’s-eye, too. The opposite side is blank, which is just fine with me because I paint a half-dozen smaller bull’s-eyes exactly where and how I prefer. Weight is 20.65 pounds, so it’s still fairly easy to transport. Price is $109.99.

Rinehart 18-1

This is my favorite roadtrip target. It measures 15x15x15 inches and weighs only 15 pounds. I can toss it in the trunk of my car or bed of my pickup and know that no matter my destination, I’ll have a high-quality, self-healing foam target on hand that will stop arrows with field points or broadheads.

The Rinehart 18-1 has 18 target zones, and each of the larger zones includes five small, black bull's-eyes, which work well as close-range aiming points (i.e. 15-yard broadhead work). MSRP for this target is $164.99, but you can buy it almost everywhere for $129.99. 

As you get ready for spring turkey season, or simply practice for the next big game season, use a target with multiple aiming points (below left) and use them — one arrow per bull’s-eye. Smashing arrows into a single bull’s-eye (below right) looks cool and might impress your buddies, but it’ll eventually hurt your bank account.

Range photos from Facebook/The Block Archery Targets


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