When I started bow hunting a couple decades back I used, and still have hanging on the wall might I add, a Bear Whitetail Hunter bow. From that very basic bow I graduated to a gorgeous wooden PSE bow from which I arrowed my first of many deer. Now much like the old Bear bow the PSE had what would be termed as zero letoff by today’s standards and peaked out at 65 pounds. It seemed like a real rocket. As an instinct shooter there was no need for anything other than an arrow to complete the setup. It was sleek and no-nonsense and I could plop arrows into the target regularly from 20 yards. The perfect hunting bow in my eyes. That is until Randy showed up and told me different.
Randy is one of those guys that needs to have the latest gizmo and since Randy was also a hunter today’s gizmo was a camo bow with a handful of sight pins, a pendulum sight, a big old stabilizer, and arrows that seemed to defy the speed of sound. Compared to my arrows flying at the target it seemed his could hit the target, return, then launch again and still beat mine to the bullseye. That is of course if he could hit the bullseye. That was the one defining difference between us.
During the course of the archery season that year Randy shot at and cleanly missed several deer within the first couple weeks. That’s about the time we began declining his pleas to help track the latest buck he supposedly hit. I bring all this intro into this edition of the Comment Corner because Randy, like many others, are speed freaks when it comes to bows. He made the argument numerous times that the speed helped him become a better shooter. Obviously he couldn’t shoot at all. I took a buck and a doe that year with my bow and last I heard Randy settled on a spikehorn shot during the firearm season. To this day I don’t buy into the argument that a faster bow makes you a better shot. Practice and confidence can definitely improve your shooting but speed typically will only exaggerate your shooting ability or in this case disability.
So which is it? Does bow speed make you a better shot?