Letter Re: Archery Equipment for Those Living in Gun-Deprived Locales

Hi Jim, 
I’d like to make a short response to the blog regarding “Archery Equipment for Those Living in Gun-Deprived Locales”.

As a lifelong archer and hunter myself, there are a couple of things I think should be pointed out in so far as archery relates to survival.  One of the biggest advantages an archer brings to the table in a confrontation or survival situation is stealth and camouflage.  By necessity, we have to be closer, better camouflaged, and more stealthy than when hunting with a firearm as we are now pitting our skills against an animal with physical senses superior to our own, and often an uncanny “sixth sense” about anything out of place in the woods.  I found my archery background extremely beneficial while serving as a sniper in the U.S. Military for this very reason.  

While I generally maintain that archery is for procuring food and disposing of large dangerous predators, I would also have to agree that a strategically employed archer could be of value in perhaps initiating an ambush, or a sentry removal situation (Only with a proper broadhead ~which I will discuss in a moment~ and a neck shot, which would equate to a virtual decapitation), however anything beyond that I would have to question it’s wisdom.  That being said of course, you fight with what you’ve got, cultivate the skills to make the most of it, and stack the deck in your favor everywhere you can (may want to keep a short sword handy as well, for up close 😉

The supplies are not expensive, and store indefinitely for repairing / replacing arrows, however be sure to learn how to tune your bow yourself!  Lay in a supply of extra strings & cables, and consider investing in a bow press.  These presses are not that expensive and it is almost impossible to do much work without one. (They will also provide a possible barterable skill). 

Regarding bows there are many good brands and models, but they are like a good gun, not cheap, however you’ll get what you pay for.  Research it carefully because it is kind of like getting married, and if you change your mind afterward, it can cost you an arm and a leg.  I and my three sons all shoot Hoyt bows, however I am very seriously considering switching to the new Matthews (easier maintenance, better customer service if needed, etc).  

One very interesting bow I have come across recently is made by LibertyArchery.com.  I can’t find one to hold myself, but when I do, it may very well follow me home. The concept is brilliant, I see so much application for it in a TEOTWAWKI scenario.  I would encourage you to check it out, it looks like it would also negate the problem of shooting from kneeling or any other “close quarters” related issues.

On a final note, chose your broadheads carefully, there are many and if you would like a recommendation,  I have switched from the Muzzy (which I loved), to the Rage Broadhead.  Look at the dangerous game video footage on the maker’s site and you will see why!  When they set the soda can in the wound channel, equate that to the neck shot on the very bad man who wants to hurt your loved ones, and it shines a whole new light on the word “ventilate”.   Take care and God Bless.  – Sheepdog Dan