It’s never too late to start hunting with a bow or a crossbow.

Many people are hitting the woods in search of the next big challenge. Whether it’s because of physical endurance or just hard-headedness, perhaps you don’t believe you can keep up with younger hunters the way you’d like to.

Well, we’re here to talk about bows you can use to get a piece of the hype.

But young people coming into the lifestyle of bowhunting are different, right? If you’re 40 or older, you’ve likely lost some of the muscle and strength you once had. Endurance, cardiovascular performance, and even flexibility can be adversely affected as you rise in age.

As many have, I shot my first deer with a .243 Remington 700. Then I shot a bow. Not only did the speed and accuracy impress me, but the increased challenge intrigued me.

I even felt like I was late getting into bowhunting at 15 years old, but that doesn’t mean folks can’t start much older. For those wanting to find a bow ideal for them in their later hunting years, we have a few suggestions, with emphasis on the features that make things perfect for older men.

Draw weight

If strength and muscle capabilities are of top concern, the first thing you should pay attention to in a bow is draw weight. When I started off, I was shooting a youth bow that pulled only 40 pounds. This helped me understand that you don’t have to be pulling 70 pounds to take down an animal.

In 2018, Mathews came out with the Triax bow. This model offers full adjustability for draw weights ranging from 50-70 pounds. It’s lightweight and won’t kill your back either, weighing in at just 4.4 pounds.


The next key specification for finding a bow is let-off. This statistic is based upon how much weight is taken off of the pull when you reach the back wall of your draw. Most bows can range from 60-90-percent let-off. The higher percentage your let-off is, the less weight you’re going to have to hold while you taking aim.

Another highly praised bow that has a very high let-off percentage is the Hoyt RX-1 (featured below). The stats show it has a range of 80-85-percent let-off at the back wall. Lets say you buy a 60-pound draw weight RX-1 with a 80-percent let-off. You’d only be holding 12 pounds at full draw.


If you aren’t concerned about compound bows and just want to ease yourself into being close to an animal, you need a crossbow. You feel nothing at full draw besides the anticipation of pulling the trigger. Taking your grandkids to the blind couldn’t be easier. Crossbows even come with assistance ropes when pulling back the string!

There are plenty of crossbows worth testing on the market, and believe me, they do the job just as well if not better than compound setups. Below are the Mission Sub-1 and the Ten Point Nitro X that helped some youngsters take down big bucks.

Full-draw fever

As a hunter that toddled into the woods with his old man, I can say the first deer I shot with a bow was just as rewarding as the first deer ever. There’s nothing quite like putting in the practice and sitting feet away from animals who have no idea you’re there.

However, I should warn you, you’re going to get hooked.

The time will come when you’ve put in the work. You’ve done plenty of shooting with your bow. You’ve graduated from field points and you’re now equipped with broadheads. You have all the appropriate hunting gear, your scent control is locked down, you have your treestand set up with multiple shooting lanes and the right safety harness holding you in.

When that first deer walks within 5 yards of your stand, you come to full draw and let that arrow fly, you might just get that buck fever you felt back in the deer hunting seasons of your younger days.



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The post How to Get Into Bowhunting When You're 40 or Older appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

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