Shooting with the Traditional Guys

Yesterday there was another of the Down East Archery’s 3D shoots. This one was held near Plymouth, NC. I’ve been there before and it is one of my favorite ranges. Yesterday, I messed up and entered the GPS coordinates using the wrong format. That caused me a little delay, a 38 minute unplanned detour.

The delay meant I’d not be in one of the early groups on the course. That meant it was going to be a long day. Then, I got lucky.

There were only a few groups on the range. My luck came when I was able to tag along with a trio of traditional archers. Traditional archer shoot and move much faster than archers with compound bows.

Recurve bows look like a fun way to shoot.

Basically, the archers shooting recurve bows, walk up to the stake, take a look at the target, none of them using binoculars, draw their bow and shoot. It’s, by archery compound bow standards, fast.

As we entered the course there were empty stakes ahead of us, the earlier groups have moved over half way through their shots. We caught the group ahead at stake 12. Until then, it was shot, score, pull and move.

Traditional archers’ shots are a lot closer. This taken while standing from the stake were I shoot.

The early pace was great. I was able to get into a rhythm. My scores were high, ten’s and one twelve, 2 up at that point. At least until we hit the wall.

The group creating the wall had 6 shooters. I knew them all, I’ve shot with them in the past, and they are slow. They are also a lively and talkative band. They are fun to be around and would be a blast at a cook out. But, the pace was gone and so was the rhythm. My final shots bankrupted my climbing score.

For me good shots come when all else is removed from my head. Trying to carry on a conversation, which means I have to think about what I might say, or trying to follow multiple conversations, while socially agreeable, does not bode well for 10’s and 12’s – at least for me.

I know it’s going to happen, that is slow shooting and talking. These are conditions which are hard to duplicate with I practice. It’s a discipline I must learn, that is to clear my head and shut out the conversation at the stake, then jump back into to the socializing.

2 thoughts on “Shooting with the Traditional Guys”

  1. It isn’t often that I get to shoot with a group (I staff a lot of the events and it makes getting out on the course difficult). While I enjoy getting out with the traditional shooters, I find that I have a tendency to try and keep pace. I shoot too fast and my score suffers.

    On the other hand, shooting with some of the compound target archers can be just the opposite. All the standing around while the group goes through their routine can cause me to loose focus.

    Both instances are fun. I enjoy the social aspect while spending some time in the woods.

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