Sunday morning workouts

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Sunrise before running

The weather here in North Carolina is warming up for a few days. It will turn cold again, but spring is just around the corner. My morning began early with a run and then archery practice. The warmth was great for running, but there was a bit of wind to frustrate me while shooting.

The run was wonderful with temperatures in the mid 40’s. River, my canine running partner, remained committed to sprinting through standing water and filled ditches that remain topped up because of the recent rains. We did pause while I tried to photograph swans in their flying pattern as they passed above us.

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iPhone cameras have their limits

After running I shot for an hour then stopped when the wind became too much. I suppose the rapid warming of the air has brought with it the wind. Still, it wasn’t a bad morning for running and shooting.

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Working on 3-spots

 

Busting arrows as fast as I can – Frustrating!

In order to protect arrows my wife, Brenda, suggested I shoot one then go pull it. That’s fine; it would certainly prevent hitting a previously shot arrow. It would also cost time spent walking back and forth to retrieve the arrows. The walking doesn’t bother me, I run a lot and walking isn’t too taxing. The problem is the time lost walking back and forth. The walking time would really add up when shooting from 50+ yards.

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Different angle to theoretically protect my arrows

I have one (ONE) 3D animal to practice shooting. In an attempt to not shoot my arrows I move around between shots. Last week I shot through an arrow from and totally different angle – what are the odds?

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Busted an arrow anyway

Then, today, it happened again. Different angle, different yardage and another busted arrow. Frustrating.

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Seriously?!

 

Working my pin sight

It has been too cold to shoot outside without gloves until yesterday. Gloves make hands thicker, change the anchor points, and require slight adjustments to sights. On Monday, it was warmer and the gloves were removed meaning my sight had to be adjusted to compensate.

It felt great to shoot without gloves and without layer upon layers of apparel. I knew once the gloves were off I’d need to make a click here and there to reset my sight. When I set the sights of my bows, I use a single point target so I can track my shots. In this case I used a rifle target. I also use these when I am out of archery paper targets. (There is a risk of arrow damage when repeatedly shooting at the same point)

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Rifle target with a dime in the center

My first three glove free shots were a bit low and to my left. Over clicking my windage and under clicking my elevation I ended up to my right and low. A few more clicks and I was on track.

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Working my way toward the center

 

The Nock Gnome

I finished my morning practice with the same six arrows with which I’d started. This was pretty easy because I’d shot paper,  a 3D deer and the distance was 20 to 65 yards. I’d not lost any arrows to fallen foliage.

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Mr. 3D deer

During the afternoon I wanted to concentrate on 50 to 60 yards. I warmed up at 20 yards then backed to 40 getting a few more warm up shots before getting down to business.

With me I had six arrows. The very same six I’d used that morning. I just taken four shots and looked to my quiver for the remaining two arrows. There, for no obvious reason was a nock naked arrow.

This isn’t the first time one of my arrows has been stripped of a nock. Where did that nock go I wondered? I checked the ground around my target – no nock. I traced the path I’d been walking – no nock.

At other times, after checking and loading arrows into their protective tube prior to a tournament, I arrived to discover a no nock arrow. There would be no nock in the tube. It’s like socks that vanish in the dryer.   Is there a fissure in the universe that absorbs both nock and sock?

The physics of a universal fissure is beyond my comprehension. That is more up Stephen Hawking’s avenue. I can’t blame this on theft by a Yeti, I’d have noticed a Yeti. I am singling out garden gnomes gone wild as the culprit behind my missing nocks.

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Dealing with the cold and wind

Today training was a 6.2-mile run and an easy day of shooting. Neither session was difficult and would have been simple minus the cold and wind. The temperature during my run wasn’t that horrendous. At 30° F (-1° C) while wearing warm clothes this is not a difficult run. In the afternoon I’d have a short workout with my bow.  Both sessions, would not have been a problem except for the wind.

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The optimistic start of a 10K run

All day we had white caps coming off the river. After running all I wanted was a hot tub in which to thaw. The wind had cut through my running apparel as if it weren’t there giving my convective heat loss a very personal impression.

Along the run, River, my dog heedless to the cold broke through iced covered creeks in order to play in the water. Following the run she even jumped into the river. I suppose it is a Labrador thing.

Shooting was another matter. I’d only be shooting for only 15 to 20 minutes. Like all sports, archery needs recover time. For this workout I’d be shooting from unknown distances into a foam deer. It also meant I’d have the house to help block the wind.

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Despite the house’s blockade the wind was a chilling factor. Unlike my home in Maryland I don’t have access to an indoor range here in North Carolina. There is an advantage to being able to step outside and shoot. On cold and windy days – well I take the good with the bad.

Terry’s Archery Plus

In December I contacted Mathews about their ProStaff requirements. Their advice was to establish a relationship with my Mathews dealer and enter their ProStaff program through their archery dealer program.

This presented a bit of a problem for me. Eager to find sponsors but living in two states and spending a lot of time in three, Maryland, North Carolina, and Georgia, means I dealt with a number of bow shops. Fortunately, one of my favorite shops, a Mathews dealer,  is Terry’s Archery Plus in Ernul, NC.

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I’d only been to Terry’s a few times. There I met Terry Lewis and found him humorous, pleasant, and extremely knowledgeable. As a matter of fact, one my first trip to his Archery Pro Shop, he took a phone call while we were talking. Apparently, the caller had questions because his response into the phone was, “Well, you’ve called the right place, I have lots of answers.” His wit was not lost on me. Since then, I learned Terry has a big heart and a bad hip.

Back to December and my Mathews dilemma – I called Terry from my home in Maryland and explained the situation. When I was in law school I learned a number of things and one is to be direct with questions. I asked Terry if he knew about the Mathews program and if so could be help. His response to me was similar to the one he’d given to another caller months ago, yes he knew and he had answers. One of his answers was that he’d be happy to help me.

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On Thursday, we met at his shop for the first time in over a month. When I arrived Terry had several customers. Since we last spoken we’d gone through holidays, hunting, fishing, 4 archery tournaments and the ATA. At his shop in Ernul we visited for nearly two hours. I really didn’t want to leave, but I felt I was using up his time.

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While talking with Terry I’d learned about local tournaments, contingency money, the Mathews No-cam bows, large vs. small diameter arrows, peep diameters and metal roof chicken coops. When I left I took a foam deer, loaded in my truck, for practice. I am happy to write that I will be shooting for Terry’s Archery Plus along with my other sponsors. Thanks, Terry!

Two New Sponsors

It is my good fortune to have two new sponsors, Terry’s Archery Plus and Flying Arrow Archery.

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Terry’s Archery Plus is in Ernul, NC. Besides being a major archery shop here in eastern North Carolina, they have a website where you can order products. Terry’s website is:

www.terryarcheryplus.com

Flying Arrow Archery is a new company started by the former owner of Trophy Ridge/Rocket Aeroheads, Chris Rager. Their website is:

http://flyingarrowarcheryusa.com

Please, check them out along with my other sponsors: Rudy Projects, BRL Sports Nutrition, 60X Custom Strings, and Tridave’s, LLC.

More busted arrows

I do my best not to break arrows. It still happens. There are precautions I take to help prolonging the life of my arrows. A dozen new Bemans doesn’t last long.

Recently I bought a dozen Beman arrows from Cypress Creek Archery in Maryland. The arrows were Beman ICS Hunter 500s. These are the arrows I’ve been shooting for the past year. They aren’t very pricy and I decided to use them exclusively after shooting up a half dozen Easton Fat Boys.

The shiny new dozen Beman arrows have been reduced to a mere eight. I lost two to a Robin Hood. It was an unlikely shot. Typically, I don’t aim for the same spot twice in order to protect any arrow that has hot the mark. In this case I shot an X at 35 yards. Then, I backed up to 50 yards. Even though I was aiming at the same X the 15 yard difference ought to have made hitting a Robin Hood unlikely.

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Two down

I heard it before I saw it. Two arrows gone.

When I practice on a 30 target 3D range in Maryland I shoot once from the hunter class stake and once from the open class stake. Still, I’ve lost arrows in this fashion.

Several weeks ago, I shot a foam pig. It was a good shot, a “pin-wheel”. When I pulled the arrow from the foam, the insert and tip became dislodged inside the pig. A day later, shooting on the same range and on that pig, I hit the  hidden insert, Robin Hooding it with another doomed arrow. The odds of that are so remote to seem nearly impossible. The impact was enough to create creaks in the carbon fiber of the unfortunate arrow making it unusable.

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Really?!

In North Carolina I have one 3D target. While practicing on it today I moved from around trying to create random distances from which to judge yardage and practice. Moving around means different angles for arrows and hopefully reducing my odds of breaking them.

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No way to break an arrow this way….

Shooting from the left of the animal, I moved center, then right. I shot from about 23 to around 34 yards. The arrows were crossed meaning no chance of a Robin Hood. But, as I pulled an arrow it felt funny. The first arrow had gone in from the left. The third arrow from the right. The arrow shot from the right  hit the arrow shot in from the left piecing it.

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Four gone

It is frustrating being down to eight arrows. In February I have three tournaments. Between now and then I am likely to break at least 2 more arrows. At this rate I could enter 3 tournaments with only six arrows. Plus, I have to practice with those arrows.

I’ll need to buy another dozen. Worse case is I end up with 4 arrows before the month is out unless I make the purchase. What is tough is no one near me sales the Bemans I shoot. I look forward to the day when I have an arrow sponsor.

Red Neck 3-Spot

In February I have three tournaments. One is 3D and the other two are shooting dots on paper. The paper shoots will be against 3-spots. When we left Georgia to return to North Carolina a couple of weeks ago, I forgot to pack my few 3-spot papers targets, and they remain in Tignall. I needed to practice shooting a 3-spot and didn’t have a one here in Hertford. But, I had a lot of rifle targets.

It has been raining here since yesterday. When the rain lifted I aimed to go outside and practice. Finally, the weather eased and I took my shot. I grabbed three rifle targets from my shed and created my Red Neck 3-Spot. I consider Red Neck ingenuity as ‘where there is a will there is a way.’

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Red Neck 3_Spot

There was one tiny problem. The orange center of the rifle targets, which is fine when shooting pins, was a problem with my target bow. My target bow has a SA Scope with a small black dot in the center of a lens. The orange of the targets is surrounded by black. There was no contrast to set the scope’s black dot apart.

What I’d do was put the black dot on a segment of white. Then, move that dot, which disappeared while crossing the black segment of the target, toward the orange. When the orange went black I held and tried to make the shot. The field of vision had to be entirely black to hit the center. That worked fairly well but I did hit a lot of nines and eights.

Out of curiosity and because the returned rain began to pick up, I grabbed my hunting bow that has an Axcel ArmorTech sight with pins. I wanted to see how pins would fair against this three spot. Yep, as I expected, it was easier to find the orange.

The rain finally forced me inside. Tomorrow is supposed to be a better day for shooting. For now, I’ll rest my shoulders and try to figure out another way to make a 3-spot.

Two too high and two too low

Yesterday morning I shot from 20 to 60 yards. From 45 yards and further I removed my yardage stakes and practiced judging the distance. At 60 yards I was a tad off.On my first two shots I hit high. I’d seen through my binoculars the first arrow was up. To make sure it wasn’t my sway I fired off a second, which smacked into the first. Two shots too high.

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Yes, I see the litter on the ground. I’ll pick it up.

So, I did was anyone would consider, I raised my sight. The first shot was a bit low. To verify, once again, whether or not it was sway I shot a second. The second smacked into the first. Two shots too low.

In 3D so much depends on getting the distance right. After 50 or 60 arrows I stopped for lunch. If the rain holds I’ll practice some more in the afternoon following a bit of recovery for my arms. Hopefully the afternoon shots will be just right.