When you first decide you want to become a hunter, you might wonder whether you should rifle hunt or bowhunt first. The correct answer is: Whichever one will get you out into the woods. You should pick the style of hunting that you’re most likely to stick with. If one of them intrigues you more than the other, choose that one. You should go into the process excited, not daunted. We’ve compiled a few differences to keep in mind when you’re making the choice and what regulations to keep in mind.

Rifle Hunting

Banks Outdoors offers accessories for rifle hunters like the Bi-Pod Shooting Stick and the Gun Rest. The shooting stick rotates and has a rubberized V-brace so you can keep your rifle on the stand while you position the deer in your sights. It also has a universal thread mount so you can mount your sight, a camera, or lights to the stand. It adjusts from 21-40 inches so it will line up with your eyes comfortably, from a seated position, no matter how tall you are. The gun rest can be attached to the windowsill of one of the windows of the Stump blind. Stump blinds have multiple windows so you can move the rest around to different windows throughout the day.

Bow Hunting

While each style of hunting requires you to learn how to aim at a deer to ensure you’re hitting the vital area, bowhunting requires you to be able to pull a certain draw weight. The draw weight measures the pounds of pressure against the string when you pull the string back at full draw. A higher draw weight will cause the arrow to fly faster, which increases the likelihood of an ethical kill. For that reason, each state has a minimum draw weight. Make sure you can pull that draw weight before you choose to bowhunt. If you’re below it, practice some resistance training until you’ve built up your arm and back muscles. For example, the minimum draw weight in Minnesota is 30 pounds.

Banks Outdoors has a Bow Hanger that will allow you to hang your bow off the wall of the blind so you can take breaks periodically without putting your bow on the floor.

Know the Legal Differences

Rifle hunting and bowhunting have different hunting seasons, so make sure to check the dates in your state. You’ll need separate tags for each, so make sure you pay attention to when the license registration opens each year. You can find season dates and hunting license requirements on your state’s government website.

States may also have requirements for the kind of rifles, bullets, and arrows you can use. For example, hunting firearms must be at least .220 caliber and you must use single-slug shotgun shells. Bowhunters must use broadheads with at least two metal cutting edges, a barbless broadhead, with a diameter of at least 7/8 inch.

Whichever style of hunting you choose to start your hunting journey with, the important thing is that you’re getting out in the woods. Our Stump blinds are spacious and comfortable, so you should be able to enjoy hunting out of the multiple windows with a hunting partner no matter what you choose.

Did you start out rifle hunting or bowhunting? What would you recommend for a beginner hunter? Let us know in the comments below!



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