Crossbow Hunting – A Sometime Alternative to Rifles

I have been hunting on and off for more than 50 years and mostly used the traditional rifle, shotgun and even the vertical bow. When I was introduced to the crossbow some time ago I found a new challenge and a new passion. Now I should state here that I still intend to hunt with muzzleloaders, rifles and shotguns during the appropriate hunting seasons BUT I also plan to increase my time and skill with the crossbow with scope. You see, I’m not a purest in the sense of being a “Johnny one note” with regard to my hunting weaponry. Crossbows add a dimension to hunting quite different from the more traditional powder weapon approach. It requires the development of new skills in handling, cocking and shooting with consistency at different ranges. It also demands a more skilled approach to stalking and the use of stands and blinds. It is perhaps more important to know your game target’s habits and habitat, since the range for crossbow hunting is significantly less in most cases.


There are a growing number of states that permit crossbow hunting during archery season and not just rifle season. This provides a great opportunity to extend your hunting season. Most states do require an additional permit to hunt with a crossbow but it’s worth the cost to experience the excitement of matching your hunting skills against the sensitive instincts of wild game – and at a closer range. For those of you that live in a state that only permits crossbow hunting during rifle seasons, why not add to the breadth of your hunting experience by using the crossbow during that time as well.