The time between hunting seasons can feel like eternity, but it doesn’t have to be boring. Competitive shooting is a great way to have fun and maintain your marksmanship during bowhunting’s offseason.
The National Field Archery Association is one of America’s major archery organizations. Many local clubs use the NFAA’s rules and formats for their competitions. The NFAA offers indoor archery, field archery and 3-D archery throughout the off-season.
When it’s too cold to bowhunt and practice in the yard, try turning your attention to indoor archery. You can enjoy the heat of competition in the dead-cold of winter by enrolling in indoor leagues or tournaments.
The Vegas Shoot uses a 40-centimeter target with a gold center, and red, blue, black and white outer rings. Archers shoot 30 arrows per round, and a perfect score is 300.
A 300 is also the perfect score in the NFAA Indoor Nationals format, but that event uses a different target. The NFAA Indoor Nationals’ target is blue and white, with a white center circle surrounded by blue outer rings. The rings score 1 to 5 points. NFAA competitors shoot five arrows per end.
When melting snow gives way to spring, it’s time to hit the field course. Field archery is great practice for bowhunting because it presents targets in varying terrain and different distances. Shooting on these challenging courses hones your skills and makes you a better shot. You can try it at a local shoot or enter a field-archery league at a club.
Marked 3-D Archery
If you like field archery, you’ll love the NFAA’s marked-distance 3-D competition. It’s just like field archery except with life-sized animal targets. The national championship for this discipline is held annually in Redding, California. It’s one of the country’s most fun and challenging archery tournaments, with shots exceeding 100 yards.
All three of these offseason activities help boost your odds of bowhunting success. Best of all you don’t have to choose one. You can try all of them at an archery club or state tournament. Talk to your archery shop or visit the NFAA website for more information.