When one season closes, another begins. That’s the motto of the well-prepared bowhunter. It’s never too early to start preparing for the next bowhunting season, especially with spring turkey right around the corner.
Now is the best time to score a deal on new archery equipment. From new bows to overstocked accessories, archery shops are filled with plenty of gear this time of year.
“This is a great time for customers because you have the overlap of the new stuff versus some stuff that is discounted,” said Samantha King, the manager at Rocky Mountain Archery in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Most bow manufacturers release their new lineup of bows toward the end of the year and into January. Many archery shops discount the previous year’s bows once the new ones arrive.
“We currently have 15% off on older models,” said Jonathon Lopez, an archery coach at Stick Sniper Archery in Tucson, Arizona.
Many shop owners attended the Archery Trade Association Show, Jan. 11-13, in St. Louis, Missouri. The event helps manufacturers showcase their new products to shop owners, who get an exclusive first look. Shop owners place orders and can even get special show pricing. They then bring these discounts and information back to their customers. Lopez encourages customers to come in during January and February and give new equipment a shot.
“I strongly believe that all the manufacturers are making top-quality equipment, but it’s about how it feels in your hand,” Lopez said. “You’ve got to try it. A small difference is going to go a long way in your bowhunting.”
Shops don’t expect you to just test the newest models. The previous year’s models are often discounted, and some shops even carry used bows. The goal is to help customers find a bow within their price range and that fits their shooting style.
“Customers can come in and shoot the bows, take a peek at them and dream about them a little bit,” King said. “You can get a really great deal. You can also shoot them against each other so you don’t have buyer’s remorse.”
Shooting a variety of models and purchasing a bow when all the products have been released for the year ensures you’re getting exactly what you want and often at a good price. It also gives you plenty of time to prep for bow season. Too many customers pack up their equipment at the end of the season and don’t pull it out again until just before the next season starts.
“This time of year people look outside and think, ‘It’s cold, I don’t want to shoot my bow,’ but this is a great time to take advantage of indoor ranges where you can shoot your bow and make sure nothing is wrong,” King said.
Rocky Mountain Archery, like many shops, hosts indoor leagues during the winter. This gives people the opportunity to practice, improve, forge friendships and engage in some friendly or serious competition.
Stay sharp this winter. Visit your local archery shop to start the new year off with some new, or new-to-you equipment, and then improve your skills by signing up for a winter league.