Contributors to this thread:
Pat Lefemine's Link
Discuss: 20 Years of Bowsite.com
This week marks the 20th anniversary of Bowsite.com. Take a trip down memory lane and share your favorite memories on this special discussion thread.
Stormrider, and his elk wrestling thread, had to be one of the best. Too bad he was a fraud.
This site was a blessing to me when I was a low wage peon and instead of heading to the bar I was able to spend hours on site thanks to Pat and dial up internet.
First handle was AZinTX as I found the site shortly after I moved to Dallas in the summer of '96. Changed my handle after moving to Midland. Used the call sign of the helicopter I crewed.
I'm glad that I found your site so many years ago and all the friends I've met because of it.
Having Fearless in my ear during a 3-d shoot yammering on and on about checking this thing called Bowsite and utimatly meeting more than a few good guy's that I'd more than be happy to share a campfire with. Thanks Frank and A BIG THANKS to you Pat.
Despite some occasional knuckleheads, lotta great guys and gals here that have become a virtual family of sorts.
There are a LOT of you that when you have something to say I take note. Sound advice on a plethora of topics.
20 years?! Guess I'm getting old...
My first experience with Bowsite was watching Pat's grizzly bear hunt. I later became more involved when Jake and I polar bear hunted in the same area of the same year. Have met a lot of great friends because of Bowsite!! I still haven't seen a Bigfoot however. And I have partially manscaped.... Thanks Pat
I really enjoy this site. Keep up the good work Pat!
To old friends and new, cheers!
Ran into Bowsite in 2008 while researching my first elk hunt in almost 20 years. Have been hopelessly addicted ever since. Have also met and hunted with some great guys from the site. Hope to meet and hunt with more!
Cheers to Bowsite!
I've only been on here for 7 or 8 years but a full fledged lifer now. Incredible people on here with thoughts and ideas to share. If you want to ask something, there's someone here with the answer. Homemade videos and stories to read and learn form, all wonderful.
This site is so damn good, thank you very much for creating it. I have met so many people through it and been so many places to hunt because of it. Some of my very best friendships were created because of bowsite.com, I can't thank you enough.
I've met life long friends and gone on some really special hunts with the people I have met here Thanks Pat.
This site is great, and the best easy to use blogging site, bar none.
I just read the History of Bowsite that Pat wrote, and that, too was great.
The downside to this site is that Pat has spoiled us with superior content. That said, quite a few of us have noticed that it is March, and thus far there have been absolutely ZERO blood trail challenges since deer season ended.
- just say'n -
Tony the Spoiled.
Pat, thank you so much for this site. I visit daily and try to keep up with the chatter, it make my life better.. Incredible knowledge of hunting from people willing to share. I even enjoy the occasional knucklehad (TBM).
I'm sure if i'm successful this season it'll be due to some tidbit I learned here.
Keep up the good work.. Goodluck to all...
Bowsite is a family to me. Thanks Pat for all The hard work. Here's to the next 20. Hunt
Thanks Pat. I think I arrived in the late 90's. A wealth of information and some entertaining threads over the years. I soak up information on here about new places, opportunities, gear and tactics. I'm just an average stick flinger but I always try and give back by helping with info about the stuff I have a little knowledge on.
I showed up on Bowsite (Leatherwall), about 12 years ago. Since then it's become a daily routine, and one that more than makes up for the vast wasteland that is TV nowadays.
Many good things I've experienced here, but probably the best was finding an old hunting buddy of mine from my high school days who I'd lost contact with 40+ years ago.
So THANK YOU Pat! You've made a difference!
Congrats Pat. It's been a great ride. My first visits happened on a shared computer at work because I didn't own one yet. I remember coming in to work early so I could check the Bowsite before starting my work day.
This site is the best and the bowhunters here are the cream of the crop. I'm grateful to be here.
Thanks Pat for providing this great source of information, & entertainment. I'm pretty much a "lurker" but have been on bowsite pretty much everyday.
Yes. Congratulations and Thank You. A lot of great guys here.
Here's to the 50th Anniversary meet and greet.
not sure if it's a curse or a blessing.....but it is, at times, addicting
Thanks for the site Pat!
Always been fun here. Was real interesting to follow Pat's elkless streak, am glad he finally got to quit pulling his hair out but at least there must be 20 or 30 left on the sides.
The history of Bowsite was an interesting read, not to mention honest and forthcoming. Not many guys would have admitted to an enterprise started so that the family could afford diapers !
Pat, I've only been here a short while compared to the veterans, but I'm here to stay. Thanks for the best internet site ever !
Thanks pat! I have learned so much from your site and really appreciate it.. loved some of the changes and hated some others over the years..
My favorite Era has prolly been the tbm era.. lol
I think I have been a member sine 97/98 when I was in college..
Thanks man Ben
Enjoyed finding out the history if bowsite. Amazing where technology has gone in 20 years. This is my favorite web site bar none.
Ps agree with the blood trail challenge request!
Just read your story of Bowsite and it is quite a read. I think all of would agree that we owe you a big thanks for bringing Bowsite into our lives. Thanks!!!!
Thanks Pat! Been here since 2005, here's to many more!
It was 1997 and Tricia and I owned a tourist lodge on Lake Granby Colorado. I heard about Bowsite.com from a fellow bow hunter and signed on, (for free). I went by the handle, Paulatthelodge until I retired in 2001 and moved to Ft. Collins CO, hence the handle, Paul@thefort.
Being a senior citizen, affords me more time to interact with Bowsite friends and contribute once in a while.
I remember when Pat was a die-hard recurve bow shooter in the beginning. I met Pat at the Denver Pope and Young Conference/Banquet a few years back along with other Bowsite lurker and hope to do the same in 2017.
Thanks Pat for all of the work and effort you and your crew have put into the very best archery hunting site on the planet.
My best, Paul
Still the best designed forum on the internet. Very surprised after all these years no other web designer has copied it or tried to duplicate it.
I found the site back in '98 by just doing a Yahoo search on 'bowhunting'. Back then there weren't many options to choose from and it's still the site I call home today. I don't do Facebook or Twitter, Bowsite is my social media.
Excellent recap on the first 20 years of bowsite well done Pat! Thanks for all you've created here and hope to see a blood trail challenge soon?!? Cheers and all the best going forward!
Congrats on 20 years Pat and thank you for putting together such an amazing site with so many incredible Bowhunters sharing their knowledge. Ron
Can't thank you enough for your work here, Pat and others. I've met a bunch of my best friends here. I'm proud to be part of such a great group.
Like many others, I've learned a lot and met many friends on Bowsite. The community is top notch, despite the few that make you shake your head. In all honesty, Bowsite has a lot less of them than many websites.
The genius of Bowsite, IMO, is the ground-up design. Pat could have gone the easy way and gone with Bulletin Board when it took off 15 or so years ago, but I honestly think that not only has Bowsite been more secure because of its unique coding, but it's been user friendly and easy on the eyes to a great many folks that we wouldn't have here if it was in BB.
The endless threads that are tedious to read because of people who only reply with the "quote" button, the stupid/distracting signatures, the endless forums that decrease traffic and postings due to people never hitting 50 different forums, etc.
And that's not to mention the moderation which is heavy-handed enough to keep things civil and most d-bags out, but not stifle debate.
Bowsite is top notch and is not just the premier hunting chat forum, but an example for chat forums in general.
GJ Pat. You built it.
that was an excellent read Pat,,,,,,,I was glad to meet you back at one of the MHH events,,,,,,look forward to seeing you again,,,,,
this is a fun site and I have enjoyed it for a long time,,,,,,,,,
take care all of you!
I remember going on a bowhunt for Central Barren Ground Caribou with Camp Ekwo Outfitters. While in camp, I met Tom Foss, Steve Edwards, and John MacPeak. I believe that it was John that mentioned Bowsite at one of the evening meals. Been a frequent visitor ever since......
Damn it, the numbers work out. The diapers probably WERE for your oldest son. I was desperately trying to prove that they were for you...especially on your Grizzly hunt and when you decided to dance with the mamba!!!
Congrats on 20 years Pat! Thank you for Bowsite, What a place to have in this technological world. Hard to believe so much time has gone by, we are both bald now :) You were a major influence on me early on in my bowhunting career. Thanks for always shooting with me at camp....and opening my world to traditional archery.
Great read Pat. I remember some of the history lesson.
I found Bowsite back in early 1998 as I was preparing for my first elk hunt. I went by the handle "Brian". (With screen handle demonstrates my creativity, hence why I am NOT a web designer) Several years later I adopted my current handle.
I have learned more about bowhunting on Bowsite than all other sources combined. Through all these years, Bowsite is still my #1 go to for my bowhunting fix.
First met Pat on an Antelope hunt in 1988 in Colorado. He and I gravitated toward one another and I knew quickly he would do something special with his bow hunting passion. Didn't know it would be Bowsite but wow has it been good to me!
His wife is a Saint and fantastic mother to their three kids. Pat's business integrity is impeccable! I trust him always to do the right thing. He also is a recognized "giant" in the Internet and technology security area with his "real job"!!
I learn something everytime I'm on Bowsite. Pat works non-stop on making sure everything works and always gets better! Best always and THANKS!
Joined this site when I was a kid, a lot of you guys would still call me a kid haha, but I can't say enough about what I've learned and gathered from this site. I'm on this site constantly, and I have to say there's a ton of great guys on here. I hope to meet a few of you some day. Anyways, happy 20th Bowsite!
Congratulatons on 20 years, Pat! This site is a daily addiction and second to none. Many good friendships have been made through this portal. Thank you!
Happy 20 Pat!!
BS has been an incredible teacher and resource for me. I have learned a ton and met some amazing hunters that I never would have otherwise.
Keep up the good work.
Excellent read, congrats on the successful business and for providing us a place to meet. It's very much appreciated.
I joined back when I was in high school, maybe 96 or 97, when I found the Bowsite through a search engine called "Webcrawler."
The Bowsite has been the reason I was late to classes and work meetings over the years. It's nearly always the first thing I read each morning, since I don't get the paper anymore.
I have had to move a lot for work or school and the Bowsite has always been a constant in my life. It has connected me to a group of hunters that haven't forgot what the sports is all about and I have made some life long friends here.
Congratulations Pat. I know I am not alone when I say this but Bowsite has changed my life in the many years I have visited and posted. I've met good friends and learned more about bow hunting than I could have ever hoped to through any other medium. The best compliment I think I could pay you and Bowsite is simply this: you have made me a better bowhunter. Thank you sincerely for all you've given us over the past 20 years, it has been a priceless gift.
In my case, the Bowsite resulted in probably hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost productivity to the technology industry. Thanks, Pat, for nurturing this community of bowhunters around the world.
I've met some of my best bowhunting buddies here, hunted on the other side of the world, and helped launch my second career as a writer because of the Bowsite.
You and Charlie have built something historical here. Hall of Fame stuff. Thank you for sharing it with us.
Thanks for the good times and memories. We have some great people here a lot of knowledge. Best Bow hunting site going! Thank you Pat , Pat
Thanks Pat really enjoyed the history lesson and all your hard work to make this the best website out there. I also really appreciate all I have learned from all the great hunters on here especially the trips I know I will never be able to go on. Way better than the Outdoor Life and Field and Stream articles!
Pretty sweet recap!
I'm not sure exactly when I found Bowsite, but I'm guessing around 2003. Since then, I've visited quite regular and have started posting more recently.
Thanks for creating a place where so many top notch bowhunters like to hang out!
Wow, how time flies .... if they at work knew the amount of time Ive spent here, I'd be in YUUUUUGE trouble ....lol.... hope there is another 20 yrs here for ya ....
Thanks Pat. Lots of good information gained over the few years I have been here. My wife does not think so much of it though. But she does say it could be a lot worse.
Thanks for helping me pass the time at work for the past 14 or so years. I look forward to meeting you in person this weekend.
Wonderful story Pat. I thank you for starting this wonderful site. I can't shoot anymore. Osteoporosis and two replaced shoulders have precluded shooting but I'm still here because it is home. However I still purchase a hunting license every year to help the cause.
I'll never forget meeting you on a hunt at one of Steve's (Rupes) leases. I was 46 at the time which is a little late in life to start hunting but I dearly loved archery.
Pat you might not have intended to but you created a great thing. Thank you
Wow...20 years already..lots of good memories. I still think about Tennbow all the time and share stories about him.. I found the bowsite.com in 97 I believe. I found the elk forum and the first person to help me was "Booner" from PA. Ol Dan was all about elk hunting..
Thanks Pat for all the great memories.
"KANSAS KINGS" lol..remember that Rupe...best wishes everybody.
I found this place around 1999. What a blessing, I was trying to learn on my own and this site helped so much. From the Bowsite I found the Leatherwall. That got me into trad and from there I have taught my whole family how to shoot a stick bow. I also joined an archery club and have taught folks there to shoot trad as well. I also run a Saturday night trad league and I try to reenact or simulate hunting shots. I do a Fred Bear night, Pope and Young too just to name a few.
Thanks Pat, It all started here! Bill
Congratulations Pat and thank you... This is a great place, have learned more here than any book I've ever read. It's been a fun journey, and wish you many more years...
Congratulations Pat !!
Another success story that proves quality will last.
Have learn and hopefully shared a lot, laughed a lot, have been heart broken a lot and have been had different points of view with fellow Bowsiters. These emotions happen when dealing with genuine people.
I have made many friends via Bowsite.com. and have hunted with several of them. Always enjoy rekindling and expanding friendships at the Bowsite Socials at the P & Y conventions.
I am looking forward to many more great years of Bowsite.
I logged on around 2005 about halfway through these 20 years. I had it with gun season and picked up a bow with no mentors or family that hunted much. It just felt right. I've met some great people here that have helped me learn archery from scratch and notch tags, fill freezers and venture from the whitetail woods to the mule deer in the sage flats to elk in dark timber. Good trip so far!
I found Bowsite in 1998. Have had a few different handle names over the years due to losing info etc. It's always entertaining even though I don't post often except when there are questions or discussions involving meat processing, field care, or taxidermy. It was here that started a fire for traditional archery even though I have never fully committed to it yet! Lol Good job Pat and keep it going for 20 more.
I to have to say thank you so much Pat - as others have already stated - what a marvelous idea.
I'm guessing I go back to 1999 or 2000, when I joined the multitude here.
The other day as I was being spanked for one of my threads I happened to think about when you initiated the "STAR" system ... I'm sure most of you old timers remember those stars..remember how they changed color as you got closer to being booted. LOL
Yup, been a blast, here's to another 20,
Thanks again. Bob
I joined in 1997 so been on for almost the whole ride. Bowsite was actually the first website of any kind I visited. My sister told me about the internet, and I did a search on her computer for "hunting". Back in the paper applications days.
I second and third what many have said. Great site which is an addiction but more important a place full of knowledge and friendships made. Thanks!
I happened upon the site in 1998 and have (mostly) been on it ever since. Fast forward 18 years and I've hunted with almost 100 guys and gals I met through this site - 7 states, 1 Canadian province (soon to be 2), and more trips to TN than I care to remember (and some MHH trips I couldn't if I tried).
Congratulations Pat! Thank you for creating such a great resource for bowhunters, and fighting back against the antis. I'll never forget meeting Tennbow and all the friends made at MHH, including you:-) Several of us still get together for a hunt at least once a year.
The information shared here has helped make me a better bowhunter, taught me how to make my own arrows and tune my own bows. Although, I don't post much anymore, I check this site nearly every day. Here's to another great 20yrs,--Cheers!
I started bowhunting in 2006. The reason I started was to hit the elk rut here in NM. Didn't take long, through my research that I found bowsite. It has been priceless to me ever since.
I do not post or comment very often but I do take a look most every day or night. Some of you have been like role models to me, and I've learned a ton from alot of you. I too, hope to meet some of you someday.
Thank you Pat for giving us this awesome site.
I first logged on back in 1998 the year I got married.
I've lost stars multiple times, made a boat load of friends the infamous SerbianShark Dan Ilkich, Jayg my favorite polack, Tim Metcalf Bigpizzaman, Jake Ensign medicinemann, Steve Ouchara SteveC123, Ryan Johnston Nontypical, Aaron Kessie Jerimiah, Chad Kious WTNut,Ron and Jeanine aka Beartrack and of course Joe Ferraro ake the famous MulePower!
I've had countless dinners, hunts, vacations, talks, and more beer drinking than Samuel Adams makes in a year. Lot's of story telling with a boatload of Bowsiters.
I have had thousands pray for me and my family when needed when my daughterm Morgan had cancer. I have tried to reciprocate when possible.
I had one of the truly greatest hunts of my lifetime because of this website with BlacktailBob at Blacktail Bobs cabin rentals on Prince of Whales Island for black bear.
I have been fortunate enough to have taken dozens of youth hunters from here on bowsite to the Ohio youth hunt, some for their very first hunt ever (That is a priceless moment in time)
Have made several incredible lifelong friendships from this site.(mentioned above)
One thing about this site is when someone needs help or advice everyone jumps in with both feet to support one another!
Dont know how long its been but its been fun and worth it. I Got started when Serbianshark and RC dominated the Wisconsin forum years back, and then i found the other forums. Hunted antelope with the infamous BB, and most of my hunts, since finding Bowsite have had Bowsite and or Bowsiters connection in the planning and execution. The goto resource for info and trip ideas. And some super entertaining videos posted.
I start my day checking Bowsite and finish it the same.
The wife no longer ask what I am looking at on the cell phone, she knows its "d----n Bowsite"
Cant forget to mention the community foreum another interesting feature!
Thanks Pat, for the greatest all round best thing going on the internet!
Congrats to 20 years!
Good luck, Robb
It was great to read the history of bowsite. I've meet a lot of great friends here. Congrats on 20 year and looking forward to the next 20!
Great place to learn well... Just about anything ! Congrats!
Thanks Pat for the best of 'info-tainment'
What Lou said...I spend waaaay too much time, Bowsiting
As a British bowhunter, I don't have an immediate source of folk to ask...so Bowsite is an extension of the bowhunting and 99.99999999& of fellow Bowsiters are willing to share their experience
Good luck and good hunting
"While this site is driven by advertisng, and we love our sponsors, we won't stifle conversations or downgrade the user experience for revenue."
The quote above honestly is what KEEPS guys frequenting this site. I first found Bowsite in the late 90s. I can't remember exactly what year but I was having issues with a Darton Maverick CPS at that time. Anyway....while I wasn't very active for the early years I have made up for it since 2000.
I can't quite put my finger on it but something about this site makes adult men who have never met before rendezvous at trailheads, 3D shoots or some point along the way to shoot something with a bow. It is awesome and I am glad I found it because the relationships I have built here will last for the rest of my life.
A great resource to be sure and we are fortunate as a group to have access to it!
Congrats Pat! 20 years is one hell of an accomplishment!
Bowsite is a daily routine for me and I am sure many others. Keep up the good work!
Before Pat's head gets too big.. I think we must first pay homage to Pat's dear friend, Al Gore. After all, if Al hadn't invented the Internet, we wouldn't have Bowsite. I am sure that Pat has "thanked" Al for the opportunity. Now on a personal note, I am absolutely convinced that I would have been able to retire long ago, had Bowsite not been created. Since Pat invented Bowsite, my productivity has suffered. Too many visits during the day to see what the topic dujour is. In addition, this damn site has cost me WAY too much money. After reading somebody's account of a great hunt, I often find myself in touch with Mark Buehrer to get that hunt on the books. More retirement money gone. Then I find myself traveling at least once or twice a year to a convention so I can rub elbows with my bowsite compadres. The wife typically joins me.... more retirement money GONE. Then there are the gear review threads. My basement is so full of just about every gadget, item of clothing, packs, etc. (thanks Corey).. more retirement money down the tubes. If Bowsite continues, I have no doubt that I will have to keep working until I can no longer draw back a bow. Gee thanks Pat. In all seriousness, I have met many of my best friends on this site and I have had the privilege of hunting with some of the best bowhunters in the world. Heres to another 20.
I launched my business the year before Bowsite came to exist and recall finding it very early on. Something special about reading the forums on a Gateway monitor the size of a Philco tv set. I recall Steve H giving me 5 kinds of grief for wanting to hunt QL caribou. Paul Brunner taught me the value of sugar in the backcountry. From round wheels to no wheels and hatchet cams to trail cams...quite a period of change.
I started visiting this site at the request of Gene Wensel. Soon after we released our first full length video called "Primal Dreams." Bowsite was greatly responsible for its success. I also met Pat at a P&Y banquet. Very good guy. Mike
Pat Bowsite has made every P&Y convention better with your meet and greet Every year I meet new guys from all over the country Its 6:30 am and I here already. Its also the last place I check before I go to bed. You have done a great job but I still miss the live chat. thanks Bigdan Ps and I don't have to use spell check as much as I use to.
Congratulations Pat! I'm still a junior member, with only about 10 years of lurking and posting combined, but hey that's almost a third of my life!
Honestly, I can't say I know for sure how my life would be different without this site. This site reinforced the bowhunting mentality within me. Without it, I would have probably never realized there were so many with a similar passion. Would I be making yearly trips to the Rockies, who knows? It is somewhat eerie to think about.
I have been on bowsite since I started bowhunting basically. Met tons of great people and have learned a ton and continue to do so. Congrats on the milestone and thanks for such a great site!!
Damn,,, Pat mentioned me.. I must be somebody. LOL Pat, I don't know how long I have been coming on here, but it has been a blast, checking out the features, the discussions, losing stars, and meeting some of the coolest bow hunters,,, and hunting with them. It has been a blessing, truly..
The MHHs that were coordinated through this site were a hoot. I was on MHH 11 and 13. Met a bunch of great guys and killed some nice boars.
When I was going through my chemo treatments, I would feel like crap, and spending time, just reading the forums and stuff, took my mind off of of things. It also gave me the opportunity to meet Kelly Harris, who I consider one of my best friends.
Congratulations on 20 years and my it stay going another 20.. Although I know you will have retired by then and moved to the bastion of gun freedom and fantastic deer hunting and regulations, upstate NY. ;-)
I hope to see you at the Woodsman Show this year. Remember, the invite for bowhunting turkey, Steelhead and salmon fishing is always open.
God bless ya Pat. Be well Brother. Peace, JayG
Congratulations Pat on a great & successful run, it's not easy keeping a Hunting Site alive & well for so long. First & foremost it takes a dedicated guy with a vision & a staff plus a bunch of great guys showing their support. Not sure how many years I've been around but plenty to see a few changes & the growth. I'm proud to be associated with the Bowsite! Thank you!
Great site ! Congrats on 20 years.
LOTS of Information gained/used/shared and a few People met. Too many "Favorites" Threads to list ... Congratulations on the Achievement.
Congrats on your 20-year milestone. By far my favorite hunting site and only wish I'd came across it sooner, but found it in 2003 and have been visiting several times a day ever since. Thanks to Pat and the mods for everything you guys do.
Thank you Pat for 20 years of enjoyment Bowsite has brought to so many. There is always something, from past and present feature articles about hunting specific animals, land improvement, politics, and detailed gear evaluations... Semi live and live hunt features, hunt recaps, BLOOD Trail fun, BB's and many others photography. What a collection of so many great contributions all made possible via Bowsite!
Bowsite is by far the easiest to navigate and user friendly site for bowhunters on the Web in my opinion. I am sure that you will continue to refine and add more features in the next 20 years. Thanks for the great site you provide us with!
Arrived at Bowsite in '99 after deciding to return to stickbows. I had to ask a co-worker how to find something on the internet. We had one shared computer in the office. Unlike some, I think my productivity at work greatly increased (first couple years anyway) because I would go to work very early and stay after everyone else was gone so I could use the computer to search the ever-expanding knowledge base here.
Ditto on meeting friends, going on hunts and learning stuff I didn't know I didn't know. Congratulations and thank you Pat.
Thanks for the hard work Pat!All the information swapped here has allowed me to learn five lifetimes of archery hunting in only one.
To inventory the human contact and friendships and even friends from those friends the network is amazing!
Mad Trapper, Thanks ya I totally forgot to thank Al. Had he not invented the internet I'd never have discovered Bowsite, and likely missed out on 20 years of elk hunting to. He's my guy!
Congrats on 20 years. I only recently became a member when I came across a post on here about my dad's (Jim Dougherty) passing. Now I check it out almost daily.
only 18 1/2 years for me, I'm still a newbie :)
Congrats Pat. I, like Ned, showed up around the time of the live Grizz hunt. Thanks to Pat (and Al Gore:), this site has seriously changed (or altered) my life. Bowsite is as much a part of my daily regime as work and sometimes more than work.
When I sit and think about the people I've met and the adventures I've been on purely because of this wonderful site, I can't help but think of the "what ifs" had this site never came to fruition. (Like Mad Trapper, I KNOW I'd have A LOT more money>)
I've met Bowsiters in airports on business, I've crossed paths with many on hunts and I've shared some great hunting adventures with several Bowsiters. I used to go to outdoor conventions solo, now whether it is the Sheep Show, or Pope and Young, it is more like a family reunion than the same old convention. All of this made possible by Pat and this awesome site.
Pat, thanks for a great site and more importantly, thanks for the memories and friendships that came to life because of this site. Here's to the NEXT 20 years...
Congratulations!!! Here's looking forward to the next twenty years!
very cool. but this makes me feel old... I've been here for all of it.
Cool article! I believe this year marks the 10-year mark for me. I can't believe it's been that long already. I love bowsite and it has taught me a lot. Thanks for your hard work and dedication in creating and maintaining this site!
Congratulations Pat. I think '05 was when I first found Bowsite. Reading about the adventures and experiences of others on here gave me the boost to start turning hunting dreams into realities. It has definitely changed me.
I think I have been here close to the full 20 years. Pat, thank you! I've met some good folks here and a few hamblasters too that I'll never get that wasted time back.....LOL. Thanks again and good luck on the next 20!
I met Pat (and Charlie) in Umiat, Alaska in 1989.....pre-Bowsite. However I really started to visit the site on a regular basis about 7 years ago and enjoy it. Lots of good information and entertainment to be had. Thanks Pat!
Guess I've been around pretty close to the duration. Bought my first Mathews bow in 1996....and it was the dealer that told me about Bowsite.
Met alot of great folks here and have learned so much from this site...I can't even begin to describe.
Bowsite is 100% to blame for my Western bowhunting addiction. Bowsite has also played a big part of my Western bowhunting success.
Thanks Pat! Thanks Charlie! Happy 20th anniversary Bowsite!
BS is still a great place to lurk, but I miss some of the good guys that got tired of being attacked. Some of the hunt stories are very good, almost like we were on the hunt! I never will forget, "Hellooo Bowsite". Hopefully, we will see more positive threads and comments in the future. Mike
Great job Pat, reminds me of the old days with the UBC---Thanks Kent
I think I first logged on in 1997, maybe earlier. I have met one of my best friends ever on this site. And had to put up with a few knuckle heads along the way, but they are a mere drop in the bucket to all of the great guys that have been willing to share great info on this site. Thanks Pat.
I found the Bowsite in Dec. 1998. Got hooked on traditional archery and it has cost me thousand of dollars in equipment. I've enjoy every minute of it. Congratulations Pat for taking the challenge and many more years to come.
Congratulations and great work Pat. This site is a life changer for a lot of bow hunters. At least it has been for me. Thanks.
Congratulations Pat and THANK YOU!!!!!!!
Bowsite is THE BEST hunting site in the world!
I look forward to the next 20 years! :)
Congratulations and thank you, Pat! You created a terrific internet fraternity. Been lurking and posting for about 10 years. Bowsite has become an almost daily addiction.
Only been on here a few years but a wealth of info and generosity, Great bunch of people thanks
There's no better for so many reasons as mentioned all above.
Congrats to you Pat with many more years to come.
Xtreme Hunts - Bowsite Sponsor
Edwin, Herb, Tony & Rich
20 years! Wow! Nice work. Great site and great bunch of guys! Easy for me to remember as I've been married 20 years too.
Been quite a while since being introduced to you Pat at the Pa Bowhunter Convention at Lancaster. We did the Advanced Bowhunter Education announcement at the show. My the stories and relationships that have been made since then! Congrats!
Shouldn't we have a repost of "Bow Test on a dead cow"?:)
thanks for creating a great site. I came by the way of the Leatherwall. I took up a recurves about 18 years ago and a friend told me to research my questions on the LW. from there I came over to here and enjoy reading threads on both sites.
QQ Archery's Link
fuzzy, "only 18 1/2 years for me, I'm still a newbie"
Don't sweat it fuzzy, you don't look like a newbie....rode hard and put away wet comes to mind...:)
thanks for the ride Pat ,I started with you as a medical student. I went on the bowsite first Larrys hog wild pig hunt as the handle of Diehard ,and now retired I don't no what id done in between cases with out the bowsite to go to ,it kept a little sence to the day .meet some great folks along the way.sure appreciate all that ya done ,hope to see ya in the field some time soon,,
Only been on a few years, likening it getting to know a few people on here. Visit it quite often, good job Pat glad I found your site.
Congratulations on 20 years! That is an inspiring story.
I'm not sure when I first found Bowsite but it was years ago. If I'm not hunting I visit almost every day. It's my favorite bowhunting site because it helps me "take the pulse" of my fellow bowhunters. Of course, there is always something to learn here and who among us has nothing to learn?
Bowsite has become a pillar of the bowhunting community and I am proud to call you my compatriot and my friend.
Pat - great story! Congratulations on the first 20 years.
I was one of those who saw your 'free ad' in Bowhunter Magazine and came to visit the Bowsite. I've been here since. Congratulations again on a job well done.
Semper Fi - Tom
Pat-congrats on a great site and story!
I stumbled onto Bowsite in the late 1990's. I visit this site almost everyday except when I'm hunting.
I've met some great folks on hear!
Can't remember what year I joined, but hardly a day goes by that I don't check in to see what's new.
Congrats on 20 yrs!!!!
Time has really flown by since I heard Pat talk about this idea at the PBS meeting in Charlotte. At the time a group of us were on the Prodigy Archery BBS and we migrated here.
It's not hard to see how and why this site has grown exponentially. I appreciate all the work Pat put into this, the Leatherwall and the state forums. There have been many lasting friendships and many great memories made here along with some memorable characters that have made it interesting.
Having been here since the beginning, my favorite part is the sharing of hunts with stories and photos from fellow members. Overall, a great group of folks!
I also remember the ad in Bowhunter. I've been here since Dec. 1998. How can anyone forget the topics brought up by mis-spelled words, the infamous "wold" and "hiney hole" hunting spot. Some of the best comedy you could find. Because how Pat designed this site it is very different from other sites which I really like. Come here every day.
It's amazing how quickly the time goes by. I'm not exactly sure how long I've been here but I can remember each and every one of those features, people and live/semi-live hunts like it was yesterday. Reading through that synopsis makes it easy to see why this place is the best! Great job Pat. Here's to another 20!
Congratulations Pat! It has been a great site.
Twenty years already?! Wow!
I don't even know where to begin as Bowsite has been such a big part of our lives for the past twenty years. Matt was here from the sites inception and I followed soon after. It's pretty amazing how we both found the Bowsite since Matt was in Texas twisting and selling bowstrings, and I was in Michigan just getting into traditional archery. When I was searching for my first bowstring, an older couple at the archery store told me I should look at the Leather Wall. I didn't have a home computer yet so got on the work computer and found both the Bowsite and Stickbow forums. There was just so much information available in one place that I couldn't get enough of it.
After perusing the site for a few hours (weeks?) I found Tradman's Custom Bowstrings, one of the site's sponsors. Matt had been twisting strings for the guys in his archery club and decided to try his hand at selling a few. When he contacted Pat about becoming a sponsor, Pat told him that he didn't have any sponsor who sold just one item, but he also didn't have any string makers either, so they both decided to give it a shot and Pat created the website for Tradman's Custom Bowstrings. Little did we know how this little computer thing was going to take off! Who would have thought that people so wrapped up in being "traditional" would flock to something so "non-traditional"! That's the part that really amazes me- how people who typically spend much of their time outdoors flocked to a computer. We didn't have mobile technology yet, so it meant we had to come indoors to read about what we enjoy doing outdoors! Crazy, huh?!
Visiting and reading the many features here became a daily routine for us. As soon as I turned my computer on in the morning, I'd catch up on what my fellow bowhunters were doing while drinking my morning cup of coffee. Matt's little business grew to the point he could hardly keep up with the orders. Fast forward to Y2K, and I was now living in Texas helping Matt with his string business and this little side venture of outfitting hog hunts on the weekends. This little virtual storefront had brought us together with so many other like-minded folks that we quickly became friends with people all over the world! We were shipping bowstrings to every state in the U.S. and even overseas. Who would have thought that advertising just one product in one place would result in a business we could hardly keep up with?! So we decided to try something new...opening our own hunting ranch.
In 2003 we both quit our "real" jobs and started outfitting hunts here in Oklahoma and the only place we advertised was here, on the Bowsite. As the site grew, so did our business...now 13 years later we're making a living doing what we love to do because of God's grace and Pat's need for diaper money :)
We've been blessed with getting to know the Lefemine family and so many other good folks that we never would have met from this site. We now have friends whom have flown over here from England, Scotland, Belgium, Germany, Guam, Denmark and many places in between...all because you had this idea Pat. None of this would have happened if you had listened to the naysayers. Thanks for all you have done to bring us together, and try to keep us together. Few people realize the value of being united in our passion for bowhunting, but your legislative alerts help us more than you know on that front.
I could write a lot more, and maybe I will later...but right now it's time to go pick up our hunters after their morning hunt (who by the way, found out about us on the Bowsite nearly a decade ago). Thank you to the entire Bowsite family for all you have done. Charlie and Phil, I know how hard it must be for you guys to help monitor and keep us in line. Julie, we know that any business involves the whole family and not just the person whose name is on the top of the page. You and the kids are really the driving force behind this site! Oh, and if you ever solve the mystery of how on earth your honeymoon video ended up in my parents basement, please let me know. That's still got me scratching my head!
We appreciate you all and look forward to what the future holds,
Cheryl and Matt
I got a few strings from Matt way back.
I've been here since the start. There's no other site that compares to this day!
Congrats to you Pat on making this what it is today, not easy with so much competition.
Congrats Pat! I probably haven't posted more than a dozen times, but have been a religious lurker for 15+ years. I wonder sometimes what my cumulative hour meter would be up to now if it was tracked.
Congrats on 20 years Pat!
I rue the day I discovered this website. . .
I believe I found it while still in high school in 1999 or so. I didn't post much or at all then.
went a few years in college without checking in too much, then rediscovered in lawschool and spent quite a bit of time reading. But again, didn't post a whole lot.
Had a few years of not much use in there, but came back with a vengeance in 2008 or so. Got an internet available phone, and that was all she wrote.
How many hours of productivity lost? How many new items bought on bowsite recommendations? How many new ideas I've tried, some successful and some not? How many new people I've met, some in person, and even hunted with some?
Would I still be ate up with bowhunting if I'd never found this site? Would I still be dreaming of hunts in faraway places? Would I have killed some of the animals I have?
Love the site. It's been a lot of fun. I value the friendships I've made and the lessons I've learned. I cannot begin to even imagine how this site has helped shorten the learning curve on many many things related to hunting.
Many many fine individuals, not to even mention fine hunters, that are on this site, willing to help at the drop of a hat. The outpouring of genuine sympathy and the PMs I received when I posted about our family tragedy has meant a lot to me. I've bookmarked that thread, and it brings me to tears and amazes me every time I read it.
This is a fine community, frustrating at times, but overall, I'm proud to be a member of it, and proud of the friendships I've made.
When I plan a hunting trip, I immediately think of only a handful of people. I would be bereft each of them without the Bowsite.
My time here tells me that, while Pat is to thank for crafting and maintaining Bowsite, her members are the value of it. I would like to thank the members for contributing so much to my hunting, my bucket list and my life. Hope we're all just getting started.
Pat, you have done an amazing job with this site--it goes to show you what hard work can accomplish in the world--I have met and hunted with some GREAT people on here--I have also learned things about archery and bow hunting from some amazing individuals --I'm proud to be part of your cult :-). --- keep up the talented work--
20 years already huh? Wow you guys are old! Can't remember when I first found this site, or exactly how long it was until I joined officially but I can say it's been a great experience.
I've met a bunch of people, hunted with some of them, learned more than I knew there was to know, and generally been thrilled to be a part of this community.
Congrats on 20 years Pat, I'm sure you don't get thanked nearly enough. You've truly done more for Bowhunters and Bowhunting than (almost) anyone else. I hope that you get as much out of this site as we all do. Thanks for this site, thanks for keeping it less commercial than everything else out there, thanks for always keeping it real, and thanks for keeping us in line when we go off the rails. I'm looking forward to the next 20 and seeing what you have in store for us.
Congrats Pat!!! I found the site in the late 90's while doing a search on Alta vista for bow hunting. The semi live grizzly hunt got me hooked for life. A few months later I went to Pat,s house to measure the skull for Boone and Crocket and we have been friends ever since that day.
Congratulations Pat and all the Bowsite guys & gals. It's not common in today's cyber world to make such a connection to an internet site, but the concept of this site and Pat's execution are superb and keeps me coming back. Great bunch of regular members willing to share advice and give their opinions. Made a few friends from the site and hunted with some as well.
Looking forward to another 20.
What a great read and what an amazing group you've created! It's been nothing short of amazing how you've kept ahead of the times for all these years. Kudos also to all the great contributors many of whom I have become close personal friends with. Here's to 20 more!
Pat, of your hunts over the years which one stands out the most to you. I think the grizzly was the most exciting but the cape buffalo the most rewarding. I know the elk was many years of frustration.
Pat, a huge congrats on the first 20!!
I think it all comes down to a well balanced life.
We can have all the money and work accomplishments in the world, but if we don't enjoy the journey....
Bowsite is one of those treats you look forward to each day (kind of like a home made special K bar), multiple times per day....
Incredible volumes of information (from some of the most accomplished bow hunters) sharing that short cuts learning curves...
Great friendships with people that are equally as bowhunting possessed as I am....this has cut down on my therapists bills as I now know..."It's not just me"
Bowsite helps us enjoy the journey!
Thanks for the history. That was a great read. I've been here most of those 20 years. but your article told me a whole lot of things I didn't know.
Not sure how I found Bowsite, but it's been at least 16yrs. Still a favorite, lots of good info, good people.
Great write up Pat. Brought back some memories.
Thanks, as I look to 20 more.
I first joined Bowsite in 2000. Not long after that, I reconnected with a college buddy of mine that I had lost contact with since about 1989 when we both posted on the Nebraska section of this site . We talk all the time now and see each quite often ever since that day. We actually both told the "reconnection" story to Pat this past weekend at the Nebraska Bowhunters Association Banquet.
It was great to read the history of bowsite since I missed those first four years. Thanks for providing me with so many hours of education and entertainment over the years, Pat. And I mean A LOT of hours--just ask my wife . . .
Nicely done Pat! I have no clue how long I've been on here but its gotta be 15-18 years. Traditional Bowhunter was where I first heard of Bowsite. Bowsite is the only hunting site i consistently (daily) peruse and I always enjoy the variety of articles, opinions, and personalities! Thanks for a wonderful site and here's to 20 more!
I first discovered Bowsite in 2003 after a rekindling of my love of all things bow hunting and archery. Since that time I have become a nearly daily visitor. I planned my first DIY elk hunt with the help of many here, and have been lucky enough to have met Pat and quite a few of the other Bowsite "legends" at MHH13, and BB's Bowsite antelope hunt. Congratulations Pat on 20 years!
Pat great recap and a great site.
I believe I started lurking in 1999 and got my first sign up email on 4/05/01 under the name fulldraw. I soon realized that someone beat me to the name so I changed it to butternut40. I know for a fact that my productivity has suffered over the years because of Bowsite. Keep it coming.
Wow, 20 years. I think I've been here for 18 of them. On my third handle I think, maybe fourth. Started out very computer illiterate, causing me to loose my registration info with every computer fix. Been x-man I think since 2001 or so.
Hopefully, when my kids are all gone I'll have time to travel and hunt with as many Bowsite friends as I can. For now, I mostly only lurk on the equipment forum where my expertise lies.
I look forward to another 20 years.
I dont remember exactly when I joined Bowsite, but it had to have been about 1999. I remember it being the first forum I joined. I also remember when the ad started appearing in Bowhunter and I was wondering what it was all about. I barely understood what the www was at that time. I never had big post numbers but I've really fallen off the last 4 or 5 years, but I still check in to see what's being discussed and to follow The live hunts and "meat poles". The head to head bow test was always my favorite feature.
Congrats on a successful 20 years.
Congratulations - I have learned a lot from bowsite over the years, it had definitely made me a better bowhunter and more in tune with my equipment The members are great - and often very entertaining.
Pat, congrats on hitting 20 years. Thank you for the resource and enjoyable "place" to check out most days at least once. I've really enjoyed Bowsite since about 2005 and look forward to years more!
Mostly just a bunch of grizzled old farts from the coulda-woulda-shoulda school. Most of them couldn't draw a breath, let alone a bow. Too much elk hunting and whining about what rest or boots to buy.
Grow a set and lern to spel and punctualize. Then, cut your hair like Jene Wensle and that guy from Abalama.
Not sure how long I've been here but it's been a long time. Great site.
Pat, I just wanted to say thank you. I was introduced to bowsite.com in 1998 by a friend. Believe it or not, but I remember the exact conversation and him showing me the site on our computer at work.
Throughout my Marine Corps career with multiple deployments to just about everywhere, bowsite.com has always been that place where I could go to be with friends.
I've never met a bowsiter I didn't like and thank you for making that happen.
Thanks again and I'm looking forward to another 20 years.
I lurked here for a few years on and off, reading and soaking up the info, had never posted on a forum in my life.
Finally posted a few times, argued with a couple guys that later became good friends and PMed Bigdan about an elk hunt I had coming up in the Breaks. He opened up and gave me so much useful information in his own coded style.... changed my elk hunting forever. I realized at that point what a treasure this place is. Can't begin to put a price tag on everything and everybody that is here. "Priceless" I believe is the term... addiction might be another....
A lurker for years.... turned into a stalker that can't shut up... who'da thunk.....
Congrats Pat. Few people in this world have created something that they know will outlive them. Great to see that happen, and grow... and realize how special it is.
PS: Coach still thinks we're all pretty much nuts..... OK, mostly just me.... She realizes it's a harmless (yet expensive) nuts.... but it did take her a few years to believe me it wasn't really a porn site in disguise.....
OK... back to the CF... there's an election on ya know....
Well Howdy, what a trip down Memory Lane, so many names and phases of the Bowsite are familiar to me. Sorry I didn't see this a couple years ago.
We had no WWW access back at work in 95/ 96 when I joined. I used to download trial CDs from AOL for a week then take them off the computer before the trial ran out. Access was only during lunch :)
GregE was my softball roster name - as we had three Gregs. It was the first thing I could think of when logging on. CAM was the first one to welcome me. Strange how those details come back. G
Thanks for all the hard work, Pat!
Scary 19 years have passed since i jumped on in August 1999 before my first caribou hunt. Hence the name.
Great fun over all those years. The site is a great mix of information, education , and entertainment by “people watching”. Thanks so much to all for making the site what it is. A unique community of people who are far more alike than dufferent. simply the best.
Relax and enjoy the ride
I first joined about three years before TNBow passed away. I keep coming and going. Glad Bowsite has stood the test of time.
Anyone still here besides me from the old Prodigy Archery Bulletin Board? I was one of the early ones here and have really enjoyed being a part of it!
I love this site. The elk knowledge and wisdom here is quite amazing.
Congrats Pat! 20 years is a milestone marker. Cool to learn about all the history prior to my discovering the site. Very cool. Obviously a site second to none.
Much like Nick and HUNT have said above. I have made several friendships because of this website Pat. Wondered away from my home state thread due to old grumpy know-it-alls. Most who have come to our state thread for advice know what I am talking about. It's pretty easy to weed thru the hamblasting nonsense folks pretty quickly though. Some good folks overall. I'd say my favorite part of Bowsite is guys and gals reaching out for prayers all over the country/world. One of the first real prayer chains I joined in on here was Kelly Harris's daughter with her health issues. Prayers were huge for that family. Been here for I think almost the entire 20 years and will be here as long as I am on this earth. Good job and be proud of it Pat!
22 years 5 months anniversary!!!!
How appropriate I find this thread again after just hanging up with a fellow BSer game planning an impending Kodiak Island trip... along with 4 other BSers... all of whom I would not know from Adam without the Bowsite.
If "Improve Lives" was ever on your bucket list, Pat, go ahead and check that box.
Pat, I don't know how I missed this in March of 2016!
Fantastic story, and the way you put it all together, is Top Shelf!
I truly appreciate everything You and Charlie did for me, during my time as a Bowsite Sponsor. I still remember Charlie's words "Bowsite is all bowhunters"! My target market. That was enough to get me to take the plunge in 2010. No regrets.
"If you build it, they will come"!
Shortly after the new century (shortly being a relative term....maybe within a couple years), I was bowhunting with Camp Ekwo in Canada for Central Barren Ground Caribou. Had the good fortune to meet Tom Foss (TThomas), Steve Edwards (Genesis), and John MacPeak (JM) in camp. I believe it was JM that first mentioned Bowsite to me.....been here ever since.....Thanks JM!!
Best forum on the planet, period. There are a ton of class individuals here.
Great timing! I was just trying to figure out the other day how long I have been following the Bowsite. I first discovered it around '94 I think when I got a brand new PC and found the "internet",, LOL. I hardly post here anymore but do a lot of reading. Have learned so much over the last 20 years. Memories that come to mind... "Tennbow" (do i have the name right?)... he was a fine gentlemen from TN I believe that passed away from cancer (?) many yrs ago. Crossbow threads when they first came on the scene. First learned about 40 Mile Air up in Alaska on the Bowsite way back in the early days... followed the posts about them on this site since and finally made my first trip two years ago with them and it was fantastic.
I got my 1st computer when I was 55, thus ahunter55. I joined soon after & I turn 77 in Nov..
Not quite sure how long I have been here but its quite a while. Got kicked off one time apparently for excess sarcasm and really missed it. Most indelible memory would be the TBM era. Congratulations Pat!
Kicked off for excess sarcasm? I better start watching my step :-)
If that were true bou would have been gone along time ago lol
Fortunately that’s not a screen but it’s all in good fun.