Summit Treestands
Ideas to explain this
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Skip72 27-Sep-18
WV Mountaineer 27-Sep-18
Bou'bound 27-Sep-18
GF 28-Sep-18
Forest bows 28-Sep-18
Skip72 28-Sep-18
Skip72 28-Sep-18
Shawn 28-Sep-18
BullBuster 28-Sep-18
Skip72 28-Sep-18
Skip72 28-Sep-18
Skip72 28-Sep-18
Lever Action 28-Sep-18
3arrows 29-Sep-18
Bowmania 29-Sep-18
WV Mountaineer 29-Sep-18
Skip72 29-Sep-18
Skip72 29-Sep-18
WV Mountaineer 29-Sep-18
INDBowhunter2 01-Oct-18
Cheesehead Mike 01-Oct-18
From: Skip72
27-Sep-18

Skip72's embedded Photo
Broken gold tip
Skip72's embedded Photo
Broken gold tip
My son (new bowhunter) shot a 4 point, Not recovered, but he found the broadhead and forward 3/4 of the arrow about 45 yds from the stand. He was shooting GT hunter with 100g muzzy fixed 3 blade and had a luminock which functioned as it should have. He never found the nock end of the arrow after looking 2 days. Some hair on the Broadhead (brown, not white). arrow smelled of deer, not gut. And there was minimal blood on the shaft. Particulars: 15' up in a ladderstand. Deer at 11 o'clock slightly quartering away at 22 yds at shot. He thinks the hit was vertically middle of body slightly father back than where he thought he aimed. No pass through. He could see the lighted nock as the deer ran off weaving between the trees. Lost sight of deer at 35 yds, He could hear the deer snorting as it ran, then seemed to slow down (trying to judge distance from the sound of the snorts). waited 30 min to climb down and track. Found front of arrow at 45 yards. could find no blood on the ground. After trying to track for about 45 min (this is a small area, bounded by a divided road to the east, a large creek to the north, a walled cemetery and housing uphill to the south. The deer headed basically east. He called a tracker familiar with the area with a dog who has a good local rep for effectiveness. The dog couldn't find the scent, no blood was found. Son went back the next day but still found nothing. Assuming the hit/aspect was not as he remembered (which should have resulted in a dead deer) It would seem that an arrow that broke off 20+ yards from the hit 20+" from the broadhead had to have passed mostly through some part of the body and should have been coated with blood. Also the lighted nock should have been relatively easy to find within several yards of the rest of the shaft unless it was pulled into the body. (He saw the lighted nock as the deer ran off, so I am wondering that if the broadhead were protruding from the other side, it may have caught brush or something and pulled the shaft deeper into the deer until it was almost a delayed pass through). The tracker is an experienced bowhunter and tracks many deer and hogs in this area and remarked that he couldn't explain what happened but would post it to his tracking friends. So what do you think happened to explain where the arrow broke, the relatively claen break for a carbon arrow (as opposed to splitting and having a more diagonal break), lack of blood, not finding the lighted nock end? Thanks

27-Sep-18
He hit it in the leg is my guess

From: Bou'bound
27-Sep-18
Check the cemetery well

From: GF
28-Sep-18
Losing track of a lighted nock is pretty weird...

My bet is a high hit over the spine; I did that once and got a really clean break on a carbon. Fortunately, I also topped the off-side lung and scored on a follow-up.

From: Forest bows
28-Sep-18
Can't find them if they are not dead.

From: Skip72
28-Sep-18
Wasn't that close to the cemetery. Leg- maybe. But he said it was running normally when he last saw it? If it hit lower leg that would explain the lack of blood. But wouldn't the gait be affected?

From: Skip72
28-Sep-18
Thanks Forest, pretty sure its not dead, unless it ran down to the creek and got dragged off by a gator.

GF- that was one of my thoughts. Maybe hit a vertebral process that prevented a pass through. Shouldn't there have been blood though from the paraspinal muscle?s

From: Shawn
28-Sep-18
Gut shot, not much blood, rear leg broke arrow on the run and fat and gut material clogged hole. Dead deer most likely, just bumped by your son and he went quite a ways. Next time when not sure, wait a minimum of 8 hrs. Shawn

From: BullBuster
28-Sep-18
Lighted nock May still be in deer

From: Skip72
28-Sep-18
Shawn, if gut hit, usually there is some fecal or gut slime on the shaft and there is a distinctive smell But, that is a possibility. I didn't consider that the leg might have broken the arrow.

From: Skip72
28-Sep-18
Bull, that was one of my thoughts. That the arrow got pulled through the deer as it ran and caught on brush and trees. And the nock end was buried in some part of the body.

From: Skip72
28-Sep-18
I appreciate all the replies. Don't think me argumentative when I post a "but" comment. There is an explaination as to why an arrow broke off at a point that suggests a near pass through but has no blood or gut material on it. So my "but" replies are for discussion purposes and in no way a dismissal of the idea. I have been bowhunting for 30+ years and never experienced anything like this. I am sure someone here has. Disclaimer here: I am 600 miles from my son. I have been in the area where he was hunting but wasn't there for the shot and follow up.

From: Lever Action
28-Sep-18
Seen this. Seen an arrow broken in three pieces when the arrow hit and deflected.

From: 3arrows
29-Sep-18
Base of neck or high back ,bush broke arrow off,deer OK.

From: Bowmania
29-Sep-18
Well, he saw the nock mid body, 'slightly back'. That rules out a leg shot.

I think the arrow hit an obstruction on the way, that took a lot of energy and may have put the arrow in a downward motion. Hits the deer in the brisket, but the nock looks midbody and slightly back, because of the downward angle . Obstructions break the arrow, as the animal runs, leaving the nock in the deer or covered in leaves. I think that accounts for the lack of blood and everything else mentioned.

I shot a bull elk once and thought I had a pass through. Couldn't find the arrow. When gutting the animal, the heart had a hole in it and I found 6 inches of arrow in the chest cavity. No feather, or logo on the section of arrow, so it was from below the logo and above the BH.

Bowmania

29-Sep-18
He saw what he thinks he saw. However, the the nock wasn't sticking out mid body because the front half of the arrow has no sign of ever being in the body cavity. None, nada, zilch. The arrow didn't get pulled into the body because the front half of the arrow never went into the body. If it had, from the angle the OP described, there would be sign of it on the arrow. He didn't hit it in the neck, or the back either, for the same reasons.

He either stuck it through the meat low in the leg below the body line. OR he just grazed it in the same area and flailing legs broke the shaft in both instances. Deer move during the arrow flight. Almost 100% of the time. they either hear the bow or that missile zooming in on them. No one knows exactly what happened. But that arrow did not enter into the body cavity.

From: Skip72
29-Sep-18

Skip72's embedded Photo
View from stand taken during daylight a couple days later. Circled area is where deer was standing
Skip72's embedded Photo
View from stand taken during daylight a couple days later. Circled area is where deer was standing
Bowmania, So the front and back of the arrow broke off leaving a middle portion in the elk? You present a different "angle" on shot. That could make some sense. The area was dense (deer was in the circled area) and there are some very possible obstructions the arrow could have hit. The shot wasn't at last light, but was late afternoon so shadows could have degraded the perception of where the arrow/nock was.

From: Skip72
29-Sep-18
WV mountaineer, Yes, almost certainly the arrow did not hit the body cavity, so what he thought he saw was probably inaccurate. Leg hit has been has been suggested and he said that is possible. "But" the arrow was found over 20 yds from point of impact (he had a range finder, his stand is permanent, he lives within couple hundred yards of it and has gone back in daylight to reconstruct what happened, so I am assuming his distances are fairly accurate. Given that, the arrow must have been carried some distance. So if the arrow hit the muscled part of the lower leg, wouldn't the shaft have had some blood on it? And if it hit the lower leg ( which is really the ankle and foot and has minimal muscle tissue so little or no blood would be expected) shouldn't damage to bone and tendons have been noticeable as the deer ran off? A couple have posited a hit high, above the spine, which would have gone through heavy muscle. Shouldn't that have left blood on the arrow? Or will the muscle blood vessels contract initially and not start bleeding until the arrow has passed? Skeletal muscle being less vascular than lung, heart, liver and other viscera.

29-Sep-18
I was the one that first suggested the leg hit. And, my assumption is the arrow grazed the leg and was broken by the moving back legs a the deer reacted to the bow and/or arrow noise. Also, I have seen legs hits that left no blood on the arrow. I know because they were being filmed by me.

I'm just guessing on this. As was everyone else. But Gheez, i'm not sure if some of these respondent's are being serious or not. An arrow doesn't enter a deer at this angle without obvious sign it did so on the arrow. Period. Same with the neck, same with the back. Etc..... Also there is nothing there to break the arrow like that. Had he hit anything in the body from that angle, the business end of that arrow would say so.

The hit was lower then the body line and likely grazed the deer. He didn't see the nock end in the animal. He saw it flicking around when the legs flailing around broke it. Tossing it air. Or, it broke when deflecting on its own. Who really knows. But, it was never in the animal. Be certain of that

01-Oct-18
Possibly slid between shoulder and ribs. Won't be much blood. Deer will act almost normal except a slight limp. Shot a mule deer one year like this. Deer ran out to about 200 yards and I was waiting for it to drop. Watched thru binoculars and hit looked perfect. Buck just turned and walked off. Trailed for 400ish yards the lost blood. Dad was 1/2 mile away and said it went by him with a slight limp. He didn't realize it was a buck I shot. Only explanation was it never entered the body and went along the outside of the ribs. This could be similar....

01-Oct-18
I'm thinking high above the spine through the backstraps. It's very dense up there. I hit a big buck there and he ran off with most of my arrow sticking out the other side with only the fletching still inside of the back straps. The arrow fell out after he went about 80 yards. Very little blood on the arrow and a little blood on the ground from where the arrow fell out and for another 75 yards or so. Some people don't realize how low the spine actually is on a deer.

I also like INDBowhunter2's idea. Many years ago I shot one that slid between the rib cage and shoulder blade too. We found the arrow after it passed through and fell out a ways down the blood trail. I swore it was a good shot. My buddy's dad killed it with a rifle later that year and we could see the wound.

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