Top Draw Consulting
Bow Poundage for women
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
crosscut 27-Jan-19
Boris 27-Jan-19
Arrowflinger 27-Jan-19
ground hunter 27-Jan-19
Bowboy 27-Jan-19
Trial153 27-Jan-19
fisherick 27-Jan-19
Snuffer 27-Jan-19
Whip 27-Jan-19
Buck Norris 27-Jan-19
doug 27-Jan-19
ElkNut1 27-Jan-19
LKH 27-Jan-19
ElkNut1 27-Jan-19
IdyllwildArcher 27-Jan-19
GF 27-Jan-19
GF 27-Jan-19
IdyllwildArcher 28-Jan-19
Brotsky 28-Jan-19
Fuzzy 28-Jan-19
Ironbow-cell 28-Jan-19
wytex 28-Jan-19
crosscut 28-Jan-19
crosscut 28-Jan-19
Iowabowhunter 28-Jan-19
wyobullshooter 28-Jan-19
milnrick 28-Jan-19
Nick Muche 28-Jan-19
fawn 28-Jan-19
From: crosscut
27-Jan-19
My wife will be 52 this fall when we go elk hunting. She hasn’t elk hunted yet and was wondering what poundage some of the women were pulling for elk hunting. My wife’s been working out in the gym on some specific exercises to increase her draw weight. Her goal is to get to at least 50 pounds. Thoughts?

From: Boris
27-Jan-19
Lite weight bows. Make sure they use COC broadheads.

From: Arrowflinger
27-Jan-19
50 pounds would be plenty from a modern compound or stickbow.

27-Jan-19
With the quality today of bows, I see no reason, she will not achieve her goals,,, with the 80 percent let off, like most of us have, she should be good. Think of this, at 45lbs, most compounds are faster, than heavy recurves.......

I would not hesitate to use 45lbs, with the right weight arrow and coc head, and shooting within a reasonable close distance...............

accuracy and a well placed arrow is the key,,,,

From: Bowboy
27-Jan-19
What state you going too? If WY she has to draw 50lbs.

From: Trial153
27-Jan-19
Get a 50 pound bow and you can back it down to 40....let her work up to it or just hunt with it at 40. She will be fine. If you have to use 50 by law then go with a smooth drawing binary cam that you can get some additional let off from if you not hunting in a state that has a let off cap.

From: fisherick
27-Jan-19
Have her sit on top of a picnic table with her feet off the ground and her hunting clothes on and draw. What poundage is she fully comfortable with? Any compound bow over 40# with a heavy arrow (8-10gpp), COC broadheads will do the job at a reasonable range. Probably a 40-50# bow.

From: Snuffer
27-Jan-19
Wife shoots 50lb draw, gold tip 3555 at around 25" stringer buzzcut 4 blade.

From: Whip
27-Jan-19
Lightweight bows with a quality well tuned arrow set up, cut on contact broadhead, and reasonable shot distances will kill elk. Really makes no difference if it is shot by a woman or a man. ;)

From: Buck Norris
27-Jan-19
My wife has killed quite a few elk with her. Poundages betweem 42 to 46.

From: doug
27-Jan-19
a lot might also depend on her draw length,

From: ElkNut1
27-Jan-19

ElkNut1  's embedded Photo
ElkNut1  's embedded Photo
She will do fine no matter her broadhead choice as long as it's a fixed blade or cut on contact. Keep shots inside 35 yards for her best controlled focus.

My Son took this 6 point at 20 yards with a 40# hoyt bow years ago with a 3-bladed brute broadhead. Drove the arrow to the fletchings!

She'll do great!

ElkNut/Paul

From: LKH
27-Jan-19
Get some of the tubular rubber exercise devices with attach/detach handles. They allow her to increase weight simply by standing further from the anchor point. Be sure to exercise both sides.

Some women can handle a lot once they get started. My wife grew up with a bow in hand and can still pull my 63# longbow without ever practicing. It's why I listen to her.

From: ElkNut1
27-Jan-19
LKH, holy begeezus, that's amazing sir! I'd listen to her too! (big grin)

ElkNut/Paul

27-Jan-19
Draw length is more important than draw weight. Some women are 6 feet tall. Some women are 5 feet tall. I've watched my daughter's trajectory flatten and penetration increase as she's grown with the same draw weight.

What's your wife's draw length?

FWIW, 50 lbs is a good target, but my bow's draw weight is 52 lbs and I pass through deer and elk alike no problem and I believe that I could kill elk with much less.

It's been said on Bowsite that the best draw weight is the highest you can handle and still shoot effectively. I'd add to that the highest you can draw and shoot at different angles (sitting, standing, kneeling, behind you, above you, in front of you, above you, and below you) and hold at full draw for at least 45 seconds and still shoot effectively.

If she can do all that with a modern compound and has an average woman's draw length, I bet she could kill an elk no problem with far less than 50 lbs of draw weight.

Nick, your wife killed that huge grizzly bear with what draw length and draw weight again?

From: GF
27-Jan-19
I’d throw out Ike’s 45-second rule, but only because I am a zero let-off guy.

PLENTY of Elk have been killed cleanly with #45 Recurves and 9-10 GPP arrows; you get to a reasonable draw weight and arrow mass, and tuning, placement and sharpness are about all that matters.

#55 Recurves have killed everything I’m North America, and I don’t believe there’s a #55 Recurve on this Earth that can approach the KE output of a reasonably efficient, modern compound at #40-#45.

Worst case scenario, she’s hunting with the Ballistic Equivalent of a heavier recurve/LB than the average man can shoot accurately at 20 paces.

Within the requirements of the law, let her shoot whatever she’s most confident with; build her a good arrow and tune the snot out of her rig.

But don’t take my word for it; ask Lou (Jaq). I expect he’ll tell you as much, but he can give you the ring-side perspective....

From: GF
27-Jan-19
I’d throw out Ike’s 45-second rule, but only because I am a zero let-off guy.

PLENTY of Elk have been killed cleanly with #45 Recurves and 9-10 GPP arrows; you get to a reasonable draw weight and arrow mass, and tuning, placement and sharpness are about all that matters.

#55 Recurves have killed everything I’m North America, and I don’t believe there’s a #55 Recurve on this Earth that can approach the KE output of a reasonably efficient, modern compound at #40-#45.

Worst case scenario, she’s hunting with the Ballistic Equivalent of a heavier recurve/LB than the average man can shoot accurately at 20 paces.

Within the requirements of the law, let her shoot whatever she’s most confident with; build her a good arrow and tune the snot out of her rig.

But don’t take my word for it; ask Lou (Jaq). I expect he’ll tell you as much, but he can give you the ring-side perspective....

28-Jan-19
GF's point is correct and Lou has pointed that out many times: guys with trad bows have killed these animals with less than 50. Jim Willems just passed through a bison with, I think a 60 lb longbow? Elk have nothing on bison. The velocity of an arrow out of a 60 lb longbow is far less than a modern compound at 50 lbs.

Just get your wife a heavy arrow and COC BH. If she's even thinking of working towards 50 lbs, she's already there and every bit she gets is just insurance.

From: Brotsky
28-Jan-19
My daughter shoots 50 pounds at 24.5" with a 400 gr arrow and a solid COC head for elk. I have no doubt that when she gets the chance her bow and arrow combination will perform very well as long as she does her job.

Half Pint's mom shoots 40 pounds at a 24" draw length. She's also running close to a 400 gr arrow. She's passed through several mature deer and taken a nice pope and young black bear with her set-up shooting fixed blade heads. I would feel comfortable using her set-up on elk as well as long as the shots were within 25 yards. If she ever draws her elk tag we'll work her up to 45-50 but she has no reason to increase based upon what she hunts today.

From: Fuzzy
28-Jan-19

Fuzzy's embedded Photo
Fuzzy's embedded Photo
just for reference here's my ex with a smallish feral hog. 35#@ 28" longbow that she draws to 26" (about 31# draw weight) shooting 19" long 2018 aliminums with bear razorhead lites. She's taken at least 2 deer that I know of with this setup. It's "legal" in VA since the requirement is stated in yards of cast than draw eight. Has to cast the arrow 125 yards minimum.

From: Ironbow-cell
28-Jan-19
My daughter killed her doe this year with a Diamond Edge at 38#, 25" draw and 350 grain arrow with a 4 blade 100 grain Stinger. Broadside shot at 15 yds out of a 18' tree and got a pass through. I was really surprised she got a pass through. That little bow shoots hard. I would guess it would work on a broadside elk on the ground.

From: wytex
28-Jan-19
Crosscut she will be great with a 50 lb pull, but check regs where you are hunting in case she does not make her goal. Wyoming has a 50 lb minumum draw weight for elk while Colorado is 35#. My recurve was more than enough on a shiras moose several years ago at 50 lbs.

From: crosscut
28-Jan-19
My wife shoots a Matthews no cam. Her draw length is 26 inches. She’s been shooting 40 pounds for deer. She’s also been using a magnus stinger for a broadhead.

From: crosscut
28-Jan-19
Stinger 4 blade. Yes, I was planning on getting her into heavier arrows as well. Thanks for advice fellas.

28-Jan-19
I would think a heavier GPP would be needed/more useful for a lighter bow. My recurve/trad bows for example I was around 12-15 gpp of draw, usually right around 600-650 grains. Makes the bows nice and quiet.

My wife is busy shooting her bow with the junk arrows it came with, getting her form down. going to take her to the shop this weekend to shoot some more and hopefully have her ready for deer season!

28-Jan-19
crosscut, what’s her current BH weight and total arrow weight?

From: milnrick
28-Jan-19
Lady Bowhunter and I haven't hunted elk yet, but there have been a bunch of animals that have gone to the freezer and taxidermist by way of her 100 gr Montec (and most recently a 100 gr Deadmeat), 50# compound and 26" victory arrows (spined 45-55).

Animals have ranged from Axis deer, white tails, black bears, scimitar, gemsbok and a bunch of others. I think the most critical things are to focus on razor sharp broadheads and shot placement.

From: Nick Muche
28-Jan-19
"Nick, your wife killed that huge grizzly bear with what draw length and draw weight again? "

26" draw, 50lb bow on the grizzly and a caribou this past fall, 100 gr slick tricks. A hand full of bears with a 38-42 lb bow. Had to up her poundage right before spring bear due to Alaska's law on having a 50lb bow for Grizzlies. I have no doubt a 40lb bow would have done the trick as well.

From: fawn
28-Jan-19

fawn's embedded Photo
fawn's embedded Photo
50 pounds with Zwickey four blade, 125 grain, did the job on this one!

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