Sitka Gear
Recurve or Compound?
Moose
Contributors to this thread:
McCree 24-Aug-21
wvfarrier 24-Aug-21
Kevin Dill 24-Aug-21
MA-PAdeerslayer 24-Aug-21
bowonly 24-Aug-21
JohnMC 24-Aug-21
Kevin Dill 24-Aug-21
White Falcon 24-Aug-21
Jaquomo 24-Aug-21
Live2Hunt 24-Aug-21
Treeline 24-Aug-21
Dale06 24-Aug-21
whipranger 24-Aug-21
Jaquomo 24-Aug-21
Kevin Dill 24-Aug-21
Treeline 24-Aug-21
spike78 24-Aug-21
Missouribreaks 24-Aug-21
lamb 24-Aug-21
LBshooter 24-Aug-21
Kevin Dill 24-Aug-21
WV Mountaineer 24-Aug-21
APauls 24-Aug-21
Steve Leffler 24-Aug-21
MichaelArnette 24-Aug-21
HUNT MAN 24-Aug-21
Ollie 24-Aug-21
cnelk 24-Aug-21
Nick Muche 24-Aug-21
Mike Ukrainetz 24-Aug-21
Bou'bound 25-Aug-21
DanaC 25-Aug-21
Kevin Dill 25-Aug-21
carcus 25-Aug-21
PECO 25-Aug-21
Stoneman 25-Aug-21
Nick Muche 25-Aug-21
duvall 25-Aug-21
[email protected] 25-Aug-21
Juancho 25-Aug-21
Bou'bound 26-Aug-21
APauls 26-Aug-21
Potro 26-Aug-21
From: McCree
24-Aug-21
So I've been following the average shot distance thread but to avoid stealing someone else thread I'll post this separately. I have a AK moose hunt booked next year and I'm really struggling deciding whether I'm taking my recurve or compound. I want to take my recurve but then again this is a big trip and expense and I don't want to regret not taking the compound. If I can get a moose inside 30 yards I'm comfortable with the recurve and it sounds like that is very possible from the average shot distance thread. What's the consensus of the group? Recurve or compound?

From: wvfarrier
24-Aug-21
Personally, I would take the compound as it doubles my range of accuracy but thats just me

From: Kevin Dill
24-Aug-21
If you're not basically all-consumed by the idea of killing a moose with a stickbow, you might as well take the compound. What I'm saying is that you definitely don't want to be there wondering if you chose the right weapon. When or if you're at a point where you can accept the weapon and whatever limits it presents....then you're ready for the stickbow. This isn't much different from guys I've known who couldn't decide between a gun and a bow. My shots are always short. I've had many fine bulls at 40-60 yards and wished they were closer....but never have I wished I could shoot them farther out. The limits of a stickbow don't concern me at all....as I made my peace with that about 40 years ago. Knowing yourself and what you MOST want from this hunt is the key. If it's a moose kill and you want to up the odds, bring your compound. You might be like a number of other guys who did it and still had 8-15 yard shots.

24-Aug-21
If it was my first and potentially only trip to AK for a moose…. I’d take my compound. I’d hate to have a massive bull, or any legal Bull at 45 and only have the story of how I called him in and wished I could have shot. However, a AK Bull moose with a recurve would be an awesome trophy too

From: bowonly
24-Aug-21
I agree with Kevin Dill. If you are asking the question, you already have your answer. Enjoy the experience, enjoy your trip.

From: JohnMC
24-Aug-21
I'll say this I am a bowhunter. If I was going on a hunt it would be with my (compound)bow I would not even consider a rifle. If you feel the same way but with your recurve vs a compound I would take the recurve. If you feel more like a moose hunter at the time than a trad hunter I'd take the compound. You got to figure out what is most important to you. When you get home and look at your wall what would bug you more. A moose you killed with a compound that you would look at and say I wish I would have taking my recurve or a empty wall saying I wish I had taking my compound?

From: Kevin Dill
24-Aug-21
I went moose and bear hunting in the Yukon many years ago. Lot of people said I was crazy to take only a stickbow and no compound or firearm. My guide was more than a bit concerned. It was a horseback hunt and extremely rough country just off the White River. I told him I was committed to the bow or go home hungry. He completely got 'it' and supported me 100%. I killed a big black bear on a day-1 stalk with a 5 yard shot. A few days later I drilled a bull at 12 yards and we watched him go down. Rod was completely ecstatic and couldn't stop talking about our success with such a simple weapon. I was as happy for him as for myself, truthfully.

It was later when we were sharing a couple beverages that Rod told me he had guided Chuck Adams on a sheep hunt. He was politely complimentary of Adam's skills with a bow, and they had a good hunt. I'll spare you the remainder, but let me just say that Rod was way too kind. He was also infatuated with recurves, and so my spare bow (a custom Robertson Prairie Falcon) found a new home in Haines Junction, YK. Best gratuity I ever gave and he deserved it.

The memories of that hunt will stay with me a long time, or forever....whichever comes first.

From: White Falcon
24-Aug-21
I would start with a stick bow, but if needed have the compound handy.

From: Jaquomo
24-Aug-21
Before my elbow-shoulder went to hell I was dedicated to the longbow, then a recurve. Didn't have anything against compounds, but stickbows were my weapon of choice. I accepted that my range was limited. It made me a better hunter because of it, and I managed to take some great trophies on OIAL and distant hunts, and I had to let some animals walk that I could have killed with a compound. I can live with that.

Follow your heart. Don't let ego factor in. If killing a moose is your most important goal, go with the compound so you'll never second guess your decision.

From: Live2Hunt
24-Aug-21
I guess it is how involved or committed to the trad bow you are. When I first went back to a recurve, the first year I would bring my compound on whitetail hunts also just because I was not over the hump on them yet. The day I had my shot at a buck I had grabbed my compound and killed it. It just was not what I wanted and was sort of disappointed. The next year I totally ditched the compound and went full in with the recurve. One November morning I killed a doe, then 1/2 hour later rattled in an 8 point and killed him. One of the most memorable hunts ever for me and have not even considered the compound since. So, your decision but for me, it would be the trad bow.

From: Treeline
24-Aug-21
Personal choice.

I would feel very hindered by the compound. Too much to go wrong. But I have been doing it with longbows for so long I couldn’t even consider any other way, especially on a potentially once in a lifetime hunt.

I took the longbow on my biggest hunt in my life for Dall Sheep and Mountain Caribou. Was the first traditional bowhunter that outfitter ever had. He was a bit skeptical but I got a monster caribou the first day and a great ram on my 8th day. I was happy to have taken both my ram and caribou with my equipment of choice.

If I had used a rifle or compound, I would have had to take a second trip with the longbow…

From: Dale06
24-Aug-21
I’d take the compound, better accuracy, better range potential, better speed (energy) in the arrow. I went to Ak once for moose. Took a compound, never got a shot.

From: whipranger
24-Aug-21
Recurve all the way. Getting moose under 30 yds is easy. Last time I hunted them I had 15 bulls under 20 yds and passed a 60”+ at 5 yds.

From: Jaquomo
24-Aug-21
Tavis, on my first QL caribou hunt I took only a takedown longbow. There were three of us trad hunters in camp and the guide said they had never had trad guys before. They were very skeptical.

First morning I head out with four arrows in my quiver. Guide asks, "Where are the rest of your arrows?" I told him I had two for caribou (two tags) and two for ptarmigan. He rolled his eyes and said, "Compound guys bring a whole tube of arrows and shoot them all."

Second day I pinwheeled a really good bull, and he didn't go 15 yards. Guide had the wide-eye and said "I guess you CAN kill one with a longbow!" Next trip I had to pass on a bunch of bulls out of range on the tundra. Last afternoon I killed a tremendous B&C class bull, but would have been satisfied with a great hunt if I left empty handed. I accepted that.

Almost identical experience on a free-range red stag hunt in Australia. Huge skepticism from my Aussie buddies, until I killed a great one late in the hunt. They reacted like it was some sort of magic. I told them it was just the same as what they were doing with their compounds, except I had to get a little closer.

From: Kevin Dill
24-Aug-21
I often think about how hunting with a stickbow used to be "I hope I fill my tag"....and for so many it's become "I'm worried it will cost me a kill". We're a lot less tolerant of not killing something than we used to be.

From: Treeline
24-Aug-21
Yep Lou, when I went to Argentina for red stag, they were a bit shocked at my equipment as well. They were blown away when I actually snuck up in a stag in that open country and managed to shoot him at under 20 yards. They asked for and I left my kill arrow on the wall of the lodge…

From: spike78
24-Aug-21
My personal opinion is that I love bow hunting BUT I come from the northeast and never hunted elk. If I were to go on a once in a lifetime hunt for 8-10k for elk out west I’d take a rifle and not feel ashamed. If you lived in Alaska and got to moose hunt every year I’d take the recurve but since this is a huge hunt for you I’d take the compound with no regrets as it is still an accomplishment.

24-Aug-21
If you are not a committed stickbow user, I would leave it home.

From: lamb
24-Aug-21
it took me three tries to kill a moose with my recurve. 2 tries for a woodland caribou. we took up bowhunting for the difficulty and challenge. take the real bow. when you kill the moose with the recurve think what you.ve accomplished

From: LBshooter
24-Aug-21
Well if your worried about range take a rifle. Hunting is suppose to be about getting close, challenging yourself and your skill as a hunter. Win, loose or draw the entire trip is what it should be about, the experience. Of course coming home with moose meat is nice but I think the memory of your hunt will last longer than the meat. Enjoy it however you attack it, I'm sure it will be a blast.

From: Kevin Dill
24-Aug-21
And keep something in mind: There are a lot of other factors which will have more to do with killing a moose than simply picking a longer range bow. I know a couple of guys who typically bat about .400 with the wheels and will switch to a gun when the moose aren't cooperating. My point is that a compound can be a perceived advantage which isn't the reality when moose won't answer the call. So if killing a moose is priority-1, the rifle is far and away your best weapon.

24-Aug-21
Spend a bit of time watching Tom Clum’s videos on building a solid shot sequence and get the confidence you need to kill at longer ranges with that trad bow.

I’ve killed a lot with both. My choice comes down to what I want to hunt with. Not where my confidence is concerning the weapon I chose.

Before watching Tom’s stuff I thought I was good but, was limited to about 40-45 yards. After implementing his teachings, I can put every arrow I shoot in a moose’s vitals. As far as I’d shoot it. I’m not special either. Every single stock bow shooter on the planet could benefit from his lessons.

Give it a look see. However, in the end, choose which one you want to hunt with. You are the only one that matters.

From: APauls
24-Aug-21
If you call a moose in and throttle it at 8 yards with a bow, the only difference you’re talking about is what you drew back. Is it REALLY that different? 99.9999% of the trip is identical regardless of what type of bow let’s the arrow fly.

The only difference is the wheel bow gives you more range. But if killing a bull at 8 yards with a compound disgusts you, then use the recurve. I do understand the romanticism of doing it with a stick and might be there one day. For me, that day isn’t this September, but maybe it is for you

24-Aug-21
Kevin Dill and Jaq are spot on. Read their posts then read them again. Decide what is most important to you. Getting a moose or how you get the moose. No judgement. No one really cares except you. Make your decision and don’t look back.

24-Aug-21
If you will regret not being able to take a shot because you didn’t have the compound then take the compound! Nothing wrong with that. If you will regret shooting one with a compound that you could’ve shot with a recurve take the recurve

From: HUNT MAN
24-Aug-21
Shooting the wheels is like pulling up the 338 for me.

You should read Apauls post . Best I have seen.

Some guys worry about silly shit.

From: Ollie
24-Aug-21
Apparently killing something means more to you than how you do it, so go with the compound bow.

From: cnelk
24-Aug-21
I know guys on here that went with a bow and ended up using a rifle. But you won’t hear about it. No harm. No foul. It’s your hunt

From: Nick Muche
24-Aug-21

Nick Muche's embedded Photo
Nick Muche's embedded Photo

24-Aug-21
I think Kevin Dill’s first post nailed it! As an avid compound bow hunter, it would just kill me to bring a stick bow and have a big bull just standing there at say 50-60 yds and not feeling confident enough at that distance but knowing I could kill it with a range finder and a compound. But having a world record bull at 200 yds and no rifle, I could care less, but that would kill someone else?! It’s all what floats your boat!

From: Bou'bound
25-Aug-21
I think you know what you will do and knew when you posted. Just looking for validation from others which different people value far differently. Have a great adventure. You’re going moose hunting. All the rest are just tiny details

From: DanaC
25-Aug-21
WE can not order YOUR priorities.

Do you want to a) shoot a moose any which way - use a 30 caliber. b) shoot a moose with 'a bow'? Use the compound. c) shoot a moose with 'a traditional bow'? Use the recurve.

But, again, it comes down to YOUR priority.

I will say this, unless doing it with a recurve means a lot to you, why sweat it? I've taken deer with rifle, muzzle loader, shotgun slug, compound and recurve and they all tasted good.

From: Kevin Dill
25-Aug-21
I had a caribou trip scheduled to the NWT with a friend. In early summer he received a new recurve and fell in love with it. He wanted to use it on the hunt, but had been a wheels guy for many years. He went round and round with what to do and asked my advice a couple times. He told me what he most wanted was to hunt with the recurve, but he didn't feel confident. I advised him to make a choice and quit tormenting himself. I knew it would be the compound and wasn't bothered by it in any way. He called me a week later and gave me the news. He decided to go with the recurve. From there he practiced his guts out with that bow and got comfortable with his abilities.

Midway through the hunt I watched a band of caribou travel past his position 150 yards from me. The bow came up and suddenly caribou were running. A large bull peeled off and collapsed. Success. You had to see his eyes to understand how he felt in that moment.

From: carcus
25-Aug-21
Im a compound guy, I've shot and owned stickbows, I have zero desire to shoot another, so easy advice from me, use the compound!!!

From: PECO
25-Aug-21
Your hunt, your choice. When you do decide, commit to that decision. Don't look back. I enjoy recurves, compounds, muzzle loaders and rifles. If it were a once in a lifetime hunt for me, that alone would be enough to make me take the recurve and make it an "all in" experience.

From: Stoneman
25-Aug-21
One thing is for sure which has not been mentioned. If you end up taking both bows with you, the first "lost" opportunity with your stick bow will result in you switching to the compound.

Go with what you are most confident in and don't look back. The most important aspect is the adventure which you will surely have regardless of weapon.

From: Nick Muche
25-Aug-21
Every time I shoot something with a recurve it's like a miracle before my eyes. I don't like to rely on a miracle for success, no matter how much sweeter it feels. I commend those that are confident enough in their shooting ability to ethically harvest game with a traditional bow, and their hunting skills to get close. For me anymore, I work too hard to make time to hunt and do everything right to put myself in a position to be successful just to see it disappear like a fart in the wind...

From: duvall
25-Aug-21
Nothing new I'm adding but I took a homemade longbow elk hunting cause I really wanted to shoot one with a bow I made myself. First morning out 9AM I called up a 5x5 stopped 25 yards behind a stump about 2" behind his shoulder. I knew he was going to take one more step out cause he was parallel to me walking up the mtn. He stood there about 90 secs looking up the mtn then turned and walked directly away from me...no shot. If I would have had the wheels I would have had my first and only bull. Still haven't got a shot at one. I've asked myself many times through the years if I had it to do over would I take the wheels? Only you can answer that. Life is full of decisions and we just have to accept and live with the consequences

25-Aug-21
Since I shoot both a recurve bow and a compound bow I was going to add to this conversation, but decided not to as all of the pros and cons have been discussed. Good luck on your decision, and then live with it regardless of the outcome as it is bound to make an interesting story around the camp fire in the near future. my best, Paul

From: Juancho
25-Aug-21
The worse you can do is go there and not enjoy the hunt. Do whatever it takes to feel confident , but, even if you don't see any animals at all , do not make the mistake to not enjoy your hunt. Soak up every second as if it was your last and take the time to feel the fresh air on your face. You will come back a better self

From: Bou'bound
26-Aug-21
I think you know what you will do and knew when you posted. Just looking for validation from others which different people value far differently. Have a great adventure. You’re going moose hunting. All the rest are just tiny details

From: APauls
26-Aug-21
Sounds like the only 2 situations you would regret are 1) Shooting a bull at 8 yards with your compound instead of your trad bow and 2) Being unable to shoot a bull at 40 yards with a trad bow because you don't have your compound.

Take the probability of each happening and multiply that by how bad you'd feel if each happened and you know which is the lesser evil.

Because shooting a bull at 8 yards with a compound is such a terrible idea lol. It's the hunt man!

From: Potro
26-Aug-21
If this is going to be once in a life hunt, I will take the compound. If not, I will take the compound too!!!

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