Sitka Gear
bow failure on the hunt
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
jjs 22-Dec-22
TJS 22-Dec-22
Bowhunter09 22-Dec-22
hawkeye in PA 22-Dec-22
badbull 22-Dec-22
t-roy 22-Dec-22
montnatom 22-Dec-22
Bou’bound 22-Dec-22
Bowboy 22-Dec-22
Dale06 22-Dec-22
Bou’bound 22-Dec-22
Cheesehead Mike 22-Dec-22
drycreek 22-Dec-22
12yards 22-Dec-22
Scott/IL 22-Dec-22
pav 23-Dec-22
WV Mountaineer 23-Dec-22
Huntiam 23-Dec-22
Grey Ghost 23-Dec-22
Steve Leffler 23-Dec-22
goyt 23-Dec-22
TREESTANDWOLF 23-Dec-22
Juancho 23-Dec-22
Corax_latrans 23-Dec-22
RSP PA 24-Dec-22
Rock 24-Dec-22
Kurt 26-Dec-22
carcus 27-Dec-22
sticksender 27-Dec-22
greenmountain 27-Dec-22
IdyllwildArcher 29-Dec-22
Shug 29-Dec-22
PECO2 29-Dec-22
Shug 29-Dec-22
Brian M. 30-Dec-22
From: jjs
22-Dec-22
Just curious, who has a bow failure while hunting?

Myself, sliced my string while on a stalk, did not go well.

Recently this fall was in the local sports shop and there were 5 different compounds with limbs blown, the service gent said 3 of them occurred in the stand.

From: TJS
22-Dec-22
Bottom cam hit metal arm on stand on a shot. Damaged cam and cut string. Had a backup bow with me. Always take a backup on trips, even with flying trips.

From: Bowhunter09
22-Dec-22
A guy in carbou camp had his string jump off the cams. I used my bowmaster to fix it. He was really grateful.

22-Dec-22
I was in a ladder stand and had a buck coming from the wrong direction so I decided to pass the bow behind my back. It got snag on my wool glove and prevented me from getting a shot. Found a limb starting to delaminate on my stickbow to be the culprit.

From: badbull
22-Dec-22
We have been saved by packing a spare bowstring and having a manual hand bow press in camp. Being 100 miles from any bow help, that has saved the day for us.

From: t-roy
22-Dec-22
Exact same scenario as Bowhunter09. I always bring my Bowmaster press on every hunt. Thankfully, I’ve only had to use it that one time.

Had my bottom limb delaminate on an antelope hunt in Nebraska. Snuck in on a buck, through a cornfield, and when I drew my bow back on the buck, the drop away rest tripped and spooked the buck. Walked back to my buddy’s truck and set my bow down to check things out. The bottom limb was about to come apart, and I’m certain the bow would have exploded, had I shot it.

Also had a limb start to feather on an Alaskan moose hunt. I noticed it the first morning, while shooting it. I had no backup bow with me, so I taped the crap out of it with electrical tape, and didn’t shoot it again until I had to. Fortunately, it held together and I killed my moose on the last day.

From: montnatom
22-Dec-22
Putting on a stalk on a mountain goat in the Absarokee range, fell down a ravine and broke all but one strand on the string of my recurve. Lucky I didn't kill myself! Of course my spare string was sitting on the seat of my truck at the trailhead...Finished the stalk and killed the goat in his bed with my handgun.

From: Bou’bound
22-Dec-22
Not me but a hunter in bear camp, rich knows him and was there, had a Crossbow literally blow up. Sitting in his lap hands off it. Nothing being touched and BAM ! The thing is in parts, fractured, part of it flew off towards bait sight. Thank God nothing hit him in eyes or anything. Insane.

From: Bowboy
22-Dec-22
I was mountain goat hunting in BC. I shot a billy the day before. We were hiking out the next morning, it had rained all night and the rocks were slippery. I had my bow on my pack I didn’t have any walking sticks. I slip and it derailed the string on my bottom cam. Being a lefty I was out of luck till I got back home in the states since the cam was slightly bent.

From: Dale06
22-Dec-22
I got in a ground blind in South Africa, and dry fired my bow. The strings and cables were mangled. My back up bow saved the hunt. Other than one day local hunts, I always take a back up bow that’s ready to go.

From: Bou’bound
22-Dec-22

22-Dec-22
Does the rest count? My QAD Ultra rest failed to drop twice in 2021 costing me a mid 150's ten point in Iowa and an upper 140's nine point in Kansas.

From: drycreek
22-Dec-22
I had to let down on a skittish doe and the tail of my jacket got between the string and the cam. It blew up in my face and ruined the cam. It was Sunday morning and the last day I could hunt, but I was field dressing her in my mind. Bow shop pulled a cam off a new bow and got me back in business the next week, I missed that guy when the store went out of business.

From: 12yards
22-Dec-22
My old QAD started not locking up for me on my SD trip this year. Had to tap on it to get it to stay up. Shot my buck with my backup bow.

From: Scott/IL
22-Dec-22
Had my Hamskea rest freeze on me while trying to draw on a stud Coues in bitter cold temps and snow in AZ.

I’ve also had the slider on a MBG break on 2 fly in hunts in Alaska 2 years in a row. Never did cost me an animal, but the sight was promptly replaced by a Spot Hogg.

From: pav
23-Dec-22
Many years back, my hunting partner's string came off the top cam during a whitetail hunt in Kansas. Closest archery shop was several hours away. I had a backup bow, but I'm a southpaw. Stopped at a local grocery / hardware / sporting goods store / restaurant /gas station to see if they might have a press. Unfortunately, they had nothing archery related. The owner asked me to describe a bow press and how it works. Tells us to hang around, then disappeared to the back of the building.

We ordered lunch...and roughly a half an hour later, he comes back and tells us to follow him and bring the bow. In that short time, he had built a makeshift bow press from pieces of 2X4, a couple boat keel rollers, ratchet strap and a come-along. After a slight adjustment to the keel roller spacing, the string was back on the cam in seconds! Could not believe my eyes! Wouldn't accept a dime for his troubles...so we made sure to frequent his establishment often the remainder of the hunt.

First thing I did when I got home was purchase a Bowmaster press. Goes with me on all my hunts...along with a spare string and cable. Still take a backup bow when feasible, but that's not always an option...especially when using transporters in Alaska.

23-Dec-22
Yep. Broke a bowstring about an hour before daylight on opening day of bow season in 2000.

Turned around, walked out, drove to the closets town, found a bow shop that was open, had a string made, paid the guy plus 50% extra, drove back, hiked in passing all my buddies on their way out, climbed my tree, shot a doe 15 minutes after climbing up, drug it back to the car, popped a cold beer and got the deer. Tone down and in a cooler by 2 pm. It was a busy day.

From: Huntiam
23-Dec-22
De railed one first day in Kansas 10 day hunt

From: Grey Ghost
23-Dec-22
Never on a hunt, but I did have a limb blow up while warming up for a big Cabelas sponsored 3D tournament. I didn't have a backup bow. Thankfully, a fine gentleman named Bill Pellegrino was shooting the same bow (Mathews Conquest), and he had an extra set of limbs and a press. We got it all back together with only minutes to spare before the tournament started. I had no idea where it was going to shoot when I stepped up to the first target. To my surprise, it was dead on without any adjustments.

Matt

23-Dec-22
My dad was 80 and had switched to a crossbow. We were in Canada on a deer hunt and his crossbow delaminated on the first day.

From: goyt
23-Dec-22
In 55 years I have never had a bow fail on a hunt. I have been very fortunate. I did have two limb failures within days of a hunt. I gave up taking a spare bow 30 years ago but I do have one at home. I take strings and cables and maybe a peep, some nock points, some d loop string and most importantly a credit card. I take some sort of a bow press like a bowmaster.

23-Dec-22
T-Roy for the win.

Electrical tape! And you killed the moose!

From: Juancho
23-Dec-22
Had a recurve start to de-laminate on a hunt. Cut the hunt short and sent it back to Black widow. Was past warranty , but they fixed for free. I still have and use that bow 25 years after that incident. I have now 5 Black widows. I did take two of them to south America for a buffalo and axis deer hunt.

23-Dec-22
If an iced up drop-away rest can be counted, then, yes, this has happened to me. Cost me an Elk.

I don’t think it will ever come up again, though, because I have no expectation of ever hunting with a compound again, and if not shooting off the shelf, then a simple rubber Weatherest will be just fine for me.

I’ve never gone more than an hour from the vehicle without a spare bow string (for a stickbow), but I probably ought to have one with me 100% of the time just because. If going more than 1/2 hour from home, I take a back-up bow, because (if you have one) why wouldn’t you?

And if I were off to someplace far, far away, I wouldn’t leave home without one.

From: RSP PA
24-Dec-22
Buddy’s group in Illinois. 160s plus walks in. Starts his draw and half way back the release breaks and bow falls to ground. I asked if he was able to throw an arrow at the deer, but alas the quiver was on bow laying on the ground. It’s all on video, but they won’t send. Lol

From: Rock
24-Dec-22
once hunting Antelope in a pit blind and heard a popping grinding noise, started looking around to see what it was and watch a limb on my Recurve delaminate. Grabbed Bow and hauled back to camp, installed new set of limbs, back in blind in 30-45 minutes.

From: Kurt
26-Dec-22
Fell in slide rock on a backpack sheep hunt. Mathew’s Drenalin string and cables were badly damaged and lower limb got dinged pretty hard. Aborted the hunt and packed out. Had a spare bow in the truck but was out of time.

Once home, replaced string set, tuned the bow, all seemed well. Elk season opened a few weeks later. Pulled the bow out opening morning and a huge sliver of carbon fiber was sticking up.. Hunted with the backup bow. Tried cutting off the fibers and sanding the area at mid-day. Bow shot like crap. Found a semi local SE BC Mathew’s dealer that said bring the 7 year old bow to the shop…he had limbs! He had the limbs on and I was shooting the bow within an hr. Still use it as a backup bow for flyi-in hunts as it fits in my soft case along with my main bow.

From: carcus
27-Dec-22

carcus's embedded Photo
carcus's embedded Photo
Derailed bottom cam elk hunting 2 years ago, day 2 of the hunt, cam was ruined

From: sticksender
27-Dec-22

sticksender's embedded Photo
sticksender's embedded Photo
Yep....and a bow failure is a gut-wrenching experience to have on a remote sheep hunt. Especially when you have zero interest in shooting a ram with a guide's rifle. On a horseback sheep hunt in 2016 the NWT.....at one point, owing to the terrain we had to leave the horses behind and hike. So I'd strapped my bow onto my pack. We were after some rams that were 2 or 3 miles away, so no need to keep the bow in hand yet. Enroute we passed through a grove of thick brush. At one point I felt a twig hang up on my pack or bow, so I torqued my shoulders a little to break it loose. It came free and I heard a light snap sound back there, which I assumed to be the dead twig breaking off, and on we went. But I'd find out later the snap sound was NOT a twig breaking.

On top of the mountain, I took off the pack and unlashed the bow. That's when I noticed the string loop was about 3 inches lower than it should be. The bowstring was off the cam, wrapped around the axle on one side, and snapped down over the buss cable at the cam module on the other side.

And yes I'd actually brought a bowmaster press on this hunt, but it was 10 miles away back at base camp, left behind to conserve weight and space. After quite a bit of gnashing of teeth, combined with many small doses of profanity, we actually got the bowstring back in the cam, using my own version of a bow press that I fabricated with two lengths of paracord and one of those yellow sets of folding Allen Wrenches to serve as a tourniquet handle. It was a small miracle that I'd go on to kill a ram with that bow later during the hunt.

27-Dec-22
Not on a hunt but I have had three bows explode on me. Twice I had a limb bounce off from my head. I was in a traditional archery club and a guy was trying to sell me his long bow . I didn't quite get it to full draw when it shattered. I handed the pieces back to him and said I didn't seem like a good fit. The worst hunting incident was when I navigated thick pine brush to set up undetected. It worked except the brush emptied my quiver of arrows.

29-Dec-22
My Bowtech Carbon Icon exploded when I drew on a huge pronghorn a few years back. Fortunately I'd brought my Invasion as backup or else my hunt would have been over and I tagged out on the last day.

From: Shug
29-Dec-22
I had a string go on a trip one time… I always bring abscond bow though so it was no big deal

From: PECO2
29-Dec-22
A few years ago, I noticed a crack in the limb of my compound while hunting elk. No problem, I was hunting local. I went home and got a recurve.

From: Shug
29-Dec-22
I had a string go on a trip one time… I always bring abscond bow though so it was no big deal

From: Brian M.
30-Dec-22
Back around '07 I climbed up a tree with my climber. Pulled my old Hoyt Eclipse up. As soon as I untied and put an arrow on the string, the bow tipped forward on the rail and dropped to the ground. Hit a rock and exploded. Gathered up all the pieces and brought it to a guy that could put it back together. A wheel was dinged, but was able to file the burr. Shot a gray fox the next morning. The following season I switched to a recurve and gave the Hoyt to a friend in 2015.

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