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Your average whitetail shot,,,yards,,,
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Bowboy 29-Feb-24
Jack Harris 29-Feb-24
craigmcalvey 29-Feb-24
njbuck 29-Feb-24
Chris Walker 29-Feb-24
x-man 29-Feb-24
SaddleReaper 29-Feb-24
fdp 29-Feb-24
WV Mountaineer 29-Feb-24
HDE 29-Feb-24
Nyati 29-Feb-24
nchunter 29-Feb-24
KY EyeBow 29-Feb-24
12yards 29-Feb-24
Catscratch 29-Feb-24
Scoot 29-Feb-24
BOHUNTER09 29-Feb-24
TonyBear 29-Feb-24
Bou'bound 29-Feb-24
Old School 29-Feb-24
Bowaddict 29-Feb-24
Two dogs mobile 29-Feb-24
midwest 29-Feb-24
Kanati 29-Feb-24
Mint 29-Feb-24
buckeye 29-Feb-24
scentman 29-Feb-24
Carbon Defiant 34 29-Feb-24
steve 29-Feb-24
LAWDOG 29-Feb-24
btnbuck 29-Feb-24
bentstick54 29-Feb-24
Will 29-Feb-24
Rock 29-Feb-24
Rock 29-Feb-24
jdbbowhunter 29-Feb-24
fuzzy 29-Feb-24
DonVathome 01-Mar-24
dnovo 01-Mar-24
BowSniper 02-Mar-24
Jimmyjumpup 02-Mar-24
From: Bowboy
25yds or less on the ones I’ve shot.

From: Jack Harris
been bowhunting whitetails primarily NE woodlands and agriculture since 1984. Not sure how many deer taken - has to be well over 100 at this point. Other than a few taken at 40 yards, most are inside 25 and average shot would probably be 15 yards.

From: craigmcalvey
Closest about 10’ straight down…furthest 27 yards. My average is definitely under 20 yards, which is my preference of 12-15 yards. I love getting close and the deer having no idea I’m there. To me, that’s what bow hunting is about, the ability to get close and cleanly kill my quarry without getting busted.


From: njbuck
Closing in on 150 whitetail, average distance is somewhere between 15-20 yards, hunting mostly eastern hardwoods for them.

25 yards and in for me. The long range game has always been around...Bear, Pearson, etc. Today's equipment has made long range bowhunting more common(in the right hands). But I agree, its always been a close range game for me.

From: x-man
Prairie ground hunting with very few trees available. Mostly ag fields and CRP.

I would guess my average is 17-18 yards. I try to set up all my spots at funnel ambush locations in that 15-20 yard range. Sitting on a stool on the ground next to or with a bush directly behind me. Never shot a deer out of a tree stand.

From: SaddleReaper
Well... manufacturers can't sell woodsmanship...

Eastern deer hunting I'd say my avg falls in that 15-20 yard window. Closest was also about 10' as I shot a buck from below him while kneeling in a ditch. Furthest shot taken was 55 yards, and it was a terrible decision even though I pin wheeled her. Lately I need to keep my shots well inside of 20, especially considering the bad shots I executed last fall. TP seems to be back for me.

From: fdp
25 and in mostly.

I think shot distance averages are a direct correlation of where you hunt.

Out west, shots are going to average longer. You can see farther. It’s that simple. Back east here, whitetails are about all that’s on the menu. Hardwoods make long shot opportunity’s almost nonexistent.

I’m guessing that the average is 17-18 yards.

From: HDE

From: Nyati
90+% 20 yds or less

From: nchunter
I shot my biggest deer this year at 5 yards. He never knew I was there. The closest deer I almost shot was in some 5 foot tall pines sitting on a stool. The deer walked past the tree, I drew and then realized that my string would be pushing the arrow through the deer as my broadhead at full draw was probably six inches from a broadside deer. I let back down and let it walk off. I don't have a clue how it did't smell me. My average is about 15 yards as I like hunting in thick cover.

From: KY EyeBow
My average definitely under 20 yards. As has been said, bowhunting has always been about getting close and whitetails are well suited for that. Different story out West.

From: 12yards
I'm the same as most of you guys. My hunting career is mostly MI, MN, IA whitetails. Recently started hunting SD which is definitely more open country and different hunting for me. But my longest whitetail kill shots (I've killed around 60 or so) were between 30 and 35 yards and probably less than a handful at that range. The majority are around 12-15 yards with many within 10 yards. My name on here is the range I prefer.

I will also say that I started killing deer in the late 1980s and my average has been around 1.5 deer/year. I've only gone 2 years deerless since then. In that time my range has not changed regardless of better equipment. If the equipment has made a difference for me it is in keeping me accurate while my physical capability has declined. But I honestly think it is a mindset for me. 40 yards looks like a mile to me in the woods. I don't even usually consider shooting if I think a deer is 40 yards away or further. 30 is a poke for me.

From: Catscratch
Grew up hunting the plains of KS. Almost every deer I've killed was 15yds or less. Did shoot one at 45yds in the late 80's, and another around 30yds in the early 2000's.

From: Scoot
Average is probably 16 yards. As close as 0 yards (deer literally ran into the front of my bow, causing me to release the arrow) and as far as 40.

Timex. My shots are similar to yours. Killed a buck at 50 yds 40 years ago. Never any past 35 since. Hardwood in southern illinois

From: TonyBear
Point blank to 16-20, longest was just under 40 yds, right between two trunks on an oak crotch.

You didn't ask how many I have missed in the last 50 years....

From: Bou'bound
“Perhaps I'm wrong, but modern trends seem to lean more on the equipment High tech aspects and less on just getting close to critters.”

Best case is to be able To do both. Get close and when you can’t get close have the skill to reach out a bit.

Kind of silly to be limited on range due to archery skill level in cases where game hangs up at a reasonable distance for the weapon but outside the users talent limited range.

At that point it’s saying “it is a close range endeavor “ as a way to explain away what is really an "I'm not a good enough shot” limitation.

If one could shoot as well at 45 as at 25 he would not be passing up 45 and saying it is a close range sport and close is 25 regardless of how lethal may be at a longer range. He's not going to say I could kill him as easily there at 45 as at 25, but i won't because i only shoot at close range shot game.

From: Old School
I’ve killed quite a few whitetails and a few yrs ago I compiled the shot yardages. If I remember correctly my avg was right around 16 yards.

From: Bowaddict
Under 25 for my average. Hunted whitetail every year since I was 12. I know how jumpy and unpredictable they are, so I setup for shots under 30. Longest 2 we’re just over 35 and vast majority around 20.

I have been bow hunting since 1978 and in that time I have killed about 50 deer. Most of them have been with traditional equipment. My longest shot was with a recurve. I stepped it off at 23 yards. I may have shot a couple with a compound at about 20 yds. All others have been under 20 yds. My stands are usually placed so if the deer follow the plan it's a 10 yd shot.

From: midwest
Very, very few over 20 yards.

From: Kanati
Trad shooter, under 20.

From: Mint
Eastern hardwoods and my guess most of my shots are around eighteen yards and it makes sense since I try to set up for a 15 yards shot on most stands.

From: buckeye
47 yards was the farthest, but usually 20 yards and under is the normal distance for me.

From: scentman
25 yds and less, my accuracy diminished after 30 yds or so... happy to say 90% of 20 yds or so usually double lung or heart, and recovered within 50 yds. scentman

30 yards and in.

From: steve
less than 20 yards. my farthest bow kill was 55 at a coyote.

High or low of 30 yards on average.

From: btnbuck
Bou, just because I CAN take a shot at 45-50 yards doesn't mean I WANT to take a shot like that. I prefer my quarry to be closer than that. That is where the excitement is for me and the reason why I bow hunt.

I've shot a lot of 3D targets at ranges up to 80+ yards quite effectively. Under 50 yards tends to be a common distance. Don't get me wrong, I can muff a shot with the best of them, but under 50 yards are typically a very high percentage shots.

With that being said, when I get in a tree and look around me, anything over 25 yards looks like it's so far away. almost all of my shots are under that 25 yard threshold. I've taken one at 40 and one at 35 when conditions were optimal, but my average is probably under 18 yards.

Unlike targets, deer can move and a good shot when released can be a bad shot by the time the arrow gets there.

My average would be well under 10 yards, maximum around 20 yards but rare. I took up hunting with selfbows for the challenge, and that challenge is to see how close I can get to my quarry and get a shot without being detected.

22 yards

From: Will
< 22yds. I can count on two hands all the deer beyond that. I think only 1 was beyond roughly 30. Longest was 37. I've definitely shot more deer closer than 20 vs beyond.

From: Rock
Less than 20 yards

From: Rock
Less than 20 yards

From: jdbbowhunter
Most 15 yds or less.

From: fuzzy
Bow, 18ish. Rifle 30 to 80

From: DonVathome
I have taken over 100 deer with my bow. Average shot is 15 yards. Very very few over 22 yards (my 1st pin was good 0-22 yards holding deadon). Aprox 2 at 30-40 and 1 at 40-50, none over 50.

From: dnovo
I've hunted strictly with a longbow for the last 43 years. I've taken 2 deer at about 27-28 yards. I've taken many at close range. A number at 5 yards. My average as close as I can figure is about 11 yds. My buck this year is my farthest in the last 10 years at 16 yards. My biggest buck was shot at 6 yards. I like being close.

15-20 yards

And that is why I switched to heavy stiff arrows. I don’t shoot to crossbow ranges anymore.

12-16 yards

From: BowSniper
Lifetime from 0 to 63 yards. But average now is 25 yds

From: Jimmyjumpup
12 yards and closer

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