|Bow hunting methods.
There are a few different ways to hunt with bow and arrow, some I like, and some I wouldn’t do myself. I will put them as I rank them and I will say why I think like I do. With that said, I certainly do not say what is the right way for you to hunt, I only express my opinion.
I rank the different methods between 1 and 10 in a difficulty scale.
Walk & stalk.
Any trophy shot during a walk & stalk hunt is a trophy worth hanging on your wall with pride! The reason I say this is because of the amount of skill you need to get close enough to any African game! Your camo must be perfect. The wind needs to be right. You must beware of all the animals in your surroundings. 100 % of your focus must be here and now. Knowledge of vitals placement of the particular animal you aim to shoot. If all of the above is fulfilled there is some more obstacles before you can shoot! First you shall range the animal, then you must be able to draw your bow undetected. And on top of this you must have a free shooting lane. Compared to all other bow-hunting methods this is the most difficult one. So now compare all the things above to the skill it takes to shoot an animal from a blind and judge for yourself!
I get much more impressed of a hunter that have a one year old impala taken on a walk & stalk hunt hanging on his/hers wall than a 63 inch Kudu taken from a blind!
Best time of year is during rain season because: Animals are spread out over large areas since there is food and water in abundance. The ground and grass is not dry and crunchy witch make it possible to walk without making it sound like the ground was covered with cornflakes. If it rains, the sound of the rain will cover your noise. Do not fear the rain, it is still nice and warm.
Difficulty scale 10.
Spot & stalk.
Almost the same as above, but with the difference that you almost always start from a elevated place, a small hill or some higher ground to get a good look on what is going on in front of you. This is a good way of scouting any animals that will give you away on your final approach. This method gives you a small edge and is not as hard as a pure walk and stalk
Best time of year is during rain season. .
Difficulty scale 8.
This method is very usable when the stalk cannot be taken any further because of inadequate cover. I have used imitation of both Baboon and Warthog to get within hunting distance. I have not yet harvested any game using this method, but I have only used it three times until today. I used the warthog imitation in half-meter (20 inches) high grass. I had a nice Impala ram and some Nyala grazing 50 meters from me when they saw my movement. They froze and stared for a minute without a sign to give up the staring. Darkness was coming rapidly so I had a maximum of 15 minutes with shooting light. So I started to grunt like a pig, make smacking sounds like pigs do when they eat and rip up grass from the ground. And it worked, both Impala and Nyalas started feeding again as I moved in a zigzag pattern towards them. When I reached 35 meters from the animals the high grass ended and it was a bit too dark for me to be comfortable to shoot so just laid down and waited for them to move on until I got up and walked home. But still a memorable hunt!
Difficulty scale. Depends on terrain, what species and number of animals, but somewhere between 6 to 9.
Find a place where animals travel frequently and find a suitable ambush spot and sit down and wait. The good places you find by checking for fresh tracks in a game path. Some paths are used only during dry season for walking to and from water so always check for fresh tracks. Try to find a spot where you could overlook a larger area. It has two advantages and one disadvantage. You will be able to scout incoming game at the same time as you observe and learn behaviour of game. You could get an opportunity to change your ambush to a spot & stalk hunt. The disadvantage is that many of the game you hunt have very good eyesight and that means you must be very careful with movements.
Difficulty ranking between 4 to 6 depending on: Terrain and camo.
Best time of year. Anytime of year. A little easier o find well used paths towards waterholes during dry season and better cover in rain season. Do remember that the closer you get to a waterhole the more skittish are the game.
In my opinion this is a good way to get rid of your buck fever. So for new hunters or if you are not physically able to go and get the game this is a good option. But when the buck fever is gone all it takes is that you shoot well and is able to sit still and shut up. After that is all up to how big your wallet and trophy wall is.
Difficulty ranking, 2.
Best time of year is dry season when game needs to drink. In rain season it is almost hopeless to sit in a blind, because there is water everywhere so the animals don’t bother to go to a waterhole.
This happens occasionally all over the world and it is shooting from a vehicle, usually a pickup truck from a quadbike. In my opinion, NOT ACCEPTABLE!
You spot a Kudu and start to run for it. When it takes off you follow its tracks at moderate jogging speed. After four to five hours the Kudu is exhausted and overheated and you could easily walk up to it and harvest it. I would only recommend this if you are built like a marathon runner and your tracking skills are so good that you could track a grasshopper in a sandstorm. Difficulty scale 17.