As more states legalize the use of crossbows during regular archery seasons, the popularity of horizontal bows just continues to grow. And it's expensive to be popular. With all the bells and whistles, a high-end crossbow can run you more than $2,000.
But, you can still get a new crossbow and put your kid through college. Wanting to provide technology-driven crossbows that are high performers but don’t break the bank, many manufacturers are offering quality crossbows under the $600 mark. So let’s take a peek at some of the best budget crossbows on the market today.
I’m a skeptic, so when I saw a gopher whistle for sale at my sporting goods store, I snorted. But I was intrigued enough by the promise of killing more ground squirrels that I bought it.
Pied Piping To operate the Varmint Call, a machined aluminum tube made by King Tool of Bozeman, Mont. ($15; king-tool.com), suck air through the brass mouthpiece. It supposedly imitates the “all-clear” call sounded by gophers and Columbia ground squirrels. Really? In my experience, high-pitched whistles remind ground-dwelling rodents of raptors, and the sound sends them scurrying to their burrows. I decided to test its efficacy over the course of several gopher-shooting sessions last spring.
When it comes to tests of hunting and fishing gear, no one beats Outdoor Life. As one of our cornerstone tests, our annual compound bow shootout has helped solidify our position as the outdoor gear test leader.
Dr. Todd Kuhn’s crack team of compound bow experts has once again put the new bows for the coming season through the wringer. In addition to evaluating and scoring the bows on things like in-hand feel, smoothness of the draw cycle and general shootability, we also conduct various empirical tests to determine each bow’s true speed, noise and vibration readings. (You’re not going to believe this, but the advertised specs aren’t always accurate.)
Like the first robin sighting and the return of baseball, the Outdoor Life Bow Test is a highly anticipated rite of spring, but the wait is almost over. The 2011 Bow Test will appear in the May issue, which hits newsstands on April 19. In the meantime, check out exclusive footage on how we test and all the behind-the-scenes action.
My identical twin sons just turned 10 years old. It’s a day I’ve been looking forward to for, oh, about a decade now.
My family has two traditional gifts for this milestone birthday. One is a first pocketknife. The other is a bicycle. Not the gimmicky tasseled-handlebar bikes that my kids learned to ride on, but real machines, with derailleurs and cable brakes. On my 10th birthday I received a three-bladed Schrade Old Timer folder and a 3-speed Schwinn.
I still haven’t decided on the specific bike my boys will get. It’s likely to be a higher-end mountain bike, one with enough adjustment that it can grow with them.
I’m still struggling to see the utility of this new product for hunting. I can see plenty of applications for fishing, but until I see a winch, gun rack and receiver hitch, I guess I’ll just have to use it for scouting, maybe for coastal brown bears.
Congratulations to Illinoisburt and Msmac on winning our crossbow quiz. Illinoisburt will take home the grand prize, a Turbo XLT from TenPoint. The crossbow was picked as the Editor's Choice for our 2010 Crossbow Test.
Ernest Hemingway was beyond talented, a compulsive alcoholic, probably mentally ill, and didn’t like to wear socks. And while you can’t make money off being a drunk or having mental issues - trust me, I know – you can by being talented…and maybe by not wearing socks as well. At least shoemaker Thomas Raymond & Co. of Portland believes so. This July they unveiled the Ernest Hemingway Footwear Co. with the blessing of Papa’s son Patrick.