August 03, 2015
By Tony J. Peterson
See why you should consider using 3D targets for your practice sessions this season in this Tech Talk segment from Bowhunter TV.
Before the birth of my twin daughters, I shot a lot. And I mean a lot. My practice sessions extended year-round, and by the time antelope season opened in August I usually felt pretty good out to at least twice as far as I expected to shoot. The arrival of a litter of little girls had an effect, as one would guess, on the amount of range time I now put in.
It's less, for sure. So I've adopted a different approach to my practice sessions, instead devoting them to quantity versus the ever-popular quality. I use to shoot through a cube-style target in a single year. And 3D targets, forget it. They only lasted a season before I could put my hand all of the way through the hole in the vitals. Now, targets last me much longer and I select them based on more focused criteria now.
The right target face matters, obviously. I like high-contrast for certain situations, and realism for others. Rarely will I use just one target for my home practice sessions, but if I'm traveling somewhere that I might be able to sneak in a few rounds, I'll bring along a lightweight, portable target (which is usually the target that travels to hunting camps with me all fall as well).
If your current targets are limping along, shot full of more holes than a "No Trespassing" sign in a poacher's neighborhood, consider the following options to replenish your supply and rejuvenate your routine.
American Whitetail | CompCube Bowhunter
Covered in American Whitetail's
ToughTarget wraps and comprised of a foam shell and an inner Compression Core, the Bowhunter CompCube
is a great choice for summer shooting sessions. To shake up your range time, this target offers a whitetail deer side, a turkey side, deer vitals area, and spots. The Bowhunter CompCube is a field-point only target, which is perfect for traveling hunts or staggered-yardage practice sessions because it is extremely lightweight and portable.
Block Targets | Vault
You know you've made a good product when its name is used to describe all of the competitors' offerings that happen to come in cube form. Such is the case with Block Targets
, and their latest the Vault
, is certain to keep the company at the forefront of the industry. Four-sided shooting, a high-density layered core, and four sizes are available in the new Vault. I'm of the opinion that Block Targets are some of the best options for long-range shooting
because the white-on-black target faces are so easy to see at long distances.
Cabela's | Outfitter Broadhead Target
One of the best deals you're likely to find anywhere on a true broadhead target comes your way via outdoor powerhouse Cabela's in their Outfitter Broadhead Target
. Designed with multilayered dense foam to stop all broadheads, this target will run you only $60 at the cash register. Made-in-the-USA and weighing in at 18 pounds, the Outfitter Broadhead Target features four-sides of high-contrast target faces to fling away at. If you don't have a dedicated broadhead target, it's time to put in your order.
Delta McKenzie | Targets Bloodline Buck
If your bowhunting aspirations are of the champagne variety, but your target budget is more suited for a sixer of cheap domestic beer, you should probably check out the Bloodline Buck from Delta McKenzie
. At only $130, this realistic 3D target is a steal. Self-healing foam, easy arrow removal, and the ability to shoot it with not only field points, but also all styles of broadheads make the Bloodline Buck a winner. If you're not sold, consider that this is also one of the most portable 3D targets I've ever owned, which is always appreciated.
Hips Archery | Targets X2 Grizzly Archery Target
When you've been creating targets for over 35 years, it's safe to say you're doing some things right. Hips Archery Targets
can boast that history, and their latest — the Grizzly
— is a great option for shooting at home, and on the road considering it weighs only nine pounds. Nestled in their X2 Series
, the Grizzly is a true six-sided target is designed to handle serious abuse. Because of that, it's also perfect for shooters who have opted for micro-diameter shafts like Easton's Injexion
. It's also designed to stop arrows that are launched downrange out of bows that are set up to 90 pounds in draw weight. So whether you've got a whitetail in your sights, or a Cap buffalo, the Grizzly is an excellent target for honing your skills.
Hurricane Bag Targets | H-28
Most bag targets feature spots to shoot at, which is fine. If you're looking for something different, however, you might want to check out the H-28 from Hurricane Bag Targets
. This target features deer vitals as the aim point, and to ensure longevity, the H-28 is designed with offset aiming points on the front and back sides to spread out your groups. The H-28 measures 28 inches by 28 inches and is a full 12 inches deep.
Morrell | Outdoor Range Target
I often fantasize about having a full shooting range at my house. If I ever achieve it, the first thing I'm going to do is buy an Outdoor Range Target from Morrell
. At only $145, this beast of a bag target is ideal for setting out and leaving through all kinds of weather. It weighs 50 pounds, so you're not going to move it all over the place, which is perfect considering it's not designed to be portable. Multiple spots cover the shooting face to ensure that you don't spend too much time shooting at the same aiming point on the Outdoor Range Target, which is also ideal for sighting in your bow from the get-go, and for inexperienced shooters who need the full 29- by 31-inch target face. Of course, if you're in the market for a smaller target, Morrell has you covered as well with their extensive lineup of innovative offerings
Rinehart Targets | Giant Mule Deer
I don't know what Rinehart
puts into their foam for their targets, I just know that it works to stop arrows for years — even broadhead-tipped arrows. Of all of the targets I routinely shoot, nothing seems to last as long as Rinehart's, which is why I love some of their offerings like the Giant Mule Deer
. To wring the most out of pre-season practice, it's best to incorporate at least one 3D target into your routine, and the Giant Mule Deer is perfect. This target is sized to represent a real deer with its 37-inch height and 40-inch length (250-pound simulated body).