Taking a long crossbow shot can really put your skills to the test.
There is an energized fad going around the archery world right now about shooting long distances. My guess is it started with the ultra-popular Cameron Hanes demonstrating his shooting abilities at +100 yards. The truth is people have been shooting long distances for a while, but he seemed to publicize it to a wider audience. Whatever the case is, although long shots are becoming more popular, hopefully we aren’t diminishing the skill they take.
A long crossbow shot is much the same. Shooting distances of over +100 yards takes concentration, a steady aim, and an accurate shooting rig. One YouTube channel has featured several videos testing their skills and equipment at long ranges. In one video, they feature a shooter reputed to be a former Marine sniper shooting targets at over 150 yards. Give the video a look.
Pretty good shooting. However these guys weren’t done at 150 yards. Several days later they posted a video featuring the same shooter at a distance of 200 yards. The 200 yard shot takes a bit longer but you can give it a watch for yourself here.
Again, good shooting, combined with good equipment, can produce some awfully good results.
One point I’m personally glad they included in the video, is the part about not trying hunting shots like this. Long shots may be fun to take, I’m sure we all do from time to time, but it’s unethical to take shots beyond your effective range at live animals. That being said, even legendary archers like Fred Bear took shots too far at times. In one story, Fred, who admitted he was trying to shoot past the animal, shot a tiger at nearly 100 yards with his recurve bow. When pressed on the subject, Fred admitted that once in awhile our blood gets running hot in a hunting situation and we do things we shouldn’t do. Taking shots out of our effective ranges is one of those things.
In the long crossbow shot video, the former sniper is using a Darton crossbow to make it happen. Darton has a long standing reputation in the archery world and has been cranking out archery gear for over 60 years. In the video the crossbow featured was the Darton Fireforce. This quality compound crossbow pushes arrows up to 400 feet per second. I could mention it’s touted accuracy, but the video seemed to highlight that aspect of the bow fairly well. The truth is the Fireforce is a serious crossbow with so many features it is worth a look.
Even with a quality crossbow like the Darton Fireforce, long shots are best relegated to the backyard. Practice them, enjoy them, get better at them, but keep your realistic shooting skills in mind while in the field.