Time on Water Can Make You a Better Hunter
June 9, 2020

Time on Water Can Make You a Better Hunter

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Who is Josh Galt?

Josh is a part of the Badlands Operative Pro Staff, and one of the best anglers working the Louisiana waters today. Oh, and he uses a bow.

Bowfishing season is running hot and heavy this time of year. We figured if there’s an outdoor activity that involves flinging arrows, we want in. So, we sat down with Josh to get the lowdown on why bowfishing is the greatest on-water activity there is, and how it can make you a better bowhunter.

The biggest benefit to the archery hunter is the sheer volume of shots. On an elk hunt, we maybe get one shot off over a multi-day hunt. But on the water, you may be drawing back another shot as soon as you get the previous fish in the boat.

 “Those of us that live archery can appreciate the fact that you can fire away, arrow after arrow, just refining and tuning our craft,” Galt said. “It keeps those muscles in shape and our instincts sharp. One might say, it’s our off-season workout.” 

Since there’s no real time to aim, bowfishing rigs typically don’t have sights. To succeed, you have to quickly learn how to aim instinctively, using the arrow shaft as a guide. Since fish are spooky by nature, quick snapshots are the order of the day. If you snooze, you lose.

On the more northern end of the Missouri River, this workout comes with the added benefit of helping control the areas overrun by invasive species. Carp, especially, are causing severe damage to the habitat and waterways. For bow anglers in these areas, there’s a seemingly never-ending supply of huge fish to target, all in the name of better conservation.

Down south, however, archery folks get the added benefit of some delicious game fish, in the form of redfish, black drum, flounder, catfish and even the occasional speckled trout. 

Aside from a solid supply of clean protein, Galt also touts bowfishing’s benefits to his ground game come whitetail season.

“I had a 160 class buck standing right under me on a hunt, and I had no sight for that distance,” Galt said. “This is where decades of bowfishing came into play. I shot by sighting down the arrow and instinctively putting the arrow right where it needed to go. Buck didn’t go 50 yards.” 

Finally, Josh told us that bowfishing has one additional benefit that may not exactly make you a better bowhunter, but it will make you a better person. 

“Probably the most important thing, is how bowfishing has gotten my son into the outdoors,” Galt said. “As hunters, we sometimes forget how often we leave an empty spot at the family dinner table while we’re in the field.”

“Sometimes this absence can lead kids to be hesitant to get involved with the thing that always keeps mom or dad away,” He said. “I tried to get my little guy into ducks, deer and even regular fishing, but he wasn’t interested. Then he went bowfishing… That opened a whole new realm for us.”

“Now, he wants to go nonstop and bring along as many of his friends as he can,” Josh told us. “The love he has for it has made me love it even more.”

Shoot, the pollen must be high today, as we’re suddenly suffering from watering eyes and a bit of a runny nose.

OK, let’s recap real quick…

  • Lots of shooting reps
  • Honing your instinctive shooting
  • Improving your snapshots
  • Killer meal at the end of the day
  • Makes you a better bowhunter
  • Family time

    OK, we’re sold!

    If you’ll pardon us, we need to see a man about a fishing bow…
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