The Silent Hunter: 3 Badass Reasons To Own a Crossbow

silent hunter
Hey there, ReadyNutrition Readers!  Now it’s time to get back into some good instruction and topics for the New Year.  I want to cover the Crossbow and some of its advantages in the arenas of hunting, survival, and as an all-around great tool to practice marksmanship.

The crossbow has been around a long time, and it saw widespread use in Medieval times as a means of utilizing a bolt to penetrate armor.  In the olden days, they made powerful bows backed by horsehair and sinew.  I’m sure there’s someone out there with knowledge about ancient crossbows and their uses.  We’d be happy to hear from you, and your comments are most welcome.  Nowadays the makes and models of crossbows are as numerous as you can imagine.  So, you may be wondering, what are the advantages to having a crossbow?  There are many, so let’s cover them.

Advantages

The crossbow delivers power and accuracy silently.  It is an excellent piece with which to hunt.  JJ uses the Huntsman Advantage with 140 lb. draw weight and a foot-cocking loop, with a 10 power Simmons scope mounted on the top.  For more serious matters, there is the Barnett Commando with 175 lb. draw (It’s a little pricey, but well worth the investment, in my humble opinion.).  I prefer broad heads such a 150 grain Thunderchiefs, 4-blades on the head.

Can Be More Convenient Compared To a Compound Bow

The advantage of a crossbow can also be found in the fact that once it is cocked and ready to fly a bolt, the firer can rest: even letoff with a compound bow can be tiring if you have to hold the position for a long time.  Crossbows also allow you to fire in the prone position.  Such a stance cuts down on silhouetting and also drawing the notice of your intended quarry should you miss.  Their power cannot be overstated.  Either of those two draws I’ve mentioned coupled with a good broad head and accurate marksmanship will bring down the largest game.

The states vary in their issuance of permits for hunting with a crossbow.  Check with your state’s hunter safety board or the forestry service.  The information may also be found in the free annual hunting guide that holds the seasons and the regulations.  If you have an injury or something medically that prevents you from using a bow, most states will allow you a license to hunt with a crossbow, and it is this way in Montana.

It’s a Silent Hunter

From a survival perspective, the crossbow is silent and powerful enough to put meat on your table when it might be “inconvenient” to make a report with a firearm when hunting.  The crossbow is fairly light and can be toted with a sling or a strap across the back or affixed to a rucksack.  The bolts you’ll have to shop around for, both for length and for quality.  I prefer aluminum to fiberglass, but on this there’s no hard and fast rule that you can use one but not the other.  Just be sure to obtain a reliable bolt from a reputable manufacturer, such as Easton, for example.

Marksmanship

Crossbows are also good for developing your marksmanship skills.  As the bolts can be used over and over, you have an unlimited amount of target practice that you can conduct.  I have found target tips in bales of hay work just fine.  Old furniture cushions (such as from that couch that seems to have a pin or nail in the cushions only when you take a nap!) and the furniture pieces (if no longer needed) make prime field-expedient targets.  Remember, there is no recoil, as it is basically a bow mounted on a rifle stock, and bows pull forward (minimally).

Prices May Vary, But Always Choose Quality Products

Prices vary, and it depends on what you want.  Quality is what you’re shooting for.  You can set yourself up just fine for anywhere between $250 – 500 with a crossbow that is effective for hunting and for home defense/survival.  Yes, a bolt (at 175 lb. draw) will penetrate body armor of an “assailant” or “marauder,” if you read me.  Let the actions of the invading individual define them as either one or the other.  ‘Nuff said there.

In conclusion, consider a crossbow for yourself and the family as an excellent survival tool and a great home-defense weapon and marksmanship aid that can meet your needs…whatever your target may be.  Everyone have a Happy New Year, and I hope some of you Guys and Gals already found a crossbow under that Christmas tree!  JJ out!

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published January 2nd, 2016
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  • j christensen

    I got my first crossbow about 8 months ago. great weapon. a 150lb with a 4x scope. I like the quiet feature.

  • LuSypher

    Hunters? Big boys with inferiority complexes, more likely . . .

    • AtomicMetroid

      No. Real men who put meat on the table to help off-set high meat prices at the store and who help conservation of their areas by keeping over-population under control. Otherwise, there would be a lot of animals out there suffering. Most hunters take care of the woods they hunt in. They take care of the rivers, lakes, etc. that they fish in, because people like you never will.

      • IMHO

        That’s what all my “hunter” buddies like to say. The truth is that none of them are hunters. They put out food and a game cam and when they get the feed times off the cam they go out when they know the game animal is eating and they shoot it. That is not hunting. That is HARVESTING. Same with decoys and other harvesting tools.
        Also their is no such thing as over population of game animals. That is another lie. It is something that hunter wannabes say to make themselves feel important or something.
        Hunters put out their feed and throw there bags in the back of their truck so the magic trash fairy will make it disappear. Trashy bastards.
        Then they take their “manly kill” and have it mounted at the taxidermy to prop up their weak egos.
        The guy is right and people like you are kidding yourself or are just…

      • Andrewmag166

        Thats what my dad does he must be doing something right hes old 78 in perfect health and never been to the hospital. He just wants the fresh meat to eat, he wont eat any meat he didnt kill himself, because they put hormones and chemicals in the meat, also they sale sick cows for meat. As long as the cows can stand they can sell them for meat but many companies have been caught putting downers (Cows so sick that they cant stand in the mix) .
        As far as hunting goes if your a meat eater you have no right to put someone down for hunting meat. What are you going to say its cruel to eat that deer while your chomping down on a hamburger, that just makes no sense.
        Now if someone is a vegetarian then they can pretend to be morally superior I guess, being a vegetarian probably is more healthy than eating the poisoned supermarket meat, but fresh wild meat is very healthy and one of the best options for people that want to eat meat. My sister recovered from leukemia and committed to eating super healthy she buys a cow when it is young, the farm raises it for her and she observes the process, this could be a good option too.
        I guess its good for people that want fresh healthy wild game that most people prefer the poisoned chemical hormone food there certainly wouldn’t be enough fresh meat for everyone.

      • IMHO

        If you read my post correctly you would see that I say nothing about the eating of meat nor the killing of game for food.
        Another example of Neocon kneejerk reaction to truths that “seem” to. Also you lie when you say that “sick” animals can be sold for human consumption. Sick animals can be sold at auction but they do not go into the food chain.
        But just so you don’t wallow in your ignorance. I kill game on my own property as well as slaughter my own livestock. I built a meat locker so I can hang my own meat. So read my post again and tell me I am wrong. But you can’t.

      • Andrewmag166

        Not exactly sure why you are insulting me, I have seen multiple shows that as long as the cow is standing they can sell it for meat no matter how sick the animal is, that was the law last I saw maybe its changed. Even many companies were sneaking in downer cows. We all know the media lies and companies do break the rules for profit so we don’t know really know what is true. Maybe all the more reason to unsure the health of the animal you eat yourself good idea on your part. My point is I don’t see anything wrong with hunting or harvesting to verify the quality of the meat you eat, but that’s just me, its still kind of a free country everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I agree the harvest approach to hunting is not very sporting, but maybe it’s not their goal to be sporting, going down to the local pub and getting a beer and a burger for a few bucks is not very sporting either but I do that too on occasion.

      • IMHO

        Why? Because you still don’t understand the point of my first post. So I will try again. But first let me be clear, “It is illegal to knowingly sell sick cows for human consumption. You can watch Youtube videos that say the contrary because we all know that everything on the internet is true. (sarcasm)

        Now concerning my original comment. You say “going down to the local pub and getting a beer and a burger for a few bucks is not very sporting either but I do that too on occasion.” Yes, but you don’t throw your burger bag on the road when you are done and you don’t brag about how manly you were for buying a burger either or talk about how noble you are for buying a burger, or mount part of your burger on your wall so people can see how great of a burger buyer you are.
        But that is just what most “hunters” do. It is not about killing and eating meat, it is about “hunters” being trashy, egotistical, small minded bastards who brag about their kill when all they did was shoot an animal that was eating at their prepared food plot.
        The original poster was correct regardless of his political or social views.
        I hope that wasn’t insulting.

      • TheDeerHunter

        You ARE completely wrong – you just can’t see it. There is such a thing as over population of game animals – although it is part of a natural cycle, over population happens, then animals starve, and predator populations increase and the extra animals get killed. Once populations decrease, the wolves starve, and game animals increase. To say there aren’t times of over population is ridiculous. I would think that someone who is an animal lover would rather see a deer humanely shot than starve to death over the winter. Also, the vast majority of hunters don’t trophy hunt, and don’t have taxidermy performed. But for those that do, What’s wrong with that? You use the meat, you put money back into the economy, What’s your issue?

      • sudyrand

        I think you are a liar, your comment doesn’t indicate that you do any such thing. So what is it? Are you a liar or when did you stop lying?

      • IMHO

        You win moron of the thread for that comment. You need to quit sitting on your brain.

      • sudyrand

        If you had a brain, you would take it out and play with it. How about this one, if you took your brain and rolled it into a ball and placed it on the edge of a razor blade, it would look like a BB on a 4 lane highway.

      • mark_BC

        I think it depends on the hunter and the hunted. Deer are definitely overpopulated in many areas, since predators have been reduced. I don’t support the hunting of predators like wolves and bears and cats since they are not overpopulated and their populations aren’t adapted to be hunted like deer are.

      • IMHO

        But I would say the problem with increase in deer population is over regulation, not the lack of willing hunters. Wouldn’t you think.

      • sixpack

        Another troll move as I see here, is to hijack the thread by getting everyone focused on his/her ridiculous comments, instead of the thread. I scrolled down several times, but all I found was unrelated argument between people. THE TROLL TOTALLY DESTROYED THE COMMENT SECTION WITH THEIR RHETORIC AND ARGUING.

      • AtomicMetroid

        You liberals need to be expelled from America

      • IMHO

        You are an idiot to respond to me as a liberal and it goes to show just how stupid you Neocons are. Now you tell me, MR. Neocon just what about my post suggests that I am Liberal?

      • AtomicMetroid

        Because of the level of your mental illness and your disregard for the constitution and country folks’ traditions/culture. You don’t respect us and our traditions. But too damn bad. Liberals, neo-con Zionists….the whole lot are nuts and Americans have had enough. It is time for patriots to make America great again. The next ten years will be very telling.

      • IMHO

        LOL. Your tradition of throwing feed bags on the road? Your tradition of shooting fed deer under your stand and then having its head mounted so you can pat yourself on the back for being such a “good hunter” and then tell everyone you “hunt” to keep the population down? Your tradition of spouting liberal drivel but calling yourself a conservative? NEOCON.
        Screw the constitution. It is a document that makes you think you have a say but in fact it only makes you a mindless slave. I’ll take Scripture over the Constitution any day.

      • AtomicMetroid

        You are a mentally ill religious nut. and our constitution is very clear. You don’t like it?? MOVE TO ISRAEL
        and I don’t know WTF you are talking about “feed bags on the road” or the rest of that craziness. You ignorant religious nuts make it up as you go. You project yourself onto others. You go ahead and read “scripture” and the rest of those fairytales. That right there lets me know that you have a very low IQ and absolutely zero critical thinking skills.

      • sudyrand

        Hey idiot, you refer people as neocons, but when they call you liberal, you get offended. So I guess they are right, you are a bleeding heart liberal who don’t know squat about hunting or overpopulation or even if the slaughter houses sell sick animals. I have seen many sick animals go to the slaughter houses and get processed for you idiot liberals to eat. It happens all the time. Another thing, it is better to harvest the over population of deer rather than let the animals starve to death. Death by starvation is a terrible thing. Have you ever seen an animal starve to death? Probably not.

      • IMHO

        LOL. And now you win idiot of the thread award. Pansy with a keyboard and no brains. LMFAO

      • Jer

        We have wild pigs in our area they are quite destructive and very predatory to numerous other small creatures. A place overrun with a pig population in very little time looks like someone tilled the hillside or valley. They are quite tasty too. Enjoyed a pot of wild pig verde tonight. We do not hunt anything else. The Bears, coyotes, deer, Bobcats and the very rare mountain lion are a treasured sighting.

      • IMHO

        Yes hogs are a big problem. Just last month I saw a herd of about 9 on my pond levy. I opened up on them with my AR. Couldn’t get close enough for a good shot but I think I hit one or two. I don’t eat pig so the other wild animals can have the meat, unless I drop one dead in its tracks in which case I will give it to a neighbor who eats unclean.
        And yes, the bears, coyotes and bobcats are rare and treasured. unless I catch one eating my chickens or calves, but the deer and turkey are for eating. The pigs are target practice.

      • TheDeerHunter

        Keep thinking you’re better than everyone else as you poison your family with antibiotic and growth hormone infused meat and GMO foods. I will gladly keep killing wild game to feed natural meats to my family. It has nothing to do with “manly kills” or mounting trophies. I guess it’s easy to judge others while you buy your meat instead of taking the time to kill, gut, skin, and process it yourself for the safety and good health of your family. I also have a “manly” garden and fruit trees. Do you have a problem with that too?

      • IMHO

        I will tell you something else. For the price that most hunters pay yearly for a hunting lease, feed, practice ammo, etc… They could buy a steer and have it slaughtered. Just sayin.
        Telling tales just to make “harvesting”/hunting sound like some noble cause just hurts the true conservative movement.
        The world is full of Neocons when a true conservative is called liberal.

      • AtomicMetroid

        Hunting lease? Many have their own land, like me. But $250-$500 a year is way cheaper than beef when you consider how much deer people use. And if it weren’t for hunters keep the deer population down then deer would be very sick and a serious problem to humans. You liberals need to be expelled. We are tired of you and your anti-white anti-American BS.
        Hunting and guns is here to stay. Liberals, however, are not.

      • IMHO

        You are a true Neocon. It is amazing how Neocons love to spout Liberal lies and then call true Conservatives Liberals for not agreeing with their liberal arguments.
        Wildlife are not dependent on humans you libtard fake conservative. Its your liberal regulations that cause the overpopulation you speak of and you gladly use that to prop up your neocon argument. I guess next you are going to tell me that you throw your feed bags on the road to give the inmates something to pick up. “OH WHAT A NOBLE PERSON YOU ARE.” sarcasm
        Another way to tell that you are a neocon is how you refuse to address the original post honestly but instead keep throwing out strawman arguments in typical liberal fashion.

      • AtomicMetroid

        You are a mentally ill religious loon. Go take your klonpin.
        If you don’t like it then move to Israel with the rest of the idiots

      • sixpack

        Another troll move I’m seeing, as I see here, is to hijack the thread by getting everyone focused on his/her ridiculous comments, instead of the thread. I scrolled down several times, but all I found was unrelated argument between people. THE TROLL TOTALLY DESTROYED THE COMMENT SECTION WITH THEIR RHETORIC AND ARGUING.

      • AtomicMetroid

        I was attacked for my opinion and responded.

      • shortwave62

        Sorry for my ignorance, but what the heck is a NEOCON?

      • IMHO

        Neoconservative. Someone who claims to be conservative but acts and speaks in a non conservative manner. In politics it specifically refers to the liberalization of the republican party. Some would say Neocon means New Conservative but that is not correct since they are not Conservative at all.
        There are no conservatives in politics and most republican voters are just as neoconservative as the Neocons they vote for. Just like the guy above.

      • LuSypher

        I live in the middle of a forest on the Garden Route in South Africa (Google it) – we even have wild elephants in these forests. And I have seen the macho, kitted-out, narcissistic men-boys who parade as hunters.
        . . . and I despise them – every single one of them.

      • AtomicMetroid

        I would never kill a magnificent elephant. Where I live deer are a nuisance, and if hunters don’t keep the population in check then deer become very sick and interfere with humans quite a lot. We are keen on conservation of our forests, lakes and rivers.

      • IMHO

        You don’t know what a real man is.

      • AtomicMetroid

        I bet you think a liberal is a real man. hahalol smh

    • Q

      You sound scared.
      I suggest you stay inside and play video games.

      • LuSypher

        I live in the real world – Africa – not in your mamby pamby amerika full of timid wannabees . . .

    • BigGaySteve

      Please there are even gay guys that hunt. Check out the gay gun group Pink Pistols.

      • sixpack

        To each his own.

    • sixpack

      How do you figure? To quote the master of Badass, Clint Eastwood in “Heartbreak Ridge”

      “I’m mean, nasty and tired. I eat concertina wire and piss napalm – and I can put a round through a flea’s ass at 200 meters, so go hump somebody else’s leg mutt face, before I push yours in.”

      • LuSypher

        Oh! Wow!

  • Vet4life63

    Pros: Crossbows are silent, deadly, fairly easy to keep in good shape, and versatile in many situations. Cons: one shot then you have to pull string up and reset bolt, which takes a few seconds or a minute depending on your skill level. Better than nothing, but for self defense against more than one attacker, not real practical. A man with a knife could close a distance of 20 feet and nail you before you are ready to fire again.

  • Sam Nelson

    I think it is time we stop hunting animals period. Everything, land animals, creatures in the sea, birds in the air, insects, every kind of life on Earth except the human kind are in a state of depletion. I am an empath, so I do see only one side of this, the animals side. Animals, birds, bees, butterflies, there are so few of them anymore, since my childhood, so much of life on Earth has been wiped out. Please, stop.

    • mark_BC

      Look up “St Matthew Island Deer”

    • Q

      You’re an animal as well.
      Shall we all just sing kum buy ya and pray for mana from heaven?

  • sixpack

    I’ve got a Barnett Quad 400 with a 150 lb draw. I have a good scope, a crank style cocking mechanism, and I use quad-blade hunting tips. I have a half dozen practice tips, so I don’t risk messing up my expensive hunting tips. I have way more than 4 arrows, so I use a separate over-the-shoulder quiver, and removed the one attached to the bow. I also have an attachable flashlight and night vision capabilities. I want a few more arrows and a couple of extra strings, and I’ll be happy.

  • Glenn Webb

    Geez, some of you posters might want to consider joining a gym. Jumping to conclusions isn’t a particularly effective form of exercise.

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