Archery: Forest of Arden

Had another great shoot this weekend, and arguably the hardest shoot I have had so far. The Forest of Arden shoot is actually just outside Birmingham so it was a doddle to get to for us, the entire club was represented and we split up into two groups. I shot with Simon, John and Tony; Richard shot with Phil, Alex, Cliff and Andrew. It was a difficult shoot … Forty 3D targets over some pretty long distances at wildly different elevations, plus no lunch break – we started at 10:30 and finished at around 5pm, so yeah by the end of it we were all shattered.

Alex doesn’t seem to like Bambi!

The shoot itself was really well laid out and spread throughout the forest, it’s the first time I’ve ever taken part in an event that featured only 3D targets, in other words no 2D pictures! The targets themselves varied in size and shape, from Lions to tiny crocodiles. What made this so challenging though was that a) the targets were generally much further away than on any other shoot I’ve competed in and b) the elevation of the targets also varied. Some were at the top of a hill, others you had to shoot down at from the top of a 30 ft hill. This meant there were no easy shots, particularly if you are shooting with longbow or in the HT category where you have to compensate for elevation and distance far more than archers who use compound bows.

Although I think I did very very well I did loose in inordinate amount of arrows, some were lost in the undergrowth which was very dense, and with some of my others the points came off rendering them useless 🙁 I even ended up having to borrow a couple of arrows from Richard and John to complete the shoot, but because these were much heavier than my normal arrows it was far more difficult to shoot with them over these distances. .

Simon lining up a shot.

I still think I did really well though, at one point I went through a 6 target spree, scoring a kill / inner kill with my first arrow on each which is a great feeling especially when you having to judge distances with just your instincts. It’s all great preparation for the Southwest Challenge in Devon from the 1st -8th of August, which I’m taking part in this year, and am really looking forward to.

As always I’ve uploaded some pictures to my flickr account …. here.

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