Archery and crossbow deer hunting season begins Saturday

Published: Sep. 14, 2022 at 6:48 PM CDT
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LAKE HALLIE, Wis. (WEAU) - Deer hunters across Wisconsin can head back into the woods this weekend as archery and crossbow hunting season begins Saturday.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), there were more than 7 million hunter days of effort in 2021 during the fall season. About two-thirds of those were crossbow and archery hunters.

Data from the DNR also shows the number of crossbow and archery hunting licenses issued increased by around 25,000 from 2019 to 2021.

“If there was any silver lining with COVID it was people reintroduced into the outdoors. So a lot of extra time maybe working from home and had an opportunity to get back out in the outdoors,” said Mouldy’s Archery & Tackle manager Will Moulton.

The interest may not be going away.

Moulton said it’s been pretty busy lately at Mouldy’s.

“A lot of customers coming in right now,” he said. “A lot of hunters getting ready maintenance-wise, checking out their strings and cables and checking out their equipment, making sure it’s in tune. Picking up broadheads, sighting in on the range, that kind of stuff. Getting ready for the big day.”

Whether that big day is someone’s first, or if they’re a seasoned pro at archery or crossbow deer hunting, it’s important they stay safe during their hunt.

“Treat every crossbow and bow if it were loaded, always point the point the bow and crossbow in a safe direction, be certain of your target, both what’s before it and beyond it, and always keep your finger out of the trigger guard and off the trigger until you’re ready to shoot,” said DNR Recreation Warden Robin Miller.

Moulton said no matter how long someone’s been archery or crossbow hunting, there’s nothing like a successful shot.

“Archery’s kind of a journey,” he said. “You start early in the year, you really work at it and you appreciate the work and the effort that you put in. So when that moment comes when you do get a deer in front of you and you make that perfect shot, you really appreciate all the time and the effort that went into it and there is a huge adrenaline rush.”

Moulton added people who are inexperienced with archery or crossbow hunting should practice before heading out on a hunt.

Archery and crossbow deer hunting seasons run through Jan. 8, 2023. Gun deer season lasts from Nov. 19-27.