Getting Ready for the Whitetail Opener

Every time I go out to my backyard to shoot my bow, I end up breaking a sweat because it's still so darn hot out. But that's the way it is in August in the South. But it also means that fall is just down the road and bow season is so close.

In the morning I step out on my front porch and notice slightly cooler temperatures, I think. Or maybe it's just that I want it to be cooler meaning fall is near. Either way, I can look at the calender and know that archery deer season in Georgia starts on September 8 regardless of the weather. It's already started in South Carolina and parts of southern Florida, and will also begin soon in the other southern states.

To get my bow ready for the season, I installed new strings and cables on my six-year old Bowtech Tribute. Yes, I know that it's kind of old, and that there are newer and fancier bows out now, but I like my bow. It fits me, it shoots well, and I killed seven deer with it last year. What more do I want?

I've also shied away from the speed craze. I like heavy arrows that are stable, stiff, quiet, and penetrate well. I love it when my arrow zips completely through the deer. Did I say I killed seven deer with my set up last season? And the year before I took four.

My arrow is 450 grains including my 100-grain Muzzy broadhead. I've also stood on the curb when others were jumping on to the mechanical head bandwagon. No moving arrow rests for me, I like my fail-proof whisker biscuit. My arrow speed is not blazing, but it's fast enough.

Any experienced bowhunter will tell you, the most important feature of any bow set up is that it fits you and you can shoot it accurately. Provided your set up has enough energy and super sharp broadheads, the most important thing is proper placement. Stick any broadhead-tipped arrow behind a buck's shoulder and the chances are great that you'll be dragging him home shortly.

I've got trail camera pictures of two nice bucks frequenting a kudzu field where I hunt. They're not monsters, but they sport handsome racks that I'll be glad to bag. One has multiple short tines on his base so I nicknamed him "Bumpy" (that's him above). With numerous trail cam pics of him, I feel confident that I'll see him the first week of the season.

Rut Reporter Eric Bruce has been writing about hunting and fishing for newspapers and magazines for 25 years and hunts deer all over the South, including near his Georgia home. States covered: AR, LA, MS, AL, GA, SC, FL.