Skip to main content

How to Pick a Crossbow That’s Perfect for You [PICS]

Bass Pro Shops

Here are two simple guidelines to ensure you get that perfect crossbow for the kind of hunting that suits you.

In the last decade, crossbows have definitely gained in popularity. They are an awesome hunting tool that bridges the gap between guns and more classic archery with a bow.

Many of today’s crossbows are well built and incorporate scopes, allowing a hunter greater accuracy.

When it comes to a crossbow, you want to ensure it matches your hunting style, conditions and the game you will be pursuing. To make it a simple choice, consider the two most common hunting practices you may do, stand hunting and stalking.

Here are some considerations and some crossbow models that will suit both these hunting styles. The beauty of all these crossbows are they come as package deals, ready to go after a couple of hours of range practise.

They are all suitable for deer, elk, moose and black bear when paired with the appropriate arrows and broadheads.

For the mobile hunter.

If you are the type of hunter that prefers to stalk your game through the bush you should consider one of the more compact crossbows available on the market.

There are numerous crossbows that incorporate shorter limbs with cam systems that offset any drastic draw weight. The smaller profile will allow you to slip more easily through rough bush and forest without causing excessive noise or getting hung up on branches.

They are also fairly lightweight and this combined with a more compact profile make them a pleasure to carry. Here are two models that will suit your needs.

Parker Gale Force Crossbow Package.

This crossbow comes as a full package, ready to go. With an arrow speed of 350 fps and an axle-to-axle width of only 20.75 inches, combined with a total weight of eight pounds, it is well suited for the mobile hunter in all kinds of terrain.

With an incorporated cocking system draw weight is cut by 50 percent, making it easier for the user to load up arrows. Combine this with an illuminated multiple reticle scope you have a hunting tool appropriate for most big game.

Parker Bows
BASS PRO/Parker Gale Force Crossbow Package

Horton Storm RDX Crossbow Package with ACUdraw.

This Horton crossbow is truly an “outside the box” design.

With a reversed tensioning system combined with a very narrow width of only 10 inches axle-to-axle when cocked. It is perfect for tight spaces and moving through the forest.

It delivers its carbon arrows at an extremely fast 370 fps and is well suited for deer, black bear, elk and moose.

This crossbow also weighs in at a light 7.7 pounds, making it imminently suitable for carrying over long distances. It also incorporates a self-retracting cocking system that makes it easier to re-load and eliminates a separate cocking rope; handy when you are stalking game far from a stationary blind.

With a 4×32 scope you will have this package dialed in in no time for hunting.

Horton Storm
BASS PRO/Horton Storm

For the Stand and Still Hunter.

Appropriate for the stand hunter are more simple designs where the width of the crossbow will not be as much of a factor.

After my first crossbow (which was a cam system) I purchased an Excalibur.

These are excellent crossbows that rely on a recurve design for their power. This engineering provides a simple yet elegant package with very little to go wrong, after years of use you will only have to switch up the one string.

My Excalibur is well suited to my box blind or any of my treestands, and like the crossbows above they come as a package ready to sight in and get out hunting.

Excalibur Matrix 355 Crossbow Package.

The recurve design of the Excalibur Matrix 355 crossbow provides a simple yet very fast crossbow with an arrow speed of 355 fps.

With a lighter weight of just 5.4 pounds, it is excellent for using from treestands and ground blinds. It comes with a 30 mm scope with ranged reticle pattern which allows for incredibly accurate shooting.

With my Excalibur I can consistently get tight groupings on my shooting block four-inch dots at 40 yards. The package comes with four arrows, field points for practicing, and a rope cocking aid.

Excalibur 1
BASS PRO/Excalibur Matrix 355

Excalibur Matrix Grizzly Crossbow Package.

This is another Excalibur package that is provided at a great price. With a respectable arrow speed of 305 fps it provides all the power you need for most big game hunting situations and, like the more premium Excalibur models, it uses recurve limbs and a single string.

It comes with four quality arrows with field points and a rope cocking aid, ready to get some practice in followed by hunting. This is also a nice lightweight crossbow at only 5.5 pounds, making it perfect for treestands or ground blinds for the more stationary hunter.

Excalibur Grizzly
BASS PRO/Excalibur Matrix Grizzly

There it is, a selection of crossbows broken into two simple categories for the mobile or stand hunter.

I have experienced great success with my crossbows and they allow me to hunt the longer deer bow season in my area with an accuracy and ease of use akin to a firearm.

NEXT: The All-in-One Sleeping System Will Revolutionize Backcountry Camping [VIDEO]

you might also like

How to Pick a Crossbow That’s Perfect for You [PICS]