Hunting stores seeing more crossbow interest as new season approachesSubmitted: 08/19/2014
Story By Adam Fox

NORTHWOODS - More hunters will get to use crossbows than in previous years during the upcoming bow season.

The Natural Resource Board approved the new season last week. It will run at the same time as the archery season, which runs from Sept. 13 - Jan. 4, 2015.

Businesses are seeing more people looking at crossbows as the season approaches.

"We've seen a definite spike in interest in this past year, and especially more now with the season in place for the fall," says Mitch Mode of Mel's Trading Post in Rhinelander.

Before the board's approval of this new season, only hunters with disabilities and people 65 or older could hunt with a crossbow. Those groups can still hunt with crossbows. They'll only need to get a crossbow license.

The new season also allows anyone legally old enough and physically able to use a crossbow.

"It's a very efficient way to shoot an arrow," Mode said. "The arrow doesn't drop as much. Its accuracy is improved, and power delivered to the arrow is significantly increased over the compound--and of course way over the traditional bows."

Hunters must get a crossbow hunting license, which includes a statewide buck tag and a Farmland Zone antlerless tag. If you have a gun license, you can also use a crossbow during that season.

Mode believes the increased crossbow usage will mean more hunting time for people who might only hunt during the deer gun season.

"But for those folks who want to hunt--and there are a lot of them--a crossbow gives them a nice option that they can extend the season from maybe just rifle season to going and doing crossbow during archery season and have a much longer season," Mode said.

If you are looking at a crossbow, Mode says you want to get a crossbow that you are comfortable holding.

"They can get a little bit weighty at times. Get a crossbow, learn how to use it, pay attention to the instructions and practice with it," Mode said.

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