Archery Antelope Hunting is a true test of a bowman’s skills, with 10x Vision and land speeds of up to 65 mph, getting into bow range can prove challenging for even the most skilled archery hunter. Be prepared to sweat, dodge rattlesnakes and potentially shoot a long ways if you hope to wrap your tag around one of the most unique animals in North America. I have been lucky enough to take three antelope with my bow and have had a lot emotional highs and lows over the years on these hunts. Here are my tips for you if you are one of the lucky ones that gets to chase this unique animal this fall!
Hunt All Day
Pronghorn tend to reside in open areas where they can use their vision and speed as an asset to protect themselves from predators. While this makes stalking into bow range difficult, it also makes them easier to spot during all times of the day when other game like deer or elk will be tucked into thicker cover. While it can sometimes seem futile, every stalk is a possible opportunity for that one chance you need. Stay after it!
Sit Water During the Middle of The Day
With the hot temperatures during archery season and the high activity of the bucks during the rut, bucks need to hit water frequently. It is not uncommon to see bucks running from one end of the landscape to the other chasing off bucks from their does or trying to steal a rival buck’s does. Sitting water can be one of the most effective ways to harvest an antelope with your bow, be prepared to sweat it out in the blind. Be alert as the bucks can appear out of nowhere, the middle of the day is as good or better than any other time of the day so don’t skip it. Be sure to check your blind for snakes before climbing in!
Pull out All of the Stops
I would recommend trying a multitude of tactics, we have had success and failures using decoys. It seems like sometimes they run at first sight of the decoy, however, in 2013 my father shot his antelope after the buck charged his bow mounted decoy and stopped at 40 yards. I also shot one of my Antelope at 11 yards using good wind, the lay of the land and a Moo Cow Decoy that my dad was walking in front of me with. I have used knee pads to try and crawl into open terrain which once allowed me a longer shot that I missed.
Confidence With Your Bow
Like any bow hunt, being proficient & confident with your bow is extremely important. Antelope are quite a bit smaller than a Mule Deer or Elk, and there is a good chance you will have to take a farther shot. Practice your longer distance shots with broadheads and ensure your arrows are flying true. My thought over the years is that on an Archery Big Game Hunt, I am lucky to get one shot opportunity, I better make it count!
If you are one of the lucky ones hunting Antelope this year I wish you luck, at times it can feel impossible but the taste of success is that much sweeter when you finally connect.
Ross Outdoors Owner