Sunday, 16 June 2013

Raven Shoot Report 15th & 16th June 2013

RavenWith the 3D Nationals Done and dusted Raven was going to be my first shoot and I'd booked in for the 2 days knowing by the end of Sunday I would be either fit or dead. I'm sure they pick the steepest hills for the 2 day shoot. Anyway the weather was promising to be slightly damp and although the rain mostly held off the grass banks were slippery especially the grass by the side of the road as I found out on the Sunday as my car slipped during the day leaving the front wheel off the ground.

So having arrived in plenty of time on Saturday it was time for the usual tea to kick off the day and burger for John before picking up the cards and the off to our starting peg, 24, and time to meet our fellow archers. So today and as it worked the weekend we would be shooting with Ben and Rob two fellow longbow archers and a fun weekend we would have.

dogSo having waited 20 minutes and not hearing the sound of a car horn, the usual start method, the word was passed that we  had started and it was time for the first pot shot of weekend at a sneaky badger hiding in the trees, well I suppose it is a wood, and a 10 to kick off the weekend. As we moved on the light dropped, yes it was only 10:30, as the clouds came over and the trees thickened we took out a pig and then it was time for a dog sniffing a can of food sat in the sun.

A quick 16 and we were wondering if you got extra for the can not that any of us hit the can. Then it was back under the cover of the trees shooting some brown animals in the dim light with a brown background; but that the fun of field archery.

So it was off for a cup of tea and then on to the first hilly part of the course with target 29 and a simple bedded deer before a long uphill at an Ibex and then a little fox before a long mountain lion. Then it was back down the hill with a sneaky pig in a fox hole quickly followed by the rear end of an otter, a standing deer and then a black grouse before a well deserved cheese burger.

Wit the cheese burger filling the correct hole it was back to target 1 and the steep hill climb punctuated by some entertaining shots with a bedded puma and honey badger. Then it was time for target 3 not a good deer for me with the first arrow braking on a stone and the second and third disappearing. Eventually we found the second but it was not until Sunday that the third reappeared.

So with the first breakage of the weekend and one lost arrow it was time to switch some around and that a shot at another long uphill Bobcat and then just for a change a small close pole cat before the Owl with the nice white arrow on its feathers pointing to the kill.

Then it was time for an entertaining shot across the hill at a standing bear. Now this should not have been to bad but as it happened there was a gap in the trees between the pegs and the target and the wind had picked up. So having shot an arrow that looked as though it was well on the way to hitting the target it was suddenly caught by the wind and diverted left.

meercatsOh well at least after this is was time to move downhill with a long shot at a standing stag before zig-zagging along the side of the hill until we met a pair of meercats and time to pick one. Having picked one and shot it, we all shot the one on the right we decided rather than leave the out out we would shoot that as well. With only a large white goat between us and another cup of tea it was a quick shot and time for a drink.

With only 10 targets to go we were on the home stretch and onto the relatively flat section of the Raven course. A quick shot at a bedded fox with a rather large base then onto another bedded deer before a nice long shot at a brown wolf surrounded by brown in the shade of the trees. Interesting target to shoot never mind take a photo of but at least the next was back into the sun as we took a variety of shots up and down the hill before a great downhill shot at a standing buck before the penultimate beaver and a long leaning bear. Fortunately it was the last target of the day because a bounce off it's back meant we were looking for the arrow for a while.

So after an excellent and very entertaining days shooting I had only broken 2 arrows and lost one not to bad I suppose and the score was half decent as well. So time to pack up and head off home for a cold beer and a chilli

Saturdays Reprobates
"Quick we should have put the arrows in the 24 !"Saturday
Arriving on Sunday the weather was looking better than the forecast initially predicted and so I was looking forward to another fun days shooting. So picking up the cards and a cup of tea I noticed I would be shooting with Rob and Ben again with the addition of Bob Miles to our merry crew. This was promising to be another fun packed day although I must say as it turned out my shooting was not up to Saturdays level even if the banter was.

Over night the course layers had been out tweaking the course slightly in places and moving some the targets and I suspect most of the pegs. The inevitable result of this was that some of the shots looked just like Saturdays but were subtly different and enough to cause a miss.

So our first target of the day would be 24 but this time it was a bedded puma before a goat and then a boar instead of the dog and its food. We wound our way through the woods following essentially the same route idly chatting about everything and generally having a laugh trying to work out how the course had changed over night. This was not an issue for Bob because he had not shot on the Saturday and so everything was new.

mountain lionHaving completed the first set of targets it was past the tea hut and onto the first hilly section of the course with a bedded puma and then a mountain lion that had moved slightly before a sneak fox and a long ibex. Heading back down the hill to the tea hut we the pig of a shot at a boar in a pot hole and then the beaver before and longish deer and finally the otter.

With the cheese burger filling the hole it was off to target 1 and the start of the long uphill section of the course with a bedded deer and then onto a honey badger and target 3. Now target 3 had moved slightly or the pegs had and although I missed the first the second was soundly in its rump and I was hoping we would find yesterdays arrow while looking for today's. But alas that was not to be the case it was going to remain hidden until one of our fellow archers found it later in the day.

Hmmm that's moved
So moving on from target 3 it was off up the hill to what should have been an easy sot at a small mountain cat but as it turned out for all of us not as easy as it should have been. Then onto a Bobcat and what was now a sideways owl with no pointer to the kill.

antelopeThe pegs for the Standing bear had moved but fortunately the wind was not present either on Sunday so any straight arrow went straight and so I hit the target with the first. The long downhill was now the big white goat and today it was a 16 before moving back uphill through a deer and onto an antelope and my first and only 24 of the weekend but that was soon to change.

With a boar next and then a single meercat it was time for an extremely long shot at the standing stag and having watched the member of the previous group move through the pegs this was going to be an interesting shot (see below). So up to the red I went and decided it was about "There" and shot it. following the arrow though the air their was the welcome sound of arrow hitting target and a sweet 16. It may have only been a 16 but it was a gnats whiskers away from the 20 and was by far the best shot of the weekend.

So it was time for a celebrator cup of tea but as we were walking past my car Rob chirps up "what have you been doing with the car" as I walk past and it's slipped down the bank raising the front wheel off the ground. Well that could be interesting at the end of the day.

So with only 10 to go we wander through the lower flat section of the wood with a large spider appearing as our first target we quickly move on through the small fox with the large base and what was now a brown walking bear in a very brown part of the wood and oddly the sky had become overcast so difficult to see again.

Finally it was back around to the leaning bear and this time a 10 with no bouncers off the back. So although my score was down on the Saturday it was another thoroughly enjoyable day with some entertaining fellow archers, what you need for a good shoot, on an exceptionally well laid course but we are used to that with the Raven guys.

Best Shot of the Weekend



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