As news of new bowhunting and target archery models continues to flow from manufacturers all across the country, the trend to tailor new bows to smaller-frame shooters – youth and women – appears to be continuing.
That’s highly understandable in both categories given the strong interest in archery spurred on in recent years by such things as NASP (National Archery in the Schools Program), the Summer Olympic games and, of course, the Hunger Games film franchise featuring Katniss Everdeen, the bow-wielding heroine of the films.
And then, of course, there’s often dad and/or granddad lurking in the background as enthusiastic 3-D archery target shooters in the spring and summer months who also chase whitetails and a variety of other big game animals in the fall when hunting seasons roll around.
Because of that, in recent years, well-known companies like Bear Archery have had their Warrior model for young shooters along with Hoyt Archery and its Ruckus compound bow.
For women hunters in recent years, Bowtech Archery has had its flagship ladies’ compound bow, the Eva Shockey Signature Series model designed exclusively for female hunters by the Outdoor Channel television star.
What about this year? Well, while there aren’t dozens of new models being brought to market in the early days of 2017, that doesn’t mean that there is no news to report either.
In fact, in recent days, there are several new bows being talked about – and tried out on the shooting range – at archery shops all across the country.
For starters, Bear Archery (www.beararchery.com) is unveiling a new 2017 edition of the Bear Cruzer RTH model, a bow that is under wraps for the moment but should come with plenty of the legendary company’s top-shelf technology and high-end components.
When it comes out, expect to see a bow with similar draw-weight adjustment abilities and draw length adjustment abilities (from 12 to 30 inches) as compared to the original model. Such features are aimed at allowing a developing bowhunter to have a bow that they can use over a lengthy period of time, in either target model finishes or a camo pattern like Realtree Xtra.
Long known for their commitment to young archers, Diamond Archery (www.diamondarchery.com) continues that course early this year with its improved version of the Diamond Atomic youth bow.
Editor’s Note: See the company’s bow specific website at www.AtomicKids.com.
Not your typical so-called “youth bow” with plastic parts, the Atomic comes with high quality aluminum parts and other top-shelf components. Measuring 24 inches axle-to-axle, the bow weighs in at just 1.9 pounds despite featuring a 6-inch brace height.
With adjustable draw lengths of 12 to 24 inches, the Atomic bow can deliver arrow speeds of up to 191 feet per second (fps) and comes in a variety of color choices including Mossy Oak Break-Up Country. The company’s bow package also comes with an adjustable sight, a capture arrow rest, a tube peep sight, a hip quiver, a black nock and three Arctic arrows.
Perhaps the biggest news splash for this year in either category comes from Mathews (www.mathewsinc.com), which is unveiling the Mathews AVAIL model for women. Weighing in at less than 4 pounds, the bow is 30 inches axle-to-axle, has a 6-inch brace height, features draw range options from 22 to 28 inches and also sports draw weight options up to 60 pounds.
Thanks to its compact yet powerful design – which includes Mathews’ CROSSCENTRIC cam and AVS technology – the AVAIL can deliver arrow speeds up to 320 feet per second while remaining smooth to draw, consistently accurate and delivering powerful downrange energy to the target.
The company offers the AVAIL bow in several finish options including camo patterns like Gore Optifade Elevated II, Under Armour’s Ridge Reaper Barren and Lost Camo XD.
If that’s not enough big news, Mathews is also offering the Mathews STOKE youth model this year, a model that the well-known Wisconsin company says is the most advanced youth model ever created.
Utilizing the same CROSSCENTRIC cam and AVS technology that the AVAIL model uses, the STOKE youth bow measures just over 27 inches axle-to-axle and can deliver arrow speeds of up to 314 feet per second. This gives a smooth, powerful shooting experience for young archers that will work well on the 3-D course during the warmer months and out in the field when the air cools and the leaves change colors.
Coming with the ability to adjust draw lengths from 21 to 27 inches and offering draw weight options of 40, 50 and 60 pounds, Mathews’ founder Matt McPherson is very pleased with his company’s latest creation while celebrating some 25 years in the industry.
“With the high efficiency of the CROSSCENTRIC cam technology, the opportunity to create the highest performing youth bow was right in front of us, and we had to do it,” said McPherson. “This is the finest youth bow archery has ever seen.”
For the Stoke youth model – which weighs 3.78 pounds – Mathews is offering the bow in both black and Lost Camo XD camo finishes.
In either case, whether it’s the Mathews AVAIL model for mom or the Mathews STOKE model for a young archer in the family, the bottom line is that one of the world’s leading bow manufacturers has created quite the industry news splash.
And that’s in delivering a compact, lightweight and yet powerful bow that gives other archers in the family the same high performance and top-of-the-line quality that dear old dad and granddad have been enjoying for a quarter century now.