How to Buy a Hunting Crossbow

Buying a Crossbow With Scope
As crossbow hunting increases in popularity, so does the quality and available features of today’s hunting crossbows. Not surprisingly, crossbow hunters often want to buy the biggest and best crossbow without really considering their needs. Many hunters need to be reminded that it is important to select the right hunting crossbow for the individual hunter. Before buying a new hunting crossbow, hunters should answer the following basic questions; What?, How?, and Who?


The “what?” question refers to the type of game you will be hunting. If you are hunting bear you will need a more powerful crossbow than if you are hunting rabbit. Make sure to choose a crossbow with a speed and power consistent with the game you are hunting.

The “how?” question asks what type of hunting you will be doing. Will you be chasing Elk for miles a day or do you plan on letting the game come to you? Be sure that you can carry the crossbow you select on your daily hikes. A few pounds difference in a hunting crossbow can make a big difference on a five mile hike.

The “who?” question asks about the hunter that is buying the crossbow. What is your frame size and strength? What size bow can you draw? Again, the biggest crossbow does not make sense for all hunters. You need to be able to comfortable draw and handle your chosen crossbow. I recommend trying a variety of crossbow sizes before making a purchase.

Crossbow Features
Basic features that set hunting crossbow’s apart are draw weight, physical dimensions of the bow, speed, crossbow style, etc. Today’s crossbows also have a variety of additional features that are available to the crossbow hunter. With so many options, buying a hunting crossbow can be intimidating for hunters that don’t know what they are looking for. Also, certain features such as the scope type can drive up the price of the crossbow significantly.

Before you begin your crossbow search, make sure you have set a budget for yourself. This is important to do so that you don’t allow yourself to get talked into features that you don’t need. Don’t worry if you can’t afford all of the features you want for your bow initially. One nice aspect of quality crossbows is that many of the features are interchangeable. You can always upgrade your equipment in the future when it is feasible financially.

As an example, you can typically use a variety of scopes with your hunting crossbow. Red dot scopes, which are usually accurate at distances of 40 yards or less, are popular with today’s hunters. However, Crosshair or multiple-reticle scopes are also available for the hunter that prefers something similar to a rifle scope.

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