Anyone who plans to hunt big game with an atlatl needs to consider several important things in preparation for the hunt.
A large part of a successful hunt is good preparation.
You will need to do at least the following to prepare properly:
- Find a venue where you can hunt legally and with permission.
- Obtain darts that are the proper dimensions for the game you intend to kill. Make sure you have enough darts so that when you break or loose them you have plenty of replacements. Bring replacement parts and repair equipment.
- Choose an atlatl that works well with your darts. Remember on most hunts you will need to hold your darts ready for long periods of time. If holding your dart in the ready position causes cramping or stiffness in your hand you will need to take steps to correct this.
- Select or make dart points that are legal for the venue you plan to hunt and make sure that they are properly sharpened. Some states and localities require certain sizes or shapes of points.
- Allow yourself ample time and space to prepare yourself physically and mentally. You need meaningful practice at the various distances and elevations that you will encounter on your hunt. A few shots at a beer can after a two day road trip will not be enough. Practice at home for months and when you get to your location give yourself a chance to warm up by taking several shots. Keep your muscles ready by devising exercises you can do that do not call attention to your location. I use isometric exercises while sitting in my tree stand to help keep me ready to shoot.
- Gather together the accessories you will need on your hunt and make sure everything is working properly.
- Select your hunting partners well. Nothing spoils a hunt worse than having hunters with you who don’t share your values and morals.
- Make good plans with your hunting comrades so you know where they are and what to do in various circumstances. When certain circumstances arise be ready to react. You never know what is going to happen during a hunt but you can anticipate various scenarios such as what to do when someone makes a hit.
I will work on this more. This is part of an atlatl hunting book I am writing.