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Over the coming spring and summer months, this is the perfect time to prep for the hunting season. Take the time during the off-season to get your gear dialed in.

One of the first things on your off-season to-do list should be finishing any necessary changes to your bow or firearm setup. Next, see our other article about getting your boots, backpack and other essentials ready.

When it comes to your bow or rifle setup, here are a few ideas to get you started:

Nail Down Sights, Strings and Optics

If you’re planning to make any significant changes to your bow, rifle or muzzleloader, now is the time to get those things nailed down. If you need a new bow string, sight or scope, we’d recommend getting those installed as soon as possible. That way, you’ll have plenty of time this spring and summer to practice.

New sights and optics are great. But you don’t want to go into a hunt next fall lacking confidence because you didn’t leave yourself enough time to practice. Make these changes early in the year so that you can begin the hunt with total confidence in the setup.

Bullets, Broadheads, Etc.

Next, it will soon be time to make decisions on the bullets or broadheads you will use this fall. Again, the last thing you want to do is rush these items before your first hunting trip in the fall. Don’t procrastinate on this one.

If you’re planning to use a new rifle bullet or projectile for your muzzleloader, those are things that require repetition and practice to gain confidence. If you are considering hunting with muzzleloaders, take a shooting course or consider the long-range muzzleloader offered by companies like Best of the West. If you were hoping to experiment with new rounds, do that now so that you can make a final decision with enough time before the season to practice.

The same goes for your archery setup. If you’ll be changing arrows, inserts, nocks or broadheads this season, start this process during the off-season. Get it dialed so that in the final months before your hunt, you can practice, practice, practice.

Off-Season Shopping for Bipods, Rangefinders and other Accessories

Lastly, don’t forget about the accessories. Not only do you need to practice with the broadheads or bullets you plan to use on your hunt this fall, but you should also be practicing with any final accessory items.

Using shooting sticks or a bipod in the field can be a big help – but only if it’s second nature. Never go into a hunt without having practiced with these types of items. The seconds it takes to get your bipod set up for a shot might be your best opportunity. If you’re messing around with the legs because you forgot to practice, you’ll kick yourself later on.

The same goes for your rangefinder, sling and anything else you plan to use. Take the time during the off-season and take them to the range with you, take them on hikes, and get used to using them. Never ever underestimate off-season practice. Will you be ready for the opportunity when it presents itself?

Contact Us With Questions

The off-season is a great time to talk with us about your hunt. You can also check out our videos for gear break-downs and important clothing recommendations for the different seasons and weather. If you’d like to learn more about our guided hunts in New Mexico, please take a few minutes to explore the rest of the website.


If you have questions about an upcoming hunt and how to prepare, feel free to contact us. We look forward to helping make it a memorable experience!