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Reasons you should Bowhunt at Eye Level

By Tracy Breen

 

The majority of whitetail bowhunters hunt from a treestand. However, in the last few years, more companies have introduced ground blinds that are perfect for bowhunters.  Below are three reasons every bowhunter should consider hunting whitetails from the ground this fall.


* Modern day ground blinds don’t spook deer.  The Redneck Bale Blind, the Shack Attack form Double Bull and many others blend in perfectly with their surroundings.  I have placed ground blinds out and have deer walking by them the same day.  If you don’t like climbing into tree-stands, don’t like the extreme cold or are taking a youngster hunting, ground blinds are a great option.


* I enjoy hunting from a ground blind because ground blinds allow me to hunt in areas I would otherwise have to ignore.  In many areas of the country, finding a good tree to hang a tree-stand in can be difficult.  Sometimes I am hunting close to a bedding area and I want to slip in and out quietly.  Hunting from a ground blind is the easiest way to do that.  There are times where I need to hunt in the middle of a field where a buck is routinely seen traveling from one area to another.  A ground blind is a great option for this type of hunt.


* Filming a hunt out of a ground blind is much more enjoyable than filming from a treestand.  Filming at buck at 20 yards on the ground is exciting and can provide awesome footage.  When you film from a ground blind, you can easily move around and move your camera and tripod around without getting busted.  Filming from a tree is often complicated.  When filming from a ground blind, getting all your gear set up quickly is simple.


If you plan to hunt from a ground blind this fall, check out the Fourth Arrow Camera Arm Rex Arm.  This simple tripod arm allows you to rotate your camera 360 degrees while on a tripod.  This makes filming from a blind much easier because you don’t have to pick up your tripod while the camera is attached and move it to get the best filming angle.   Simply rotate the Rex Arm and you can get great footage without moving or making noise.


Hunting deer from a ground blind can be extremely fun and rewarding.  Try it this fall!

Why Fourth Arrow Camera Arms

After years of videoing hunts and general videography, a team sat down to start Fourth Arrow and one of the first innovations was reinventing the hunting film industry. The goal was simple: Begin the brand by creating three simple points of perfection that trumped every current arm system out there.
Why:
  

 •    Lightweight. Is there a reason a camera arm needs to be the same weight as your average boat anchor?
    

•    Removable and Affordable Base system. Why does an extra camera base cost $100? Can’t we have something affordable enough to install in every stand location we have?
    

•    Range of adjustment for virtually any tree-stand situation. Why do we have to pick the perfect tree to hang a camera arm? Why can’t the arm accommodate to any situation, tree, or branch that I want to hunt in?


After reviewing these questions, we answered all of them! It took us months of perfection and testing. It was a journey to team up with some of the best brands and productions in the industry to earn their trust and confidence in Fourth Arrow.

Four Archery Tips with Levi Morgan

 

By Tracy Breen

 

In the sport of tournament archery, few archers are as accomplished as Mathews Archery pro Levi Morgan. Morgan makes his living shooting his bow and has won countless professional archery titles. He has a very popular TV show called Bow Life TV. Every year on the line and in the field, Morgan has to repeatedly hit the mark while under an enormous amount of pressure. Most bowhunters I know, including myself, are always looking for ways to become better archers and bowhunters. Below Levi Morgan provides some great archery tips about how a person can shrink their group and put more meat in the freezer.

    1.    To be a top notch archer, your equipment must be fine tuned. Morgan believes this is something many bowhunters overlook. “You are only as good as your equipment allows. If you want to be a great archer, you need to learn how to tune your own bow or find a trustworthy pro shop that can do it for you.  If a bow isn’t tuned properly, you won’t shoot as well as you could if the bow was dialed in,” Morgan explained.


    2.    If you are a hardcore bowhunter, you recognize that to be successful in the field, you need to be able to hit your mark. One way to fill more tags is by extending your range. “Many bowhunters will say that they don’t want to take a shot in the field past 30 yards so they only practice out to 30 yards. When a buck is standing at 30 yards, the hunter often gets nervous because the deer is at the greatest distance they practice at. All bowhunters should practice well beyond what they would shoot a deer at. Practice at 70 or 80 yards. If a person can shoot a pie plate at 80 yards, their confidence will be up and a 30 yard shot will be a shot they are confident they can make,” Morgan advised.


    3.    When shooting at extreme ranges like 80 yards, an arrow must be tuned perfectly. “I use Swhacker Broadheads. I like mechanical heads because they are easy to tune and they fly like darts.  If a person is going to use a fixed blade, they should practice with the heads at great distances so they are confident in the field with them,” Morgan added.


    4.    One of the major reasons most bowhunters go home empty-handed is because they get buck fever and fold from the pressure. Morgan knows all about pressure. When he is filming a hunt, he is under a lot of pressure. When he is shooting in a tournament, a lot of money is on the line and many people are watching. Over the years, he has had to learn how to deal with being under intense pressure. “I think the key to dealing with pressure is having a mental checklist every time you draw the bow. I have a checklist that I go through in my head when I draw and focus on the target. When my checklist is complete, I shoot. I am not thinking about the big buck standing in front of me or all the people watching me. I am checking off my list. By focusing on my list and not on the high pressure situation, I am able to make the shot,” Morgan noted.


Being a top notch archer and bowhunter requires time and effort. Morgan believes archers starting out should try to practice 30 minutes a day almost daily. Seasoned veterans should practice several times a week. They key to success, whether a person is shooting in a tournament or the woods, boils down to practice and being able to consistently make good shots so when the moment of truth arrives, the body and the mind know exactly what to do.

Eight Best Gifts for an Avid Bowhunter

As I am writing this Fathers day is a mere three days away, but I know this topic is relevant to many other holidays as well. How do I know? Because from Black Friday through December 22 of every year my phone explodes with frantic texts from my hunting buddy’s family inquiring about what hunting gear my friends might need. So without farther adieu: The eight best gift ideas for bowhunters.
 
    1.    Broadheads. As a bow hunter, you’re always going to need broadheads. These are one of those things that you can never really have too many of. The only problem with us bowhunters is that we can be awfully picky about our gear, so buying broadheads as a gift may require a little snooping. Find his bow case and snap a picture of the broadhead in his quiver. Bring it to a local store and have them identify it. A three pack of those heads will be a much appreciated gift and should run between $35 and $45.



    2.    Wind Indicator. Unless your loved one exclusively bowhunts turkeys, wind plays a large roll in each and every hunting trip, making it a pretty safe gift idea. Monitoring the wind is absolutely critical. It’s hard to go wrong with the $30 Wyndscent Grenade



    3.    Trail Cameras. Yet another one of those things that is hard to have too many of. Trail cameras can be used year round for monitoring deer and other game. In fact, your loved one has probably over enthusiastically shown you pictures of a deer from one of these trail cameras and had a hard time wiping the smile off his face. These run anywhere from $69 to $300, depending on brand. I suggest going with the bulletproof warranty of a Lift from Exodus Outdoor Gear



    4.    Subscription to a Mobile Scouting App. Now this one is a little less tangible, but incredibly valuable, especially if he loves DIY Public land hunts or is always looking for new land to hunt. An app like this should show property lines, weather, and predict the best time to hit the woods. An added bonus, It helps to keep him safe as it doubles as a GPS in case he gets lost. My personal favorite is Huntwise.



    5.    A Camera Arm. A lot of hunters have the desire to film their hunts. Filming requires a camera arm to keep the camera steady while the hunter focuses on the shot. Packability, Adjustability, and Affordability are all qualities to look for.  If your favorite bowhunter has mentioned filming hunts in the past than a camera arm may be the perfect gift idea! The industry standard is the Fourth Arrow Stiff Arm.



    6.    A Good Target.  Deer hunting may only last for a couple of months, but as you probably know, we shoot our bows year round. Having a solid target to shoot increases our confidence and helps relieve some stress as well. There are many great options out there, but a bag target from Morrell is among my favorites.



    7.    Treestand. Depending on his hunting style you can always get him a good treestand. If he is a public land hunter he will likely want a hang on stand or a climber. If he hunts the same core property frequently a nice ladder stand is hard to beat. Prices vary, but I’d budget between $90 to $250 for a nice stand. If you’re looking for the best, Lone Wolf will have you covered.



    8.    Ozone Go– With every gas station or lunch stop comes unwanted scent. Deer and most other game will flee at the faintest whiff of any human smell or any smell they associate with humans. The Ozone go is an on-the-go ozone generator that aids in eliminating those unwanted odors! Get yours from Scent Crusher!


Now you have it! Some of the best gifts to get your favorite hunter for any holiday! If you’re a bowhunter yourself feel free to leave a comment adding another product that you’d love to open on your Birthday/Fathers Day/ or Christmas. If you’re feeling particularly straightforward you can even send your significant other the link to this article! If you’re shopping for a bowhunter…Congratulations on finding that perfect gift your hunter will enjoy for years to come!

Five Tools and Tips for Editing Hunts with Nick Ventura

 

Although I have spent some time editing hunts I am well aware my current level of expertise is extremely limited. I plan to gain more skills and tactics by attending a Filmthehunt.com editing school this summer but wanted to first hop on the phone with the Film The Hunt’s co-founder, Nick Ventura to learn a little bit about the fundamentals of video editing- specifically as it relates to editing hunts. He was more than willing to let me share some of my main takeaways with the Fourth Arrow community.

 

Color Correction & Color Grading

 

In order to understand how to color grade and color correct footage you need to know what each term means.
Color correction is tweaking the exposure and white balance, Color grading means adjusting saturation, contrast, and color schemes to achieve the ideal tone for the film. Nick elaborates, saying “The important part is that you go in and correct that scene first, and then go ahead and grade it to set the tone.” Examples of how color grading can impact your footage can be found here:

 

Setting a Tone

 

Now what is the tone of a video? Well in each video you need to identify the mood. You wouldn’t want to have a happy scene with dark colors- that will only confuse the viewer.  Nick often looks at the film, identifies the mood, and color grades the footage to reflect it.  “If we’re trying to bring out drama then we may add some more blues to the shadows to trick the individual into thinking it’s a very dramatic scene. If it’s a happy scene, we may try to warm it up. Each scene and project deserves different color treatment”.

 

Nick referenced an episode of The Life where Matt Kline of Exodus Trail Cameras shot a big buck and the team was unable to recover it. “In the beginning the colors were warm, he shot the buck, and was pumped up! But over the course of the next two minutes when they started looking for the buck the footage progressively got desaturated and the colors got a little cooler. The goal is to have the video depict the emotions felt at that moment.”

 

“Having two different color schemes can farther differentiate two settings.” Nick adds. “When referencing footage from the past the editor can make that footage cooler and less saturated than “real time”  footage. Subliminally, your viewer will start to see that color scheme and identify it as a flashback without the need for a lower third overlay.”

 

In the Field Audio

 

The biggest thing with audio is eliminating unnecessary and distracting noises without distorting the sound. There are many features in different programs that help to remove noise. You also want to avoid “peaking”. “When it comes to audio we try to run a minimum of one wireless mic in addition to our shotgun mic. One is directional and records the deer while the wireless records the It really separates the beginners from the professionals.” Nick adds.

 

Dig Deeper Musically

 

Audio from the hunt is extremely important, but music (or lack of) can really aid in setting the tone of your film. When it comes to music there are many affordable options. Nick suggests audiojungle, premium beat, and audiomicro as decent sources, but the key is to dig deeper. Avoid the best sellers or trending tracks like the plague, as many others have likely used them in the past. Look into old tracks or do what Nick suggests and have one of your musically inclined friends put together some tracks- You will have more control of these and can be confident nobody else can use that track in their production.

 

Transitions

 

So you know what tone you want your footage to have and you have selected some music and audio is under control, but how are you going to piece it all together? You can utilize transitions or incorporate jump cuts, or simply put, no transition at all. According to Nick, the three safest transitions include Fade to black, Fade to white, and Cross dissolve. While these can certainly be overused, they provide a non-intrusive way to tie clips together when a jump cut simply doesn’t flow smoothly. Nick notes that audio needs transitions as well, you don’t want your music to end or start abruptly, fade it out and fade it in for a less obtrusive effect.

 

So there you have it! Some of the Do’s and Don’ts of video editing! If you’re interested in learning more check out some of the resources Film The Hunt offers. They hold both online and seated education programs from beginners to advanced editors! Happy Hunting and good luck editing hunts!

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