Bow Hunting In The Rain Yes or No?

Fall leaf in the rain

Bow Hunting In The Rain

Are You A “Diehard” Or A “Fair Weather” Kind Of Hunter

Of course  bow hunting in the rain is completely your decision.  Well, unless you are a macho guy with a big ego, then you must go, it IS a manly man written rule. Now me, yes, I did it. As I like to put it: I paid my dues.  Actually that would be something the Hubby made sure I did many many years ago, but that’s a story for another day.

Bow Hunting In The Rain

OK, some people are absolute die hards and will hunt no matter what the conditions are. The Hubby used to be like that, he is a just a little more lenient in is older age. Now the Redneck, he was out this afternoon. In case you didn’t know, at the time I am writing this Hurricane Joaquin is just out to sea here on the east coast of the USA. It was suppose to hit the states just below us, so the weather isn’t nearly as bad as it would of been, though by the shore there is a lot of flooding. Here in New Jersey, we live just minutes from Pennsylvania. Still, it’s been raining for days now and today there is more wind than rain. Now how does that affect bow hunting deer? Well that’s where opinions come in, and there will be many, but I’m writing this so mine is the most important. So I say IT SUCKS!

Paying Your Dues?

As I stated earlier, I paid my dues. I hunted and fished bass tournaments in the worst of weather: torrential downpours, freezing rain, snow, seriously ugly temperatures. And guess what?  One day, not long after having knee surgery and it didn’t quite want to bend, I sat in an extremely high deer stand while freezing rain caked me and the stand with ice. My feet were so cold they hurt like holy hell and I was barely even able to walk. Getting out of the stand, with my bum leg, frozen feet and hands, and everything coated in ice was quite an AH HA moment. All of a sudden it was very VERY clear to me, I was NOT having fun. NOPE. NONE. NADA. Oh yeah, I didn’t see a damn thing either. Even the annoying squirrels were smart enough to stay inside and I have no doubt they were snickering at me the whole time. So like I said, bow hunting in the rain sucks!

Bow Hunting In The Rain, It’s Not Really That Bad

OK, so that was a bit of an extreme scenario I shared. I also hunted many a rainy days where wearing the correct bow hunting clothing made for not such a bad day. But, there are still many different issues that you need to keep in mind when hunting in the rain. The deer might sit tight, especially if it is also windy. The noise from the rain leaves their hearing vulnerable  and the wind can wreak havoc on the ability to pin point any threats by smell. Then throw in, if you actually got a deer, following a blood trail in the rain… So now that you’re out there playing in the rain, you need some rain gear. How much money you want to spend on hunting clothes is almost as important as how much you spend on your bow, arrows and broadheads.

Walmart or 5th Avenue?

I’m not saying you have to buy the most expensive stuff out there. Some things, like bow hunting accessories, can be had without breaking the bank and still last for years. I still have my original “fingers” from 28 years ago when I first started. What are they? Just a simple leather covering for my 3 middle fingertips of my left hand for pulling back the string on my bow. Another cheap item: an arm guard for those days, when practice shooting, and you bend your wrist instead of keeping it straight when you release the string. OUCH would be a very polite way of explaining the pain that is inflicted on your forearm, OH and then the colors, such pretty pretty colors come next. But still, you remember to wear your $5 arm guard and you will be good to go!

20+ years ago: The day I decided I was not having fun freezing my butt off hunting in miserable weather, nobody has come home with a deer yet……just saying.


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  1. Trish

    Hello Donna, I really enjoyed this information. Your page layout is nicely done. Very nice easy to read content. I myself am not a hunter but i do love to go fishing. It sounds like the weather is important when hunting with bow. Also having the right accessories is important as well. Thanks for sharing this information.


  2. Vincent


    I was browsing the web for some info on bow hunting and came across your website. Awesome stuff you have hear. Do you think you can hunt down more when the weather is bad? Because of the possibility they will keep still. I’m still a complete newbie to bow hunting so any tip would work 🙂

    Thanks in advance,

    1. admin

      Hey Vincent!

      For deer hunting I prefer bow season the best: there are less hunters out and being the “first season” the deer are at the most natural patterns. The longer deer hunting progresses the more the deer are apt to change their habits as they become more and more aware of YOUR patterns. Though keep in mind I live in New Jersey and do not have quite the big open woods/spaces as other places.

      To answer your question: my opinion would be Yes & No.

      Yes if you are referring to “still hunting”, the practice of hunting on foot going extremely slow, just enough to move but not enough to draw any attention to yourself, you might be lucky enough to sneak up on them. And that would be for all the reasons I would say No if you’were to be in a tree stand. In bad weather it makes it harder for the deer to use their senses to alert them to any danger, hence why they tend to sit tight till it passes. That is short answer version. Keep stopping by for more tips, last year I started looking into “How Barometric Pressure Affects Deer”, but will be for another day!

  3. Tijmen

    Awesome article! I have been shooting bows for a while now. In my country ( the netherlands) the weather is often very bad… Now I was wondering… Is there any special gear you need when hunting in the rain? Can it ruin my bow?

    Greets tijmen

    1. admin

      Your equipment should be fine. Just let everything air dry before putting away. In other words don’t just throw your wet bow and arrows in your case. It would be the same theory as when I tell “Manboy” to hang up the towels he uses after a shower so that they don’t become piles of nasty, dank, moldy smelling science experiments. For clothing: Rain gear. Anything that is water proof. Depending on where you live,the temperature will play a role in cost. Here in Jersey it is usually pretty mild for bow season in the beginning, so something light weight is more comfortable. Something wit Gortex is a good call. Also, shoot for gear that is “windproof”, the difference is warmth is crazy!!


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