How Far Can You Shoot A Deer With A Crossbow

How Far Can You Shoot A Deer With A Crossbow

Like to shoot a deer with a crossbow? But, have no idea how far you can shoot with it?

Obviously, shooting a deer with a crossbow is something different. Watching shooting with a crossbow in TV and handling it in practically is a far different matter.

When shooting with a crossbow, you should have a clear idea about how far you can accurately shoot one and whether your crossbow has enough power to kill the target animal.

Whether you’re a newbie or experienced hunter, you should know the maximum powerful range of your crossbow for deer hunting.

“How far can you shoot a deer with a crossbow?” the answer of this question actually deserves some looking into.

To find the cut and dry answer of this desperately seeking question, just go through our discussion.

Definitely, you’ll be able to find the actual effective range of your crossbow.

A Word About Crossbow

The crossbow was invented in the ancient China, but in the middle age, the Greeks and Romans used it for military purposes. It was an essential weapon in the combat environment all over the world.

But over the last couple of years, the crossbow has upgraded in design as well as functionality. Its sophisticated shape and innovative design make your hunting experience better.

A crossbow, upgraded bow, and arrow features a horizontal bow mounted on a stick. There is a string that pulls back the bolt and shoots with a strength so that it can go faster, fly farther and hit harder.

Crossbow shoots the arrow just like a compound bow arrow. Most of the crossbows feature cable, cams, and wheels.

Latest crossbow is accurate, fast and powerful enough to cleanly take the largest big-game animals. Shooting with a modern crossbow is also a pleasure.

To get the best deer hunting results with other things like its setup and working mechanism, you should know ‘how far can you shoot a deer with a crossbow’ as well.

The Factors That Affect The Hunting Distance Of A Crossbow

When it comes to finding the effective hunting range of your crossbow, many factors influence the technical capabilities of your weapon.

Your question was “how far can you shoot a deer with a crossbow?”, its reply depends on-

  • Hunting techniques and natural conditions
  • The aim of using crossbow- hunting or target practice?
  • The configuration and velocity (FPS) of your crossbow
  • Arrow travel distance

Hunting Techniques And Natural Conditions

You may effectively shoot a six-inch foamed target at 60 yards with your crossbow under controlled condition.

But what about the shots at animals?

Remember, when you aim at an animal, you should not only consider your crossbow and marksmanship ability, but also the inconstant nature and movement of the target.

In a particular natural condition, you may effectively shoot your target. But making the similar shots in a different condition is an entirely different matter.

The Aim of Using Crossbow- Hunting Or Target Practicing?

If you just shoot up into the air where hitting a target isn’t a concern, an arrow of a crossbow having 300+FPS can easily travel 500 yards. Obviously, at this distance, it’s quite impossible to hit the target accurately.

Effective Hunting Range

The average effective hunting range of a 300+ FPS crossbow is usually 50 to 60 yards. Even you can shoot efficiently up to 80 yards and the shoot may be powerful enough to hit medium and even a big animal.

But it is uncertain to shoot with precision and punch the vital organ of the target. So, it’s wise to take the shooting decision from maximum 35 yards away.

This isn’t due to the arrow will miss the target from a further distance, but because of the fact that at this closest distance, it’s certain to land the arrow where it should be. Otherwise, it’ll just wound the deer without killing it and it's not moralistic.

Effective Target Practice Range

An arrow of a 300+ FPS crossbow, for example, can easily punch a compressed foam target from even 180 yards away. But hitting a deer steadily from such a distance is quite impossible.

The Configuration and Velocity (FPS) Of Your Crossbow

How far your arrow will travel depends on the configuration of the crossbow, mostly on the weight of the broad head or shaft.

A weighty arrow comes out of the crossbow at a slow rate than that of a lighter arrow. Although you may be able to hit the target at long distances, the arrow won’t be able to punch enough to give a fatal hit.

Also, think that an arrow may take a second to travel 100 yards and you may have the crosshair needed, but the deer may move when the arrow arrives.

A crossbow is able to shoot arrows between 300 to 400 feet per second (FPS). At slower speed comes the possibility of arrow drop increases.

Arrow Travel Distance

You’ve shot with the highest energy, but the arrow may lose its energy as it travels. Keep in mind that arrow velocity decrease with the increase of distance. Although an arrow is fired from even the most powerful crossbow, it may begin to drop after as little as 30 yards.

An experienced crossbow shooter takes into account anything in the 50-yard range for a long shot, but the beginner should plan to shoot within 30 yards. If you prefer to hunt in wood, you should consider shooting range at 20 to 30 yards. Keep in mind that the under bush and branches of trees naturally cut off your range.

Although, sometimes it’s possible to target long distance, when it comes to hunting an animal like deer, get close to the target and pass a humane kill.

Final Word

When you first asked “how far can you shoot a deer with a crossbow?”, several replies have made you confused. But after going through our discussion definitely you've got a good idea how far you can shoot with your crossbow.

Now, as you know all the factors that may affect your hunting distances, the chances of your hunting success have obviously increased.


Your target is always a quick and humane kill.

Get Out There And Enjoy Yourself!

About the Author Taylor Joana