Forget your survival fishing kit, or okay, don’t throw it away, after all it’s probably pretty small, cheap and easy to store, but I’d like you to consider getting a bow to add to your survival cache. Why? Well, I’ve a few reasons that I think they’re a better long term survival choice and I’m going to share them with you here.
Firstly let’s have a theoretical stand off between 2 people in a survival situation. One has a fishing rod and the other has a bow and arrow, I’m pretty sure I know which one I’m going to put my money on. Enough said, a bow is hands down a better choice for defense than a fishing rod!
Hunting vs fishing
When you fish you can catch fish. In a survival situation you probably aren’t going to have a harpoon handy or any seriously strong line and anchor point for hauling in big catches so anything larger than an average fish is probably out of the question. Now with a bow you can also fish, it’s called bowfishing and it’s a common practice nowadays in countries that don’t ban bows for hunting. With a bow you can’t just catch that average fish, but you can shoot freshwater and saltwater fish, alligators, eels, sharks, basically you name it, if it swims into the shallows and doesn’t have a hard shell it’s game for a bow fisherman.
Nearly all modern bows such as the Martin Jaguar Elite pictured here come with the fitments you need to attach bowfishing reels.
Oops, sorry I’m forgetting a major major point here, I can’t just hunt fish with a bow, I can hunt anything, deer, small game, birds, you name it. Unless you get inventive with your fishing line I’m pretty sure you’re stuck with just fishing with a fishing rod.
Do it yourself
Let’s say we both have some string, something you could use for fishing line and/or use for bowstring. Give me 30 minutes and a knife and I could fashion a rudimentary bow and pointed arrows from wood lying around. Yep, you say, but I don’t NEED any of that with a fishing kit, well that may be true but you’ll have a harder time replacing your barbed metal hooks with something you make yourself but I can make sharpened sticks to use as an arrow very quickly and easily.
Fishing is boring
If you’re a fisherman, then I’m sorry but our opinions on fishing differ. Nothing would seem less enticing to me than sitting waiting for a fish to bite, I know it’s supposed to be relaxing and passive and calming and all that, but come on we’re in a survival situation here actively hunting a fish in the shallows with a bow, now that’s fun and it’s also going to improve my bowmanship the more I do it.
Bowfishing is quick
If you’re good at it and you find a source of fish or some other game in the shallows you can wade into the water with your bow and shoot a fish within minutes, you can opportunistically fish, you won’t have to sit around and wait for them to take your bait, bowfishing can be a quick way to get fed.
Ever heard of a bow-drill? Well a bow drill is one of the most basic and easy to use methods of making fire. You take a pointed stick and wrap the string of a bow around it and use the bow to push and pull rotating the stick with greater speed than you could ever achieve by simply rubbing it. This heats the top of the stick to smoldering point and catches the tinder alight. You’ve seen or read about people rubbing 2 sticks together to make fire, well a bow drill is just one step up and with a bow and arrow handy already you have nearly everything you need already. Not so with a fishing rod.
So I can make arrows, and I can make a bow, I can make fire, I can enjoy hunting lots of different types of game. I could, at a push, fashion a grapple arrow to help me with climbing. There’s lots you can do with a bow. Hopefully I’ve made some valid points in this article, if you agree please, take a look at archery, nowadays there are many many different types of bows available from folding survival bows to compound bows, bows are easy to get hold of in nearly every country and archery is a sport still practiced in a ‘club near you’. Learn how to shoot and you’ll find yourself a better prepared than you were before.
This was a guest post by target crazy!