If you want to have consistent accuracy when you’re out bowhunting for deer then using a bow sight is the way to go. Not only does it make it easier to aim, but your chances of harvesting a deer are much higher than without one.
Some of the newer bow sights, especially ones made by IQ Bowsight, will even be micro adjustable which takes into account the windage and elevation. Having this ability to use micro adjustment will give you the best chance to hit your target dead on.
You will find that companies also make sights for recurve bows, and some have a sight light, or glow in the dark rings to help you place shots with greater accuracy during low light conditions. These will help when you’re already in your anchor point and need to make an accurate shot.
Take some time in the off-season practicing with your bow and sighting in your pins and you’ll be ready to hit the woods come deer season. However, if you’re not sure what to get then take a look at the sights below.
We’ll do a deeper dive on these bow sights below, but first, let’s go over exactly what a bow sight is.
What Is A Bow Sight?
A bow sight is used in archery and is a device that is mounted on your bow and will help you aim the arrow. You look through the peep sight on your bow string and you’ll see the sight pin is much like a bead on the end of a shotgun barrel.
It tells you where your arrow is going to hit the target. You should also take into account the axis adjustment. A third axis adjustment allows you to boost your accuracy for longer shots.
Types of Bow Sights
There are several different types of sight that you can use on a bow. The most popular and effective types are
Fixed Pin Bow Sight
Multi Pen Adjustability
Fixed pins are the most popular. These typically have between 1-9 pins located within the sight. These are going to be set to be accurate from a certain yardage.
5-10 yard splits are the most common. Look for sights that have retina lock technology on them. These will help you correct any issues you may have when shooting.
Many 1 pin sights also use a pendulum sight. Once adjusted the sight will automatically move the pin for shots between 0-40 yards. This is not an effective sight for long range.
You’ll also find that some fixed pin sights will come equipped with an adjustment knob. Meaning you don’t need a tool to adjust sight.
Multi pin adjustable are similar to fixed pin. The difference is that the yardage for these can be adjusted quickly. Typically you’ll have 2-5 pins in your sight all set to shorter yardages for quick shots in the tree stand.
However, if you need to make a further shot you adjust the sight to meet the yardage you need. This way you can have a pin set to 20 and 30 yards, but if a deer shows up at 40 you can efficiently and quickly adjust your sight to meet that yardage.
Digital sights are a relatively new sight technology and are not usually thought of for archery, but are just as effective. These do not have pins, but instead use a projected lite dot that you use to aim.
This gives the hunter the clearest line of sight possible for their shots. Make sure to check your local hunting regulations before heading out into the woods with this though. Some places do not allow for digital sights to be used on bows.
Benefits Of A Bow Sight
Using a bow sight and axis adjustment together not only makes you a more effective bow hunter, but a more ethical one. A bow sight keeps your shots accurate and consistent, which leads to a quicker, cleaner harvest. This also ensures that you have a smaller chance of wounding the animal.
Considerations Before Purchasing A Bow Sight
When purchasing your bow sight you’ll want to make sure you’re getting something with decent durability, because we’ve all dropped a compound bow, or crossbow out of a tree stand.
Which means you’ll be looking for sights that are made of either stainless steel, aluminum. However, there are some lightweight materials out on the market.
When looking at the quality of your sight you’ll first take into account what it’s made of (See above).
Then you’ll need to see how many pins it has, is it tru glo, are the sights easy to adjust when sighting in. These are items that can tell you what kind of quality sight you are getting
Single or Multi Pin
This all depends on the preference of the hunter. A single pin adjustable sight is great because there is less crowding in the sight area which means you have better vision for your shot.
However, some people may not be comfortable adjusting their sight in a stand while a deer approaches.
Multi pin is useful because the hunter knows exactly what each pin is set to and there is no adjusting. However, if you have too many pins in your sight then it creates a smaller field of vision in your sight.
It’s best to head down to your local bow shop and try out both to see what you prefer.
Is It Legal In Your Area
A normal single, or multi pin set up will be legal in most if not all hunting areas in North America, but it’s still best to double check before heading out into the woods.
Digital sights are a different story. Since they are new to the market, many places have not had the opportunity to make them legal, or they don’t feel like they should be legal.
So, if you’re bowhunting with a pin sight then chances are you’ll be fine, but when using a digital sight, it’s best to check your local laws first. No sense in heading out to the woods with an illegal sight and being forced to pay a fine or having your license taken from you for the year.
When looking at durability you’ll need to ensure the sight is made out of solid materials as well who makes it, and how well made it is. A sight could be made out of stainless steel or used aluminum construction, but if it’s been made flimsily then it simply won’t matter.
Adjust some of the pins on the bow, and handle sight before purchasing. You’ll be able to tell how well it’s made and its durability by handling it beforehand.
The actual size of the sight is dependent on the hunter. However, most of the time you would like your sight to be as small and as light while still having an adequate opening to shoot from.
Pin size is similar. The best sights have smaller pins that allow the hunter to have a larger field of vision through the sight while still being able to put the pin exactly where they want on either the deer or the target.
Are Single Pin Sights Good For Deer Hunting
A single pin sight can be effective for deer hunting. It should be taken into account whether it is adjustable or not though.
A non adjustable single pin is only going to be accurate from one distance. Typically that will be a 20-30 yard, so longer distances will be out of the question. However, if it’s adjustable then its just as good as a multi pin sight.
Best Bows Sight Reviews
Now that we’ve dug a little deeper on what a bow sight is and what to look for, let’s take a look at a couple different sights that can help you figure out exactly what you need.
1. Trophy Ridge Volt
A fixed pin sight equipped with fiber optic pins, this trophy ridge volt model is a great bow sight for any level of user. It also is able to be mounted both left and right hand bows. Which means there is no more worrying about whether you purchased the correct side.
If you feel comfortable shooting in low light conditions because the bright fiber optic rings allow you to see exactly what you’re aiming at and the green accent ring gives you a clear view of your sight.
This is also made of the materials as the Ridge reacts, so it is both strong and lightweight.
The most expensive piece of equipment on this list, but it might just be worth it. This might be the best single pin bow sight. It is incredibly accurate and shooters are able to shoot long distances. They’re also reporting accurate shots up to 100 yards during target practice.
Using your rangefinder you’re able to set the dial very quickly to whatever yardage you need. This saves you time and effort if you’re in the stand and the deer are moving in quickly. With a strong enough bow and an experienced shooter, you could take longer shots and be more confident in your shooting and your bow.
This is a 5 pin sight that gives the hunter the ability to have multiple distances set up through their sight. It is also made of Ballistix Copolymer, which means it is just as strong as aluminum while being 24% lighter. Which is great for the hunter who enjoys a light set up.
Along with having a strong, lightweight frame, and having a five pin set up, it’s also equipped with a built in bubble level to make sure your bow is always head straight and steady.
Thanks to the fiber optic pins, the pins are also very bright and allow the hunter to ensure they’ve got their pin on the part of the target they’re aiming for, especially in low light.
The bow also comes equipped with a rheostat light.
There are many great sights for bow hunting, the ones above are a great start but also check out Field Logic IQ, Range Rover bow sight, Trophy Ridge Pursuit, and anything by Garmin.
Having the right bow sight could make the difference between making and missing a shot. Make sure to take some time and figure out exactly what you need for your hunts, as well as what testing out a few different kinds so you need what you’re most comfortable with.