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Ah yes the age old question. The answer is you should shoot the distance it is to the target with no adjustment. Your form in shooting from a tree is very important. After much debate and trail and error I believe it boils down to bending at the waist. When you practice on the ground the arrow is naturally at a 90 degree angle from your body.
When you are up a tree and shooting down it is vital that you keep that form by bending at the waist and not lowering your bow with your arms.

Practice this by drawing to level in the tree and bend your waist to the target.

Shot placement on the deer is best learned by shooting at a 3D target from a tree. You can then see how the arrow will penatrate throught the deer. different angles require different placement to cross through the vitals. You will aim at a higher point on a down shot but only because of the arrow travel throught the deer.
 

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thats why i asked how far to the target.20yrds is 20yrds.

That I agree with.

If you measure from the base of your tree out 20 yards to a spot a deer is standing you should shoot the 20 yard pin dead on no matter what the angle.
If you climb 20 feet up a tree shooting the same spot point to point on the ground will be longer but the effect of gravity on the arrow is still based on the horizontal plane of 20 yards instead of the 23 yards point to point or whatever it actually is. Arrow drop is based on the horizontal plane not the vertical plane. If it is 20 yards straight accross and your shooting a severe angle down where the actual distance may be 30 yards you would still shoot the 20 yard pin.

When using a range finder you should mark your yardage from either from the base of the tree or from the stand straight out in front of you to a tree at the same level, not to the ground.

Where you aim is a different matter, assuming you want all shots to be a double lunger you have to adjust the aim point accordingly. Just as you have to move your aim point back as the deer quarters away you have to move the aim point up the deer as the angle increases to pass through both lungs.
 

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If you're 20' up you'll generally hit high from your aiming point at a moderately steep angle. Same when shooting up at steep angles you'll generally hit low. Alot of range finders now days have that compensation built in. I use one all the time now.

If you use the range finder from the tree to the ground you will hit high because it's telling you the distace on angle to the target not the stright line distance.
 

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I love this debate. In Bruce's example assuming you had a 13 yard pin and a 15 yard pin you would shoot the 13 yard pin.

The actual distance does not matter. It is the distance from the base of the tree to the deer that matters. Not the hunter 15 feet up the tree to the deer. The force of gravity will only effect the arrow for 13 yards.

The reason is in the physics of gravity. Only the distance on a level bubble will determine how much an arrow drops from the force of gravity. that is why people say you have to aim low on a shot from 20 feet up a tree.

The range finders that compensate for the hieght is compensating the difference in the distance on the diagonal line and the distance on the horizontal line.
 

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For more information on this subject check out youtube.com Michael Waddell's comercial with a rangefinder and bow shots. Michael shows a target at 32 yds with his new compensating rangefinder but shoots it like a 25 yd shot. I'm will admit I'm getting confused some on this. I sight in my bow from the ground at known distances then set my pins. Climbing into a 16" ladder stand changes the shot angle/distance into the vitals slightly which requires a mental adjustment for arrow placement. There's no question that the higher you go the more drastic the shot angle becomes and the need to hold lower on the body or you will shoot over it. How these adjustments are made is the subject of ther debate. I will look and learn!

If you messure your distance from the base of the tree there is no adjustment to make.
 

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I hate to get technical but....... The arrow drop, shooting from an elevated position at a downward angle, wouldn't be as much as from a true level position. It's physics. Gravity doesn't have the same effect when shooting downward. The steeper the shot gets, the less drop you'll have over the same distance, thus you shoot high. The reverse is true shooting at an upward angle. Has anyone ever tried shooting straight down? Put a target at a very steep angle under you and see what kind of groups you get. It will suprise you. An arrow shot using a 20 yard pin at a target 20 yards away from an elevated position will hit differently than an arrow shot using a 20 yard pin at a target 20 yards away on level ground.
I couldn't disagree more. The effect of gravity is the same whether shooting straight out or down. It is physics, gravity is constant and will have the same effect reguardless of the angle.
 

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shouthern man that long post... What????
Buckshot thats the old way, pre arc range finders, and it works just about right or you can range a tree level out from your stand for the same number.
Now keep this in mind, only to muddy the waters more, I'm 30 ft up a tree shooting at a deer 30 ft below, in elevation, the base of my stand out on a level line from the base of the stand 30 yards. Bruce i'm sure has hunted hillsides like this, that makes you 60 ft above the deer but 30 yards out. This is where that compensating range finder comes in handy.

No doubt that the compensating range finder would be an asset. As odd as it seems if you know the level line distance out is 30 yards you shoot the 30 yard pin.
 

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this is one of those subjects that can easily cause debate but I know between the bunch of us, ONE of us would get that deer.
And I'll have you guys know I would be willing to share my venison. :w00t: LOL just kidding guys

It might sound like one of the quota hunts I used to go on where there were arrows bouncing of trees in every direction and no dead deer.:biggrin:
 

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So, if I am understanding correctly, if I am 20 feet up a tree and range a deer at 30 yards with my range finder, (pre arch function), it's not really 30 yards? It's a strait line, how could it not be accurate? I think the arch theory is true at long distances, say 300 or 400 yards, but not 20 to 40 yards.
It is accurate. The question is where you should messure from. I say to be accurate on your shot you should messure 20 feet up a tree next to the deer because the diaganal line to the deer will be longer. The longer the distance the more exagerated the difference.
 

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Okay, I went out and set up my 15 foot ladder stand. I put the target 20yards from the base of the tree. I then ranged it from the stand it read 23 yards. Used my 20 yard pin holding right on with no compensation and hit the mark. Moved to 30 yrds from base of tree, ranged 31 yards from the stand. Same results as at 20 yards. Moved to 40 yards from base of tree, ranged 41 at 15 feet up, same results as at 20 yards. Did not compensate, held right on the mark and the arrow landed where I was aming.
Bingo!:pickle:

You can get the same result by using the range finder from the tree stand but instead of spoting on the ground pick a tree the distance you want to check but check it at the same hieght you are in the tree.
 

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Then what's the use in having a range finder? I can do what I have done for the last 25 years and pace it off from the base of the tree. Like I said in an earlier posting, I don't use mine for ranging deer. I mark landmarks from the ground before I hunt. 3 yards doesnt mean squat to a bow shooting 300 plus feet a second. There's barely an 1/8 inch between my 20 and 30 yard pin as it is.
I range landmarks after I get in the tree as well. There are allways shooting lanes you can't see from the ground. But not every body shoots fast bows and it could be the difference in a good hit and a bad one.
 

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Im with you on this rozman those range finders are expensive,and i also dont shoot past 30 yrds,i also pace off the distances and use markers in my kill zones.never wanted to spend 300+ for a gadget i would probably drop from my stand anyway and break.I also dont shoot more than a 100 yrds for gun hunts so i feel my scope thats sighted in for that distance will do the job.But to each his own .i can see where out west they could come in handy
I paid $200 for my Nikon and other than the binoculars it is the most used tool I have in the bag. It really comes in handy during Muzzle loader season where the difference between 100 and 130 yards through the trees is a shoot / don't shoot decision.
 
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