The Tennessee Classic is an annual pilgrimage for many bowyers, knappers, and traditional archers throughout the southeastern and midwestern United States (and even some beyond). Every year hundreds of archers gather with their families in a valley near Clarksville, Tennessee and camp out, craft gear, and lose arrows in thick vegetation beyond tricky 3D targets. The actual 3D shoot, organized by the Twin Oaks Bowhunters, takes place on a Saturday and Sunday in April of May. Many arrive up to a week in advance, however, just to enjoy good company amidst amazing scenery.
This year marked the 20th annual gathering and was incredible as always, with record attendance despite heavy rains that soaked the course for two days straight before the shoot.
Thanks to the Twin Oaks Bowhunters for all their hard work setting up such a great event!
Tipping an arrow with a spent .38 cartridge is an old trick. It’s a cheap way to blunt your arrows for hunting small game. Some even put nails through the cartridge after it’s glued to the arrow to keep the arrow from burrowing when stump shooting.
Tools needed for tipping an arrow with a .38 cartridge: arrow shaft, lighter, hot glue, the cartridge, some pliers, and a cold one in your favorite koozie.
Not long ago I broke a judo off my stumping arrow and was lucky enough to capture it in slow-motion:
Flu-flu arrows have broad feathers intended to slow the arrow after a short flight, usually around 40 yards. The feathers stand high off the shaft and flatten just after the arrow is loosed and it has its highest velocity. After dropping below a certain velocity threshold the feathers stand back up and provide a sudden increase in drag, bringing the arrow to a halt. The idea is that you can shoot into trees at squirrels or birds and your expensive (or labor-intensive) arrow won’t fly into the unfathomable depths of forest. People also often tip these arrows with blunt heads to keep them from burrowing into the ground or penetrating deep into impromptu targets when roving.
But why the funny name?