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Field Archery

Field Archery involves shooting at targets set out along a course, normally in the woods. SWAC Field Archery follows the National Field Archery Society (NFAS) rules of shooting. This involves following a pre-laid course and shooting at targets set at an unknown distance. One of the main draws of NFAS field archery is that the distances are not set - you have to judge for yourself how far you are away from each target, then shoot! The targets are predominantly of animals and can be either 'faces' (pictures) or 3-D model animals. Courses will normally have either 20, 36 or 40 targets. Further details can be found on the NFAS website.

Field Archery committee members:

Dave Holt (Field Officer), Alan White (Field Tournament Organiser)

Targets and Scoring

Below are some examples of faces and 3-Ds:

 
Faces

 
3-Ds

The idea is to shoot at the target from a peg set at an unknown distance away from the target. If you miss the target you will then have to move forwards onto the next peg. If you fail to hit the target again, you then must shoot from a third peg closer to the target.  If you miss this time then you will not score (known as blanking a target). 

On each 'face' target you will have a 'wound line' which outlines the animal and a 'kill zone' which is also marked out on the face.  With a 3-D target you will also have a 'kill zone'. 

The usual scoring system for a 'Big Game' round is as follows:

Arrow Kill Wound
First 20 16
Second 14 10
Third 8 4

So you can see that with the scoring it is better to 'wound' an animal with your first arrow than it is to 'kill' it with your second. In some shoots a score of '24' can be awarded if an archer hits the smaller zone inside the 'kill zone'.  In other shoots there is a 'feathers and fur' rule which is when the arrow is outside a wound line but is touching the fur or feathers.

Bow Styles:

There are many styles of shooting that are allowed under NFAS (National Field Archery Society) ruling.  The complete list of bow styles are:

Freestyle Recurve bow with metal arrows, sight and full stabilisers
Barebow Recurve bow with metal arrows, no sight, single stabiliser
Hunting Tackle Recurve bow with wooden arrows, no sight, no stabilisers
Longbow Longbow with wooden arrows, no sight
American Flatbow Flat bow with wooden arrows, no sight
Primitive Bow and arrows made from natural materials, no sight
Crossbow Crossbow with sight and metal bolts
Bowhunter Compound bow with no sight, limited stabilisers
Compound Limited Compound bow with pin sight
Unlimited Compound bow with full scope sight

The Pegs:

In front of each target will usually be five pegs laid out in the following order:

1) Wasp Peg    2) Red Peg 3) White Peg 
4) Blue Peg    5) Yellow peg 6) Orange Peg


A compound archer will shoot off the wasp peg first followed by the red and white.  All other bow styles will start from the red peg followed by the blue and white.  Juniors and Cubs will shoot off the blue, yellow and orange pegs according to their age group.


Recurve archer shooting
from the white peg

SWAC Award Field Competitions

There are a number of field competitions, open to all SWAC members, which run throughout the winter months. There is a two bow-style entry limit for the Winter Field Champs.

The four competitions listed below count towards the SWAC Archer of the Year Award, along with four target competitions and one clout competition. The more you shoot in, the more chance you have of winning!

Winter Field Champs (Big Game Round)

20 target course set at unknown distances on 7 dates from October to April (see the Field Champs listing in the members section for upcoming dates). Your two highest scores are added together to form a ranking.

Alan Ball Memorial Shoot (Big Game Round)

20 target course set at unknown distances. Awards are presented on the day, based on a Handicap scoring system - your scores are submitted and are put through a ‘special’ mathematical formula. Because of this, all entrants compete against each other – regardless of experience and bowstyle
Alan Ball 2012 Shoot Report
Pete Corbin Memorial Shoot (Big Game Round - November)

20 target course set at unknown distances. Awards are presented on the day, based on a Handicap scoring system in the same way as the Alan Ball Shoot. First placed archers will receive a beautiful water colour painting to take home for the year.
Pete Corbin 2011 Shoot Report
Dave Enticott Memorial Shoot (Big Game Round - April)

20 target course set at unknown distances, shot to NFAS Rules. Awards are presented on the day.. The shoot is normally followed by a BBQ in the woods.


Open Competitions

If you want to shoot in field archery competitions outside of SWAC, you will need to become an NFAS Member in order to be insured. Speak to the Club Secretary for details.

There are plenty of open competitions in the local area which SWAC archers regularly attend. Over the summer months there are also 2-day shoots with camping available, which makes for some brilliant archery weekends away. Every course is different and it's a great way of travelling to competitions all over the country and meeting archers from other clubs.

A full listing of NFAS Open Shoots is available here