What You Learned
Three types of bows that are legal for bowhunting in Washington are the long bow, recurve bow, and compound bow. The most popular is the compound bow. It is also easier to draw and hold than the other two types.
Persons who have a disability and a special permit are allowed to hunt with crossbows. In certain areas, modern firearm hunters also are allowed to hunt with a crossbow.
The types of arrowheads are bullet point, blunt point, field point, JUDO point, fish point, and broadhead points.
Here are some safety rules for bows and arrows.
- Never dry-fire a bow.
- Match the arrow to the draw weight of the bow.
- Never hunt without a covered quiver.
- Remain alert whenever you are around broadheads.
Before practicing or hunting, examine each arrow.
- An arrow with a bent, cracked, or broken shaft should be discarded.
- A cracked or broken nock can be replaced.
Broadheads must be razor-sharp for hunting. To prevent injury:
- Use a special wrench to screw on broadheads.
- Keep broadheads covered in a quiver while going to and from the field.
- Use great caution while dressing bow-killed game.
Here are some of the Washington laws and regulations that apply to all bowhunters.
- Bows used to hunt big game must have a draw weight of at least 40 pounds.
- Arrows used to hunt big game must weigh at least 6 grains per pound; the minimum arrow weight is 300 grains, including the broadhead. Broadheads must be sharp and be at least 7/8" wide. Barbed broadheads are illegal.
- Bowhunters may not shoot at wildlife from a vehicle or from across or along a public road.
- Bowhunters may not use any device attached to the bow that allows the bow to be held at full draw.
- Bowhunters may not have electrical devices attached to the bow or arrow.
Washington has specific archery seasons for hunting deer, elk, goat, sheep, moose, bear, and small game. Check the annual Hunting Seasons and Regulations pamphlet from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife for open seasons, dates, units, and requirements for special applications.