Industry

2018 Bowhunting Gear Trends

The latest and greatest trends in bowhunting. Let’s take a quick look at some of the more noteworthy trends in bowhunting gear.
Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo

Author: Scott Einsmann

Those attending the 2018 ATA Trade Show saw and tested many new products that integrate an array of incredible innovations.

These latest and greatest trends in bowhunting are already making their way into your store and your customers’ hands. Let’s take a quick look at some of the more noteworthy trends in bowhunting gear.

Companies poured money into research and development to discover the best mix of images, shapes and colors for hiding the human form. Some new patterns look futuristic, while others are clearly retro. Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo

Camo Patterns

One of the most noticeable trends at the ATA Trade Show was the vast variety of new camouflage patterns. Companies poured money into research and development to discover the best mix of images, shapes and colors for hiding the human form. Some new patterns look futuristic, while others are clearly retro. What’s the one thing they have in common? They’re all cool!

Camo is fashionable, especially new camo patterns tied to already popular companies. These companies use their proprietary camouflage for branding. It’s like printing a logo all over a piece of clothing or equipment. These camo patterns make certain products stand out as part of a unique brand.

Equipment that Fits

Quality hunting gear is seldom a generic, one-size-fits-all product. Customers want equipment that’s built to fit them, whether it’s release-aids in different sizes, or bows built for long or short draw lengths.

One of the fastest growing market segments is women’s hunting gear. Whether they’re looking at clothing, treestand harnesses, or bows and arrows, women no longer settle for gear that’s a little too big or too small. They, too, desire functional clothing and equipment. Well-cut, custom-fitted gear makes bowhunting more accessible and enjoyable for females.

Manufacturers are making crossbows lighter and quieter without sacrificing the predecessors’ performance. In fact, some models weigh as little as 4 pounds. Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo

Lighter, Quieter Crossbows

Crossbows have grown in popularity because of their great performance and short learning curve. However, one common complaint is that some models are heavy to hold and loud when fired.

To answer such complaints, manufacturers are making crossbows lighter and quieter without sacrificing the predecessors’ performance. In fact, some models weigh as little as 4 pounds, and their release is whisper-quiet.

Technology

One of the most talked about product lines at the ATA Trade Show was auto-ranging bow sights. These sights integrate range-finding technology into their operation, which makes critical shots easier and more accurate.

Bow sights weren’t the only high-tech gear debuting at the Show. Ozone-based scent eliminators have been around a few years, but they’re now expanding their presence. Bowhunters can use portable units to deodorize their ground blinds and treestand setups, or rig them to remove scents from their cars, trucks or SUVs. Bowhunters can also treat their gear in scent-killing bags or closets.

Meanwhile, trail cameras continue to change the way many people bowhunt, and wireless cameras are making scouting even easier and less intrusive. Wireless trail cameras have grown annually in quality and quantity, and their prices have dropped significantly. In fact, the MSRPs for some models hover around $200. That makes trail cameras affordable for more bowhunters than ever before.

What do you think of the current bowhunting trends? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page, and join in constructive discussions with your fellow retailers.

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