Course and Target laying – So What makes a shot challenging?

My personal view is there are several ways in which you can make a shot challenging. Instinctively you will sometimes see how the land and vegetation can combine to make a good shot. But that doesn’t make it very easy to explain here or to new course layers developing their skills.
The art is combining one or two of them together to make a shot challenging without being too hard. In essence there is a fine balance between challenging and demoralising and as a course layer you need to judge this carefully.
In the next few posts I will look at different options from target distance to size of target, intervening terrain to footing on the peg.
First off though I’m going to give some comments on elevation.

So what do I  mean by elevation?

Any shot that is not along flat ground and requires you to change your stance or aiming because it is down a hillside or hung in a tree.
Shooting along the flat is one thing but in field archery you have the opportunity depending on terrain to introduce a shot that goes down or uphill and it confuses people. Shots across the slope also increase difficulty as you have to judge the angle and distance to the target.
An example of this can be seen here, where it looks a straight shot up a hill to a target by the tree.
View from the red peg

View from the red peg

This isn’t a straight up hill shot though, but one at about a 30 degree angle across the slope.
Arrows shows the target

Arrows shows the target

Though it doesn’t look it, it is a largish paper target of a Ram too from the Merlin archery  range of faces, shown below. Many archers will judge the distance but not necessarily the elevation. When setting this shot we decided that a paper face mounted on a target boss was better than a 3D target.  Why, I hear you ask?
We thought that a boss would mean people would find arrows more easily rather than them skipping along the ground, also a target boss deceases the chance of an arrow skipping off the top of the target and traveling on.
target face - merlin ram

Merlin Ram

Raising a target can also work as was the case in the tree shot. You will notice we have put a lower target in for juniors.

Elevated shot for adults

Elevated shot for adults

This isn’t a long shot, being approximately 7-9 yards, but because of its elevation in a tree it often throws peoples judgement.
I hope these ideas help and generate some ideas of your own. Have a walk round your wood this weekend and see if you can apply any of these ideas. If so then let me know, via the the message for Rob.
As always thanks for reading.