I know that there’s scarce information about bowfishing if you are just getting into it. I prepared a brief infographic to show you what bowfishing gear you need to have to catch the game.
When you know what are you working with, you don’t need to overcompensate with expensive equipment. I’ve used the same bowfishing gear on all of my 44 successful bowfishing trips in the last 5 years.
To let you know what are you getting from this infographic and article, here’s a list of all the gear I’m going to cover:
- Bowfishing bows
- Reels for Bowfishing
- Bowfishing arrows
- Arrow points
- Bowfishing line
- Bowfishing rest
- Safety slides
- Bowfishing lights
Make sure to read the article or skim my infographic to get all the information you need for a successful bowfishing trip. Feel free to share the infographic on social media or your site if you find it interesting, you can find instructions below it.
Now let’s take a look at basic bowfishing gear that you should have on every trip. Feel free to upgrade or expand on it, but good quality basic equipment is more than enough.
Essential Bowfishing Gear [Infographics]
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You don’t need fancy, high-end bows with scopes and sights to get started. It’s a quick sport that makes you rely on your instincts.
Two types of bows that most bowfishing enthusiasts use are a compound bow and recurve bow. Make sure the poundage of your bow is between 30 and 50 pounds.
You can even use a crossbow for bowfishing if you find it convenient.
Great solutions are bowfishing kits, where you get everything from bow, arrow, and reels. It’s the simplest and usually the cheapest way to start with bowfishing.
Make sure not to skimp out on reels and lines, since they are the ones that will help you get the fish out of the water. For bowfishing, you can use 3 basic types of reels:
- Drum reels: You need to manually wrap the line around the drum when spooled off.
- Spincast reels: You release it with a button and spin the crank to reel the line back.
- Retriever reels: They are quick to operate and use a braided line which is stored in a bottle instead around the drum.
If you want to know more about them, you can read it in our bowfishing reels article.
Since you are shooting your prey underwater, regular arrows won’t do the trick for your bowfishing gear. Bowfishers use special fiberglass arrows to shoot their targets.
First of all, they are much heavier and thus allow better penetration through the water. They are also much stronger and don’t break on impact.
You will often hit rocks and other hard surfaces. Also, they need to be strong enough to pull the fish out.
Just as it uses different arrows, bowfishing gear requires different arrow points too. They need to have high penetration and be able to fly straight through the water.
Besides just shooting the fish, you need to pull it out of the water too. That’s why bowfishing points have so-called barbs pointed at the tail of the arrow.
You can choose between two, three and four barbs for your arrow point.
If you would like to find out more details about bowfishing arrow points, you can find everything about them in this article.
The ordinary fishing lines won’t do in this case, especially if you’ll use drum or retriever reel. Don’t cheap out on the line, or you can lose the fish and ruin your trip.
You can choose them based on length and thickness. Make sure that it can hold the weight of the fish you are going to shoot.
Even though some hunters like to shoot off the shelf, I recommend that you get an arrow rest.
Simple flipper rests made from rubber or plastic are the most affordable solution, but they tend to wear out easily.
Roller rests are much better options since they are easy to install and allow you a better center shot adjustment. Just make sure that your rest offers fast shooting and holds the arrow in place.
No matter what kind of reel or bow you have, it’s best that you use a safety slide in your bowfishing gear. They prevent snapbacks of your arrows and prevent potential accidents.
Don’t worry, they won’t mess with the flight of the arrow and they are quite inexpensive considering how much they can mean.
Bowfishing at night provides a special kind of enjoyment. However, to be able to enjoy it, you need a good set of lights in your bowfishing gear.
Bowfishing lights can be mounted either on your bow or as a headlamp. For best results, attach a set of strong floodlights on your boat or pontoon.
Just make sure to get a lamp with a bright and wide beam. You can choose between LED, halogen or HPS lights for bowfishing.
If you like to fish in muddy waters, you might like our article about bowfishing lights for muddy waters.
On the Way Out
Whether you are just getting started or have some experience with bowfishing, I hope that you will find this article and infographic useful. I would appreciate it if you share this infographic if you like it.