Skip to main content

Dudley Puts His Grandpa's Handmade Longbow to the Test

I’m often asked why I don’t do trad archery. The truth is I have, but the last time I did was with this longbow my grandfather made by hand before he passed. He made this longbow with wood from a tree that he had to cut down on the homestead. The arrow rest is a flip down iron sight off a Korean War rifle. He loved trees and he never wanted to waste any part of them.

My grandpa, Charles Carlton, was a tough sucker, hard to please, and a forester that loved the woods more than anyone I know. He started many of the early turkey relocation programs in the south and loved seeing a gobbler in the wild. He came from the old school, survived the Korean War and went on to teach my uncle, myself and my cousin how to be stewards of the land.

Sadly, much of his mind faded near the end, but the one thing he never forgot was “can you still shoot that bow so good?” He always loved watching me practice. The last time I saw him he came out of his shop with this longbow and gave it to me. He said “I always loved this tree, do you think you can put it to use for me?” This video was one I did for Poppa. It’s the last time I bowhunted with a longbow. I’ve always been afraid to break it. This hunt was simply meant to be and something I’ll always remember. Hopefully you like it. It tears me up every time.