A while back when I was visiting my Dad for a little family gathering, he had us shoot some arrows in his backyard:

My Dad teaching me all over again

It rekindled the fun I had as a kid with archery, when his dad taught me how.

Since then, I have always kept it in the back of my mind to see if I could somehow arrange my back yard to accommodate the hobby.

It has taken over 6 years to finally actualize that goal.

I am incapable on doing anything on my own, so I used my kids as a handy excuse. I signed them up for archery lessons.

This was a “surprise” gift none of them asked for.

For 5 weeks, we went every Friday to a nice place in the Hazel Dell area near Vancouver.

These kids were great, Owen stuck with it even though I know it was taxing for him

The classes were an hour long, and it was non-stop target shooting

Caralyne is a natural. She had really great grouping the first night, and was very consistent. She originally did not want to go, but I think in the end she was very happy with the classes

Back to the original plan to shoot at home. It turns out, I can’t. Not in my backyard at least.

The biggest reason is safety. I do not have a safe spot to shoot at a target, without either a side street or a neighbors yard. The second is my backyard is small and on a slope, it absolutely sucks. I hate it.

I stick with what I am familiar with, and that is horse stall mats in my garage!

Picked up another 4x8 horse stall mat

I actually scavenged the surrounding area for 2x4’s. There is enough construction of new homes here that I was able to grab a few good sized pieces from waste bins.

This was still not a sufficient backdrop

Next part was from Home Depot. I found some 4" thick roofing insulation. One large piece was enough, I cut it down to size in the parking lot with a razor, and then wrapped it in a few layers of house wrapping.

This target is nicer, is still holding up, and dampens the sound

A classic straw target was pretty cheap on-line, and so far has held up well. I’ve been shooting a few times a week in the garage for the last 3 months

finger guard

I like this kind of finger guard. During our lessons I didn’t use any finger protection, and that was a mistake. I ended up loosing feeling in my middle finger for 2 months.

The biggest drawback is I only have about 22 feet from my garage door to the target. It is enough for me now, and I can do this any time of the year (I don’t know if you know this, but it rains a LOT in the Pacific Northwest)