This coming weekend, dozens of animals will be pierced by the sharp, pointed blade of an arrow, shot straight and true by Northwest B.C. residents along Highway 16 at Kasiks Resort.
Luckily, they’re of the plaster and paint kind.
The Eagle Eye Archers are set to hold their 10th anniversary Kasiks 3D Shoot from May 22 – 25 and between 60 to 100 3D model animals are the weekend’s victims in the lush forested area surrounding Kasiks.
“You get to walk around pristine nature – a coastal rainforest. There’s birds chirping, it’s a very lifelike setting. So you’re walking in the woods, and you might come upon a deer just as you would if you were hunting,” said Eagle Eye president Fred Hutchings.
“But I’m not a hunter. I’m an archer.”
It’s a fresh change of pace for Prince Rupert archers, who are used to shooting in the indoor venue that Eagle Eye boasts at the Pentecostal Tabernacle gymnasium on Portage Road. There, shooters can pierce targets up to 18 metres away. At the Kasiks, advanced archers could be staring down a target as far as 60 metres away from them. It’s a lengthy upgrade.
“It’s considerably longer,” said Hutchings.
The Kasiks Shoot is Eagle Eye’s signature event, held annually in late May for bow and arrow enthusiasts all over the northern part of the province. Twenty-two categories make up the weekend’s competition, split into age groups and bow divisions such as adults, juniors (13-17), cubs (8-12) family and peewees (7-and-under) and unlimited, bowhunter-sighted, bare bow, recurve and traditional.
Archers have four chances to complete three rounds of shooting, including the first opportunity scheduled for Friday at noon, two more rounds on Saturday and the final round on Sunday at 9 a.m.
“[Participants] will be walking a trail and as they come up to a coloured stake, they’ll shoot the targets from [those designated areas]. Whatever age category you are is colour-coded and the challenges get more difficult with each coloured stake … You might have a tree you’ve got to lean around or shoot through a little hole in a bush to get at the animal – so a very lifelike setting,” said Hutchings.
“Their three scores [from three rounds] are combined for their grand total.”
Past shoots this year have garnered large numbers all across the region as Hutchings estimated the recent Terrace shoot held more than a week ago attracted 135 participants while the Bulkley-Valley Bowman Shoot had approximately 230 shooters.
A raffle on Sunday, including a flight for two from Hawkair, will be held simultaneously with the award ceremony and Kasiks will be distributing simple breakfasts and lunches from Friday to Sunday, including a smorgasbord, steak and seafood supper and children’s meals of seafood and hamburgers.
Participation prizes will be up for grabs along with a chance to participate in a novelty shoot and free campsites and firewood are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
“There’s thousands of dollars worth of raffle items that have been donated or purchased, including bows and targets and animals and stuff. So there will be awards for first, second and third [in the 22 divisions],” said the president.
The shoot will be surprisingly accessible for those in a wheelchair, walker or pushing a stroller.
“We’ve had people show up with baby-buggies, we had one elderly person who showed up last year … so he just ran his quad, got out, took the shot, scored and got back on his quad and kept moving along,” he said.
“We’re fortunate – the terrain is so flat, so green and so lush. Not all courses can have that.”
For more information on the Kasiks Shoot, contact Fred Hutchings or Bob Bennett at the Eagle Eye Archers’ Facebook page: Eagle Eye Archers Prince Rupert.