Massachusetts Bowhunting

Especially by the standards of the New England region, the Bay State has an enviable record of putting deer into archery hunting’s most prestigious record book. With only 14 counties totaling a meager 5 million acres, Massachusetts is the 40th-largest state in the U.S. So this isn’t an expansive place. Still, there’s a lot of bowhunting available, and not all of it is in the rugged Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts. Although all of the counties with the highest P&Y numbers lie inland, such bucks have been taken in every part of the state. Even such vacation hotspots as Martha’s Vineyard have turned out some impressive deer over the years. Worcester (49) leads the way, with Berkshire and Middlesex (35 each) tying for second place. They’re barely ahead of Hampden (32) and Hampshire (30) in rounding out the state’s top five trophy producers. Whether there’s been a shift toward bigger bucks in the eastern part of the state is hard to say, but entries have clearly shifted in that direction. Like many other states bordering the Atlantic, Massachusetts features higher, more rugged landforms in its western reaches.

Few whitetail addicts who live outside Massachusetts think of it as a good place to pursue Pope & Young bucks. But it is. Especially by the standards of the New England region, the Bay State has an enviable record of putting deer into archery hunting’s most prestigious record book.

Mass-Pachico_MA_2016

With only 14 counties totaling a meager 5 million acres, Massachusetts is the 40th-largest state in the U.S. So this isn’t an expansive place. Still, there’s a lot of bowhunting available, and not all of it is in the rugged Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts. Although all of the counties with the highest P&Y numbers lie inland, such bucks have been taken in every part of the state. Even such vacation hotspots as Martha’s Vineyard have turned out some impressive deer over the years.

Massachusetts-NAWP-180100-MA-USA

As our map illustrates, most entries…

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