best lighted nock colors hunting

Which Lighted Nock Color is the “Best”?

What is the Best Lighted Nock Color?

The hunting industry is ever changing, moving, and growing. Lighted nocks are becoming more and more of a practical tool for the modern archer who is moving and growing with the industry. While the industry might be taking the first steps, it is up to the hunters to carry the innovations and products into the field. Once this occurs, improvements, competition, and reviews are inevitable. Centered on this critical pivot, the discussion between hunters of the “best” product starts to occur. The same can be said for lighted nocks. While this blog won’t dive into the discussion between lighted nock brands specifically, it will deliver even better insight for hunters…what is the best lighted nock color to use?

Lighted Nocks in the Outdoor Industry

New products are constantly being designed, tested and adapted that are intended to help sporting folks afield. Two of the critical key driving factors for the archery industry are accuracy and shot placement. Accuracy in the field and accuracy in practice are paramount to ethical hunting practices and the hunter’s confidence in shot placement. The responsibility of accuracy and practice is no more imperative than in the pursuit of archery hunting. This pursuit has led to a multitude of archery improvements that seem like a world away from a primitive stick and string propelling a wooden dowel through the air. Compound bows, fiber optic sights, carbon arrows, mechanical broadheads, the list goes on and on when you begin to list improvements to accuracy for the archery hunter. One development designed to improve accuracy, shot placement, game recovery, and improve the value of time invested in practice and hunting is the lighted nock.

Lighted nocks became a possibility with the advent of translucent plastics used in the design and construction of arrow nocks. Those new nock designs coupled with the availability of smaller and smaller LEDs and batteries made lighted nocks a reality. By adding a lighted nock to an arrow shaft, tracking the flight of an arrow moving at speeds of three hundred feet per second or more becomes much easier. The use of lighted nock during practice provides immediate feedback on your shot and arrow flight. Identifying issues in form during practice such as hand torque become much easier to identify with the use of a lighted nock. The task of identifying arrows out of tune that fly contrary to rest of the quiver is much less time consuming with the use of a lighted nock and the ability to identify each arrow’s flight path before the target. The point of impact on target is also much easier to establish from the shooting position when using lighted nocks both in practice and hunting scenarios.

best lighted nock colors hunting

The use of lighted nocks in hunting scenarios is becoming more and more commonplace. The ability to track arrow flight to the point of impact in low light conditions can be a valuable tool in the field. Considering a shot taken in the field and examining the placement on the game animal is critical when determining the recovery approach. Arrow recovery after the shot, whether a complete or partial pass through, is often critical in the follow-up and tracking of downed game. The use of a lighted nock can make finding that arrow, and the associated blood trail much easier.

What is the Best Lighted Nock Color?

When considering lighted nock selection, don’t discount the choice of color as a key decision point for the application you intend to use the nock and arrow setup for when hunting. While camouflage and concealability are critical components of bow hunting, hunters should consider the visibility of an arrow before, during, and after the shot for recovery. The key advantage to a lighted nock is its visibility and obvious contrast to the surroundings.  Finding the exact location the arrow impacted the game animal and finding the blood trail can sometimes be frustrating and difficult to identify after the shot.  Angles, perspective, entry’s and exits, and even shadows change when you climb down from a tree stand or exit a blind to examine an area after a shot is taken. The ability to locate a glowing lighted nock shining in contrast to its surroundings is a great start to tracking that game animal.

best lighted nock colors hunting

Color choice in a lighted nock can mean the difference between quickly finding an arrow after the shot or scanning the ground in a seemingly endless search for your arrow.

Green Lighted Nocks

Choosing a neon green lighted nock for a spring archery turkey hunt, for instance, may not be the best choice.  A bright green lighted nock attached to a camouflaged arrow may be next to impossible to find in a green feed or fescue field where turkeys are feeding and strutting. That same green lighted nock on the end of an arrow on a western antelope hunt on the high plains, or in the orange and red November woods of the Midwest will stand out like a sore thumb against the backgrounds. Green lighted nocks serve as the best color choice in nearly every scenario that green does not exist in the landscape, at least by majority compared to other colors in the landscape.

best lighted nock colors hunting

Red Lighted Nocks

A green lighted nock color literally serves as the best choice for nearly every season except the spring green up.  The color in its place during this time of year by far, also one of the most popular colors besides green, is red. The green and lush habitat extends from turkey season well into the summer and early autumn, when early season whitetail hunters or elk hunters start hitting the woods. In these scenarios the best color nock for the hunter would be a color that stands out against the different shades of neon green and in some cases yellow grasses/leaves in early autumn. Red nocks in spring and summer are the best choice. This means that a red nock should be used for spring turkey hunting, early season whitetail hunting, and September elk hunting.

best lighted nock colors hunting

Yellow Lighted Nocks

Consider how many times a hunter has mistaken an orange or red fall leaf or turning grass in the fall whitetail woods for a spot of blood after a shot. Many hunts depending on season and ecosystem lend themselves to distinct colors and hues. A neon yellow lighted nock on a hunting arrow shot during a fall hunt is not likely to show up against the autumn browns, reds and oranges of October and November. Again green nocks are the best in this scenario, leaving yellow nocks with not a lot of great options as far as the hunting application. A lighted nock should glow and act as a beacon against the darkness on an early morning or late evening hunt regardless of the color.

So Which Is the Best Lighted Nock Color?

Color, light, and shadow are all critical in the pursuit of game. Camouflage and stand or blind placement should always be cognizant of the surrounding colors, hues and shadows of the hunting area.  Most times we are concerned with blending into the natural environment and to go unnoticed. In the case of a lighted nock, this tool is best served to contrast with the surrounding environment. Hunters work tirelessly to better their odds in the field and to respect the animals they pursue with ethical practices. Improving confidence in shot placement and the odds of arrow recovery with the use of a lighted nock can go a long way to enhance an archery hunt.

As you can conclude, each season, hunt, and environment have considerations for the best lighted nock color. One color does not, unfortunately, cover the spectrum of hunts. Rather two different colors, red and green, perform together as the best colors for lighted nocks.

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