Continuing with our current trend of archery-related posts, I believe another important topic to cover is what is the best pop up blind for archery.
The reason I would differentiate between blinds for archery and blinds for hunting rifles is that for bows and crossbows you usually need more space to maneuver than you need with a rifle. Even if the bow itself is almost the same dimensions as a rifle (granted, not all of them and not all of the time), reloading a rifle is way easier than reloading a bow. And doing that in silence and stealth is a lot harder for bowhunters than it’s for “normal” hunters.
That’s why when I go crossbow hunting, I usually take a bigger pop up blind than when I’m just taking my rifle. And just to be honest with you, I like using my bigger blinds because I like having a bit of space around me, so I have where to stack my gear and still have some breathing room.
That being said, I prefer having a pop up blind for archery strictly because I noticed that I’m a lot more active as a bowhunter than as a rifleman so I travel more. I’m not quite sure what’s the reason for that, maybe because I usually hunt at closer ranges with a crossbow than a rifle, but because I’m more active I what to have a blind that’s easier to move around so I usually opt for a pop up.
How to choose the best pop-up blind for you?
As with all things in life, the devil is in the details. When choosing any piece of hunting gear, you usually run into the same problem, and that is the abundance of options. While having options is usually a good thing, having too many is a negative because you get stuck in analysis paralysis.
To do my small part and help my fellow hunting community, I decided to make a list of what I consider the most important aspects to consider when choosing a pop-up blind for archery.
I think most people saw the first category coming a mile away. For myself, the most important factor to consider when choosing a good pop up blind is weight. As I previously said, I like to keep moving so I prefer something on the lighter side, rather than the heavier ones.
But, and that’s a big but, I like pop up blinds that are lightweight but still structurally sound, I don’t want a blind that collapses at the first sign of wind. So, the best blinds are the ones that have a good balance between weight and resistance.
I have to admit, I do love my comfort when out hunting. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against hunting from tree stands, going on the prowl, or anything like that, but if I have to choose between the comfortable option and the uncomfortable option for the same thing, then you can bet that I’ll choose the former. And in the blind business, size equals comfort in my book.
So, now we have to juggle three things at the same time to get to the optimal choice, namely, weight, resistance, and size.
Another thing that ties in directly with weight and size is portability. How easy is the pop up blind to carry when you are on the move. Try to aim for more compact designs if you can, because you certainly won’t regret that choice.
The materials of the blind will determine some important characteristics, such as weight and resistance, that’s why it’s important to also look at what it’s made of. Usually, the number one go-to material for making hunting blinds is polyester because it’s strong, lightweight, and usually cheap. Another advantage of polyester is the fact that it’s usually water-resistant (not waterproof) and can keep you dry if you are in a light rain (using a waterproof spray is still recommended).
So, try to aim for pop-up blinds made of polyester if you can, because they are usually the top choice.
Windows and doors
Most modern hunting blinds are properly equipped to give you good viewing angles due to numerous windows. For the best results try to find a pop up blind that offers at least 180 degrees of vision. Another plus for modern blinds is the fact that most have see-through and shoot-through mesh windows that don’t generally allow animals to see inside. The number and placement of the windows is again a personal choice, but try to respect the 180-degree rule, because it will make things easier for you.
The first thing you see when you look at a blind (literally) is the camo pattern it has on it. The sheer number of patterns that exist is only matched by the number of blinds that are for sale. You can find a pattern suitable for probably every environment you can think of, but that again usually leads to analysis paralysis. So, what I like to do is choose a good base color depending on where I’m planning to hunt, and then get the one I like the most because finding the perfect one will probably be impossible.
That being said, camo is probably the most personal choice there is, and each hunter has a specific pattern that they like and that they are will to swear by. So, take my advice, choose your base color well and then get the one that you like the most.
Because this whole post is about pop up blinds, then assembly should usually be a breeze. However, not all blinds are created equally. Some similar pop up blinds in size and weight may have very different assembly times, which is again another aspect that you should be aware of. Usually, from my experience, the cheaper ones are harder to set up because they have to cut some corners to keep the cost down. But that’s not always the case, and you can find some hidden gems.
All things being said, there are a couple of variables that you have to juggle and adjust to fit your specific need, but at the end of the day if you keep in mind what I just mentioned, then I’m sure that you will find the best pop up blind for archery in my list.
Best Pop Up Blind for Archery in 2021 – Tested and Reviewed
Ameristep Care Taker Blind
As usual, I want to start on the right foot, and in this case, that means with the hunting blind that I consider the best pop up blind for archery can find anywhere, the Ameristep Care Taker.
Most hunters are aware of Ameristep, as they have been in the market for over 20 years and in that time, they have developed a reputation for quality products at affordable prices and this hunting blind is no exception to that rule.
In my book, it meets all the criteria that I want from a great pop up blind, namely it has the right size, it’s lightweight, it has plenty of windows for a big field of view, and it is durable as well.
Assembly is also fast and painless, thanks to its Spider Hub frame design which enables hunters to quickly pop the blind into shape and back again. There are also tie-down straps and stake lots for when you need to hunker down in the wind/rain/snow. The outer shell of the blind is made of the proprietary Durashell Plus, which gives it a custom woven, matte finish which makes the blind both lightweight and durable.
In the line-of-sight department, we have 6 trapezoid windows spread across three of the blind’s sides, and the remaining side of the blind houses the door. Each window has a shoot-through mesh that also has a coating of ShadowGuard which helps reduce silhouettes and shadows from people inside the blind.
When changing location, it’s as simple as popping the frame and then moving the blind using a tube-and-strap bag to the next location.
The base model can be a tight fit if you have a lot of gear
Spider Hub frame makes unpacking and packing easy
Durashell Plus gives the outer shell added resistance
Barronett Big Cat Blind
Moving on to one of the most spacious and compact models out there, we have the Barronnet Big Cat hunting blind. Despite its common box shape, it’s were spacious on the inside, and two archers could comfortably hunt from inside. You could fit even more people inside, but the amount of room each one would have would decrease pretty drastically so I wouldn’t recommend more than 3 hunters in one of these.
Dimension-wise, we are talking about 90 inches of hub-to-hub space, with a 70×70 inch footprint and around 80 inches in height. The great advantage of this blind is that because it has significant height, archers can shoot their bows while standing up, which makes it easier and increases accuracy.
6 large zipperless windows and 2 shooting windows offer the hunter a big field of view, while the zipperless design usually means noise-free adjustments.
Construction-wise, this is pretty durable as the poles that support the structure as a bit thicker than you would normally find in other blinds, which helps with stability and resistance. The only negative that I can find (maybe it’s just personal preference) is the fact that this model doesn’t have flooring. It does have a skirt around the edges to conceal movement, but I prefer a bit of flooring for the simple fact that if it’s raining, you kind of want to put your gear down somewhere dry. Other than that, the polyester shell is very durable and the producer even claims it’s waterproof. My advice to you is always to use a waterproofing spray, just to be safe.
When you are ready to pack up and go, this pop up blind only weighs in at around 20 pounds which makes it easy enough to carry around.
Primos Double Bull Deluxe Blind
I know a lot of people will be a bit surprised that my top choice for the best pop up blind for archery isn’t the Primos Double Bull Deluxe because this has been a staple of hunting for some years now. The only reason the Primos isn’t my number one is that it’s a lot more expensive than the Care Taker. I’m not denying the quality that they bring to the table, but I just feel like the Ameristep has the best balance between cost, features, and price. That being said, this is certainly the best pop up blind for archery if you want the premium option, no doubt about it.
The unique feature of this blind is its 180-degree window, which gives you a continuous and uninterrupted view. You also get two smaller windows to the side, and at the back, you have a zipperless door for noise-free entry/exit.
One of the great things about the front window apart from the impressive view is the fact that it has silent window closures and is height adjustable. The inside of the blind is also specially coated to create a dark environment to minimize shadows and silhouettes.
While the quality of the materials is high, and the size decent, one problem is the fact that it’s not quite as light as other models. Weighing in at around 30 pounds this is 50% heavier than the Big Cat blind, which makes carrying around more cumbersome.
Exceptional field of view thanks to its unique frontal window
It’s a bit heavy
Great camo pattern which fits well in different settings
Pricier than other models
Silent door and windows
Barronett Beast Blind
I also wanted to provide people with an option in case they are fans of hunting with a lot of buddies and need big blinds. The Beast pop up blind from Barronett is here to save the day, as it’s one of the biggest pop up blinds you can find.
In a nutshell, this blind from Barronett is a rectangle blind formed by joining two smaller square Barronett blinds. The reason this works so well is that it gives you great visibility thanks to the huge field of view you get and you also get two doors for ease of access.
The square footage of this blind is around 160 inches by 90 inches, which gives a lot of room per hunter. A negative in my view is the fact that there is no flooring, which may make things wetter and muddier if you go out hunting during/after bad weather. But there is a ground skirt around the entire blind, to contain scents and shield the movement of the people inside.
Apart from that, you also get six large windows equipped with shoot-through meshes (the meshes are attached using Velcro, so they can be replaced easily) for silent hunting. Another negative is the fact that the windows are opened using zippers, which might make more noise than you want. But if you keep that in mind a plan ahead, this shouldn’t be a problem.
The polyester is tough 150D fabric which is also waterproof and you get a black interior coating for additional occlusion.
Excellent for group hunting
Zippers can be loud
Lots of windows
Ameristep Doghouse Blind
Last but not least, we have the Doghouse blind which is probably the best budget pop up for archery you can find. It’s lightweight, durable, with enough viewpoints, and most importantly it’s very easy on the wallet.
The Durashell plus fabric used in the Doghouse blind is the same as in most other Ameristep versions, keeping you well covered and well protected from the elements. The matte finish on the outside blends in with the setting, while the ShadowGuard coating on the inside removes any shadows or silhouettes that might scare your prey. A neat feature of the Doghouse is the fact that it uses a 3d Edge ReLeaf trim to break the shard edges of the blind and help it blend more easily with its background.
For optimum visibility, there are seven individual windows with zippers that can be opened in any direction. Shoot-through mesh covers can be attached to any of the window openings if you want extra concealment.
To help it stay secure on land in high winds, you also get tie-downs and stakes to pin into the ground, because this ground blind only weighs 12 pounds. For transportation, you also get a backpack to carry it around easily.
ShadowGuard inner coating
Not the most spacious blind you can find
3D Edge ReLeaf trim
Lightweight and easy to transport
As they say, that’s about it from my side when it comes to pop up blinds for archery. As always, I just want to say that for things like hunting blinds, people usually have strong feelings when it comes to the shape they like and especially the camo that they consider to be superior. If you don’t have any strong feelings about those topics, then feel free to choose whatever you what from this list because it will do the job well.
Now, just to reiterate, my number one pick as the best pop up blind for archery is the Care Taker from Ameristep. It’s just the perfect blend of quality, size, and cost, and even though others on this list came close to it, in my mind this is the pop up blind to beat.
For the best premium pop up blind for archery, my choice is the Primos Double Bull because of its outstanding visibility. I don’t think anything else comes close to it in terms of visibility, but the hefty price tag weighs it down. It still has a very good quality to price ratio, but solely because of its price it doesn’t take the best overall award.
And last but not least, in the best budget corner, we have the Ameristep Doghouse blind. This may not have all the fancy features of the other winners, but the fact of the matter is this one is the lightest I tested, and it’s the cheapest. And if you are looking to maximize your buying value, then this is my recommendation to you.
To make the best decisions, we need the best information and that’s what I try to provide readers with these posts. As always, decide what are your needs and then just choose the item that meets them the best. Happy hunting out there!