The following guide will help you navigate the waters of crossbow hunting regulations in Washington, and hopefully will teach you a thing or two about the requirements as well as restrictions that come with the territory. I tried my best to make sure the information I present below is as accurate as possible, though it’s quite likely that I might have missed something or forgot to mention an important piece of information. Which is why you should not consider what you read here to be official advice of legal value, and I recommend you double-check everything you read here or, and this is the best option, contact the Dept. of Fish & Wildlife in Washington for more accurate information.
Make sure to check out our list of top 5 recommended crossbows for hunting in the USA if you’re looking to get started.
Crossbow Hunting Regulations in Washington
Hunting with a crossbow in Washington during archery-only season is prohibited, unless you have a disability hunting permit, in which case you can hunt with a crossbow during any season where archery weapons are allowed. It is, however, legal to use a crossbow during any modern firearms season. As always, you’ll need to successfully complete a hunter education course / class before you can get a hunting permit – learn more about that here.
In order to legally hunt with your crossbow in Washington, it needs to have a minimum draw weight of 125 lbs., meaning pretty much any quality crossbow for $170 or more will make the cut. Hunter Orange clothing requirements are discussed in more detail on this page. What’s important to remember is that the minimum is 400 inches of fluorescent hunter orange, and that it must cover the entire body from the waist up, including a hat.
- Arrow + broadhead must together weigh a minimum of 350 grain.
- Minimum broadhead cutting-diameter is 7/8″.
- Please note that using expandable broadheads for hunting is illegal.
- Minimum draw weight is 125 lbs.
Please note that it seems there are certain types of crossbows that are currently not legal to hunt with in Washington, however information available on the subject is not conclusive. As a result, I strongly recommend getting in touch with the Washington WDFW via # (360-902-2200) and letting them know the exact specifications of your crossbow so that they can assist you. Please make sure to mention the exact type of scope you use as well.
Did We Miss Anything?
In case you believe we forgot to include some vital information in the above references, or if you have reason to believe that something has changed in the recent past making our guide outdated, we’d be greatly appreciative if you could drop us an e-mail using the Contact Us form. We will review every suggestion thoroughly, confirm it through proper legal channels, and as soon as we’ve got things sorted we’ll update this Washington guide immediately and let you know via e-mail. Thank you kindly for your contribution and please help us keep this place as reliable of a hunting regulatory resource as possible.