Parker Blackhawk Crossbow Review

ModelDraw WeightStrokeVelocitySuggested Arrow LengthCrossbow Length / Weight
Parker Blackhawk Crossbow

parker blackhawk
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160 lbs.11.375"320 fps

Crossbow Academy: ballistics, sighting, tuning
20"34.25" / 6.5 lbs.
- Blacked-out design for ground blind hunting
- Lightweight and compact
- Scope bore sighted from factory

- No rope-cocking device included
Small Game Hunting?yes2
Deer, Elk Hunting?yes2
Moose, Bear Hunting?yes2
Target Shooting?yes2
Today's Online Prices:Compare Prices
Also Recommended:Best Parker Crossbows

Package Contents

Welcome to our review of the Parker Blackhawk crossbow. This crossbow is designed with the ground blind hunter in mind, with a short axle-to-axle length as well as a short power stroke and blacked-out finish. Each package delivered by Parker Bows includes the following items:

  • The Parker Bows Blackhawk Crossbow, including stock and bow assembly
  • Assembly hardware and Allen wrench
  • 3X Multi-Reticle Scope
  • 4-arrow Quick-Detach Quiver
  • 4 20” crossbow arrows with field points
  • Instruction manual
  • Parker Bows Sticker
  • Warranty Card

Assembling The Crossbow

Parker BlackhawkI had my Blackhawk assembled in less than 15 minutes. The scope comes pre-mounted (and bore sighted), so all there is to do is attach the prod to the stock, and then mount the quiver.

Attaching the prod took a bit of effort, but it was not too bad. Just make sure you get everything lined up right on the rail, and you have the cable guide installed properly, or you can damage your crossbow.

Accuracy And Power

The Parker Blackhawk hurls arrows off the rail at 320 fps, with 91 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy. It is a powerful weapon, surprisingly so for such a compact crossbow. That is powerful enough to take on just about any target you might have in mind, even the formidable grizzly bear.

The Blackhawk is also deadly accurate. I was able to shoot half-inch groupings from 20 yards, and went on to test each of the five aiming points on the scope. From 40 yards, my groupings sat around an inch and a half, and only went to 2” at the 60-yard range. From 80 yards, I was able to maintain 4” groupings, and had 6” groupings from 100 yards.

Parker BlackhawkHunting: What To Expect

At only 6.5 lbs., the Parker Blackhawk is probably one of the lightest crossbows I have ever carried. It felt like a feather on my back, which is a nice thing when you are also packing in your ground blind. Once I was in my blind, this crossbow turned practically invisible in my hand, because of the blacked-out paint finish.

The Parker Blackhawk is one of the quietest crossbows I have ever shot, which is very nice when you are shooting from a ground blind. There is very little worry about a deer string-jumping when you are shooting the Blackhawk.

With almost 91 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy behind the arrow, this crossbow is a deadly force to any legal game in North America. I took the Blackhawk out bear hunting, and was able to bag a large grizzly bear with ease. I was on a rock ledge near a choke point and spotted the bear from about 45 yards. I took careful aim and hit him square in the torso for a double lung penetration. He thrashed around, destroying just about everything around him, for about 2 minutes, and then dropped to the ground dead.

I have also used the Blackhawk for deer and moose hunting, and found it to be an excellent choice. I am not usually a fan of ground blind hunting, because the deer seem to always notice light glinting off my bow, but that is definitely not a concern with the Blackhawk. I’ve bagged 2 bucks and a moose cow with the Blackhawk.

Ballistic Data For The Parker Blackhawk

Your actual results will vary slightly depending on weather, and significantly with arrow weight change. See our Crossbow Ballistics Guides section for a complete understanding of how we conducted our tests and why this data matters.

Kinetic Energy Of The Parker Blackhawk

Of course, what you probably want to know next is how likely the crossbow is to ethically hunt with; does it have the stopping power to take down game with a single shot? The Parker Blackhawk delivers 400-grain arrows at 320 fps, which will deliver approximately 89 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy at point blank range. Assuming you lose a few percent lbs. of KE for every yard the target is outside of point blank range, that still leaves you with 85 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy. This is more than enough power to stop even the toughest game, like grizzlies or Cape buffaloes.

Use our arrow ballistics calculator for more valuable information.

Cocking The Parker Blackhawk

With a draw weight of 160 lbs., the Blackhawk is definitely best drawn using some sort of cocking device. That said, the crossbow has a very smooth, easy draw, and the safety automatically engages every time you cock it. I never had any problems with the safety not engaging, and I have probably fired over a hundred arrows so far.

The Crossbow Scope

The 3X scope is a bit different from what I am used to on Parker Crossbows. Every other Parker crossbow I have seen came with the 4 x 32mm multi-reticle scope, but this one comes with a 3x scope instead. I found, though, very little difference between the two scopes.

The scope is mounted and bore-sighted out of the box, and only took three shots to be perfectly zeroed in. Once zeroed, it held zero throughout the entire season so far.

The optics on this scope are quite nice, and the scope has very good light-gathering properties. Even though the reticles are not illuminated, they are very clear even in lower lighting conditions.

See our detailed guide on how to sight-in your crossbow


The Parker Blackhawk comes with 4 20” crossbow arrows, weighing 400 grain. The Blackhawk, like almost all of Parker’s crossbows, relies on capture nocks to reliably prevent dry firing, so make sure you only use capture nock arrows with the Blackhawk.

The arrows included with the Blackhawk are very well made, and I used them instead of my normal Firebolt arrows during my range time. They stood up well to multiple shots, and fired consistently all day long.

When hunting, I did switch up to my Firebolt arrows with capture nocks, and chose broadheads that would bring the weight of the arrow up to 425-gr. This combination worked very well, and I did not notice any significant decrease in the speed of my arrows.

You can also learn more about crossbow arrows and take a look at our broadhead recommendations

Safety and Design

I love the G2 Bull-Pup trigger that Parker uses on its crossbows, because it is smooth and predictable. The Blackhawk is no exception here. The ambidextrous safety automatically engages every time you cock the crossbow, and is easy to disengage when you are ready to shoot. The automatically engaging anti dry-fire mechanism is also top quality, never failing me.

This crossbow features an AR-style textured pistol grip, which makes the crossbow very easy to hold and aim. Of course, the light weight of the crossbow does not hurt!


The Parker Blackhawk is covered by a lifetime warranty against manufacturer’s defects. Parker’s customer service team is top-notch, and is always eager to help the customer get the most out of his or her crossbow purchase.

What Crossbow Case Fits the Parker Blackhawk Crossbow?

The Parker Blackhawk fits nicely into the Carbon Express Deluxe Case It provides plenty of padding to protect the crossbow and feature pockets which are easy to access. It can be purchase around the $70 margin. It probably will not work, if the cope is large. The Allen Company case will work better with larger scopes.

Crossbow Review – Summary

Thanks for reading our review of the Parker Blackhawk crossbow. For a crossbow that costs under $600, this is an excellent choice for any crossbow hunter, new or experienced. It has the compact design and dark finish necessary for ground blind hunting, and works equally well from a deer stand. Take a look at today's price on this crossbow and check out our top 10 crossbows rankings for more.

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