Brothers on target
Dolores’ Tel and Stetson Hamilton excel in 4-H archery competition
Stetson and Tel Hamilton are definitely brothers in arms.
The Dolores siblings are fantastic with a bow and arrow.
Montezuma County’s strong 4-H archery program perhaps had its best season at the 4-H state championships in Pueblo.
Stetson Hamilton, 15, placed fifth at the state fair in his first year in the senior division shooting compound bow. His performance qualified him for the 4-H Nationals at Grand Island, Neb., next June.
Younger brother Tel Hamilton, 12, placed fourth in the junior division in Pueblo.
The competitive archers and bow hunters don’t appear to be letting up any time soon.
“Next year, I’m hoping to qualify for nationals in recurve (bow),” Stetson said. “I would like to also try to qualify for nationals in other shooting areas. But I haven’t figured it out yet.”
Hitting a target takes extreme concentration and focus. These elements are a must to master precise bow and arrow aim.
How did archery all start for the Hamilton brothers?
Seven years ago, Rusty and Kim Hamilton took their sons to a hunting exposition. Stetson tested out a bow and arrow for the first time. From there, he was hooked
“They had a ping-pong ball fly out of a leaf blower and you shot at that. I shot that,” said Stetson, who will be a sophomore catcher on the Dolores High School baseball team. “We came home a week later and I wanted a bow. That was the end of it.”
Tel saw his older brother’s newfound passion for archery and was influenced to try it himself.
“What really got me into archery, was my older brother,” Tel said. “I’ve always done something that my older brother has done, with baseball and everything. He started in 4-H, and me and him have skyrocketed since then.”
Seven years later, the Hamiltons have huge aspirations for the future.
Stetson hopes to continue his climb up the 4-H competition ladder in compound and recurve bow. He wants to be an archery instructor as well. Stetson has bow-hunted the last two years, bagging massive mule deer bucks that scored in the Pope and Young records.
“I would like to become a leader and help people out,” Stetson said. “When I turn 18 or 21, I would like to become certified and help grow the (local) archery program.”
Tel, well, all he wants is his own television show. Tel shot his first kill bow hunting in Texas with his father. Tel bagged a blue Hawaiian ram in 2009. He is old enough to tag Colorado big-game this bow hunting season.
“I would like to go professional with hunting or target shooting,” said Tel, who also plays basketball at Dolores Middle School. “I would like to start filming my archery hunts and get on TV.”
Before state, Stetson took reserve champion at the Montezuma County Fair in the senior division. Tel told all at the fair, winning grand champion in the junior division.
The brothers are currently preparing for the 2013 World Archery Festival at Las Vegas, Nev., in February. Archers only shoot from 20 yards away in Vegas, but the best in the world descend upon Sin City.
“Vegas is the next big thing for me. I would like to place in the top 10 this year,” Tel said. “I missed it by a little bit last year. But I’m back with much better equipment. I have a target bow this year. I had a hunting bow the last two years.”
Stetson and Tel Hamilton are just a combined 27 years old. If the sibling duo, that is anything but a rivalry, continue to shoot for success, the brothers may be right on target to achieve their ultimate goals.