I'm thinking about getting into bow hunting, and I'm wondering about the mechanics of crossbows. I assume that I wouldn't cock the crossbow at the time I see a target, and I also assume that I wouldn't cock the crossbow and then leave it like that from one hunting season to the next.
So how long is it safe to keep a crossbow cocked? Can it stay cocked for a full day in the woods? I'm concerned both about my personal safety as well as keeping my equipment in good shape.