Forget CrossFit: Competitive ax-throwing has officially come to D.C.

There’s something immensely satisfying about the thud and thwack a four-pound ax makes when it loops through the air and sticks onto a piece of wood. Especially when it’s a bull’s eye.

Ax throwing, long a sport of choice for lumberjacks and Canadians, could become Washington’s new blowing-off-steam activity of choice, with multiple ax-throwing venues opening in the next few months. The first to arrive is Bad Axe Throwing, a Canadian-born chain with 19 locations, including one that debuted last week near Echostage in Northeast D.C.

During a preview visit, Bad Axe wasn’t much more than a bare-bones warehouse decked out with raw Home Depot supplies. The lower half of one wall was covered in plywood, then topped with heavier boards painted with large circular targets, similar to dartboards. Each pair of targets was in its own “lane,” which looked like a horse stall, separated from neighboring ones by a high wooden wall with a higher chain-link fence. I felt like I had stumbled into a lumberjack fight club.


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