Category Archives: Favorite Hunting Gear

Elk Hunting Rain Gear……..Don’t Let The Weather Come Between You And Your Elk!

 

Whatever you do, don’t let the weather come between you and your Elk.  Elk hunting rain gear is a must have in my opinion.

Because we can’t control the weather, you always need to pack rain gear in your day pack. If you make sure that you are prepared for rain or snow your chances for getting your elk greatly increase.


Hunting rain gear is a really hard item to choose. Rain gear can be found in so many styles and materials it becomes hard to make a decision on which one to choose.


Many suits claim to be water proof and breathable and aren’t. Those that are can be like wrapping yourself in plastic. Some are made out of fabrics that are quiet while others are sure to give you away.


Make sure that any rain gear that you buy is taped at all seams with rain flaps over zippers and a hood. Many folks like the jacket and pants combination because it gives a fair amount of freedom of movement. Some like poncho style rain wear that gives the user options to cover extra gear with the ample cut.


Rain gear can be very expensive depending on the brand, style and quality of the suit. I have been using a very inexpensive suit lately with great results. It is made by a company called Frogg Toggs. These suits are extremely light, waterproof and breathable.


The material will throw you off because it looks disposable, almost like paper. These suits are surprisingly durable. They are very quiet and hide your movement. The best thing is that they are priced under $50. I think Sportsman’s Guide even has them on sale right now.


I recently went deer hunting during a tornado watch. I know, I’m crazy. The rain was blowing sideways but I was warm and dry. I have never stalk hunted in this rain gear because I didn’t know how it would hold up.


My strategy was to move so slowly that I wouldn’t tear my rain gear. Slowly I moved through the rain soaked woods and in a very short time, I harvested a deer. To my delight, my suit held up without any tears.


You can spend a lot of money on rain gear but if you’re looking for something reasonably priced, I think Frogg Toggs is a great choice. Frogg Toggs also makes a poncho that sells for around $10.00 that I keep in my pack at all times.


It has saved me from getting soaked several times. I even had it with me when our family went to Disney World and it was a life saver. When you’re hunting you always want to be prepared, so remember, don’t forget your elk hunting rain gear!


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Shooting Sticks For Elk Hunting Sure Do Come In Handy


Now that elk season is over and the great memories remain, I turn my attention to hunting whitetail in Alabama. As I mentioned in the Rocky Mountain Elk Guide, whitetail hunting keeps a hunters skills honed and besides, it’s just fun. I don’t know about you but I have found that I need all the help I can get to make sure that I make an accurate shot on an elk or whitetail.


 Over the last few seasons, I have started using a shooting stick. Shooting sticks are nothing new, actually they started with the beginning of firearms. I still remember pictures of the early Spanish and English explorers resting their blunderbust rifles on a forked shooting stick. They didn’t use them for accuracy but to hold the weight of the firearm.


A shooting stick can be fashioned from a small sapling with a fork in it or you can buy one from many sporting good stores. The sticks that you purchase at a sporting goods store often are telescoping to adjust to your height. This also allows them to be easily stored in a hunting backpack.


Another advantage that I have found of this type stick is that it doubles as a walking stick. When hunting in elk country, you are constantly climbing up and down slopes. The shooting stick will make you more stable and less prone to falls or twisting your ankles or knees.


There are several models to choose from…There are single shooting sticks (1 leg), bipod shooting sticks (2 legs) and tripod shooting sticks (3 legs) . You just need to decide which one is right for your needs.


Now is a good time to purchase your shooting stick and what better time to practice using it than during whitetail season. Good luck and happy hunting.

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Best Cheap Hunting Binoculars For Under Fifty Dollars………. Really?

I know that you probably think I’m crazy but I have found and used a pair of binoculars for under fifty dollars. I know that in my book, The Rocky Mountain Elk Guide, I recommend the purchase of a good pair of binoculars and I still stick by that advice.

Recently I was in my local Bass Pro Shop and found a really good pair of binos for under fifty dollars. Of course they were on sale and usually sold for about $149.99. But still, at regular price, that's a pretty darn good deal.

I pulled a pair out of the box and glassed around the store, which is cool because you can spot whitetail, wild hogs, turkey and just about every other species of game animals found in the United States. After day dreaming that I was out on the hunt, I decided to give them a try.

The binoculars are Redheads, a Bass Pro brand. The pair I tested are 10×42, waterproof and fog proof. The manufacture did a great job in the design by making them easy to grip, fairly light weight 20 oz, and armored with a rubber coating.

Field of view at 1000 yards is 304 feet. They feature twist up and down eye pieces for those of us who wear eyeglasses are nitrogen purged with fully coated lens.

So the real question you want to know is, how did they do on the hunt? Well, they were very clear in low light conditions. Focus was smooth and extremely clear. I spotted a doe and yearling walking up a ridge a good one third mile away, squirrels playing in an oak tree at 200 yards and plus other wildlife in the area.

I harvested my first deer of the season ( I’m down in Alabama right now) using these binoculars on the same trip. All of this to say that I love em and will keep using them. If you are in the market for a great pair of binoculars that don't break the bank, I would definitely recommend  taking a look at Bass Pro.

 

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Gamehide Review…….Great Quality And Innovation

Choosing the right outer wear for hunting is crucial to a comfortable, enjoyable and successful hunt. There are so many things to consider when buying hunting clothes.

 

Warmth, comfort, quietness and function are at the top of my list. Recently I found myself going around and around in choosing what type of jacket to buy. I kept looking at a parka with a hood. It was windproof, waterproof and insulated. The jacket had a plush lining that felt like you were wearing your sleeping bag to the stand.

 

But how often does it get cold enough to wear a jacket like this in my area? Also the jacket would be too hot to wear on my walk to my stand so I would have to store it in my backpack. This would then mean that I would have to wear a lighter jacket in route.

 

I have always been a believer in layering so I went with a lighter jacket that can be worn under an outer coat and would be just right for stalk hunting or traveling to my stands.

 

I found a performance fleece jacket that would work for bow season, winter and spring turkey season as well. The jacket is light weight, made with bonded fleece and treated to bead water making it windproof, water resistant and quick drying. The sleeves on this jacket are designed in the arms up position. This allows total freedom in arm movement.

 

The other quality that I like about this jacket is that it is almost totally silent. You feel like you are in stealth mode when you wear it. The makers included hand warmer pockets, a slash zippered pocket for easy access. The jacket is tailored to be longer in the back covering most of your rear end. The bottom hem has two drawstrings to close out any unwanted breezes

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It is the attention to all of the mentioned details that impressed me with a hunting wear company called Gamehide. Gamehide only makes clothing for hunting using the finest of materials and innovation. I believe that if you are interested in quality hunting garments, Gamehide is your best bet and value for years to come. 

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What Is The Best Day Pack For Elk Hunting?

daypackWhat is the best day pack for elk hunting? There are quite a few things that a hunter needs to consider when choosing a day pack.


A day pack has to carry everything a hunter needs each day for the hunt. It has to carry water, food, game calls, first aid kit, extra clothing, rain gear, flashlight, rope and survival gear to name a few items.


The shoulder straps should be wide and comfortable but not restrict a hunter from shouldering his or her rifle. It needs to be made of a weatherproof material that is silent when you walk through brush. Some manufactures include a built in blaze orange rain cover. The best day pack for elk hunting is one that can hold all of your gear and still not wear you out at the end of the day.


All packs are not created equal. Some have rigid frames on the outside, others have softer internal frames and the smaller ones have no frame at all. If you are hunting by horseback, a larger pack is not needed because you are usually not far from your horse and saddle bags. If you plan to hunt multiple seasons like archery and gun, go with a camouflaged pack.


Multiple compartments are needed so that you can organize your gear and balance the load you will be carrying. Pack it with your heaviest items toward the bottom and the lighter gear up top. This will make the pack easier to carry and keep you more balanced as you hike. Remember to pack your rain jacket close to the top for speedy access.


When choosing the best day pack for elk hunting keep in mind the size because you will tend to fill up whatever size pack you purchase.

 

The larger the pack, the heavier your load will be all day. Get more insider tips on planning and preparing for an Elk hunt in the Rocky Mountains in my new book  The Rocky Mountain Elk Guide.

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What Are The Best Binoculars For Glassing Elk?

leupold binoculars

 

Proper optics are essential for a successful elk hunt. Binoculars are so important because they help you locate your game.

 

So many hunters walk right by animals that they could have taken. If they had stopped and glassed the surrounding hill sides and valleys with a good pair of binoculars they would have seen more animals.

 

So with that said, the question remains, what are the best binoculars for glassing elk? As in anything you find in life, you generally get what you pay for. There are few binoculars in the lower price range that are good.

 

Nikon Monarch are really good binoculars with a very clear lens. A new binocular made by Bushnell called the Ultra-HD has been tested to have greater light transmission and a 12% wider field of view. Nikons sell for around $275.00 and the Bushnells are under $200.00. These would be the minimum you should spend on optics.

 

Swarovski, Zeiss and Leupold make fine binoculars and retail into the thousands of dollars depending on the model. They are well worth the money, believe me.

 

So what are the best binoculars for glassing elk? Choose a pair that are a 10 to 12 power with a 40 or larger objective lens. This is one of those times that I would say try not to skimp. Buy the very best binocular that you can afford.

 

Go to a sporting goods store that specializes in hunting equipment, listen to the salesperson and then try out the different models before you make your decision.

 

To me the hardest part of making the decision is deciding on your budget. I also suggest that you spend the extra money on a harness strap that holds the binoculars secure, keeps them close at hand and is comfortable to carry all day long.

 

The size and weight of binoculars need to be considered. You would hate to buy a great pair of binoculars but not carry them because they are too big and heavy. So bottom line, decide on your budget and get the best pair of binoculars that you can. Binoculars.com has some great ones to choose from.

 

Get more insider tips on planning and preparing for an Elk hunt in the Rocky Mountains here  The Rocky Mountain Elk Guide.

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What is the Best GPS for Elk Hunting?

gps

 

Determining what is the best GPS for elk hunting can be confusing. There are so many fine brands and models of GPS on the market today so I will try to narrow it down to my favorite and the one I carry on all of my elk hunts.

 

 

I tend to want to go simple with my electronics so I prefer to combine my needs into as few instruments as possible. The GPS that I carry has many features. It has a weather band, 2 way radio, electronic compass, altimeter, map and navigation page.

 

 

From the menu page, you can mark way points, check sun and moon phases, set your alarm clock, check the best times for hunting and fishing and if you get bored at night, it even has games!

 

 

A great feature of this GPS is its capability of tracking another user of the same type unit. This means you and your hunting partners can keep up with each other as you hunt. You can send silent messages to each other if you want to remain silent.

 

If you want to know the answer to “what is the best GPS for elk hunting? ” I believe that it is the Garmin Rino 530.

 

 

In addition to all of the features I mentioned above, it has a very long battery life, its waterproof and shock resistant and user friendly. It can be used in low or no light conditions because it is backlit. You can get topography maps and even marine maps.

 

 

Get more insider tips on planning and preparing for an Elk hunt in the Rocky Mountains at The Rocky Mountain Elk Guide.

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