When it comes to hunting, Go Carnivore is hardly a mainstream hunting blog. You will not see us advising hokey gaderty and the latest big buck tactic. At the end of the day, successful hunting is about skill. There are, however, some practical pieces of gear that make hunting more tolerable, endurable and practical these purchases need not require you to break the bank. The mainstream hunting industry throws all kinds of cheap stuff in your face. Its almost a “hand grenade” marketing tactic: Shove enough junk out there and people will buy something, usually a inferior product that requires more purchases of the same or similar products. Below is a list of gear that is practical, field tested and much of it comes in under $100, even $50 We have no affiliation with any of these products, just long hours in the field.
Black Rock Down Beanie. This 850 fill beanie weighs a mere 1 oz and, paired with a base layer, should provide all the warmth a hunter needs. If you are in a state that requires blaze orange during the cold weather seasons, you might consider getting the beanie in Blaze orange. I love this thing. $55
Icebreaker ultra thin merino wool socks make great sock liners. Match these with a pair of thicker high quality merino wool socks and you’ll have warm feet. $17.99
Smartwool Glove Liners with Touchscreen technology. Face it: The contemporary hunter spends time texting, scrolling Instagram, taking pics and using touchscreen GPS systems in the field. These gloves will allow you to do all of that without exposing your skin to the cold. $24
Probably my current favorite piece of hunting gear is this First Lite Merino Wool Neck Gaiter. I wore this thing 24/7 for a week straight in Colorado. You can wear it as a face mask, a beanie hat, a neck gaiter, headband or a doo rag. You can use it to like a handkerchief to wipe sweat of your brow or to dry your hands after washing them in a stream, wipe blood off your knife etc. I tucked it under the back of my hat to keep the sun off my neck on sweltering afternoons. I even slept in it. Handy, practical, lightweight, & comfortable. $30
This FHF rangefinder pouch is a bit expensive for what it is. That being said, I have always had issues with optics. I’ve never been able to keep them in a comfortable position in relation to not being in my way when bending over, climbing etc. As a result, my optics and range finger have often ended up in less than accessible places when I needed them. I think I solved this problem with this particular range finder pouch. For an extra $9, you get an extendable tether. Again, expensive for what it is, but it does work well and seems to have solved my problem. I attach this to my bino harness which keeps the rangefinder always accessible on my right ribcage. $36
This Solo Hunter Rifle Cover is a 8oz piece of Cordura fabric with a stretchy liner. It easily fits over your rifle and comes off instantly. While not 100% waterproof, it is treated with a DWR coating making it highly water resistant. It will definitely keep moderate rain and snow entirely off of your rifle and scope. A Hard rain might require a quick wipe down with oil at the end of the day, but the internal mechanisms should remain dry. I bear ate mine (!!!), so I got another one. $36
For hunting in cold weather, no insulation layer beats a down “puffy” jacket. Period. End of story. Not debatable. There are a lot of options out there for down jackets and they don’t have to be hunting specific since a hunter can always wear a camo shell jacket over it. I would look for jackets with a fill of greater than 800. Here are two suggestions.
Kryptek Aquillo Jacket: $239 (currently on sale for $179)
Feathered Friends offers an assortment of super high quality puffy options from midweight fill vests to full on mountaineering jackets. $170+
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