If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you know by now that I’m a passionate big game hunter and the gear I use allows me to pursue that passion. Many new hunters wonder what gear they should get when they begin hunting. I know I did. Here is a brief overview of what I take with me when I go hunting. My gear list is ever-evolving and to help me stay organized, I use an Excel sheet made by Brady Miller of goHUNT and I’ve attached my version for your use at the end of this article.
This season I chose to wear the Danner Powderhorn. They are a solid, all-around boot that performs equally well chasing elk through the mountains or hiking to a tree stand along a river bottom. For camouflage, I wear King’s Camo. It’s a high quality, low-cost camo that can be found through many different dealers. Whether one believes that camouflage is needed or not, having comfortable clothes while hunting is essential. My number one rule of clothing is to avoid cotton due to its tendency to absorb water and cause chafing.
The ideal pack is one that can be used as a daypack or as a multi-day pack. I resenting started using the Sky 5900 from Stone Glacier, an expedition pack that can convert down into a daypack. It’s got a load shelf that is rated at 150+. I recently helped a friend pack out an elk with the 5900 and it was a lifesaver.
On day hunts, I always carry these basics:
- Hunting Licences
- Binoculars – Vortex Diamondback 10×42
- Rangefinder – Vortex Ranger 1000
- Harvest Kit – Alaska Game Bags, electrical tape, fluorescent flagging tap, and skinning knife
- Bear Spray – UDAP
- 550 paracord
- Wind Checker – Dead Down Wind Wind Detector
- Facepaint – Nature’s Paint
- Headlamp – Black Diamond Ion
- First Aid – Quickclot and Ultralight/Watertight Medical Kit .9
- Game calls – Rocky Mountain Hunting Calls
For a multi-day hunt, my list is a little more involved. The attached Excel sheet is a complete list of everything I used on my seven-day backpack trip for elk this fall. This is a good starting point and checklist for you to use as you plan your next adventure. Download the file and adjust it to fit your needs. If you have any questions about gear, feel free to contact me, I’m always happy to talk. Good luck out there and shoot straight!
(Photos by Nate Harris)