Whether you hunt elk every year at your getaway cabin in the woods or are planning a long distance trip to harvest a once in a lifetime ram, you’re going to need a couple pieces of essential gear. Bad luck that many incur while hunting is often attributed to missing a key item forgotten back at home or at camp. As a hunting fanatic, the essential items are near impossible to forget: tents, food, ammunition and your guns. However there are also some easily forgotten items that are essential for effective hunting and critical for survival. Here is a short list of items that could make or break your adventure.
Check-List of Hunting Essentials for Your Next Adventure
1. Hunting apparel: Proper clothing can make a significant difference in the enjoyment, safety and success of your hunt, whether you’re on the prowl for wild turkeys or prefer a big game hunt. Whenever venturing out, it is extremely important to consider the weather. If you fail to check the weather beforehand, you risk the chance of ending up cold, wet and absolutely miserable. Imagine the frustration you would feel if there is a clear shot to take down your game but you can barely aim because you can barely keep yourself from shivering. Choose clothing that keeps you dry and warm, yet lets your skin breathe and helps control scent. The proper hunting attire also protects you from potential harm from other hunters. Make sure your gear is aligned with the safety requirements set out by your local or state hunting agencies. Neglecting or ignoring the standard to wear the required safety clothing will put you at unnecessary risk, ruin your hunt, or worse.
2. Game Cleaning and Retrieval Kit: After your arrow flies or your bullet leaves the barrel, the second part of the hunt begins. Just as you wouldn’t forget your bullets when hunting, you also would not forget the essential items used to locate, retrieve and clean your harvest. A good kit includes:
3. Low-power binoculars for periodically scanning ahead to look for any signs of disturbance.
4. Biodegradable marking tape for marking the blood trail and studying the animal’s flight pattern.
5. A high-power light or headlamp that emits at least 200 lumens that will light the way and help you follow the blood trail. Don’t forget spare batteries in case your light dies or your tracking goes into the late evening hours.
6. Compass or GPS to help determine the animals flight path and to prevent yourself from getting lost while following a blood trail.
7. Luminol and a spray bottle to detect bloodstains and spatter. Crime-scene investigators use the Luminol to create a solution that makes blood glow fluorescent blue which will help you easily follow a blood trail.
8. Hunting game bag or tarp for carrying your harvest.
9. Hunting knife for cleaning and carving your game, cutting rope, etc.
10. Field-dressing gloves to keep your hands clean of blood.
11. 100 feet of paracord is valuable for improvising a shelter, hanging meat to cool, or tying off a leg while skinning and butchering a big game carcass.
12. Transporation and Storage: It takes a lot of gear to effectively hunt big game. In order to ensure that your gear is safe and reliable, it is important that you have the right means of conveyance and storage solution to meet your needs.
13. Off-roading vehicle. When it comes to hunting, no piece of gear or tool you have holds a flame to the importance of having a great off-roading vehicle. The best hunting vehicles can handle rough terrain and has a bed for carrying your equipment and your game. When choosing a vehicle ensure that it is versatile, dependable, and easy to perform small repairs in case you experience a problem in the field. Pickup trucks and ATVs/UTVs are ideal.
14. Extendobed truck bed extenders allow you to easily access all of your equipment and gear, and allows you to load and unload your game with ease. These pull out truck bed units can be customized with drawers, compartments, shelves, mounts, dividers, and much more, providing extra storage space for all of your hunting gear.
15. Emergency Kit: Having a set of tools and emergency materials will help you survive the unexpected while traveling in the back country. The kits are lightweight and are barely noticeable in your backpack or storage device until you need it to get you out of a bind.
16. Survival Blanket
17. Mini-Rescue Flash signal mirror
19. Waterproof matches
20. Survival fishing kit
21. Duct tape
Before going on your next hunt, ensure you have some if not all of the proposed items listed above. These items have shown to be convenient and could net you your prized animal or hold you over while you wait for the animal to appear.