Accessories Can Make Life Easier

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I wanted to take a minute to give a tip to the younger guys out there. Now that I'm in my 40's I have started to buy the things that if I had purchased years ago would have made life a lot easier and I can't believe I waited so long.

When I was younger I put all my money into new guns that many times rarely got used at all. Lately instead of that I have been getting the things I always looked at but never picked up. Even if money is tight try to save up and get something once a year or so and you will be very happy with the results. Here's a list of items that I am very happy to own now.

A good rangefinder for those long shots. Get the best yuo can as there is a big difference in their abilities.

High quality binoculars and scopes. they don't have to be the best but the cheapest out there will leave you dissappointed.

A gps will save you a lot of time looking for public land and keep you from going in circles.

A game cart for wheeling out game animals would have saved me countless hours and sore backs over the years.

A hoist system for the trailer hitch on the back of my truck and we can now skin them in the air instead of rolling them around on the ground.

A decent camera for better pictures. I used cheap throw aways for many years to save money and you can tell from most of the picture I took. Sometimes the pictures are all you have so the better they are the fresher the memories will be.

I'm sure there are many more that could be added but that's a good start to making life easier. Any good rifle will get the job done but the rest of these things make a big difference before and after the shot.

Comments

BikerRN's picture

Great Advice

I too, as I age, find that some of the things I wouldn't consider twenty years ago are now a "must have" thing.

Compared to when I was a kid I'm enjoying hunting now. I try to make myself comfortable and use equipment that makes my life easier. Being that I don't have the "spring in my step" that I used to have I am amazed at how fun hunting is with just a few simple additions to the gear.

A pad to sit on, tripod, GPS device, and a few other tools of the trade make things much more pleasurable and may allow me to hunt longer to make up for lost time.

Biker

GooseHunter Jr's picture

When I think of all the

When I think of all the accessories that I have bought over the years I think the one that has made the biggest gain for me would have to be the rangefinder.  I use to never carry one until I missed a cow and what I was almost positive of the range until I stepped it off and I was off my almost 75 yards.  Since then the rangefinder has allowed me to take some shots I may have not done in the past when just not knowing.  I saw where some talked about game carts...we bought ome used it once to bring out a cow and I will tell you I was more tired from pushing and pulling that game cart than I would have been making multiple trips with my frame packs.

Retired2hunt's picture

I have to show the wife so I can buy!

 

I definitely agree with your list Hunter25 - and Arrowflipper - and Groovy Mike.  As I was dragging my deer from about a mile out last month I was mumbling through my sweat soaked shirt that I should have bought a wheeled game cart or a darn ATV.  It would have made things a whole lot easier - and made me look smarter.  The easy part was crossing the Rio Grande river with the deer!

As for the camping gear - I learned that lesson last year trying to camp in a 3 season tent when I was in the 4th season weather.  I was miserable for 5 nights.  New tent did just great!

I have to go now and show my wife this blog so I can go to the store and buy what I need!  Thanks Guys!

 

 

ManOfTheFall's picture

Thanks for the great tip.

Thanks for the great tip. Over the years I too have begun to get these types of things that I did not have when I was younger and it sure has made my hunting experiences more enjoyable and less frustrating at the same time.

arrowflipper's picture

40's

Great tip...... buy the things that make your life easier.  When I started reading this, and you mentioned "younger" guys, I was thinking you must be a bit older.  Boy was I wrong on that one.  You're still a whipper-snapper.  Glad to see you are getting some good things while you're still young. 

Good binoculars and a good scope are worth their weight in backstraps.  When young, I thought a good gun was what I really needed to spend my money on.  I still like a fine rifle, but if given a choice of fine rifle or fine binoculars, the binos win out.  I spend a whole lot more time "using" my glass than I do the rifle.  I now carry a very fine set of glasses and I love them every time I pull them up to my eyes.  I also spent way more than I should have and put a fine scope on my gun.  Early in the morning or late in the evening, there's nothing like pulling that rifle up and seeing a bright, clear image of what I'm looking at.

Other items that I'm sure you have are good camping gear.  When I was young, I thought nothing of sleeping on the cold, hard ground.  I thought it proved that I was tough.  As I got older, I realized that a good night’s sleep in not only nice, it's necessary.  I now have a large tent that I can walk around in without bending over, a heavy duty Army cot, a two inch pad on that cot and a warm, oversized sleeping bag.  I also have a heater that I can roll over and light about 5 minutes before getting out of bed.  Camping comfortably and sleeping well are paramount to hunting.  Now, if you don't camp out but hunt from home, then I'll take my nice warm wife to cuddle up to.

Something that I had to learn the hard way on was boots.  I started out with some pretty crappy boots.  My feet were always wet, cold and miserable.  Therefore, I was miserable.  I finally spent the money on a good set of boots and it was amazing how much nicer my hunts became.

Ya know, the list goes on and on, but I agree 100% with the youngster, hunter25, that buying good equipment makes all the difference between a great hunt and a miserable one.  Thanks for the reminder.

 

groovy mike's picture

two extremes of this topic, and you are both right.

Hunter25 and Ndemiter you have touched on the two extremes of this topic, and you are both right.   Without a doubt the right gear can make your life easier.  You SHOULD buy it.  I have already decided to get the best glass that I can afford for both binoculars and rifle scopes and Camera Land as a sponsor of BIGGameHunt.net has been a huge help to me with both of these needs.  I’ve also picked up a GPS although I don’t use it much – it is worth having.  A game cart for wheeling out really big game animals has proven invaluable on both mule deer and moose hunts, but also gets used rarely.  I’ve also added an ATV for deer retrieval to the category of amazingly useful (how did I ever live without this) type of ALMOST essential tools.  But that said – you can carry too much gear.  You can over rely on technology, and the bottom line is that you CAN get by with very, very little of the latest and greatest gear.  Simple basic equipment can get the job done and by the end of a long hike you will be glad that your daypack is light – UNLESS you get lost or delayed out in the remote areas in which case you will be glad for every extra ounce you carried with you.  You need to look at each hunt individually.  For example if you will need a game cart – bring it.  But if the likelihood of needing a game cart is small then don’t waste the time, energy, and limited luggage space to bring it. 

I agree that a decent camera for better pictures is well worth having.  As you said – the photographs may be all that you have to show for even a successful hunt after the freezer is empty and the taxidermy gone bad.  So I too would advise you to upgrade your camera from whatever you have to the next level better and to take LOTS and lots of pictures.  You will appreciate them later.  Even though I have always used pretty decent cameras it amazes me to see the improvement in my photographs over the years as technology has improved and become more affordable over the last few decades.

So get the best scope, camera, and binoculars that you can (check out Cameraland’s inventory !) and pack judiciously with the rest of your limited pack space.

Mike

ndemiter's picture

that is a good tip. but, when

that is a good tip. but, when you're young, it takes a little longer to save up the money to purchase some of these items.

now that i am finacially stable enough (and by that i mean i finally have more money coming in than going out) to purchase these things, i've got myself well set up. but i do reflect upon the wasted time and inefficient hunting (and walking in circles) that i have done and can only chalk it up to experience. it's all different now that i'm older, wiser and more efficient.

this little stuff makes a huge difference and it's hard to say what you might need out there. last year, i hunted with my cousin for the first time... he carries everything in the world he might need, by the end of the week, he was down to a few shells and a bottle of water. but my gear didn't change a whole lot. a light frame pack, water, a snack and shells... and binos!

the rest is extra and you may or may not need it, it's up to you to decide whether to use it or not.