When you’re out in the field, you can never be too prepared but then you can’t be running around the hills like a pack horse either. With hunting season approaching, it may be a good time to evaluate where you hunt, what you hunt, and what you need for the hunt.
Back when I started thinking about being prepared, I bought a tactical vest with lots of little pockets, but it didn’t carry much. I then switched to a backpack that carried everything I needed, but it was bulky and inconvenient.
I was planning on making myself a leather possibles bag until Carrie found me a Versipack. What I can’t get in the Versipack fits nicely in the pockets of my hunting vest.
But back to the original question – what’s in your hunting pack – I thought I’d list what I take, so feel free to comment on what you do or don’t take on your hunts.
From top, let to right:
gun sling (you never know when you need both hands free)
nylon rope (also makes a good temporary leash)
hunting knives (two are always better than one)
dikes (for when your dog gets caught in an illegal snare, as Elvis did years ago)
Trapper Ron’s safety setters (the use of conibear traps on land should be illegal)
Large garbage bags and reflective strap (garbage bags make a good emergency poncho)
wet wipes (I use them all the time, especially when field dressing birds)
hand warmers (for hunting in very cold conditions)
first aid kits and sports tape (don’t go in the field without first aid for you and your dog)
sample packs of dog food (sometimes the dogs are too excited to eat breakfast)
GPS handheld device (keeps you and your dog from getting lost)
poncho (sudden storms are not uncommon)
hand saw (from a temporary blind to temporary shelter)
combs (I use them quite often in the field)
multi-purpose tool (useful in removing porcupine quills)
locator beacons (see your dogs during early morning or late evening hunts)
pens and dog whistle (for updating permits in the field and the whistle keeps you from yelling at your dog)
utensils (hey, who knows when you need a fork and spoon)
collapsible cup (we used to drink straight from the creeks, but not anymore)
collapsible dog bowl (great for watering your dog)
variety of shotgun shells (lead, non-toxic, goose – pheasant – quail loads, etc.)