5 Must-Haves When You Are Hunting
Imagine this scenario: You woke hours before dawn, loaded your equipment in your vehicle, headed to your perfect hunting spot, began unloading your gear, and realized you’d forgotten a vital item required to complete the hunt. This could be a map to get you to your site or even legally required safety equipment. Any good hunter knows a successful hunting trip begins before you leave your home. It will be immensely difficult to have an effective hunt if you do not acquire the right gear and prepare correctly. This list comprises five must-haves for hunters that intend to bring home any game.
1. Protective And High Visibility Outerwear
One major part of packing for your hunting trip is ensuring your high-visibility outerwear makes it into your bags or gets put on before your leave your home. Hunters wear "safety orange," which is already included in many outfits that may involve occupational hazards, like site workers, paramedics, etc.
Deer and other game animals cannot distinguish orange from natural colors in the environment, so it will not harm your chances of pulling in your game. However, you are not the only human in the woods. Though you may be a responsible hunter that fully identifies what you are shooting at before you take the shot, that cannot be said of every hunter in your vicinity. Some hunters may see a flash of movement and take a shot, resulting in serious harm or even death. Orange easily contrasts with the other colors in nature, so other hunters are much more likely to identify you as another human instead of potential game. Many states have recognized the importance of safety orange in keeping hunters safe - more than 40 U.S. states require wearing orange while hunting. Even those that have not legally mandated it still heavily recommend it. Whether you bag any game, a successful hunt is one where you return home to your family.
2. A Good, Reliable Rifle
Few things are more disappointing than calling in your game, lining up a shot, and failing to get your rifle firing feedback. It will be just as frustrating if you line up your shot and your rifle fails to shoot where you were aiming. You need to be familiar with your weapon and how it shoots to place a good shot. Accuracy is important to ensure you place a humane shot that kills your target as quickly as possible. An improperly maintained weapon can even malfunction in such a way that you become injured. For example, failing to clean your rife can cause rust accumulation, corrosion, and residual fouling build-up. These issues can make your rifle unsafe for you and other hunters near you.
3. Extra Rifle Magazines
Having multiple magazines for each weapon you will carry while hunting is essential. Even the highest quality magazines will degrade with time and use — the feed lips will become bent, and springs will lose their form. It is impossible to predict when a magazine will lose its effectiveness and fail to feed correctly, so the best mitigation for this instance is carrying multiple. If you only take one magazine because you believe that is all you will need, you will lose a large part of that gun's effectiveness if you lose the magazine. Though hunting rifle magazines will fail after a certain time, you can extend that by purchasing quality magazines. American Rifle Magazines supplies top-quality, OEM, American-made hunting magazines for Marlin and Remington rifles.
Though you may be confident in your hunting location, many obstacles could force you to change your typical path. It is wise to be prepared with topographical knowledge of your area. A map can also help you plot the best route to pull your game out of the woods. On a safety note, you should also leave a map of your intended location with someone that is not going into the woods with you. You can also have them connect to the GPS on your phone through a location app to ensure your location is always known. You can be extremely confident in your ability to move through the woods, but that does not prevent an injury or emergency from occurring.
5. Game Calls
Hunting is a game of knowledge and luck. You need to understand how your intended target will move through the woods and when, but the knowledge of their patterns does not guarantee they’ll be where you believe. Game calls are a method to entice the game into favorable conditions for you to take the best possible shot.
Though spending quality time in the woods makes the hunt worthwhile, no one will argue that the hunt is better when you fill in a few of your tags. Ensuring these five things are in your bag and ready to go will improve your chances. Happy hunting!