Backcountry Gear Dump, Bear Edition

Spring bear is one of the best times to test and try out new backpacking gear for the year. I am always eager to test all the gear that I have upgraded during the winter. Below is my gear that I use for my backcountry spring bear hunt. Typically, I will try and be in the mountains for 5-7 days and follow a nomad style of hunting for spring bears. This style of hunting allows me to be light and mobile which is critical to find bears in rugged terrain. My bag weight will depend heavily on the weather forecast but I will try and keep it as light as possible for this style of hunting. I will be glassing most of the day during this hunt so a glassing chair will be worth its weight in gold. Depending on how stable the weather is, I will leave clothing at the truck or pack more clothing in my pack. 


Turkey Gear & Hunting Tips

With Turkey season on the horizon I couldn’t be more excited to dive into an article about turkey hunting. Just a few years ago I never understood what all the hype about turkey hunting was. After some convincing from a good buddy of mine, I agreed to tag along with him on my first turkey hunt. It only took a few moments of walking along the field edge that first morning and hearing my first gobble that I knew I was going to be hooked. 


Camo vs Solid Colors

Is camo really necessary to harvest animals? This is a question I have had running through my mind over the last couple of years. Recently I have noticed that more and more hunters, including myself, wear solid earth tones and camo apparel. I have hunted in full camo, full solid earth tones, a mix of camo and solid colors through various types of hunts and environments. Throughout this article we will look at historical data, personal stories and the science behind camouflage. 


Miles for Piles – Shed Hunting Gear Tips

As the long, cold days of winter come to an end, the need to scratch the “Cabin Fever Itch” is stronger than ever. My favorite outdoor activity during from February to June is looking for antlers that deer and elk have shed. 

As a shed hunter, I catch myself as my efforts are mostly focused on where I am going to hike, which hillsides the animals wintered on, and dreaming of how many sheds I am going to find. And rightly so! These factors are crucial in increasing the success of a shed hunt. 


Venison Philly Cheesesteak

Why I hunt for my own meat

Growing up in a deer hunting family was a blessing. For many years it was always in my eyes about killing the biggest buck in the woods. Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy pursuing and chasing mature bucks, but today there is so much more beyond that. Let me give you a few examples.

Deer hunting to me is more than going out one weekend a year and shooting a deer. In my eyes there is something you can be doing 365 days a year to be preparing yourself for a better opportunity of being successful. Spring time is a great time to shed hunt, scout new and old areas, and to learn how deer move and use a specific piece of land. There is so much you can learn from simple observations and just being in the woods.


Pack Fitting Basics

I love being a hunter these days because there are so many great advancements in technology that make life in the backcountry more efficient and more comfortable.  Packs are no different.  It seems like right when I get settled into a pack that works great, someone comes up with a cool new concept to make them function better.

When it comes to fitting a pack, I think it’s important to first determine your intended use of the pack.  Are you the type of hunter that carries camp around on your back for 5-7 days? Or do you usually hunt from a truck or spike camp where a lot less gear to haul on your back is required?  Fortunately, there is more than a few packs out there that are dual purpose packs.  Meaning they can be used as a day pack as well as an extended backcountry hunt.


Alaska Guide Creations Holster – Tactical, Versatile, For Real.

Who is Alaska Guide Creations?

Recently, there was a viral video of a Utah man being escorted out of a canyon by a mama-mountain lion. While watching the video I could not help but think, “where is this guy’s gun?”. Whether that would have been the right decision or not is up for debate, but regardless of views, my .38 Special would have been at my side. Or my front. Or my back. How? The Alaska Guide Creations Holster. 


Arrow Setup 101

One of my favorite things to do each fall is chase bugling bulls with my bow.  From the moment the last light fades on my last hunt, I start tinkering with my bow and arrow setup to see how it can be improved.  Over the years I have done a lot of research on what I think makes the best Elk hunting arrow. I have also looked at a lot of “Game Film” in the offseason from the hunts of others’ trying to determine what set-ups seem to work best. 


Merino? Not Your Grandpa’s Wool Sweater

The first word that comes to my mind when I hear the word “wool” is a memory from my first rifle deer hunt. Slipping my dad’s big, itchy, bright red sweater that had “RUGER” stitched in black across the front. Sure, it was warm, and I knew I wasn’t going to get shot, but man, I couldn’t wait to take that thing off. When I first considered buying Merino wool, I had flashbacks to that particular sweater. Little did I know at the time, Merino wool was the fabric that would soon take up the majority of space in my hunting closet. 


King’s Camo – XKG Layering System

What comes to mind when you think layers? Maybe, onions? Maybe, perhaps a 7-layer dip on game day (mmm………7-layer dip)? Or maybe layers of clothing? For the sake of this article, I am going to discuss clothing layers. More specifically, the XKG layer system from King’s Camo. My intention for this article is to dive into the system I have put together and discuss what XKG is, why I chose what I have, and the conditions I have experienced with it.