Author Archives: Marcus Springer

Colorado Elk 2018

(Submitted from BlackOvis Customer Glen Gust)

It all started late December 2017 when told my wife that September 2018 was going to be the year I wanted to go on my first elk hunting trip. I shared my thoughts with an older brother Rollin that had just started archery hunting after a number of years of being off. He was on board. At the time I was 55 and my brother was 64. Also by May Carrie my wife joined forces. Shortly after I had made my decision I became a member of Elk101 and was getting into the online course. The course is so well thought out and I really enjoyed getting into all the information. I loved all the planning and research that goes into a backcountry hunt. From learning to call, to what goes into a pack ready for the back country, clothing and footwear, what state to hunt?? Wow, I could tell I hadn’t started too early. The big thing about Elk101 that really helped me was all the really pertinent information all condensed in one place. It was so accessible. Another thing that was so helpful was all the other resources that Cory was linked up with. gohunt, OnX, EXO, Rocky Mountain calls BlackOvis, MTN OPS, all of them we subscribe to or have purchased from them. From diet changes to a major change in our exercise program it was charge time. A quote that OnX had on their cover page last summer and fall became our motto, “Success favors the prepared”. We did our best to leave no stone unturned. Along the way we always seemed to be enjoying our new adventure no matter what challenges we faced along the way.

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GORDON BUCK – Pending New Record Archery Mule Deer

Gordon Buck, 2018 Mule Deer

In this day and age, in a world of self promotion and images that travel faster through social media than wildfire in a dry forest, how does a potential all time world record archery mule deer buck harvested in early September not be seen around the world until now? It starts and ends with a humble guy who is less interested in hype than he is in the hunt.

Enter the bowhunter who harvested this once in a generation buck, Justin Gordon of Kamas, Utah. His drive and passion for pursuing mature mule deer in the high country has been his focus for nearly two decades. He’s humbly gone about honing his craft and skill, all the while refining his equipment selection in order to spend time on public land, in true DIY (Do It Yourself) fashion pursuing his dream: to harvest a mature mule deer buck surpassing the magical 200″ mark.

Gordon Buck, Grip and Grin


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First Lite Cipher Camo – New for 2017

What is Cipher?

Cipher camouflage from First Lite leverages the same proven working principals as their Fusion camo. The relationship between colors and shapes in both First Lite patterns are specifically designed to fool the brain and resemble patterns found in nature. No Pixels, no trees. Breakup camouflage from First Lite utilizes several key principles to help you disappear in both short and long distances:

  • Large Shape Disruption –  Used to distort and hide the hunter’s body by incorporating large regions of light and dark colors that work against the human figure.
  • Small-Medium Texture Disruption – A scattering of small-to-medium sized elements from a nature-based algorithm effectively blends the hunter into their surroundings when close to prey.
  • Disruptive Coloration – Finely tunes palettes of color to contrast against body outlines to blend with natural surroundings.
  • Focal and Depth Confusion – Color and shape algorithms based in nature are strategically placed to confuse depth perception. Peripheral vision of the prey is also distorted with the controlled contrast and disruptive coloration.
  • Light and Dark Crackleture – Unique to First Lite patterns, the crackleture use of light and dark shapes that weave throughout the pattern offer yet another level of versatility and effectiveness, eliminating color blobbing and further distorting the hunter’s shape.

Cipher Camo

Cipher vs Fusion?

Although they use the same science and both are very flexible to a wide variety of environments, Fusion incorporates green into it’s color pallet which makes it ideal for early season, western lichen/sage/pine, and any type of heavy wooded areas. Cipher on the other hand uses a much more muted color pallet for dry and late season environments.

First Lite Camouflage

BlackOvis NWT Merino Wool Giveaway [Contest Over]

3 Will Win!

Each winner will get setup with a merino top and bottom in the style of their choice. Contest was open from 2/22/17-2/28/17. 

*Since we had such a high feedback and entry count we decided to throw in an extra winner! Congrats to our Winners: Clayton Lowe, Lisa Sheppard, Kelly T Hicks, and Ray Slaton.

You need to properly layer in order to make an effective hunting apparel system. If your base layers can’t breath or can’t keep you warm when needed, it can bring your hunt to a raging halt. Merino wool is ideal because of it’s natural properties and by using them as your next-to-skin layer, you can stay out in the field longer with added comfort.

BlackOvis Merino Wool

We at now manufacture our own 190 gram, 100% Merino Wool from New Zealand Merino sheep and we’re giving you a chance to win 1 of 3 sets of Merino wool! Each winner will be able to choose either the NWT 1/4 Zip Top or the NWT Long Sleeve Crew AND either the NWT 50/50 Blend Boxer or the NWT Base Layer Bottom.


  • 1 submission per email address
  • Must enter using the form above
  • Contest is open from Feb 22nd through Feb 28th, winner announced March 1st
  • By entering, you agree to receive the BlackOvis Gear Insider emails. You can unsubscribe anytime
  • If the notified winner has not responded within 24 hours, a new winner will be selected
  • Your information will not be shared or sold to anyone else


Merino Wool has powerful natural properties which include moisture wicking, warmth when needed, odor resistant properties, and is extremely soft. When washing merino, tumble dry on low heat or hang to dry to prevent fibers from being damaged. To learn more about these products, visit the BlackOvis brand page



Marmot Tent & Bag Giveaway! [Contest Over]

Marmot giveaway

Let’s kick November off with another giveaway! We’ve teamed up with Marmot to bring you an ultralight tent and sleeping bag combo. The dual entry Marmot Force 2P Backpacking Tent offers a great balance between weight, living space, and easy of setting up. Pair this with the Hydrogen 800+ fill 30° Down Sleeping Bag and you’re set to venture deep into the backcountry with some of the world’s most reliable outdoor gear!

One lucky winner will take home the combo, totaling a retail value of $718!

The winner is… Derek from Alberta, congrat man! Stay tuned for more giveaways we have planned in the near future.

Because it’s a contest, we do need to set a few ground rules:

  • 1 submission per email address
  • Must enter using the form above
  • Contest is open from Nov 1st through Nov 8th, winner announced Nov 9th
  • By entering, you agree to receive the BlackOvis Gear Insider emails. You can unsubscribe anytime
  • If the notified winner has not responded within 24 hours, a new winner will be selected
  • Your information will not be shared or sold to anyone else

Again, a huge shout out to our sponsor Marmot. They have been a long time partner of BlackOvis and are for sure a leader in the outdoor industry when it comes to quality made and functional gear. Even if you don’t win the contest, pick up some this season so you can rest assured that your gear will hold up for years to come.

Choosing a Bino Case


What’s important to you when selecting a bino pack?

We’ve come a long way in how we carry our binoculars. Hopefully you’ve moved on from grandpa’s antique heavy leather single pocket design. With such a wide selection these days you can be pretty picky on what features are most important.

Do you go for new technology like the Badlands Magnetic closure system, keep it simple and quite with a tiny elastic band like Alaska Guide Creations? Is weight and breathability most important to you, or does matching your camo pattern outweigh everything else?  Do you keep it simple or load it with pockets and features to carry some of your other gear?

We want to hear what you guys are using, why, and what brands we need to bring in if doesn’t carry what you want. If you could make your ultimate pack by mixing features across brands, what would it look like?

– Join the discussion below and share your thoughts! –


Zeiss Conquest HD 10×42 Giveaway w/AGC Bino Case

Snow is starting to fall here in Utah and we’re getting in the holiday spirit by kicking off November with a bino and case giveway from Zeiss and Alaska Guide Creations, over a $1,200 value!

It’s simple, decide if you want a chance to win some free gear, if yes…. then enter your submission by filling out the form below. Limited to one entry per user.

The Zeiss Conquest HD 10×42 Binoculars are designed and built to “Made in Germany” quality standards and provide traditional Carl Zeiss premium performance. The HD lens system produces colors that are vivid and natural, and details that are crisp and sharp. The unique protective coating guarantees the clearest view in any weather.

If you haven’t heard or Alaska Guide Creations yet, you will soon as they are taking the market by storm. AGC has actually been around for 40 years, ran by guide and founder Jaret Ownes, and it wasn’t this year he decided to take his custom made bino cases to the open market. To celebrate, AGC has announced their new product line for 2015 and is proud to be one of the first on board.

BlackOvis Bino Giveaway

  • Submissions are open 11/5/15 – 11/11/15
  • 1 submission per email address
  • Must enter using the form below
  • Winner will be contacted through email and announced back here November 12th 2015
  • By entering, you are agreeing to receive BlackOvis Gear Insider emails
  • If the notified winner has not responded within 3 days, a new winner will be selected.
  • Your information will not be shared or sold to anyone else

The Contest has now ended and we have randomly chosen a winner. Congratulations to Thaddeus K. from Ogden UT for taking home the grand prize! Thanks to everyone who participated, stay tuned for additional giveaways coming your way

Sitka Elevated II Pattern

Building on the science of the old Elevated Forest pattern, Elevated II has been optimized with less foliage and more sky which will lengthen the engagement range and extend seasonal effectiveness to redefine the way people hunt whitetail deer.


Not only has Sitka re-engineered the whitetail line to be more resilient, insulated, and quiet, they’ve also improved in the area of concealment. It’s not enough to keep you comfortable in the stand for longer periods of time, they’ve gone one step further in order to extend your concealments’ seasonal effectiveness, so that you can add weeks and not just hours to your time in the stand.

On the comfort side, Sitka has re-engineered all materials in the collection for the quietest and most protective whitetail system ever created. From the cotton ball quiet Celsius series to the specific body mapped thermal needs found in the new Shacket and Fanatic Lite, the whitetail hunter will immediately see the bar being raised.