Gear needs to work. When you're headed off the grid on the hunt of a lifetime, it's no time to have subpar equipment. This gear will keep you comfortable and lethal throughout the fall.
KUIU has paired midweight layers with their StrongFleece technology for a versatile piece of gear you can’t hunt without. The tech features a two-layer knit with soft-brushed fleece on the inside, while a tightly knitted hard-faced outer shell resists snags. The ultrafine polyester fibers are hydrophobic to wick away moisture while also providing a soft, insulating midlayer. Breathable and water resistant, you can wear the 235 Zip-T as a midlayer or outer layer depending on your needs.
Designed to be versatile tool for the backcountry hunter, the Guide X Trekking Poles from Argali are a hybrid design with a carbon-fiber upper section and two 7075 aluminum lower sections to keep weight down but hold up to abuse. The poles extend from 25.5 inches to 55 inches and weigh 17 ounces as a pair. Beyond just helping stabilize your hikes, the Argali Grip-Adapt System allows you to attach the X3 Adapter or QuickShot Adapter to use your trekking poles to glass from, shoot off of, and you can even attach the two to make a single center pole for the Argali tipi.
NIKWAX HARDSHELL DUO-PACK
Technical hunting gear is made to withstand the elements thanks to DWR treatment, but after many days afield, that waterproofing wears down and needs maintained. Nikwax is the leader in water-repellent treatment. The Hardshell DUO-Pack is made to use in the washing machine or by hand to restore water repellency of both clothing and synthetic sleeping bags (a wash for down bags is also available). Treatments contain elastic water-repellent polymers that bond to fabric, all while leaving space in the fabric so it is open and breathable.
Spartan Precision Equipment designs gear to function efficiently in the field. The Ascent Tripod comes in two versions—Mountain and Woodland—that are both fitted with the Davros Pro Head and have twist-lock extending legs for easy use. What’s more, the legs are detachable to be used as trekking poles if need be. The Mountain extends to 50 inches while the Woodland extends to an astonishing 70 inches. Weight is 3.2 pounds and 3.7 pounds respectively. The Davros Pro head offers smooth panning and easy attachment for your optics and rifle via the company’s unique magnetic attachment system.
The 3 Primal from Riton is made to be a crossover scope that is perfect for both the range and long-distance hunting. For quick adjustments in the moment of truth, the Primal has exposed zero-stop turrets and two throw levers that are also removable. Made of aircraft-grade aluminum, this scope is made to withstand backcountry elements. It is 100 percent waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof. Windage and elevation adjustments are calculated with 1/10 MRAD, giving you precise holds on a big buck or bull.
For backcountry pursuits, a hatchet is a useful tool you don’t want to hit the trail without. The new Hellgate from MKC weighs in at just 14.9 ounces but is made of 52100 high-carbon ball-bearing steel. This makes the hatchet tough yet lightweight with a perfect balance for swinging. The Hellgate features a sharp edge that is made for more than just cutting wood or brush. It’s so sharp, MKC promises you can field dress an animal if you find yourself without a knife. MKC offers free sharpening and repair for life.
Made for four-season solo use, the Sky Solus is made with a minimal footprint so it can be pitched in tight terrain while not sacrificing space or durability. The Stone Glacier WebTruss system allows you to pitch the tent quickly in bad weather and provides a bulletproof shelter against harsh winds and sideways rain. Two vestibules give you ample space for gear or cinch them under the fly if space is limited on the mountain. A single door sits at the front of the tent, while two drawstring holes inside allow access to the vestibule space. Minumum trail weight: 3 pounds, 11 ounces.
Many people opt to leave the spotting scope behind when trekking deep into the backcountry. While the concern for weight and space is real, a spotter can be a valuable tool. Vortex revamped the 11-33X spotter, commonly known as the Mini Razor by its admirers, to this new 13-39x56 version. With some added magnification paired with premium glass, the new Mini Razor will be a perfect option for anyone trying to cut weight but still glass effectively. The new model comes in both a straight and angled model that weigh 29.5 and 28.6 ounces respectively.
Browning has a long and storied history in the outdoors space. Now, they are entering the world of high-end frame packs. The packs feature a sturdy frame and the new norm of a removable bag that allows the users to carry a load that sits tight up against the hunter’s back. The pack features a fully adjustable harness and waist belt to fit the user. The Monroe and Gannet packs are 3600 and 5500 cubic inches respectively and are available in Major Brown and the Ovix camo pattern.
The trusted light company Streamlight released an impeccable new headlamp in 2023. The Protac 2.0 boasts an astonishing 2,000 lumens when running on high—with maximum beam distance of 241 meters. It runs off one Streamlight SL-B50 Li Ion battery that is USB rechargeable. The Ten-Tap power switch allows the user to choose between different settings on the light, which includes a low-beam option that will greatly increase the run time of the lamp. When operated on high, the battery will last for 2.25 hours of constant use; on low, it can operate for 25 uninterrupted hours.