Whether you are fresh to shooting or are a skilled hand, it’s good to have a shooting vest. Knights never went to battle without armor. In the same method, you have to armor yourself with a shooting vest when you are duck hunting, skeet shooting, clay pigeon shooting or trap shooting. The shooting vest will guard you against recoil, and its pockets will give a suitable storage place for your blank bullet shells, cartridges, shooting glasses, and so forth. Hunting Guide wanted to split with you what we know about shooting vests. So we made a short record of the best shooting vest on the market for the money.
- 1 What is a Shooting Vest?
- 2 Read Before Getting the Best Shooting Vest
- 3 5 Best Shooting Vest Review
- 4 Last Word
What is a Shooting Vest?
A shooting vest, as the name willingly recommends, is a garment worn when one is shooting. They are usually worn by people who connect in trap shooting, skeet shooting, or shooting clays. The vest is designed to give practical benefits to a shooter. For example, shooting vests have big, large pockets on the front side and also back which allow the simple storage and retrieval of ear muffs, cartridges, blank casings, shooting goggles, and additional shooting equipment.
Shooting vests have compartments on the shoulders into which you can put recoil pads or protection pads. The recoil pads are planned to shield your shoulder from the force of your firearm’s recoil. If you are a beginner shooter, you must confirm your shooting vest has shoulders protection pads; or, you might hurt yourself.
Read Before Getting the Best Shooting Vest
Left-handed or Right-handed Shooting Vest
Many people don’t know that there are 2 types of shooting vests: one is for left-handed shooters and another one for right-handed shooters. The dissimilarity between the two categories is self-explanatory. Left-handed vests offer the best performance for left-handed shooters.
It would, therefore, be a blunder for a right-handed person to purchase a left-handed shooting vest. That is not to say that the right-handed individual who purchases a left-handed shooting vest won’t be able to use it – no, just that comfort and ease of use will suffer.
Recoil Pad Pockets
Several shooting vests come with protection pads, while some do not. Those shooting vests that do not have the recoil pads but have pockets suppose you to obtain the pads individually. You must ensure your future shooting vest has recoil pad pockets. If your shooting vest includes recoil pads, you can utilize your weapon without the panic of the recoil slamming against your shoulder and causing some injury or pain.
Newbie shooters particularly should keep this tip in mind. Avoid recoil pads, shooting can move from something exciting to do to something you have to suffer. The recoil pads will guard you against injury when your firearm goes off.
Most shooting vests have mesh material for the sake of breathability or ventilation. When the climate is warm and damp, you will start to panic profusely, and before long you will be too exhausted to shoot. Mesh cloth ensures that there is a flow of air within your clothes. As a result, you remain fresh and dry in the bad feeling of the high temperatures.
Cotton and polyester are also popular materials. Both have their pros and cons. It’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons of each and choose the one which suits you best. Even as cotton and polyester are thicker and present more support and padding than net, the latter is lightweight and airy. And if you will utilize your shooting vest in extreme climate, you should think vests that are water-resistant, airproof, or that have a fleece center to keep you humid while shooting on cold days.
Now, allow hunting guide come across at the best shooting vests for the money.
5 Best Shooting Vest Review
1. Browning Trapper Creek Vest
[amazon_link asins=’B0067LT6WO’ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6394a4f6-7ee0-11e8-ae04-15abef1cbecc’]If you are searching for the best shooting vests on the market, Browning is a perfect selection. The brand is famous and appreciated in shooting circles. Its products are high-quality for their strength, design, and in general usefulness. This is the first of the Browning shooting vests hunting guide will review in this article. More than 75% of customers on Amazon review that the vest fits them as they wanted. They wrote words like “Perfect fit” and “Good fit” to explain the vest.
It is ideal for use in both warm and cold weather. In warm weather, you wear it as normal. But in the cool weather, you can change it to allow you to carry it over heavier cold-weather clothes. And don’t worry about the vest weighing you down. One of the main reasons we like it is that it’s lightweight. Any shooter hates to be weighed down by a part of clothing when they are shooting – it’s hard to focus, and you want to be as light as possible, both physically and mentally. It’s an exceptional lightweight summer vest.
The lightweight division is particularly useful for everyone suffering from back troubles. If it were too weighty, it would additionally aggravate the pain. Where do you store your blank shells and shooting accessories like shooting goggles when you are shooting? Well, you will like this vest. It comes with four built-in shell pockets. The pockets are big and have huge space, and you can keep your empty shells in them.
The vest is made with 100% poly mesh, which is great for ventilation. That’s why it’s best for wearing in a warm climate. It will guard you against worrying heavily when you are shooting in summer weather. This vest is perfect for skeet shooting, sporting clays, and trap shooting. And it has a practical value.
My only gripe with the vest is the zipper – although some might like it that way. Both sides of the vest don’t separate – the zipper combines them. The vest can’t be totally open like a jacket. You have to wear it on like a t-shirt.
2. Beretta Men’s Two-Tone Clay Shooting Vest
[amazon_link asins=’B06WP8VZXV’ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’70c12418-7ee0-11e8-8799-9356283cdec7′]When the climate is hot or damp, shooting in the outside can get to be agony. You seem to be sweating from every pore in your body. You are hot and stuffy. You pant and wheeze. You drink water, pour it over your head, but it doesn’t seem to help. Your shooting vest isn’t helping either. But not this Beretta shooting vest. One thing it has going for it is the fabric: 100% cotton. Cotton is one of the best fabrics in the world. Due to cotton’s breathability, it is the perfect fabric for summer. And if you are a great sticky human being regardless of weather, this cotton shooting vest is the most excellent probable option for you.
Thanks to cotton’s ability to absorb sweat from your body, it gives your skin room to breathe. As an effect, you feel cool, relaxed, and calm, even as the sun and the humidity come down hard on everyone around you. Being diplomatic is a very important quality of the successful shooter and this shooting vest will guarantee relaxation even in boiling weather? You will be cool and relaxed during your powerful shoot-offs.
If you desire to save time while shooting, it’s essential that you have somewhere to keep your cartridges and other required gear for simple retrieval. That is where this vest comes in handy. Big and wide are its pockets. And adjustable: expanding shell pockets. You can keep many cartridges in each pocket, and since the pockets are wide and adjustable, you hardly feel the heaviness since the contents of the pocket are spread out. There is still a pocket for your shooting goggles.
It comes with a removable Gel-Tek recoil pad. The protection pad will guard your shoulder by providing the extremely essential padding between the hard buttstock surface of your gun and your shoulder when you are firing. If the protection of your gun does make contact with your shoulder, the Gel-Tek recoil pad will cushion the force.
3. Beretta Men’s Silver Pigeon Shooting Vest
[amazon_link asins=’B01401QW8I’ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’8166eb87-7ee0-11e8-b384-ef6d16bcef81′]This one is also a Beretta shooting vest. It is different from the one you have just read about in a variety of ways. For instance, this one is not made of pure cotton. As an alternative, it comprises a polyester/cotton blend, with 70% of the material being polyester and cotton being 30%. For that reason, it is a double-threat fabric. It provides you the advantages of both cotton and polyester. Cotton, on the other hand, is hypoallergenic, strong, flexible, and breathable. Breathability comes from the cotton material and the side and central mesh section. For that reason, the vest is excellent summer wear. Also, if you are a heavy sweater. It will keep you cool and comfortable even in hot and humid weather like the turkey vests.
The vest comes with a Gel-Tek protection pad that will shield your shoulder from the force of recoil as you use your gun. And if you want to take off the recoil pad, you can do so and keep it somewhere else for safekeeping. It also has double cotton-padded recoil patches. Wearing this vest will be like wearing armor. Shooting is an enjoyable activity, but it can also be risky, especially when you are a beginner
If for whatever reason you are unable to hold the firearm correctly, the force of recoil could cause you bodily damage. But on trying this shooting vest, you are ready for any possibility and can exercise total confidence. Another negative aspect of the shooting lifestyle is the loudness of your shots. Over time, this can begin to have a toll on your hearing. For that reason, you need earplugs and earmuffs to protect your ears. And for that reason, you will like this shooting vest. It has an ear guard loop where you can carry your earplugs, earmuffs, and any other ear protection accessories.
4. Browning Men’s Summit Vest
[amazon_link asins=’B00I6P0QDM’ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’8de5778d-7ee0-11e8-9df3-ede30f05c24c’]Browning Shooting vests are measured to be among the very best on the marketplace. The Browning product is well recognized in the shooting clothing market. All Browning shooting vest confirms you ease, strength, and practicability. For that reason, hunting guide has reviewed 3 Browning vests in this article. Since this shooting vest is frivolous, you can spend hours shooting without pointlessly exhausting. It is planned to improve your comfort and choice of movement. This gives you flexibility. As a shooter, you desire to be juice in movement slightly than rigid and forced. This vest will ensure you remain calm and relaxed, able to shoot quickly, with control over your movements.
And this being an article of clothing, you might think it amiss if we neglect to mention how it looks. While value is king as far as shooting vests are worried, it would not damage to look good while you shoot – particularly if you do you are shooting in an open area such as a shooter range. It joins stylishness with comfort, durability, and usefulness. Strong polyester shooting patches can be set on both shoulders. Stitching into these patches are REACTAR G2 pad pockets. These are slim, lightweight gel protection pads which are calculated to fit most Browning shooting vests.
The vest, however, does not come with the recoil pads – you will have to purchase those separately. For best results, purchase Browning’s REACTAR G2 pads. These pads can take recoil on the inside of your Browning vest without any change of look or enhance in extent or pull. The shooting patches and flinch pads will defend your shoulders from the unexpected, strong jerk of your firearm’s flinch. The body of the vest is 100% polyester mesh. As a result, it has adequate ventilation. When the climate gets insufferably hot, you will need all the air and circulation you can get inside your clothing and this shooting vest gives exactly that.
5. Browning Ace Shooting Vest
[amazon_link asins=’B079J1X215′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’9b7d14de-7ee0-11e8-8b4d-59af2e38e8bb’]If you desire to look smart and a force to be supposed with when you are shooting, this Browning shooting vest is a perfect selection. And if you have a group, you can put the name of your group on the vest’s front or rear – there is sufficient space for that. You could also put your name on it.
The vest’s fabric includes a blend of polyester and spandex. You obtain the benefits of polyester as well as spandex. Since it contains spandex, the vest offers a custom fit. Comfort and stylishness are the resultant advantages. The side tab modifications also offer a custom fit. Many people dislike when their clothing is extra baggy and can lose their attention over this subject. Since the tradition fit to make the vest sense normal and easy when you are wearing this vest, you can provide your full attention to your shooting.
The big pocket at the back comes in useful when you have to find somewhere to keep your empties when you are out shooting. A smaller pocket at the center is ideal for storing your water bottle – you can also store other types of gear in it. It does not come with REACTAR G2 recoil pads. But you need them. You will have to purchase these separately. What the vest does have is sewn-in pad pockets for the REACTAR G2 recoil pad. These will keep your shoulder protected from the sudden force of recoil when you fire your weapon.
The core advantage of having the best shooting vest is the expediency of the pockets. It’s like having a toolbox; only your gears are cartridges and blank casings. The defense from flinch is also essential. And let’s not forget style. When you set on a shooting vest, you look the division. And that puts you in the correct situation of mind to focus on your shooting. Whether beginner or skilled shooter, we advise you to buy a shooting vest. Think any one of the 5 we have reviewed here, for these are the best obtainable shooting vests for the money.
Unfortunately, when hunting on public lands can get crowded and you’ll be limited and might not receive the very best spot. When you’ve decided what you would like to collect, start hunting! Your goose hunting is finished. Goose hunting is a good time for young and old dogs to acquire experience and have a little fun.
- 1 1. The Most Effective Way to Set Out Goose Decoys
- 2 2. How to Change Your Luck with Snow Geese
- 3 3. Birds in Flight: Looks Are Deceiving
- 4 4. Snow Geese: Playing the Numbers Game
- 5 5. Layout Blinds Take Getting Used To
- 6 6. When the Canadas Sleep Late
- 7 7. Keep Those Silhouettes Visible
- 8 8. Layout Blinds: You are Part of the Action
- 9 9. Hiding Your Boat in Plain Sight
- 10 10. Don’t Let Those Incoming Geese Fool You
1. The Most Effective Way to Set Out Goose Decoys
Veteran Maryland call-maker Sean Mann leads early season duck hunting and goose hunting in Alberta and is one of the most successful and experienced in the business. He informed Wade Bourne from DU, in a tip for the DU Website: To finish more geese when hunting over a field spread, set decoys 10 feet apart (3 long steps), and face them in random directions. This set provides a natural, relaxed look, and it also offers incoming birds plenty of landing room inside the spread. By setting my decoys so far apart, I use half the number I used to. I can set up and tear down faster, and most of all, the geese work better. Our hunts are much more productive than when I set decoys closer together. Less really can be more.
2. How to Change Your Luck with Snow Geese
In the October ’08 Field & Stream, author Dave Hurteau, in an interview with veteran guide Tracy Northup, Up North Outdoors, hunts up north, presents a deadly method for changing your luck with those tough, high-flying flocks of snow geese. In a tip called, “Play the Wind,” Northup says. “Snow geese typically fly high and circle straight down, making it difficult to shoot them anywhere but right over a good spread. But a 30–40 mph wind keeps them flying nice and low.” Northup recommends scouting out a location of snows where there are ditches or hedgerows a hundred yards or so from the fields where you can sneak into position to pick off the low-flying snows as they pass—without spooking the main flock.
3. Birds in Flight: Looks Are Deceiving
Because they are big, Canada Geese appear to be slow in flight, compared to ducks. And because of their long tails, pheasants appear to be slower than they really are. Swing your gun properly, lead the bird, and keep swinging as you pull the trigger. Or you’ll be shaking your head, wondering how you missed.
4. Snow Geese: Playing the Numbers Game
Those large flocks of snow geese weaving across the horizon, clamoring constantly, are hard to pull into normal decoy spreads of just two- or three- dozen birds. The flying geese can see great distances, and they are looking for big groups of feeding birds. Savvy hunters have learned to cope with this by putting out decoys by the hundreds, if necessary, and to do this they’ll use all the silhouettes they can haul to the site, plus whatever “rage-type” decoys they can fashion themselves from things like baby diapers and white garbage bags attached to a stake.
5. Layout Blinds Take Getting Used To
When using a layout blind, before the birds start flying take some time to try practicing the move it takes to rise into a shooting position. It takes some getting used to. If you don’t practice it, you may not be in a good position with your face well down on the gun during the first critical seconds when it’s time to, take ’em!
6. When the Canadas Sleep Late
In below-zero weather, sleep in an extra hour or two. When it’s that cold Canadas will stay roosted and fly out to feed only after the sun has come up and warmed things up a bit. It might be 10 AM before they leave the roost. The only thing you’ll get by showing up at dawn is cold.
7. Keep Those Silhouettes Visible
When using silhouette decoys for geese, take care to position them so many of them appear broadside at every angle. When edge-on to the viewpoint of the flying birds, they become invisible.
8. Layout Blinds: You are Part of the Action
You’re lying in a field, totally hidden right among the decoys. No brushy blind, no boat, no pit blind, no elaborate box blind, no blind on stilts. As an alternative, you are placed comfortably into a well-camouflaged layout blind, made more invisible by attaching the brush to the blind’s convenient straps and holders. You’re wearing camo yourself, including a hat and mask. Even your gun is camouflaged. Unlike hunting from a brush blind where you have to keep your face down—and thereby miss part of the spectacle of flying birds on the way in—you’re seeing the whole show, from the time birds, appear in the distance until they coming right into your face. There’s nothing like it!
9. Hiding Your Boat in Plain Sight
The john-boat or canoe you can put into the water and go wherever the ducks and geese are flying has gotten a lot easier to hide with the introduction of today’s synthetic camo material. The material, imitating different shades and textures of marsh grass, comes in manageable mats you can attach to your boat, then roll up and put away after your hunt. Cabela’s, has a bunch of different patterns, including the excellent Avery, and there’s a popular one called Fast-Grass that’s available at the Knutson’s waterfowling store and site.
10. Don’t Let Those Incoming Geese Fool You
The approach of wild geese to a blind is one of the neatest optical illusions in nature. The geese just keep on coming. You think they are one hundred yards away, and they are two hundred. You think they are fifty yards away, and they are one hundred.
The truth is that you can spread your duck decoys just about any way you wish, as long as you leave an open area for the birds to land into the wind. No matter which way they come from, or how much they circle, their final move down will be into the wind. No wind at all? It becomes a guessing game.
Here are a few of the editor’s favorite Duck Hunting guides that have been submitted by Hunting Guide from across the nation.
- 1 Duck Hunting Guide’s Advice I Don’t Want to Hear
- 2 Pothole Sneak Attack
- 3 Local Birds: Use Small Decoy Spreads for Small Bunches
- 4 Mix ’Em up If You Want To
- 5 Jump-Shooting Joys
- 6 Too Hidden for a Good Shot
- 7 Gloves for Setting out Decoys
- 8 Pond Shooting at Sunset: The Way It Used to Be
- 9 It’s All about Visibility, Visibility, Visibility
- 10 The “Hole” Is the Thing
- 11 The Outer Gun: The Key Position
- 12 Where’d the Mallards Go?
- 13 Black Ducks—Red Letter Day
- 14 Where the Birds Want to Be
- 15 Take ‘Em!
- 16 Tall-Timber Trick
- 17 Using the Wind with Your Decoy Spread
- 18 Don’t Be a “Skybuster”
- 19 Beating the Crowds in Public Hunting
Duck Hunting Guide’s Advice I Don’t Want to Hear
In the duck blind, you’ll often hear your guide urge you to, “Stay down. Keep your head down. Don’t watch the birds! I’ll do the watching.” Well, if you’re not watching the birds, you’re losing part of the joys of the hunt. Your blind should be good enough for you to peer through the stalks or brush just as the guide is doing. When the ducks are passing right overhead, neither one of you should be looking skyward. You’ll spook the birds for sure.
Pothole Sneak Attack
If you’ve scouted out a promising pothole or small pond and you’re planning to jump-shoot the ducks that are resting there, try to sneak up on them with the wind at your back. When the ducks jump into the wind (which they most certainly will do), you might get a shot before they re-orient themselves and fly the other way.
Local Birds: Use Small Decoy Spreads for Small Bunches
Make a distinction between the resident ducks you hunt in the early season and the large flocks that migrate in later on. You’ll spot resident birds in pairs and small flocks, so decoy them accordingly and don’t burn out any one place by hunting it too often. Save the big spreads for when the birds from up north show up.
Mix ’Em up If You Want To
So you’re thinking about adding some bluebills or canvasbacks (diving ducks) to your decoy setup of mallards, pintails, and gadwalls (puddle ducks) to give your spread more visibility. Go right ahead. It won’t hurt your chances a bit.
Jump-shooting ducks from a canoe or john-boat is a great way to hunt some creeks and small rivers. The best way is with a partner, one hunter with the gun at the ready, the other on the paddling. Stay quiet; anticipate the sharp bends where you may surprise a few mallards, blacks, or other puddle ducks. Listen carefully as you go. You just might hear the birds before you get to them.
When you’re hunkered down in a blind so that you can’t see the ducks you’re working, when it comes time for someone to exclaim, “Take ’em!” you come up with your gun and have to find the birds before you get down to pointing and swinging the barrel. It won’t be an easy shot.
Gloves for Setting out Decoys
Gloves that stretch almost to your elbows and keep your hands dry are a must for setting out decoys. Shuck ’em off and wear your regular gloves when you get into the blind. See the “Midwest PVC Decoy Glove” at Mack’s Prairie Wings, www.mackspw.com. Check other favorite waterfowl gear vendors for other options.
Pond Shooting at Sunset: The Way It Used to Be
Waiting for ducks at sunset beside ponds where the ducks would be coming to roost was once a mainstay of hunting tactics. Local wood ducks, mallards, and black ducks, puddle ducks of all sorts that had migrated into a particular area— they all come hurtling into the ponds after sunset. Sometimes the shooting was so late, the birds had to be outlined against the western sky. Today, shooters who try this are easy marks for wardens waiting nearby to hear the sounds of gunshots after legal shooting hours. If you want to just watch the show (and you should!) leave your guns in the truck.
It’s All about Visibility, Visibility, Visibility
Unless you’re gunning a tiny creek-bottom or river location, surrounded by high trees, most of your duck-hunting locations will be in open areas where you hope passing birds can see your decoys and come on in. Anything you can do to increase the visibility of your spread will make a difference. Black decoys show up better from a distance. Magnum-size adds visibility. Canada geese decoys add visibility, whether you’re hunting geese or not. Movement devices (the ones that are legal where you hunt) are critical if there’s no wind blowing: spinners, battery-driven shakers, pull-cord movers—whatever you’ve got.
The “Hole” Is the Thing
No matter what shape of the decoy spread you decide is right for your hunting location and conditions, it must contain a hole or two for the birds to land. If the water in front of the blind is solid with decoys, the birds will land on the outside of the spread, at long range or even out of range.
The Outer Gun: The Key Position
The Outside shooter on the upwind side of permanent duck blinds or layout blind setups is in the key position and can absolutely ruin the shooting for everybody with him. It’s happened to me more times than I can remember. The ducks, or geese, are coming into the spread against the wind, from his side. If he starts shooting too early, around the corner, the guns in the center and another side will get no shots or shots at widely flaring birds only. Sometimes, to top off this little drama, the outside offender will turn to the other guys and say, “Why didn’t you guys shoot?” Advice: Put an experienced shooter in that outside position, a shooter with the judgment and nerve to wait until the birds are into the spread enough so everybody can shoot.
Where’d the Mallards Go?
When you’re on a marsh in the early morning where you reasonably expect a flight of mallards, don’t be surprised if they don’t show up until later in the morning. Your local birds or even visitors from the north, maybe feeding in the fields.
Black Ducks—Red Letter Day
My calling aspirations reached a sort of pinnacle years later. I was hunkered on an icy creek on the marshes of the Chesapeake Bay, near the famous Susquehanna Flats. A pair of black ducks flew down the creek, very high and in a big hurry, headed somewhere with express tickets. They clearly were not interested in my modest decoy spread, but when I hit them with my old Herter’s call and the Highball, they turned like I had ’em wired. Interested then, they circled warily while I scrunched down. Now I started rattling off my Feeding Chuckle, and a few moments later they were cupped and committed. I could finally say that I knew how to call ducks.
Where the Birds Want to Be
Pushing into a cove in the marsh or along a big river or lake, in the first pre-dawn light, you flush a big bunch of ducks or geese. Away they go, gabbling and honking. Never mind trying to follow them or heading for another spot. Set up right there. It’s the place the birds want to be.
Few moments afield are as thrilling as those when a big flock of ducks sweeps into your decoys. You’ll shoot a lot better when you are aware whether your birds are diving ducks—like bluebills and canvasbacks—or puddle ducks—like mallards and pintails. Diving ducks will bore straight past when the shooting starts, while puddle ducks will bounce skyward as though launched from a trampoline.
When gunning the hole in the tall timber with a few decoys out, give the water around your tree a good kick when birds are passing or circling to imitate splashing and feeding activity.
Using the Wind with Your Decoy Spread
Ducks often want to land outside a spread of decoys—even when the setup has left an inviting hole. That ’s why you want to set your decoys upwind—not directly in front of the blind—so that you’ll still have a good shot at the birds coming in against the wind and trying to land on the outside of the decoy spread.
Don’t Be a “Skybuster”
A Skybuster is the most hated character on any marsh or field where there’s duck or goose hunting. The Skybuster burns away at birds that are obviously out of range, thereby alarming the birds away from the region and ruining probabilities others might have had on the incoming birds.
Beating the Crowds in Public Hunting
Ducks swiftly wise up to blinds on open hunting regions. You score more ducks if you seek out remote corners that see much less pressure. Use just 6 or so decoys and call only sufficient to get passing birds’ attention.
One of the trickiest conditions in turkey hunting is having a bird sneak up after you when you’re sitting at the base of a tree. It can be very difficult to twist your body around far enough to make a perfect shot, and it’s nearly impossible if the bird is behind your right shoulder if you’re a right-handed shooter. It’s an excellent plan to practice shooting your turkey gun from your opposite shoulder before the season starts. If you’re comfortable taking shots this way your chances of getting a bead on a turkey without spooking it will develop dramatically.
- 1 Control the Volume of Your Box Call
- 2 5 More Reasons Gobblers Are Easy to Miss
- 3 Use Decoys Late in the Season
- 4 The Best Place to Set Up on a Roosted Gobbler
- 5 Don’t Let a Hot Gobbler Get Too Close
- 6 Locating Roosting Gobblers
- 7 When Gobblers Get Lonely
- 8 Rake Leaves to Call in Hung-up Toms
- 9 Fake a Flock of Fall Turkeys
- 10 Circle Gobbling Birds Hung up Behind Obstacles
- 11 Faking Out a Gobbler: A Desperation Tactic
- 12 Cover Ground to Find Mid-Day Gobblers
- 13 Don’t Get Mistaken for a Turkey
- 14 Make a Gobbler Jealous
- 15 Bust a Roosted Flock in the Fall
- 16 Coping with “Shut-Mouth” Gobblers
- 17 Don’t Waste Time on Henned-Up Birds When
- 18 Why Gobblers Are Easy to Miss
- 19 When Roosting Gobblers Fly Down
Control the Volume of Your Box Call
If you are working a gobbler with a box call and he hangs up in the distance, you may be calling too strongly. Box calls are notoriously loud; the tom may think the hen you’re imitating is closer to him than you want, and will often stop and wait, thinking that she will come to him. One way to get him moving is to reduce the volume of your call. Hold the call upside down, with the handle on the bottom, and slide your thumb up the sides to increase pressure on the call and gradually dampen the vibration. The gobbler will think the hen is moving away from him and may give chase.
5 More Reasons Gobblers Are Easy to Miss
Need more reasons to miss a gobbler within 30 yards? Try these:
- The bird is moving, and you panic slightly, raising your head from the gunstock just a bit;
- You gun is new, unfamiliar, or one you haven’t shot in weeks or months;
- You’re wearing gloves, deadening your touch, and you pull the trigger like it’s a rusty nail;
- Your guide or companion is doing the calling, and he whispers the command “Shoot!” to you. You instantly obey, even though you’re not ready;
- You try for a headshot. Any of these reasons is enough to make a grown man cry.
Use Decoys Late in the Season
The best time to use turkey decoys is after most hens are already sitting on their nests. A decoy is much less effective early in the breeding season when most toms will already be attended by hens.
The Best Place to Set Up on a Roosted Gobbler
If you’ve done your scouting homework, you’ll often know where a gobbler has roosted for the night. If you’ve done your extra credit, you’ll know where he goes after he flies down. The best place to set up to call him in the morning will be between these two places, about 100 to 200 yards away from his tree (distance depending on how well leafed out the trees are). Get there well before first light, and sneak in as quietly as you can. Roasted birds are alert to unusual sounds and can pick up movements even in very dark conditions.
Don’t Let a Hot Gobbler Get Too Close
The next time a gobbling tom comes trotting into your setup, don’t wait too long before taking the shot. Most turkey load patterns open up at around 20 to 30 yards; this is the distance at which you have the best chance of putting a pellet into his brain or spine. If you let him get to close your pellets may be packed so tightly together that a slight miscalculation will cause all of them to miss.
Locating Roosting Gobblers
When you’re calling or scouting has located a roosting area (and you’ve been careful not to spook the birds!), you’ll hear them fly up into the trees—big wings flopping, a great deal of noise. Be alert, however, that they don’t choose the limb they wish to roost on from the ground, and then fly up to it. It’s after they are in the trees that they move around to a favored spot to spend the night.
When Gobblers Get Lonely
Many turkey hunters miss out on bagging their bird by not being alert to a hunting opportunity that takes place in the middle of the day. Sometimes around eleven o’clock in the morning, hens have left the gobbler to go to their nests. That’s when the toms get lonely—and start to gobble, betraying their location. You can get into position, set up, and call in your bird.
Rake Leaves to Call in Hung-up Toms
The next time a gobbler hangs up in the distance, responding to your calls but refusing to approach, stop calling and start imitating the sound of a feeding hen by raking a hand through the leaf litter at your feet. If all goes according to plan, the gobbler will grow frustrated, wondering why the hen he can hear scratching for food won’t respond to his calls, and will often come closer to investigate.
Fake a Flock of Fall Turkeys
Most hunters use turkey decoys to stimulate a gobbler’s mating or competitive instincts during the spring season, but decoys also work well for fall turkeys. The trick is to use lots of them to simulate a small flock. If you can figure out where the turkeys you’re hunting roost, and where they feed, set up your fake flock between them and use a couple of different calls to imitate the sound of a few feeding hens.
Circle Gobbling Birds Hung up Behind Obstacles
Gobbling turkeys hang up for lots of reasons, but one of the most common is that there’s an obstacle between him and you. Streams, fences, and ravines will often keep a turkey from following up on the promise of a ready hen. In many cases, you’ll have the best luck killing your bird by crossing these barriers yourself. Using a crow call to keep him gobbling, circle around him until you’re 180-degrees away from where you were set up before. He’ll be more likely to return along with a path he’s already used than he will work through the less familiar territory, and you’ll know there won’t be any other obstacles on this trail that might obstruct his progress.
Faking Out a Gobbler: A Desperation Tactic
When a gobbler plays hard to get, and nothing else has worked try walking straight away from him, calling occasionally as you go. If he thinks his potential paramour is leaving him, he just might come running.
Cover Ground to Find Mid-Day Gobblers
Turkeys gobble more in the early morning than they do during the middle of the day. This makes them easier to find, but it does not mean they are easier to hunt. Most toms will gobble in the morning even if they’re with hens, which mean you stand a good chance of spending all morning talking with a bird that has no reason to come to your calls. If you find yourself working a bird that refuses to come to you, don’t give up hope. Instead, go looking for a more accommodating tom. It is true that turkeys gobble less frequently when the sun is high, but the flip side of this behavior is that if you find one that does gobble; he is much less likely to be with a hen and will be far more willing to come into your calls. Hike through your property and call every 100 yards or so until you get a response.
Don’t Get Mistaken for a Turkey
Never wear any clothing or carry any accessories that contain the colors red, white, or blue. You should also keep your hands and head camouflaged when calling, and wear dark-colored socks and pants long enough to keep bare skin fully covered. These colors are found on the heads of wild turkeys, and you do not want to be mistaken for a gobbler by another hunter.
Make a Gobbler Jealous
You can use a decoy to simulate a breeding hen by pushing a hen decoy’s stake deeply enough into the soil so that the decoy’s belly touches the ground. Hens take this position when they’re ready to mate. Put a jake decoy behind her (a jake is an immature male turkey), as if he’s about to breed her, and the tom you’re hunting may become so upset that he approaches your setup with much less caution.
Bust a Roosted Flock in the Fall
The most common tactic used by fall turkey hunters is to find and then scatter a flock of the birds and then sit down to call them back in. Turkeys will naturally desire to regroup, and if you call well sufficient to duplicate a lost bird, they will use you as a homing beacon. One good way to find a flock to bust is to identify where the birds roost. Inspect the woods for big hardwood trees with plenty of clean droppings at their bases, and head out the evening before you plan to hunt to listen for the sounds the birds make as they fly up for the dark. Creep into the woods before daylight the next day, and then rush the group as soon as it flies down.
Coping with “Shut-Mouth” Gobblers
If pressure has forced spring gobblers into silence, try patterning a long beard like you would a deer. He’ll have favorites route he takes to favored strutting areas and feeding spots. So glass open areas until you find where the birds are using, and then set up an ambush.
Don’t Waste Time on Henned-Up Birds When
If you’ve got lots of lands to hunt, don’t waste time trying to bring in turkeys that aren’t that interested in your calling. When a bird gobbles once in reply to your calls but won’t go any closer after 15 to 20 minutes, it’s likely he’s still with hens. Make a mental note of your location, and then move on to search for another, a lonelier bird who will respond with more enthusiasm. Later, however, if you still haven’t filled your tag, return to the spot you were calling in when you first heard him gobble and try calling again. His hens may now be on their nests, and he’ll be wondering what happened to the one that wouldn’t come see him earlier in the morning.
Why Gobblers Are Easy to Miss
How do hunters miss a big target like a wild turkey standing within 30 yards? My personal pet theory (and I’ve done it myself!) is that the shooter is so enthralled by the scene before him that he raises his head from the gunstock just slightly. Do that, and you’ll miss every time.
When Roosting Gobblers Fly Down
When you hear hens fly down from the roost, while a gobbler lingers on his limb, still calling occasionally, your nerves will be as tight as they can get. But don’t start thinking your bird is as good as in the oven. Next, a scenario can take place that virtually dooms your hunt. The hens may start walking away in a direction away from your setup. The gobbler flies down and joins them, oblivious to your calls.
Today hunting guide providing hunting tips about Wild Sheep and Mountain Goat. First of all, you should know about species of them.
There are 2 species of wild native sheep in North America, the bighorn sheep, and the Dall sheep. There are 3 subspecies of bighorn:
- The Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep (Ovis Canadensis Canadensis)
- The Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep (Ovis Canadensis Sierra)
- The Desert Bighorn Sheep (Ovis Canadensis Nelsoni).
There are 2 subspecies of Dall sheep: the Dall sheep proper and the Stone sheep.
Glass in The Morning
Although sheep move most during the morning and evening, it’s generally a bad idea trying to find the animals late in the day. Sheep live in high, rough country. Unless you’re prepared to spend the night, you don’t want to get caught on the side of the mountain in the dark.
Watch for Their Rumps
Bedded sheep will almost always get up and move around a little . . . between noons to around 1 PM. They may feed for a few minutes, or move from one group of beds to another nearby. Or they may only get up, stretch, turn around and lie back down in the same bed. If you are watching the right spot at the right time, you’ll see their white rumps and know exactly where they are.
The Colors of the Mountain
Bighorn sheep come in a variety of colors, from light tan to dark brown to a deep blue-gray. These colors vary from region to region (and sometimes within a single region). Because the animals tend to bed in spots that match the colors of their coats, it’s a good idea to have a sense of the common shades found in the area you plan to hunt. Look for ground that matches these colors, then look for sheep hidden there.
How to Field-Judge a Mountain Goat
Identifying a trophy mountain goat is not easy. The differences between a good billy’s and a record-book animal’s horns will often be less than an inch. The first step to finding a record is to make sure the animal you’ve spotted is, in fact, a male. Billies have high, humped shoulders, and shaggier coats than nannies. Once you’ve found an old male goat, straighten out his horns in your mind’s eye and compare that length to the length of the animal’s head. If the stretched horns reach from the animal’s nose to the bottom of its eye, they are less than nine inches long. If they reach from the nose to the base of the ear, they are at least nine inches long and will qualify as a true trophy.
Creep Across Crests
When stalking sheep and goats, be extremely careful to never silhouette yourself against the skyline. If you must cross the crest of a ridge or a saddle, do so on your hands, knees, and belly, and move as slowly as you can.
How to Field-Judge a Trophy Sheep
When glassing for a record-book sheep, always look for a full, curling horn that’s bottom extends below the line of the lower jaw. You want heavy, thick horns with broomed tips, which will score higher than un-broomed horns of the same length.
Scan for a Silhouette
Sheep easily spot a skylined hunter’s silhouette, especially when the hunter is moving. But the reverse is also true. When glassing for sheep, always keep a close eye on the tops of ridges, cliff edges, and the skyline over a saddle. Scanning for silhouettes is the easiest way to spot these animals.
Don’t Educate The Herd
If you’re hunting with friends or as part of a guided group and are lucky enough to kill a sheep, don’t immediately rush in to claim your kill after the shot. Stay hidden, watch to see where the animal falls, and wait to retrieve it until the rest of the herd has left the area. Avoid startling them and other hunters in camp will have a much easier time of stalking sheep in the area.
Account for The Hump
Don’t let an old billy goat’s hump throw off your aim. This massive growth of fat and hair covers a ridge of finlike vertebral spines and gives the animal a unique profile when compared with other big game. When preparing to pull the trigger, don’t put your crosshairs roughly halfway up a mountain goat’s body the way you would on an elk or a deer; the animal’s vitals will be located in the lowest third of its body. Hold at the top of that lowest third to ensure a killing shot.
Read more about Bear Hunting Guide.
Last time that I went camping, I was really excited because I had found a new campfire meal recipe and I was eager to try it with my spouse and kids. We made our first camp and I chopped and prepped all the ingredients. Next, I began to gather firewood as the kids played and the wife enjoyed a brief power nap, stacking my timber and kindling just right. I even made a quick stone circle to mark my fire pit for nostalgic effect.
Next, it was time to light the fire so that I could cook my meal, but I quickly discovered that I didn’t have any firestarters. I’d forgotten both my matches and my lighter. We probably could have gone on with a cold canned meal of something else, but I wasn’t about to go the rest of the camping trip without a cigarette. Yep, that’s right, I had to trek all the way back, drive to the nearest convenience store, and come back. It wasn’t pleasant and the family still won’t let me live it down!
Don’t make my mistake and forget something important. Be sure that you’ve brought all your necessary things for camping and are ready to go.
Staying the right temperature can make a big difference between a miserable trip and a pretty good one. Bring some form of shelter, even if you’re not planning on staying long or sleeping over. Especially in the mountains, the weather can change on a dime, so it’s important to be prepared. There are different tents that you can get, each with its own purpose, pros, cons, and price tag. Get whatever works for you best.
If you’re bringing kids along who don’t go camping often, a tent has a lot of uses and instills a sense of calm and security. It can help with a child who isn’t adapting well, who needs to rest, needs a timeout or who needs to change clothes.
For your shelter, you should bring your:
- Footprint or tarp
- Tent Repair Kit
- Tent Stakes
- Air pump for any inflatable items
You never want to sleep on the ground, as the earth has a tendency to suck in all of your body heat and you can find yourself in a situation where your body can’t keep up. All shelters should have something to sleep in or on, such as a sleeping bag, bedroll, cot, air mattress, or hammock. You’ll probably want to bring along a pillow, or at least some spare clothes that can be rolled up to suffice for the task.
Camping Utility Bag
Your camping utility bag is a grab and go bag that you leave packed and contains everything that you’ll need to go camping on a dime. It’s a great way to have all of the smaller, more essential things already packed so that you can have more headspace to remember other things, or even to do more planning.
Your Camping Utility Bag Should Contain:
- First aid kit
- Cotton balls
- Antiseptics such as hydrogen peroxide or isopropyl alcohol
- Painkillers such as Aspirin or Tylenol
- Allergy medicine just in case
- Antibacterial soap
- Antibacterial wipes
- Chemical hand warmers
- Sunburn treatment, such as aloe vera
- Poison ivy treatment if in a wooded area
- Bug repellant
- Petroleum jelly as it has a variety of uses in a bind
- Hat and sunglasses
- Fire starters such as a lighter, matches, or a flint striker
- Fuel for any propane or gasoline powered devices that you might bring
- Trash bags for any situation that might arise – they can also be makeshift ponchos
- Large Ziplock bags to help deal with anything that is smelly
- Duct tape, just in case
- Pocket knife of some sort
- Light sources such as a lantern, flashlight, or more
- A battery or crank powered radio in case you’d like a bit of music or need to check the weather
- Extra snacks say for low blood sugar situations
- Map of the campground area
Personal Toiletries Bag
Personally, I like to keep my toiletries bag packed and inside my camping utility bag so that I never have to worry about it. I’ve had a couple trips where other campers forgot their bags, but because I had mine, I could share supplies with them and it wasn’t a big deal at all.
Inside this, you’ll want:
- Change of clothes
- Extra socks
- Towels and washcloths
- Soap, but I don’t recommend body wash as few campsites have on-site showers
- Shampoo and conditioner
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Grooming kits such as shaving kit, or hairbrush
- Deodorant or antiperspirant
- Toilet paper, and extra toilet paper
- Feminine products
- Any extra medications
If you’re going out where there are no built-in camping facilities, you will also want to address the issue of using the restroom. It’s pretty easy to make a portable toilet out of an old five-gallon bucket and the fanciness of such designs depend on the instructions that you’re following along on. There are also similar products that you can purchase that help address this concern, as well.
For your restroom, you will want to bring:
- Toilet paper
- Extra trash bags
- Hand sanitizer
- Something for privacy curtains like tarps
Food and Water
Lastly, you will want to be prepared for all of the necessary things for camping when it comes to keeping your body fueled up and properly hydrated. Remember to always bring extra water. I like to keep spare water jugs near my camping supplies so that I will always remember to fill them up and bring them along.
Here are some ideas when you are going to cook food on the trail
- Drinking water
- Personal water canteen or water bottle
- Napkins or paper towels
- Disposable silverware, cups, and plates
- Ice for anything that needs to be kept cold
- Tin foil, ziplock bags, and other ways to store food leftovers
- Trash bags
- Pots and pans
- Cooking instruments such as ladles, slotted spoons, wooden spoons, spatulas
- Camping stove and camping stove fuel
- Fire starters
- Fire fuel or kindling for tough situations
Last But Not Least
And of course, don’t forget to take your cell phone!
Pronghorn Antelope eye is bigger than that of cow or horse, nearly as large as that of an elephant; they provide him somewhat the appearance of a huge beetle. It can see half or three-quarters of a mile away, with a range of vision keener than that of an 8 power glass. I have seen a herd fairly fly across the plains up to the foothills and trees, then scorn the cover they have reached and circle back and back again as if playing a game of tag with your bullets. The pronghorn is a real sportsman. He runs, but he never hides.
The Pronghorn Challenge
Antelope shooting is the kind in which a man most needs skill in the use of the rifle at long ranges; they are harder to get near than any other game—partly from their wariness and still more from the nature of the ground they inhabit. Still, good hunters consider on applying 6 or 7 cartridges for all prong-horn they kill; for Pronghorn antelope are continually presenting standing shots at very long distances, which, nevertheless, it is a big temptation to try, on the chance of luck favoring the marksman.
Sit Over Water
You can avoid strenuous stalks during midday heat if you switch to hunting a waterhole. Pronghorns are creatures of the dry, high plains, but they need to drink periodically, and will often show up during the hottest hours to slake their thirst. If you know which water sources they’ve been using you stand a good chance of ambushing one.
Set Your Decoys with Stealth
When hunting Pronghorn Antelope with a bow, a decoy can make the difference between a fruitless stalk and a successful hunt. The trick is to creep close enough to set one up, and then to set it up without being spotted. Wait until the buck you’re hunting is busy chasing a doe, or obscured from view by a clump of sage or other brush. If he sees your decoy rise up out of the grass he may grow suspicious of the unnatural motion and fail to come closer to investigate.
Give Your Blind Time
If you plan to hunt from a blind overlooking a water source, make sure the blind has been in place for a few days before you plan to sit in it. Pronghorns will be wary of this new addition to the landscape after it first appears; you want to hunt from it after they grow comfortable enough with its presence to wander within bow range.
Glass from Your Truck
Most pronghorn antelope have yet to associate vehicles with the hunters who drive them. This makes your truck an ideal platform from which to glass for a trophy. Once you’ve spotted a buck you want to stalk, glass out the route you plan to stalk, and then drive your truck far enough away that the animal won’t see you getting out.
Some Facts of Pronghorn Antelope Biology
A male pronghorn weighs, on average, about 120 pounds. Females are slightly smaller, averaging 105 pounds. The animals are not large, standing approximately 3 feet at the shoulder. Both males and females have horns, though the males are significantly longer, averaging 13 to 15 inches compared to the female’s 3- to 5-inch horns. Pronghorns can live up to nine years in the wild.
Long Shots is Not Important
The key to getting up on lies in the seemingly flat land they inhabit, which is actually broken, cut and intersected by coulees, ravines, gullies, washes, draws, ridges, hills, and divides. A smart antelope hunter can take advantage of this tortured topography to get close—almost always less than 200 yards, and very often less than 100.
The Pronghorn Antelope’s Range
True Americans, pronghorn are found only on the plains and grasslands of North America. Like bison, seemingly endless numbers once covered the west, stretching from Saskatchewan to just north of Mexico City. And like bison, they nearly became extinct. Populations declined from an estimated 30–60 million in the early 1800s to less than 15,000 by 1915. A moratorium on hunting lasting until the 1940s and a federal tax on firearms and sporting goods funding conservation efforts are credited with stopping the decline. Today there are almost 1 million pronghorn. 5 subspecies are recognized:
- American/common (found in most of the range, Canada, and northern Arizona)
- Mexican/Chihuahuan (found in New Mexico, Texas, formerly southeastern Arizona)
- Oregon (found in southeastern Oregon)
- Peninsular (100–250 animals, found in Baja, Mexico)
- Sonoran (endangered, 500 animals found at Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge and Sonora, Mexico).
How to Field-Judge a Pronghorn Antelope
A trophy antelope’s horns will be longer than 13″, which is the distance from the base of an average pronghorn’s ear to the tip of its nose. Horns that appear to be twice as long or longer than the animal’s ears are likely to break the Boone & Crockett record books, especially if they are curved, crooked, and look wider at their bases than the width of the animal’s eye. Look for horns that split into prongs above the tips of a pronghorn’s ears. You want an animal whose front prong extends at least 4 inches forward from the main horn.
This Apeman Trail and Hunting Game Camera with Infrared Night Version is designed to best suit trailing and hunting games, and unlike most trailing and hunting camera, it has an exclusive quality for it is built to have a highly developed infrared feature by including 42 pcs of infrared LEDs.
[amazon_link asins=’B071RCVG95′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’hg02jc-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’06f9d1b6-6667-11e8-89fc-d1a14a2d236d’]It has a weight of 1.4 pounds, with this, it would make it easier to bring with you especially when hunting. You may line up this camera to your preferred and correct brightness during the daytime, and at nighttime, you can capture high-quality pictures and videos. Also, the brightness is automatically reduced when the setting is under energy saving mode to extend the use of its battery. The image sensor of this Hunting camera is 5.0MP with 1/2.5 inch CMOS sensor and the photo resolution that can be programmed with either 12 megapixels 4000 x 3000, 8 megapixels 3263 x 2448, and 5 megapixels 2592 x 1944. Expectations for your desired quality of images can be met with its various program choices. The triggering distance is maximum 20 meters, and the triggering speed of the camera is less than a second, so you will not ever miss even a single moment of your experience with this camera.
The hunting camera itself along with a wall mounts, mounting belt, mini USB 2.0 and instruction manual are included when purchased. This is also a free-shipping product so you can save a few bucks in your wallet.
Apeman Trail Hunting Camera Features
The manufacturer assured the consumers that this product is highly reliable to have a high-performance and quality with its 12-megapixel image resolution.
When the camera is used in daylight each movement that’s identified along with the usage results brightly colored pictures and it turns black and white at night.
It takes up to 9 photos in every detection, and the quality of videos are also high with 1080P that record clear quality videos and audio, but the video length only supports 10s up to 3 minutes.
It is prepared 42 pcs of black LEDs allowing the camera to create results with outstanding images, and with the black LED’s, making of bright flash may be avoided for bright flashes alert most animals. Also, this camera contained an IP54 spray water protection. This has been added to two more PIR side sensors for a better motion detection.
The colored 2.4 inch TFT LCD display has 480 x 234 pixels, it enables you to watch or erase images or videos directly after recording.
This camera also has also 44 infrared LEDs that range up to 20m for a clearer vision, especially during the night time.
For it to function with its intended purpose, it must have a power supply, the camera requires 4x or 8x AA batteries type LR6, you may also use 4x or 8x NiMH AA type LR with low self-discharge; also this may be extended with an external 6V power supply and at least 1.5A. The power supply can be standby up to 6 months.
Advantage and Disadvantage
According to some who have used and tried this camera, the good thing with this camera, Is that it can produce mesmerizing and high-quality result images and videos.
Particularly when being used in the night and with the freebies that the product comes with the camera can be mounted wherever they user want to set it.
The camera is used for surveillance, and it can double as an outdoor camera especially for those who live near the woods or forest. Some users also commented on its relatively low price because of quality it gives to the users.
Reviews have also been made and raised so that the concerns of some of the consumers may be considered and notice. Some had said that the camera cannot be turned on and a green screen had appeared, and it disappointed some people because of technical problems the users had with the camera.
Also, another concern was made when something had gone wrong with the camera, and the owner could not find someone or any store that could fix the problem.
Moreover, though the product comes with free stuff, the buyer must add additional charges to the purchase of the camera to have a memory card.
Most of the users that had reviewed this Game and Hunting Camera from Apeman and showered it with encouraging comments about how they have been satisfied with the quality of the images and videos.
Buyers had been truly amazed at how the quality of pictures and videos had still been worth it even when they use it in the dark. Moreover, despite its pros and cons, your money is still your money if you decide to buy this one this product review will help you validate whether this camera will fit your needs.
To check more detail features and customers reviews please visit Amazon.
Some caribou migrates more than 3,000 miles each year—farther than any other land animal. They travel in herds every fall and spring from their wintering to their calving grounds and arrive just in time to think about heading back.
It’s hooves are wide, concave, and act like snowshoes, distributing the animal’s weight on snow, ice, and melted muskeg. These hooves also work like paddles when it needs to swim across fast-flowing rivers or even large lakes. But they don’t slow the animals down. It has been recorded running faster than 50 miles per hour.
Caribou Never Stop Moving
This is not the wiliest game animals a man can hunt, but that doesn’t make them easy prey. First, you have to find them. Then you have to decide whether or not to wait to shoot a trophy. You can’t pattern this because it never stays in one place. The herd you’re stalking today might be miles and miles away from the next. If you see a bull you like, pull the trigger, because you never know what tomorrow will bring.
Bring the Right Optics
Unless you’re a bush pilot, the hardest part of hunting caribou will be finding the herd. Bring high-power binoculars (at least 10 × 42) and carry a spotting scope. Make sure to use top-quality glass or you’ll lose your ability to hunt during the morning and evening hours.
Don’t Spook the Herd
When you’re sneaking up on a bull, keep track of another caribou. They seem to float in from nowhere just when you want to move. Though caribou won’t get away like a whitetail buck when you surprise them at a distance, they will jog off and take another caribou with them. Then you have two options: Stay put and hope they stop so that you can stalk them again, or run after them. In my experience, spooked caribou seldom give you an easy second hunt.
How to Field-Judge an Antlers
When trying to guess the length of a caribou’s antlers, use the animal’s shoulder as a measuring stick. Most shoulders will be between 48 and 54 inches high. Look for antlers with curved main beams, which will generally be both longer and wider than straight ones (though they may look shorter from the side). A trophy animal’s shovels will be broad, have multiple points, and extend far out over the muzzle. Kicker points, the spikes that grow off the back of a caribou’s antlers, will add to the score, as will palmation and extra points at the tops.
How to Read a Caribou’s Body Language
When it’s not distressed, they walk quite gradually, expanding the head forward and downward. When alarmed, it performs a special behavior to warn another caribou of danger. They’ll do this if a predator gets too close, but isn’t about to catch them (or after they figure out that you’re a person sitting on a rock). The troubled caribou will run with the head held high and parallel to the land, and the small, generally floppy tail held up in the air.
A Good Gun for Caribou
While a good shot won’t need more than a .270 to take down a thin-skinned animal like a caribou, the animals are much larger-bodied than most whitetail deer. It can help to shoot a bigger gun when you’re reaching out to knock one down at the long ranges you’ll often find when hunting in the tundra. One great caribou cartridge is the .338 Win Mag. Loaded with a 200-grain bullet, the cartridge will hit three inches high at 100 yards. Elmer Keith loved this chambering for both caribou and elk, and you will, too.
Winterize Your Caribou Gun
Always make sure to keep your gun clean, moisture-free, and either grease-free or treated with synthetic lube designed to function in extreme freezing temperatures. The last thing you want when firing your rifle at a caribou after a long, freezing, late-season stalk is for the hammer, firing pin, or trigger to malfunction because your gun’s oil congealed in the cold.
Don’t Put Wet Bullets into a Freezing-Cold Rifle
Always carefully clean any cartridges you’ve dropped on the ground if you’re hunting in the far north during the late season. They make pick up moisture that causes them to freeze to the inside your gun’s chamber, reducing your expensive rifle to a single-shot firearm.