Hunters are no longer the majority of gun people, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be remembered come Christmas time. Or, for that matter, on their birthday or graduations. Yes, you can use this handy gift guide for those times as well!
What are some awesome gifts for hunters? Here are 7 stellar examples. Bear in mind that this is by no means comprehensive; these are just quick, easy ideas to help you out this season.
Anyone who’s hunted in states that get cold and have…well, moisture…knows how valuable a good set of gaiters is. They can make the difference between abject misery and only moderate misery when you’re out in the field.
First Lite, the clothing company formerly fronted and now owned by Steven Rinella of Meateater fame, makes a very decent set, the First Lite Brambler Gaiter.
They’re waterproof, lightly insulated, and – like other First Lite gear – designed specifically for hunters with adjustable boot straps and calf straps. Price of entry is relatively steep at $85, but good gaiters are worth Jabba the Hut’s weight in gold.
Another great gift for hunters is some decent glass, and specifically binoculars. Most hunters prefer them compact and light so they’re easily carried, but powerful so they can spot game.
Leupold’s BX-1 McKenzie binos are a fantastic set for anyone, from East coast beanfield sitters to Western hunters that stalk the plains. They have 10x magnification with a 42mm objective, but a modest 22 oz in weight.
For about $175, that’s a gift that would make just about anyone swoon.
Don’t have much of a budget? Okay. How about something simple, yet unbelievably useful?
The Magpul RLS sling is ridiculously simple, as it’s basically an adjustable nylon strap. It’s also ridiculously cheap, at just under $20…but it has a party piece. The thing about this relatively simple sling is its adjustable loop, giving it the function of National Match and/or Rhodesian slings.
Adjusted to the shooter, it rapidly deploys as a stabilizer. Is a bipod or are shooting sticks better? Sure! But you don’t always have time to deploy them in the field. The Magpul RLS sling is simple, effective, and inexpensive.
Another good stocking stuffer?
Surefire EP7 Sonic Defender earplugs use a passive percussive filter which blocks noise above 85 dB, but allowing low levels of noise to pass through. There are even canal inserts that can block even more noise in case you want to block out passive noise on, say, a plane, if someone’s talking during the game, your in-laws are visiting, what have you.
They’re perfect for hunters who don’t always take their ear muffs or plugs with them. This way, you can hear what’s around you in the woods and not get that ringing in the ears after shooting at game. Every hunter needs a good set of ear protection and they’re less than $20.
If you want to help your favorite hunter out and make it easier for him or her to hit that trophy target, a rangefinder is an ideal gift idea. Nikon’s PROSTAFF 1000 rangefinder is small, light and — best of all — affordable. It’s water resistant, fits in a pocket and will give your favorite hunter reliable single or continuous range readings out to 1000 yards. It’s also affordable at about $170.
Yes, it’s a total cliche to give socks as gifts.
But…almost any hunter in North America would jump for joy to get a pair or two of good merino wool boot socks. Sure, some folks never have to deal with cold, wet feet. But for those of us who do, we know what a misery it is.
Huntworth offers a 2-pack of tall (over-the-calf) length merino (and nylon) wool socks for $20. Again, it seems like a horrid, tired cliche, but trust me…this is a gift fish that will never be sniffed at, so to speak.
Finally, there are many, many knives on the market, and many are excellent. Stellar, even. But in my experience, there the one that absolutely rules the roost is by Havalon.
The Havalon system, such as the Havalon Piranta-Edge, uses replaceable blades which are surgical sharp. They design has been copied by multiple companies (Gerber makes a darn good copy), but if you’ve never used one…oh boy, are you missing out.
Havalon blades remove hides like a laser. Normally a blade this fine is only found on a carpet knife. You aren’t going to find a better skinner or cleaner of fish. Price of entry is less than $40.
Granted, there are many, many, many different bits of gear that make fantastic gifts for hunters. These are but a few, merely an appetizer, an aperitif. Know some other great gear that you think makes a great gift for the hunting set? Sound off in the comments.