Whether you’re an experienced hunter or just starting out, every trip will challenge you. Preparation is key in overcoming those challenges. From knowing your equipment inside out to preparing for bad weather or injury, packing smart can make all the difference between a hunt to remember and a day that you’d rather forget. Excepting the obvious, like gun and ammunition or scents and grunt tubes, we’ve compiled a short checklist of essentials that every hunter will need.

Dependable Clothing

It’s your first line of defense against the elements, so make sure your outfit is up to the task. Quality boots that keep your feet warm, dry, and blister-free are essential for long treks, and your clothing should be waterproof and quick-drying. Depending on the season, accessories like gloves, hats, and gaiters offer extra protection for your extremities.

Field Dressing Kit

The most important part of this kit will be your knife, but there are plenty of other handy pieces of equipment to help you get the job done effectively and safely. This DIY kit makes for a good place to start.

A small knife-sharpening steel and multi-tool also deserve a place in your carry. Both can get you out of a bind without taking up too much space.

Fire and Light

Time flies when you’re having fun, and day can turn to dusk or dark in what seems like a flash. Packing a flashlight or headlamp ensures that you can find your way safely. A lighter, flint set, and weatherproof matches are also a must. Matches can also double as low-tech wind testers for before you shoot.

Navigation Equipment

If you’ll be far out, a GPS and emergency GPS locator are your insurance. At the very least, bring a compass—you may not need it often, but you’ll be glad to have it when you do. In addition, a sturdy hiking pole can’t tell you which direction to head, but it can help you descend steep terrain more safely.

First Aid and Just in Case

A well-stocked First Aid kit is an absolute essential for any hunt, as is enough sunscreen to last the day (and then some). Pack calorie-dense snacks and bottled water to keep yourself sharp, and toilet paper to handle the other end of that equation. Finally, a roll of surveyor’s tape will serve to mark routes and blood trails, and paracord and duct tape to bind, repair, or fasten things over the course of your hunt.

At Oak Creek, we thrive on creating an unforgettable and fulfilling hunting experience for all of our visitors. The team at Oak Creek includes experienced, friendly guides and staff who will advise you on your hunt and help you in your preparations. Call us at (573) 943-6644 or visit us online to plan your next hunt today.

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