January 19, 2017
As whitetail hunters we're all looking for the best gear to ensure success while in the whitetail woods. The "best" shows up annually at SHOT Show in Las Vegas.
SHOT stands for shooting, hunting, outdoor and trade, but the show itself is not open to the public. Here's a glimpse of some new products you could use to help you with your upcoming whitetail hunts even if you can't get in the door at SHOT Show.
Two pieces of optics you need are a good binocular and rangefinder. Nikon has entered the combo field with their new LaserForce 10x42. It features laser ranging of distances from 10 to 1,900 yards. It's ideal for firearm or archery hunting with distances read in increments of 0.1 m/yd for distances shorter than 100 m/yds, and in increments of 1 m/yd for distances over 100 m/yds.
Like many of Nikon's rangefinders it includes ID (Incline/Decline) Technology. This gives you the option to have either horizontal or actual distance displayed. Like all Nikon products it is wrapped in an ergonomically-friendly chassis that is waterproof and fogproof. It retails for approximately $1,200, about the same price you would pay for a separate binocular and rangefinder, but now you have it one handy package.
If you're thinking of the LaserForce then you will need to tote it around and few manufacture backpacks and accessories better than the folks at Mystery Ranch. Cradle and protect your binocular with their new Quick-Draw Bino Harness, a family member of the Quick-Draw pack accessory line.
There's no need to struggle with easy access to your optics through a clam-shell design secured with a magnetic latch. It's one-hand easy, plus two detachable security straps guarantee that even if the lid is open and you drop the optics, they won't fall to the ground. The pouch also includes MOLLE webbing for add-ons such as a sidearm holster or a bear spray pouch. You spend a lot on your binocular so protect them from the elements with a Mystery Ranch Quick-Draw Bino Harness for $75.
Ground scent control equals rubber boots, but many models of rubber boots equal blisters and uncomfortable hikes. The boot experts at Ariat (yes, the cowboy boot pros) have changed that outlook with the addition of their Incite Thermal performance rubber boot footwear. It joins the new Ariat Hunt collection.
The Incite Thermal features a lightweight boot with exceptional support and flexibility. You'll be impressed with the absorption and rebound features that cushion, and propel you forward with little effort. Excellent traction round out a boot that is at home in the treestand or stalking whitetails in a cornfield setting. Lastly, your feet will remain warm without bulk by utilizing trapped air and efficient insulation to retain body heat via SolarCore Aerogel technology.
It's time to get serious and that means shooting accurately. Consider the new Bergara HMR (hunting and match rifle). This is a serious whitetail rifle built around world famous Bergara barrels. Get ready to shoot the best groups of your life. The HMR currently comes in two great whitetail calibers: 6.5 Creedmoor and .308 Winchester.
The rifle weighs slightly more than nine pounds, includes a detachable magazine, adjustable cheek piece, Bergara's B-14 action and pre-threaded muzzle with thread protector. You'll pay a bit more at $1,150, but it's a rifle you can use as an heirloom starter.
Finally, this last piece of gear won't make you a better hunter, but you will have a way to show your success more creatively with the Skull Hooker Trophy Tree. You may be familiar with Skull Hooker and their variety of ways to display your prized European trophy.
The Trophy Tree takes that concept a step further by using a stand fabricated with a variety of display hooks and the ability to change positions to match your room's space, or your inner, decorative you. You can't mount every deer you shoot, but you can make turn them into inexpensive European mounts and display them with class.