Upland hunters are adventurers. Instead of lying in wait for game, they set out in search of birds. These quests can range from short jaunts to all-day treks. In thick cover or sparse. Sometimes with dogs, other times without. But always there is the pursuit. The following gear can make your journeys afield more pleasurable this season.
With its 2¾" blade and teardrop point, the Williams Bird Knife is great for not only cleaning birds, but also the myriad other tasks a knife is called on to perform in camp and in the field. The blade is made of M390 steel, and the slightly oversize handle is of G-10 fiberglass laminate. The included Kydex sheath allows for easy carry on a belt.
Colors: Orange, Black, Blue, Dark Gray, Sand and Tan.
Overall length: 6¾".
For a traditional bird-and-gear carrier with classic good looks, the Tom Beckbe Strap Vest is hard to beat. The vest is made of 8-oz waxed shelter cloth and features two fully lined gusseted front pouches, two interior snap pockets, a generously sized game bag and two water-bottle pockets. Adjustable cotton-webbing shoulder straps are treated to dry quickly and resist mildew, and there are adjustable side straps and an adjustable waistband. The open-back design offers breathability and easy access to the game bag.
Colors: Rye Brown (shown) and Blaze Orange.
Sizes: Standard and XL.
For trekking across the prairie or navigating steep mountainsides, Irish Setter’s Terrain Boots will help hunters get there and back safely and comfortably. The 10” boots are non-insulated and feature waterproof uppers of polyurethane-impregnated leather and fabric panels. (Boots with varying amounts of insulation and in camo colors are available for an added price.) Lightweight EVA in the midsole and a foam footbed offer ample cushioning. Multi-directional lugs on the sole provide traction and stability.
Sizes: whole and half sizes 8 through 12 plus 13 and 14.
Widths: D and EE.
Weight: 1 pound 14 ounces (per pair).
For wading into brush or striding through grass, Scheels Outfitters Endeavor Upland Pants offer ironclad protection. The water-resistant, four-way-stretch fabric moves with you, and an adjustable stretch waist allows for layering. Other features include a gusseted crotch, articulated knees and zippered side vents. Durable oxford overlays offer puncture resistance, and inner gaiters keep out snow and debris.
Color: Tarmac. Sizes: S through 2XL.
Lengths: 31" and 33".
Wearable by itself in the early season or as a base layer later on, the Pyke Kiowa Upland Hunting Shirt is a perfect fit for the field. Nylon-spandex four-way stretch material provides a modern fit that is neither too tight nor too loose, and a longer torso allows the shirt to remain tucked in. The shirt is breathable as well as moisture-wicking, and durable nylon on the forearms offers abrasion resistance. The quarter-zip upper makes for for easy on-off, and there are gusseted underarms for freedom of movement.
Colors: Orange and Grey.
Sizes: S through 3XL.
Hunters who like to wander are never out of touch with the Garmin inReach Mini 2. This lightweight, compact satellite-communication device has two-way text-messaging and interactive SOS capabilities as well as location-tracking, electronic-compass, weather-update and location-sharing features. The 1” x 1” high-resolution display is optimized for viewing in all conditions. When the unit is using customized tracking intervals, the battery can last up to 30 days without recharging; when powered off, it can remain charged for up to a year. The inReach Mini 2 does require a satellite subscription plan, and it can be paired with more than 80 Garmin devices.
Colors: Flame Red (shown) and Black.
Dimensions: 2" (w) x 4" (h) x 1" (d).
Weight: 3½ oz.