Planning a deer hunt? Can’t be possible without a detailed planning ahead of time. There are a lot of items that you must have while hunting a deer. The list is unlimited but in most of the cases, hunters keep their hunting gear in the truck as it’s not so easy to move all things to the hunting field. Still there are a lot of things that you must have, right next to you. The gear list should be finalized keeping in view the season, your hunting style and various other conditions.
Before moving on to the final list, there are some legal steps that must be followed to avoid any undesirable condition. I always recommend to keep things legal. If you are going to hunt on a private land, acquire land owner’s permission first. Secondly, you have no right of doing it without a hunting license. So, if you don’t have one, get one as soon as possible. Lastly, following the local hunting rules and regulations, plus any seasonal hunting limits and restrictions is very important. Once you are done with all this, now move on to our final hunting gear checklist.
Basic Checklist for Deer Hunting
Start preparing for the hunt before time. Make a detailed checklist and make sure you have everything before the final show down.
You can’t hunt without ammo. What’s your style of hunting going to be? Whether you will hunt with a rifle, handgun or with a bow, prepare and select the weapons accordingly.
Keeping a knife with you can be quite helpful in various situations. But above, all you must have a sharp knife to field dress your kill.
Sitting on that tree stand or in the blind, you would need a binocular to look around and find the right animal. None of us would like to hit mistakenly a log as a deer. To make it easier to carry, use a binocular harness.
5. Gear Rope
If you have been thinking yourself to be a Hercules till now, it would not work here. To drag all the gear to the field is not possible without a gear rope, especially for the climbing tree stand users. So, don’t forget to pack a 20 to 25 ft. thick nylon rope.
6. Scent Killer
Don’t let the animals get your odor. So, you better follow some precautionary measures to go odorless. First of all, your hunting clothes should be washed in a scent-free detergent. Scent killer sprays are easily available. Spray it all over your body and the gear. And keep it with you for touching up every now and then (especially if you are planning to hunt whitetails, you better go odorless in every possible way).
I always carried my pocket size folding compass with me while hunting. Because I never wanted to get lost. You’d also not wish something like that happening to you. So, make sure you are carrying a compass or a GPS with you.
8. First Aid Kit
Though a first aid kit has nothing to do with hunting down a deer, but this is something that makes sure that you are OK. A first aid kit is a must-have and should never be forgotten while packing your gear.
In the dark and dense area, you will surely not find electricity. So, you better arrange emergency gear like a LED flashlight or a headlamp.
Get the map of the hunting area from the local wildlife department or from the department of environmental conservation. It’s very important for keeping you safe from getting strayed.
11. Ear Protection/Safety Shooting Glasses
While you shoot a rifle or handgun, it is very important to keep your eyes and ears protected. So, don’t forget to grab your pair of ear protection and shooting glasses.
12. Wind Indicator
Knowing the direction of wind while hunting can be useful in hiding your body odor. Especially while hunting for the mature bucks, as they have a very sharp sense of smell. Once you will know the wind direction, you’ll better be able to place your tree stand on a tree in the upwind direction.
13. Hand Warmers
Temperature in such areas is the most unpredictable thing. With frozen hands, you’ll not be able to pick anything. So, you better have hand warmers, if you really like to stay longer in that treestand.
14. Deer Calls
Just keep on sitting and waiting for the bucks to appear, can only be tried if you have no other work to do in life. But if you want to get the things done sooner, buy a deer grunt call. Grunting and bleating sounds may prove helpful. I know many of you think, they don’t work. But believe me, they do!
15. Deer Cart to Drag
Again, if you think yourself to be a Hercules, you’ll need a deer cart to drag your kill all the way to the place where you’ll finally field dress it.
16. Hooks or Hanger
While you are hunting from a tree stand, there are a number of things that should be right next to you. it may include; your backpack, extra piece of clothes or your weapon. You can’t hang them in the air, can you??? of course not. So, you better pack some hooks and hangers with you to the hunting field.
17. Range Finder
This item is recommended particularly for the archers. A range finder is the best device to measure the distance between you and your target. Modern archery is incomplete without it. It brings confidence and makes sure that you get your aim right on time, in the most humane way possible.
18. Rain Cover
Unpredictability of weather is always an option. So, a rain cover or a foldable plastic sheet is a must-have.
19. Mobile Power Station
Not only your cell phone should be fully charged but you should have a mobile power station to face any worse situation.
20. Proper Clothing
To face the cold weather, other than dressing up in layers, keeping a few extra clothes like a hoodie or a cap is a good idea. Other than this, be sure to wear the right hunting boots and socks.
21. Camo Face Paint Tubes /Extra Face Mask
Once the clever buck/whitetail detects you, there is no use of putting all the hard work. Always keep camo face paint tubes with you or use an extra face mask especially while hunting for the whitetails (a spare set of camouflage gloves is also recommended).
22. Water and Food
Though this one does not directly relates to deer hunting but you never know how long you have to sit waiting for the bucks. And if you don’t drink or eat properly, it would lower your energy level, required for the whole adventure. So, keeping aluminum water bottle and a few energy bars with you would be a wise decision.
There must be something durable and spacious to keep most of the things packed for you in one place. Using a high-quality backpack is what all the hunters both seasoned and novice do. I would also suggest you look for the best hunting backpacks. Backpacks are available in various types. Some are designed to function simply while others may carry even your weapon or bow in it.
These are the very basic essentials that you need while hunting deer, bucks or whitetails. You cannot call this the ultimate list of the gear you need but it includes the very basic things that can make your adventure more successful.
Joseph Gleason is the founder of Captain Hunter. We provide guides on how to hunt effectively, answer reader questions, and reviews of the latest hunting gear. We specialize in providing expert information that does exactly what it claims.Our dedicated staff members are each seasoned professionals with a passion for hunting built upon years of in the field experience.
Founder of Captain Hunter