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  1. #1
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    Never been backpacking

    Hi. This is my first post other than an introduction. I've been lurking mostly in the elk and mule deer boards. Not sure which of the two I'd rather hunt based on a few factors.
    After a lot of thought and learning a bit about availability of licences and of animals, I've come to the conclusion my hunt starts here.
    I have to determine whether I backpack or bring a camper.
    If I bring the camper I will still bring some gear for an overnighter in the woods.
    A backpacking hunt looks like an awesome experience. However, since I've never backpack camped, I don't have experience or gear. I do hunt and camp so I might have a start but often times gear is made for a specific use.
    I'm wondering what are some gear essentials for a 5 night stay and how to pick a backpack?
    Not sure if this matters but if I backpack it will probably be a mule deer hunt. I think an elk would be too much to handle alone miles from my truck.
    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Eastmans' Staff / Moderator
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    I will see what I can dig up for blogs, but here is a start: http://blog.eastmans.com/gear-list-2...muledeer-hunt/


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  4. #3
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    Thanks ScottR. Great info!!!

  5. #4
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    My gear list changes depending of location of the hunt and time of year. My late season mule deer hunt I packed completely different then my early season elk.

    What hunt state and time of year are you going?

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  7. #5
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    Besides the obvious, essentials for me would be a way to purify water, extra batteries/battery bank/solar panel, fire starter, baby wipes, good sleeping bag/quilt and sleeping pad, stove and fuel...... the list goes on and on my friend!

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  9. #6
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    5 nights is a lot for first time backpack hunting. I'd suggest taking some overnight or 2 night trips in the summer and work up to 5 nights. It will give you a chance to test out your new gear too and see what works for ya and if anything fails.

    I hope you DO try backpack hunting though, it's addicting and extremely worth the effort.

    I'd start with the basics and unless you are rich you won't be able to afford top notch gear on everything right off the bat. Borrow what you can from friends, and buy used gear when you can.

    Get shoes/boots that are comfortable and work for you. If your feet stay in good shape and you stay warm and dry, you can kick ass!

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  11. #7
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    I haven't decided on where and when yet. I can see how that would be a factor in what gear would be needed.
    At this point I really don't know. Click image for larger version. 

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    Here is a bad screenshot of where I'm considering.

  12. #8
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    I suggest that you try to get some general backpacking experience before you do so while hunting. There are hiking trails everywhere, with campsites along the way. You can even just hike along an old road and bushwack camp on public land. You will quickly learn the lesson of the overloaded pack, and need to remember that the hunting pack will often be 20# heavier than that due to the firearm/bow, optics, heavier clothing and sleeping bag for the later season, etc. If you aren't comfortable with finding yourself deep in the woods, with no one else around, no road, trail, or signs of civilization, then you're not ready to wander around in the mountains. Good luck, the journey is a big part of the fun.

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  14. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by RICMIC View Post
    I suggest that you try to get some general backpacking experience before you do so while hunting. There are hiking trails everywhere, with campsites along the way. You can even just hike along an old road and bushwack camp on public land. You will quickly learn the lesson of the overloaded pack, and need to remember that the hunting pack will often be 20# heavier than that due to the firearm/bow, optics, heavier clothing and sleeping bag for the later season, etc. If you aren't comfortable with finding yourself deep in the woods, with no one else around, no road, trail, or signs of civilization, then you're not ready to wander around in the mountains. Good luck, the journey is a big part of the fun.
    Preparing here is a good idea. Lol! It does nerve me a little though to be in the woods alone in western states. Maybe no need to be skeert. Living in southern Michigan there isn't much to fear. I've never camped with bears, wolves, lions. I hunt and camp alone here usually.

  15. #10
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    I will tell you this much... If you only do one thing do not skimp on a good pack. I wasted a lot of money and time on mediocre packs before I bought a great pack. A good pack will make life so much easier for you and you will actually enjoy backpacking and not want to throw that piece of crap pack you saved money on off a cliff!! Same holds true with boots and socks!!
    Last edited by 25contender; 11-27-2017 at 09:20 PM.
    DIY Public land Elk hunts are not for everyone but everyone should try it at least once in their lifetime. And for all those younger guys that say I don't have the time, I don't have the money, I'm out of shape or I don't have the experience to do a trip. I only have a few things to say. Take the time to make a experience, Save the money to make the trip, Get in shape so you will enjoy the hunt and the only way to get the experience is to go and make it happen. Hunt on Mark!!

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