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    First Elk Hunt - SW Montana Late Nov. - Need Gear Recs!

    Hey everyone. New to the forum.

    I'm an avid hunter in middle TN, and have everything i need for this area and our seasons. I've signed up for a back country elk hunt 7 day in SW Montana. I am looking for gear recommendations. We will be hunting out of a base camp and on foot each day.

    I know the brands, but I don't really have a good place around here to buy/test anything. So i'll be buying online.

    Can you recommend your setup for the following:

    Base layers
    Midweight Jacket
    Midweight pants
    Heavy jacket (do i need??)
    Heavy Pants (do i need??)
    Rain jacket
    rain pants
    pack

    Anything else clothing wise that i might not be thinking about? I'll be buying hats and gloves, etc. Just not familiar with this area in this season.

    Thanks for the help!

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    I would get some technical gear if I were you. I can recommend Sitka Gear if you can afford it. Start shopping now and you'll be able to get some good deals. Some merino wool base layers, Kelvin Lite Hoody, and Jetstream vest, and a Jetstream jacket (windstopper). Get some long underwear depending on how warm blooded you are and the Timberline pant. I rarely use a rain pant or jacket, maybe to cut the wind is all. But that is what the windstopper is for in the Jetstream.

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    I prefer the outfiter wool stuff from cabelas, good water proff boots that you can cover ground in are a must.

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    I've had great luck with First-Lite base layers and Kuiu pants. I haven't upgraded mid layers and coat yet, but my old Woolrich fleece and Browning rain coat are still working great!

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    If I was you I wouldn't spend a lot of money on new clothes unless you plan on hunting this type of areas quite a bit to get the use out of them.

    If I were to head up there at that time of year I wouldn't change up my outfit very much. I have a set of Cabela's Dry Plus bibs and 3 way jacket that can handle anything that you could throw at it. Other than that for my layers I would have one my lightweight long john bottoms and Levi's. If it starts to get cold or wet I put on the bibs. For a top I always dress light but then have a light weight sweatshirt and a heaver jacket that I can put on. If it gets wet or real cold I'll put on the outer Dry Plus coat. It is both real warm and waterproof.

    If you are hiring a outfitter I would talk to them and see what they suggest for clothing. They will know a lot better than those of us that haven't hunted that area at that time of year.
    If you don't care where you are, you are not lost....

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    I'd say you have to buy merino wool long underwear top and bottom. Outer layers? You'll be good with wool outer layers and they do not have to be in a camo print. Buy a rain poncho also. The most expensive and technical rain gear on earth will not outperform a cheap nylon rain poncho draped over yourself and your gear. Nylon/plastic is noisy, but if you're just sitting out a rain squall or glassing it doesn't matter.

    Don't over-think this, let your guide do the thinking.
    Last edited by conibear; 03-20-2019 at 10:17 AM.

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    Wool is good but completely wool garb and especially a wool outer layer is not ideal for windy regions like SW Montana. Wind blows right through it and you'll get chilly.

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    You will need something to block the wind. Raingear works and serves the whole raingear pupose as well. You will also need an insulation layer unles you are walking all day. To sit and glass you need a light warm insulation layer.

    Kuiu superdown or whatever First lite and Sitka equivalent are. Tops and bottoms. Kifaru glassing parka may be the single best piece of insulation layer ever developed.

    Gloves will help also. Kuiu glassing mitts or similar from other manufacturers.



    Sent from my LGLS992 using Tapatalk

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    Clothing - Good guidance above. I like FL merino for base layer. Black Ovis isn't bad either and cheaper. FL or Sitka for mid layers. For outer layers Sitka gets the edge with their gore layers to block wind. For any puffy I use a cheap treated down coast not camo as you will likely wear it around camp in the morning or you can wear it under an outer layer if you have a storm blow in. Probably don't need puffy pants or insulated pants unless your late season hunting in snow.

    Backpacks - Kifaru, Exo or stone glacier. There are a few others that on a budget you may want to look at but if you plan on packing decent weight (100+ lbs) the 3 I mentioned are good.

    Sleep system - get a good bag, pad and tent. The pad is one key, the bag temp the other. So long as you'll be in a tent or cabin I like treated down. If you were going to the PNW or AK, synthetic bags would be a consideration.

    Foot care - your gonna put miles on. Comfy and broken in boots are key. 2 pairs of merino socks that you can air / swap if the get damp. Leukotape for any hotspots or blister prone areas.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JimP View Post
    If I was you I wouldn't spend a lot of money on new clothes unless you plan on hunting this type of areas quite a bit to get the use out of them.

    If I were to head up there at that time of year I wouldn't change up my outfit very much. I have a set of Cabela's Dry Plus bibs and 3 way jacket that can handle anything that you could throw at it. Other than that for my layers I would have one my lightweight long john bottoms and Levi's. If it starts to get cold or wet I put on the bibs. For a top I always dress light but then have a light weight sweatshirt and a heaver jacket that I can put on. If it gets wet or real cold I'll put on the outer Dry Plus coat. It is both real warm and waterproof.

    If you are hiring a outfitter I would talk to them and see what they suggest for clothing. They will know a lot better than those of us that haven't hunted that area at that time of year.
    solid advise!

    get what you want if you can afford it but no need to break the bank .I have hunted my entire life in wranglers and flannel shirts. if really cold and wet I bring an appropriate coat and would suggest you do so also, if going into the backcountry. but no need to buy a high dollar coat or pants , or gloves or spend 500 dollars on a pair of boots when a two hundred dollar pair is adequate.

    unless you really want to and can afford it . in which case I say, why deny yourself!
    if doing a lot of walking , in wet conditions a nice , water resistant and flexible pair of pants is a pretty nice thing to have .

    kuiu, sitka and first lite, are very nice and all . but if looking for something a bit more affordable I have a pair of zion stretch pants that are pretty comfortable walking in. they won't keep you entirely dry in wet conditions but they do dry pretty fast . think they were only about 30 bucks or so , while kuiu and first lite will be hundreds.

    I would say, happy feet ,happy hunt.

    I can tolerate being cold and miserable but I despise cold feet when hunting and do what I can to assure that doesn't happen. don't wear cotton socks .

    don't forget a knife !! it really sucks to have to gut em wit yer teeth.(story for another day)


    one thing you can bet on in the rockies is , if you don't like the weather ,wait a minute ,it'll change!

    don't know time of year your hunting or elevation but from oct on you can probably expect anything from 70s to 20s. sun, rain ,hail and/or snow
    Last edited by kidoggy; Yesterday at 07:24 AM.
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