Hunting gear, specifically clothing does not need to be expensive. In fact, you can often find it very inexpensively, but you have to keep your eyes open. This is a year round pursuit, and often you will find things out of season. But you can build a set of excellent gear for pennies on the dollar if you poke around and keep your eyes open. In this episode I talk about some examples and first hand experiences about where to look and how to develop a year round buying philosophy to find great gear at very low prices.
- Keep an eye open every time you go to a store, even if it’s not a hunting store.
- Look at discount stores in the off season.
- Look at thrift stores, auctions, and estate sales.
- Be watchful even at grocery stores, drug stores, and places you wouldn’t expect.
- Always look around at hiking, outdoor, and campaign gear, just in case.
- Do not be too worried about the brand, learn to discern the quality and buy accordingly.
- It is good to have a variety of gear items so you can be ready for different weather and hunting environments.
Again and again I have found quality hunting gear at places that I did not expect, such as Sam’s Club, or Rural King. You can sometimes find fair gear at Wal-Mart but often the gear lacks key features like a windproof membrane or sufficient insulation, or it may just not be quiet enough to mask even minimal movement. But there have been times where I was grocery shopping at a store and they had a special buy with an great hunting coat for the money.
Shopping right after the season is also a great time to look for gear. I have gone out to find hundreds of coats on clearance for $30, and I mean really substantial insulated windproof parkas in every size. This can be one of the best times to get new gear. You won’t be able to use it until the next season but for the price, you cannot beat it.
If you are a new hunter, it may be best to try and make it through your first season buying as little as you can get by with and then stock up on new gear as soon as the season is over for pennies on the dollar. Also keep in mind, you likely need less gear than you really think you do in order to be effective. Marketing is going to make you feel like you need more than you do. Often only spending time in the woods can help you figure out what you really need and what would be more effective for you.
Another important factor to consider is the construction of your hunting gear. No matter the cost, the right kind of gear with the right materials and insulation will help keep you comfortable. If you are fighting the elements you want some kind of wind and water-resistant barrier. It does not have to be GORE-TEX, there are much cheaper options. What counts is that your garment is made for the conditions you plan to hunt in.
Warm weather gear, no matter what it costs will do a poor job in the cold. If you can find cheap gear made to do what you need it to do, then you can succeed with minimal budget impact. Yes, you can get more by spending more, but it is also possible to get high quality gear for low prices IF you know what to look for. Here is another episode I did: Making Sense Of Insulation For Hunting Gear.
Listen to the whole podcast episode for more and here are a few videos to help take you deeper as well!