A first-time hunter should be ready for anything.
The first step to prepare for your first hunt is to ensure you have the right equipment, clothing and gear that you will need. The last thing you want is to forget a crucial necessity, but you don’t want to be lugging around superfluous items either.
You will need your own rifle, whichever make and size suits you best and is appropriate for the kind of animal you are targeting. Telescopic sights will also come in handy, depending on your prey and method of hunting. A sharp, heavy hunting knife is essential on a hunt. It can be useful for other work duty functions, depending on your choice of knife. The best blade for the occasional hunter would be a clip point knife, which is utilitarian enough for hunting, skinning and other field cleaning tasks, but also useful for other normal duties.
Bring a sweater, hunting jacket, heavy socks and gloves, a wool cap and good footwear. Hunts often occur in the early morning or late evening, when the animals are most active and feeding, and these times of day can be chilly. Plastic ponchos make too much noise in movement and the material can be shiny and bright so bring a rain suit or jacket instead.
A flashlight will come in handy in the dark. Make sure you check the batteries. Binoculars are also advisable, to help spot prey or other wildlife. Hunting can be a tedious, quiet activity if your prey doesn’t materialise, so bring along a good book or a journal to write in. Insect repellent will come in useful; however some hunters prefer to use a head net as prey may scent repellent. Water, hot drinks, snacks, medication, a first aid kit and personal toiletries will make your hunt more comfortable. Don’t forget your camera!
To store all of this, you will need a duffle bag that is water repellent, a soft gun case for your weapon and a few boxes of ammo. If you intend to bring cuts of your game home, pack meat bags and an extra duffle bag to store them in. Alternatively you can bring a cooler to keep the meat fresh. You will also have to bring along both your weapon and hunting licenses. For your own safety and navigation, bring along a digital GPS or compass.
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