Those of us that love spending time in the outdoors can be somewhat difficult when it comes to shopping for.
Through the years, family and friends have given me items that they ‘thought’ I could use while hunting and fishing, but the truth is most of us are pretty particular about our gear.
While I greatly appreciate the fact that these kind people thought of me, I must admit that I often place the gifts on the back of the shelf, and some of them are never put to use.
Each year about this time, I compile a list of Christmas gift ideas for the sportsman or sportswoman.
These are items that I use personally and have found to be useful. Hopefully they will help you choose that perfect gift for the outdoor types on your shopping list.
I say often, my Smokin' Tex electric smoker is one of the items that make my life much easier and fun.
I use my smoker often and through the years have cranked out hundreds if not thousands of pounds of smoked sausage, ham, not to mention many easy meals of smoked chicken, brisket or pulled pork.
Creating great-tasting meals with my Smokin' Tex is extremely easy:
Simply season the meat, put 4 to 6 ounces of wood in the wood box, set the thermostat and let it cook.
I often leave my smoker cooking all night at low temperatures when cooking large pieces of meat.
Learn more about the Smokin' Tex at www.smokintex.com.
NIGHT HUNTING SCOPE
For the past couple of years, I’ve been using the Photon RT digital night vision riflescope.
This scope is a great alternative to thermal scopes with a fraction of the price, and this scope simply can’t be beat.
The cool thing about the Photon is that it can be used for daylight shooting. With onboard video and sound, the RT series is very practical and versatile.
Check them out at www.sightmark.com.
THE GAME ALERT
By Hogman Outdoors (www.hogmanoutdoors.com)
It is a must have for any nighttime hog hunter.
The unit mounts on the feeder, and via a red light signals the hunter when hogs are at the feeder.
With the Game Alert, there is no need to be continually scanning the area for hogs. When hogs show, the light comes on, and the hunter makes the shot.
I’ve been using mine for a couple years now and wouldn’t hunt at night around a feeder without it.
SEASONINGS AND EVERYTHING FOR THE OUTDOOR COOK
My “go to” place for ordering seasonings and cures or just about anything else I need for outdoor cooking is BUTCHER PACKER SUPPLY (www.butcher-packer.com.)
Visit the website and check out all the different products that make outdoor cooking easier.
If you are a home sausage maker, make sure and order a few packets of sausage seasoning or try one of the cures for making ham at home.
“KILL TO GRILL, the Ultimate Guide to hunting and cooking wild hogs”
I’ll give my book on hog hunting a plug here also.
I’ve spent many years hunting hogs and making everything from ham and sausage to pulled pork sandwiches from the meat.
My book is full of useful tips and tactics to help you find and harvest wild hogs and transform the meat into some fine eating.
The book can be ordered through www.catfishradio.org.
Absolutely nothing is more frustrating to the hunter than having an unreliable feeder.
I’ve been using these feeders for the past 14 years and have one in the woods that has given me 12 years of carefree service.
Equipped with a solar panel, the battery stays fully charged.
Go online and check out THE TIMER, THE REMOTE and THE ELEMINATOR.
These three items will insure your feeder troubles are over. The eliminator tightly seals the flow of corn after the feeder motor spins. No more corn loss to raccoons or squirrels.
BIG BORE AIR RIFLES
Big bore air rifles are now legal in Texas for hunting big game and many newcomers have begun learning about shooting and hunting with these power air rifles.
Pyramyd Air (www.pyramydair.com) offers a huge inventory of airguns, both big bore and smaller calibers and supplies. Pyramyd Air is a ‘one stop shop’ for all your airgun needs.
Hopefully my shopping list this year will help you choose the perfect gift.
Items such as center fire rifles and compound bows make excellent gifts of course, but they do require a bit of input from the one receiving the gift.
A hunter doesn’t want just a ‘deer rifle.'
He or she has specific actions and calibers in mind that best suits their style of shooting/hunting.
For instance, a 30/30 would not be the choice of a hunters heading out west for long range shots at big game, nor would a heavy magnum caliber be the choice of a person that is sensitive to recoil.
Likewise with hunting bows, they come in different draw weights and draw lengths.
It’s very important for a qualified bow technician to measure the shooter in order to set the bow up properly.
So, rather than purchasing a specific rifle or bow, it might be a better idea to consult with a salesman at a particular archery shop or gun store about price and give a gift card or certificate for purchase.
This way, the hunter on your list will be insured of getting the rifle/bow that best fits their needs.
Listen to ‘Outdoors with Luke Clayton and Friends’ on radio stations from Nebraska to Texas on weekends or anytime online at www.catfishradio.org.