6 Tips for Your Backcountry Bowhunt

by
posted on August 6, 2014
mehall_ah2015_fs.jpg (42)

undefinedHaving just completed Magpul Dynamics’ Backcountry Hunter’s Course, I can tell you the training is ideal for any hunter planning a D-I-Y backpack wilderness hunting trip. Instructor Luke Carrick of Guiderite Adventures, who has been packing it into the wilderness for 20 years, teamed up with Magpul’s Caylen Wojcik to cover everything from hydration and water purification to personal equipment options, tent and pack selection, basic land navigation, quick target identification and live-fire field-shooting scenarios. While some things made for good common sense, if you’ve never ventured into the wilderness for multiple days and you’re planning such an adventure of your own, check out these pointers for tent, sleeping bag and sleeping pad selection.

TENTS
I used Easton’s three-season Kilo Carbon 2-person tent, which was ideal, weighing a mere 2.7 pounds packed. And it certainly serves as a great drying rack for any wet clothing.

• Tip: Sidestep minimalist-style tarps and bivvy covers as mountain weather can change quickly. We were headed for Mount Ranier, where you can start off in 80 degrees only to find yourself in 30 degrees and fog an hour later! Your tent should have enough space to store all your gear in adverse weather. In the case of extreme wind conditions, a four-season tent is a must. Otherwise, in 50 mph winds, the only thing holding down your tent will be, well, you inside of it.

• Tip: On super-cold mornings, put on all your clothes before you open the tent because the cold air rushes in immediately.

SLEEPING BAGS
A 15-20 degree comfort rating is the way to go. I took my new-for-2014 Thermarest sleeping bag called the Mira, an all-around winner for ultra-light three-season backcountry adventures. It sports compressible 750-plus-fill goose down, a Toe-asis foot warmer, a reflective ThermaCapture lining and straps for securing it to your sleeping pad so you sleep even better!

• Tip: Bags with synthetic insulation are also fine, but be aware that in some cases the synthetic ratings can be off, which is why down bags were recommended.

• Tip: Always use a space-saving compression bag!

SLEEPING PADS
If you aren’t comfortable, you can’t sleep. The time of year impacts the pad you choose. Your pad with a radian of 2, or an R2, that is rated for summer will let the air come through nicely, which means you’ll freeze if you use the same pad in the winter when you should opt for a pad with an R6 rating.

• Tip: Pad size is also important! Ideally your pad will measure three to four inches past your shoulders on each side so your shoulders don’t ache or fall asleep. If you hunt hard all day, you need a good rest at night.

• Tip: And pack a patch kit!

Latest

H2H 348 Winchester Vs 358 Winchester Lead
H2H 348 Winchester Vs 358 Winchester Lead

Head to Head: .348 Winchester vs. .358 Winchester

Between the .348 Winchester and .358 Winchester, which cartridge is the better all-around choice for the hunter? Contributor Philip Massaro examines the pros and cons of each.

New for 2023: HatsanUSA .62 Caliber PileDriver

HatsanUSA has announced its largest airgun to date—the .62 caliber PileDriver, designed for high-powered hunting applications.

Mauser Introduces M18 Bolt-Action Rifle in Camo Patterns

Blaser Group has announced the importation of the Mauser M18 bolt-action rifle in two camo patterns—U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) and Fred Bear Old School Camo.

A Recipe for Reloading the .45-70 Government

Contributor Barb Melloni takes her readers through the process of reloading the .45-70, and her eventually precise result.

NRA-Backed Constitutional Carry Introduced in Florida

Once signed into law, more than half of the nation will recognize this fundamental right. 

#SundayGunday: CZ-USA 712 G3

Get a closer look at the CZ-USA Field Sports 712 G3, the latest addition to our #SundayGunday series.

Interests



Get the best of American Hunter delivered to your inbox.