Category Archives: Hunting Gear

Havalon Hydra Knife

Havalon Hydra Review: More Than A Knife

The all-new Havalon Hydra redefines an ancient tool our ancestors called a—knife. Created unlike any of its predecessors, the Havalon Hydra is a stroke of genius bred with pure ingenuity.
 
Built on a precept that believes good is never good enough, the Hydra is an all-in-one knife/saw combo suitable for any outdoor excursion. Think of the Havalon Hydra as a handheld ‘transformer’ at your disposal, always ready to morph itself into a razor sharp blade or saw in a matter of seconds.
 
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Havalon Hydra: Seven In One

In reality the Havalon Hydra is seven knives in one. With a quick and easy system offering interchangeable blades the Hydra can deliver a razor sharp edge for whatever you’re cutting or sawing.
 
While the Hydra’s more compact family members, such as the Piranta-Stag, are suitable for making quick work when field dressing or caping game, the Hydra is designed to be more than a handy hunting knife. Whether fish, fowl or four-legged beast, the Hydra is equipped to make light work of any cut of meat.
 
Havalon Hydra Knives
 
The Hydra’s handy package comes with a saw (#115SW), fillet blade (#127XT), a hunter blade (#115XT), along with four different Piranta blades (#60A, #70A, #22XT and #22), all designed to turn your favorite wild game into a succulent meal.
 
Providing a total of seventeen blades in seven different styles, you might call the Havalon Hydra a Swiss Army Knife for the meat-lover.
 
The foundation of the Havalon Hydra offers an ergonomic design manufactured from aluminum alloy. Measuring 5-7/8” long the Hydra’s handle offers superior grip and comfort—ideal when spending long sessions on the cutting board.
 
Havalon Hydra Review
 
An additional feature provided by the Havalon Hydra is the Piranta safety lock. Locking the Piranta blade into a closed and fixed position, this feature provides both protection and peace of mind.
 
Obviously the Havalon Hydra will be traveling with us this fall. Gone are the days of packing several knives when on an out-of-town hunting trip. Now all we have to do is slip the Hydra’s handy carrying case into our travel pack and we’re good to go.
 
Havalon Hydra Knife Case
 

The Hydra And Real Life

Digging into our stash of highly prized venison backstrap, we sought to christen the Hydra with a delectable cut of venison. We were not disappointed. The Hydra willingly and adequately filleted and cut just as we expected. The Hydra blades were razor sharp and fastened solidly to the handle. Changing blades was simple and the additional blades store needly in the Hydra’s Cordura case.
 
This knife has definitely found a place at the top of our ‘favorite gear’ list.
 
Havalon Hydra Saw Knife
 

Summary

For those who find the thought of a double-blade knife a discomfort, let me offer a little logic. If you don’t like the thought of two blades, with one razor sharp blade under your hand, just remove it. You don’t ‘have’ to use the Hydra with two blades.
 
You can count on this little jewel doing plenty of work for our family and I fully expect the Hydra to make light work of venison steaks this fall.
 
For more information on the Havalon Hydra check out Havalon Knives.
 
Havalon Hydra Set

Preseason Giveaway

The Bowhunter’s Pre-Season Giveaway

Knowing how much quality hunting gear means to the bowhunter, we’ve decided to offer one lucky guy, or gal, a chance to begin this year’s hunting season with some brand new hunting gear. Starting today and running through September 1st, you’ll have a chance to win all (yes, all) the hunting gear featured in this giveaway.
 
This giveaway includes products from Vortex Optics, Costa Sunglasses, Lone Wolf Treestands, Badlands Packs, Bushnell, Stic-n-Pic, Havalon Knives, Hunter Safety System, Duel Game Calls, Scott Archery, DeerLab, and more. Here’s how The Bowhunter’s Pre-Season Giveaway will work:
 
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Simply SIGN UP below, and provide us with your name and email. It’s that simple. There’s no Facebook pages to like, no Tweets to retweet or blood to donate. All we want to do this year is make some bowhunter very happy! (See details below.)
 
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Details: You must be 18 years of age and live in the United States to enter this giveaway. By entering this giveaway you are agreeing to receive email updates from 365 Whitetail. The information you provide will be also be shared with the individual companies that have provided products for this giveaway. For detailed information on the individual products included in this giveaway, please see below.
 

Vortex Optics – Diamondback 8×32 Roof Prism Binocular

The Vortex Diamondback 8×32 binocular provides superior quality in a compact, bowhunter friendly package. Offering multicoated lenses, phase-corrected prisms, and waterproof/fogproof contruction, these binoculars will have you seeing like you’re supposed to. While there are several optics companies making quality optics, few know hunting like the team at Vortex. Vortex Optics are designed by hunters for hunters and not only that, Vortex knows the outdoors is not a friend of glass. Therefore they offer a VIP Warranty with every purchase. What’s a VIP Warranty? Check this out: Vortex VIP Warranty
Vortex Diamondback 8x32

Primos Trail Camera – Proof Cam 01

The all-new Primos Proof Cam 01 trail camera represents the dawning of a new era for trail camera users. In order to move forward Primos has gone back to the basics—back to what hunters want. The Proof Cam 01 offers 10 Mega Pixels, 36–850nM low glow LED’s, 70ft night range, 0.7 second trigger speed, and features photo, HD video and HD time lapse. The all-new Proof Cam 01 operates on 8 AA batteries, provides a battery life of 9-months, and comes with 1 year warranty.
Primos Proof Cam 01

Lone Wolf Treestands – Alpha Tech F1

When it comes to treestands, there’s no question Lone Wolf Treestands ranks at the top. Each treestand is made and assembled in the United States by a team that understands both safety and stealth. The Lone Wolf Alpha Tech F1 delivers the necessary function every treestand hunter demands—quiet and comfortable. Constructed of 100% aluminum and weighing in at only 13.6 pounds, the Alpha Tech F1 offers unparalleled stability. The Alpha Tech F1 also offers a roomy 30″ x 19-1/2″ platform, an extra thick contoured foam set pad and includes a 6-point safety harness that meets industry standards.
Lone Wolf Alpha Tech F1

Slick Trick – 100gr Standard / 4 Blade Broadheads

If you’re looking for a broadhead with versatility at its core—look no further. With perfect geometry for extreme penetration and incredible flight, the Slick Trick Standard 100gr broadhead cuts a devastating four-blade hole with extraordinary performance. This 1” four-blade design out cuts seemingly larger 1 1/8” three-blade broadhead designs by 18%, resulting in larger holes, maximum hemorrhaging and much shorter blood trails. Eight broadheads included in this giveaway.
Slick Trick 100 Standard
 

Costa Sunglasses – Gift Certificate (Your Choice)

Built on the premise that clarity and durability can co-exist, Costa sunglasses offer dedicated sportsmen optimum clarity and unrivaled quality. Worthy of whatever thrill you pursue, Costa’s are designed to be just as hardcore as your adventure. Whether you consider yourself an avid angler or hunting enthusiast, Costa designed eyewear will stand up to your playground.
 
Included in this giveaway is a gift certificate for one pair of the Costa sunglasses in the style of your choice.
Costa Sunglasses

Badlands Silent Series – Reaper Pack

Known for their unconditional lifetime warranty and quality hunting packs, the Badlands brand is no stranger to the bowhunter. The all-new Badlands Silent Series packs are designed, crafted and named for those who pursue their quarry with stealth—and from a treestand. The 1800 cubit inch Reaper offers an ingenious easy-open main compartment that can be operated with one hand and quickly sealed shut with a flip of the wrist. This pack is constructed of a proprietary fabric developed by Badlands called Mutex™, which is guaranteed to stay soft and quiet in even the most extreme hunting conditions. Revolutionary Mutex™ is then backed with a sound-absorbing, acoustical foam, all but muting any internal sound caused by your gear. As with all Badlands Silent Series Packs, there are also no buckles or zippers to give you away when silence matters most.
Badlands Reaper Pack

Havalon Knives – Piranta-Stag Hunting/Skinning Knife

While we’ve been fans of the original Havalon Piranta for some time, the new Piranta-Stag features a stronger, thicker 60A blade and a larger handle. Literally these knives are razor sharp, so once you start using a Piranta-Stag, you’ll never use anything else.
 
Giveaway includes the Piranta-Stag, 6 additional stainless steel #60A blades and a nylon holster. 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed. Havalon products are beyond good, they’re simply amazing.
Havalon Piranta Stag

Scott Archery – Shark Caliper Release

Scott releases are known for their quality, which is why the Scott Shark release has become a best seller among bowhunters. This duel-caliper release provides even distribution of friction resulting in enhanced accuracy. For the predator who prefers a caliper release, you can’t go wrong with a Shark. This giveaway includes a Scott Shark in Realtree AP, with a buckle style strap.
dual-shark-release

Hunter Safety System – HSS-UltraLite Flex Harness

The HSS-UltraLite Flex is the lightest, most flexible harness to hit the market. The HSS-UltraLite Flex features a series of individual, padded hexagons that provide a comfortable, snug fit and unprecedented flexibility. New HSS 1.25” upper-body webbing, tether and waist buckle continues to provide the strength you expect from HSS without the added weight and bulk.
 
The HSS Flex incorporates individual, padded hexagons to provide comfort and maximum flexibility, a patented HSS design that eliminates dangerous dangling straps
 and weave-through buckles, and a secure, mesh cell phone pocket for your convenience.
HSSFlexFit

Drake’s Adventures – Trick or Treat

Drake’s Adventures book series will captivate your kids page after page. And there’s no better way to introduce youngsters to the outdoors than with high-quality sounds coupled with adventure. Trick or Treat captures the exciting moments Drake and his father spend hunting a buck named ‘Spider.’ “Feel the hair rise as a smaller buck turns tail and bounds away, just to have the best buck on their farm come in with his hair bristled and ready for battle.”
Drakes Adventures Trick Treat

Deer Lab – 1 Year Subscription

Managing Trail Camera photos has never been easier. Now with DeerLab’s Trail Camera Software you can conveniently keep track of not only photos, but individual bucks as well. Plus this unique software automatically taps into your closest weather station and coordinates it with your photo’s time stamp. This means you can track what wind, temperature, or barometric pressure your hit list buck is moving to. For information on additional features visit DeerLab.
DeerLab

Bass & Bucks – $50 Gift Card / Online Store

Stocking over 800 new and used bows, Bass & Bucks is Indiana’s premier archery retailer. Included in this giveaway is a $50 gift card to be used on Bass & Bucks’ new on-line store. From Elite Archery, Scott, Black Eagle and a host of other quality brands, here’s your chance to make your gear list complete. Looking for a new bow, check out Bass & Bucks.
bass and bucks

Duel Game Calls – Stretchback Grunt Call

Duel Game Calls is not just another call maker. Setting themselves apart by using duel chamber technology, Duel Game Calls produces some of the most realistic calls on the market. Watch Weston Clark demo the call here.
Duel Stretchback Grunt Call

Stic-n-Pic – Mini Ground Mount

Stic-n-pic trail camera mounts are some of the most innovative mounts on the market today. Just released this year is their new Mini Ground Mount. The mini mount comes in a small convenient package along with offering all the advantages we have come to expect from Stic-n-Pic.
Stick n pic mini ground mount
 
Thank you for participating in The Pre-Season Bowhunter’s Giveaway. Hopefully, you’ll be the winner!

Under Armour Fat Tire Review

Under Armour Fat Tire GTX Trail Running Shoe

The thing about running shoes is I’ve never really found a pair that had it all. Sure, there have been some that offered just the right amount of stability but left a lot to be desired in comfort. Some were comfortable but didn’t hold up to the long hours of rigorous workouts. And then some were just disappointing all around.
 
However, the radical, outside the box, Under Armour Fat Tire GTX Trail Running Shoe is something much different. In my opinion, it might just be the perfect running shoe—at least for me.
 
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Nothing on the market today looks like the Under Armour Fat Tire shoe. Likewise, I think you will be hard pressed to find anything that performs like it either.

The Foundation

If you’re going to build something then nothing is more critical than getting the foundation right. It only takes a glance to see that the Under Armour Fat Tire was built with a unique (and highly effective) foundation.
 
Drawing its inspiration from the highly popular Fat Tire mountain bikes, the GTX is constructed of a Michelin (yes, like the tire) Wild Gripper outsole rubber compound that cradles your feet in nearly 2-inches of unmatched, impact absorbing comfort! And, while the sole has a unique, slightly curved shape, it doesn’t hinder walking or running. Instead, it adds to the already soothing feel of the shoe.
 
Under Armour Fat Tire GTX Trail Running Shoe

The thick sole of the Under Armour Fat Tire might have a different look to it but only after trying it out for yourself will you truly appreciate everything it does.

Running proves these points in spades as the composite textile and foam construction found on the inside of the Under Armour Fat Tire absorbs impacts with the road, rocks, treadmill—you name it. And, when the shoe does meet an obstacle you can hardly notice due to the Michelin material and the amount used. In addition, the unique traction lugs on the bottom of the Fat Tire offer unmatched cross-slope grip with performance over all types of terrain.
 
Under Armour Fat Tire

The grip of the Under Armour Fat Tire is superb for just about any conditions you may find yourself running in.

Performance On the Outside

The great features of the Under Armour Fat Tire GTX don’t stop at the sole. On the outside users will be pleased with the solid construction and durability that Under Armour garments are known for world wide. This includes the 100% waterproof Gore-Tex membrane that provides a barrier between your foot and the elements. This feature also allows for air flow to keep your feet cool and comfortable yet dry.
 
Under Armour Fat Tire GTX Shoe

The new Under Armour exclusive Ridge Reaper camo is highly attractive and adorns the outside of the GTX Fat Tire model.

Lace It Up

Adding to the performance list of this shoe is the BOA Closure System. With this you can literally tighten the shoe to your exact comfort/performance specifications in a matter of seconds. No old-fashioned laces to contend with. Simply push the BOA dial in and turn clockwise to tighten. To loosen, pull the dial out and the steel lace, nylon guides release themselves from the spool.
 
This feature might be one of my favorites simply because it adds a custom ‘dialed-in’ fit to the shoe depending on the situation at hand. Sometimes I like my shoes tight when I’m hitting the trail pretty hard. Other times, when I’m just kicking around, I like them loose; but not too loose. The BOA system gives me the option to meet both circumstances effortlessly.
 
Under Armour Fat Tire Running Shoe

The BOA Closure System eliminates the hassle of stretch and weight found in ordinary lacing systems and is guaranteed for the life of the product.

The Scent That Kills

Under Armour fans are familiar with the great lengths the company has made to keep hunters undetected in the field. The Under Armour Fat Tire follows this same mind set with the incorporation of Cupron on the inside of the shoe. What is Cupron? It is an anti-bacterial, copper infused sock liner that kills 99.9% of athletes foot fungus after 12 hours of contact.
 
And, while this product is marketed as a running shoe I can see it being used in certain hunting situations. With the addition of Cupron Technology the Fat Tire provides high performance during training but also won’t contribute to game-spooking odors (should you take it afield) the way ordinary running shoes can or will.
 

When The Rubber Meets The Road

So how does the Under Armour Fat Tire perform? Flawlessly! I’ve honestly tried to find something about this shoe that I dislike but I can’t. If I wanted to be picky I guess I could point out that if the BOA Closure System were to fail it would take more than a shoe string to fix. However, as I mentioned it does have a lifetime warranty so it’s really no concern to me.
 
Nevertheless, the first time I slipped these shoes on my feet I knew they were unique and special. As a former athlete in high school and college my body (particularly my knees) doesn’t always agree with the constant pounding that goes with trail running or just running in general.
 
Under Armour Fat Tire GTX Shoe Review

Do yourself a favor and try to find a flaw with the new Under Armour Fat Tire.

The Under Armour Fat Tire is honestly the most comfortable running shoe I’ve ever used, simply because it creates such a fine cushion between my feet and the road. This translates to less shock on my knee joints and even my back. Both of which allow me to train harder for hunting season or just overall better health.
 

Moving Forward

One change I would like to see made to this shoe is the introduction of a slightly more aggressive tread for really rugged terrain. Why? Well, if I could take the overall feel of this running shoe and incorporate it into an all-out hunting boot—look out. That would really be something special.
 
However, the UA Fat Tire GTX Trail Running Shoe is already special in so many ways. The only thing missing—is your foot.

Carry Your Shed Anters Shed Rally

Shed Tote: Conveniently Carry Shed Antlers #ShedRally

A successful shed hunt not only means adding to your bone collection, it can also initiate the conundrum of how to pack multiple shed antlers back to the truck.
 
Across the years I’ve packed shed antlers in hand, tried to cram them in my pack, and attempted to strap them to my pack—none of which have ever seemed very secure or comfortable.
 
Thankfully, I’ve found a much better and more convenient way to carry shed antlers!
 
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While attending the Indianapolis Deer, Turkey and Waterfowl Expo I stumbled upon a very unique product. A product I think is rather ingenious. Made by Call 4 Life Lanyards, this is one product every shed hunter should have in his or her possession.
 

Shed Tote: Conveniently Carry Your Shed Antlers #ShedRally

The innovative style and size are what attracted me to the—Shed Tote. This handy paracord tote provides the shed hunter with a safe and reliable way to carry shed antlers of any size or weight. Made from durable 550 paracord the Shed Tote is designed to fasten to a belt loop or backpack with ease.
 
Including its integrated carabineer, the Shed Tote measures 13-inches long overall. Its compact size helps to prevent the Shed Tote from catching on brush or branches. The Shed Tote’s design also keeps antlers relatively tight and restricts them from excessive swinging, like some other paracord totes are prone to do.
 
Shed Rally Transport Shed Antlers
 
Since the Shed Tote is small enough to be carried in your pocket or pack until needed, transporting the Shed Tote is easy. Once you find a shed, simply attach the Shed Tote’s integrated carabineer to your belt loop or backpack, fasten the shed and keep on shed hunting.
 
To use the Shed Tote simply slide the slip knot upwards until the loop is large enough to fit around the base of the antler. Once the antler is placed through the loop, tighten the slip knot against the antler and you’re antler is held securely in place.
 
The Shed Tote does require that you pay attention to the shape of the antler base. Some antlers will be more secure if the slipknot is on the inside of the antler or vice versa.
 
Carry Shed Anters During Shed Rally
 
This is one product that will perfect for the upcoming Shed Rally. (Hopefully you’ll not only be able to hashtag your photos with #ShedRally, but come home with several sheds fastened in the Shed Tote.)
 

Shed Tote: Display Your Sheds

Not only can the Shed Tote be used to carry shed antlers, it also provides a unique way to display sheds as well.
 
By fastening three or four shed antlers in the Shed Tote and hanging it below a sconce or from a hook, the Shed Tote can become an addition to any den or man cave decor.
 
transport shed antlers shed rally
 
The Shed Tote retails for $14.99 and comes with a lifetime guarantee. To order a Shed Tote contact Call 4 Life Lanyards at (660) 619-8813.
 
Due to the ongoing development of this product, there may be slight aesthetic or design differences from the Shed Tote pictured and what you receive. If you have any questions or would prefer a custom Shed Tote color or design feel free to contact Call 4 Life Lanyards—they’ll welcome your inquiry.
 
For more information about Call 4 Life Lanyards please feel free to visit them on:
 
Website (currently under construction)

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram
 
Good luck shed hunting!
 
Shed Rally Carry Your Shed Anters

Review Vortex Ranger 1000

Vortex Ranger 1000 Rangefinder Review

The reason I chose the Vortex Ranger 1000 rangefinder was based upon the willingness of Vortex to understand and accommodate hunters. Hunters are a unique breed of individuals who have a reputation for placing extreme demands on their gear—the Vortex Ranger 1000 rangefinder has met those demands.
 
While some might expect this review to simply say the Vortex Ranger 1000 is the best rangefinder on the market—it wont. What this review will say is judging yardage is critical for any successful hunt and an accurate and dependable rangefinder, such as the Vortex Ranger 1000, can make an ethical harvest all that more possible.
 
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For some time now I’ve been trying to find an optics company that ‘got it.’ What I mean by ‘got it’ is this: So what if a company offers the clearest glass in the universe if the design and features are for birdwatchers. A birdwatcher I’m not, but a hunter I am. So the gear I use must live up to the rigors of hunting and perform without compromise in a variety of hunting situations.
 
Just this year I sent back a piece of gear that I could not conscientiously do a review on. What the piece of gear claimed to do and how it actually performed were vastly different. Yes, I could have made the manufacturer happy by writing a positive review, but what about all the bowhunters I would have falsely influenced? Not to mention that uncommon word called—integrity. No thanks, item returned!
 
With that said, let’s take an honest look at the Vortex Ranger 1000 laser rangefinder.
 

Vortex Ranger 1000 Rangefinder

Having worked in the outdoor retailer space has provided me with the opportunity to use a considerable number of high-end optics. From binoculars, spotting scopes to rangefinders, I’ve had the opportunity to demo a variety of optics in both the timbered Midwest to the more open hillsides of the West.
 
Comparing the Vortex Ranger 1000 to other quality rangefinders, I would say it ranks at the top the list. And while I believe there are other quality rangefinders on the market, the Ranger 1000’s overall performance has been beyond stellar.
 

Reliability

When it comes to rangefinders, the first and foremost item of importance is reliability. I’ve heard several horror stories stemming from a rangefinder that failed to perform at a critical moment. To each his own, but for me personally, owning inferior gear is not an option. When hunting pressured whitetails a single opportunity cannot be forfeited due to a malfunctioning rangefinder.
 
Since using the Vortex Ranger 1000 rangefinder I’ve not had a single issue. From lowlight conditions, cold weather, wet days and fresh snow, the Ranger 1000 has always been reliable.
 
The Vortex Ranger 1000 claims to be waterproof and is said to be designed with o-ring seals that prevent any moisture from penetrating the armored body or around the multi-coated lenses.
 
After hunting several days in the rain, I can say the Vortex Ranger 1000 lives up to its claims and is indeed 100% waterproof. Unlike another high-end rangefinder I’ve used, which allowed moisture to get passed its rubber seals, the Ranger 1000 performed beyond expectation. I have to say; compared to other reputable laser rangefinders, the Vortex Ranger 1000 is the epitome of reliability.
 
Vortex Ranger 1000 review
 

Consistency

Every bowhunter knows a rangefinder must be consistent in its yardage readings. A false reading of a few yards can result in a total miss of an animal.
 
Having put the Vortex Ranger 1000 to the test, it has been dead on, no matter the weather conditions. The yardage readings are always accurate and unless hunting in a torrential downpour, there has never been a day the Vortex Ranger 1000 hasn’t been precise in its yardage readings.
 

Ability

Having spent a considerable amount if time behind a variety of high-end rangefinders, I’ve seen some of the most expensive rangefinders fail during light rain or fog. Any environmental factors that can disperse the rangefinder’s light beam, such as rain, fog or snow normally affect yardage readings and make a rangefinder virtually useless.
 
One of the most impressive aspects of the Vortex 1000 Ranger is how it has performed in a light mist/drizzle. The Ranger 1000 has ranged up to 330-yards in a constant light drizzle. And while ‘light drizzle’ is subjective, the Ranger 1000 outperformed other rangefinders I have used in the same weather conditions.
 
Another impressive aspect of the Vortex Ranger 1000 is its ranging ability. The farthest range achieved with the Ranger 1000 is 995-yards. I was impressed to say the least. Now I’m really excited to test the Ranger’s limits while doing some late winter predator hunting.
 
vortex ranger review
 

Speed

The one thing I did notice about the Vortex Ranger 1000 was its readings were not processed as fast as some other rangefinders I have used. Again, ‘not as fast’ is subjective and we are talking about less than a second.
 
Less than a second for a yardage reading at almost 1000 yards is still well within reason. I’m just being honest about our experience with the Vortex Ranger 1000 and informing the potential buyer of what to expect should they purchase the Ranger.
 

Features

The Vortex Ranger 1000 provides more than adequate features for both the bowhunter and long-range shooter. As someone who prefers a red LED instead of the a black LCD, the Vortex offers not only a ‘bright’ red LED but it is fully adjustable should the user prefer to adjust the light to a dimmer setting.
 
It’s Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) mode offers treestand hunters or those who hunt in steep terrain, angle compensated ranges for either uphill or downhill shots. The Ranger 100 also features a scan mode that allows ‘tracking’ of a moving animal by simply holding down on the ‘measure’ button.
 
The Vortex Ranger 1000 also comes with a reversible/removable attachment clip, CR2 battery, lanyard and can be attached to a tripod. I can’t think of another feature that I would need or want on the Vortex Ranger 1000. For my style of hunting, the Ranger 100 has it all.
 
vortex ranger 1000
 

Usability

The setup of the Vortex Ranger 1000 was simple and its menu easily accessible. Changing between Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) and Line of Sight (LOS) modes is quick and not at all difficult.
 
To use the Ranger 1000 requires a simple press of the measure button to turn on the unit and a second press to acquire the yardage.
 
The Ranger’s 6×22 objective lens offers sharp and bright images and an adjustable diopter provides a crisp image focus.
 

Warranty

The Vortex Ranger 1000 comes with the Vortex VIP warranty. VIP stands for Very Important Promise. This means Vortex will repair or replace your rangefinder in the event it becomes damaged or defective.
 
There’s more.
 
The VIP warranty means there is no warranty card to fill out, nor receipt to hang on to. This warranty is also lifetime, unlimited and unconditional. Plus it’s fully transferable.
 
How can you go wrong with a deal like that?
 

Vortex Ranger 1000 Specs:

 

  • Waterproof O-ring seals prevent moisture from getting inside for withstanding harsh weather conditions.
  • Rugged Design – Built to handle tough situations. Compact and lightweight.
  • Rubber Armor – Provides a secure, non-slip grip.
  • Diopter – Adjusts for precise focus.
  • Utility Clip – Provides quick, convenient access.
  • Tripod Adaptable – Compatible with a tripod adapter, allowing use on a tripod or car window mount.
     

    Detailed Features

     

  • HCD Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) mode for angle compensated ranging.
  • LOS Line of Sight (LOS) mode displays actual line of sight range.
  • Scan Feature displays continual distance readings when tracking a moving animal.
  • Easy-to-use Menu – Intuitive, easy-to-use menus feature a simple, clean illuminated display.
  • Ranging Format – Range in yards or meters.
  • Range Reflective 11-1000 yards
  • Range Deer 11-500 yards
  • Accuracy + / – 3 yards @ 1000 yards
  • Max Angle Reading +/- 60 degrees (INC 50)
  • Magnification 6 x
  • Objective Lens Diameter 22 mm
  • Linear Field of View 315 feet/1000 yards
  • Angular Field of View 6 degrees
  • Eye Relief 17 mm
  • Length 3.9 inches
  • Width 3 inches
  • Weight 7.7 ounces
  •  
    For more information check out the Vortex Ranger 1000 here..
     
    Ranger 1000 rangefinder review

    havalon knives 2015 ata show

    2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 3

    Day three of the 2015 ATA Show was our favorite day of all. Not necessarily because of the products we saw, but due to the fact we were able to spend a considerable amount of time sharing experiences and telling tales with fellow die-hard bowhunters.
     
    Bowhunters are a unique breed and for the most part they’re a band of brothers. A deep understanding of what unites us is what made spending time at the 2015 ATA Show so rewarding.
     
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    On day three of the 2015 ATA Show I was joined by two of my sons. Although I had several meetings to attend before the end of the day, my boys enjoyed a day filled with making new friends and talking to outdoor personalities such as Fred Eichler, one of their favorite bowhunters.
     
    As we made our way through the booths we hadn’t had time to visit previously, we continued to find great products. We located the first of many at the Havalon Knives booth.
     
    A few years ago we started using Havalon Knives and haven’t looked back. These small but exceptionally sharp knives have field dressed, caped and quartered numerous deer. And while a traditional mindset still prevails among hunters, which requires packing a bulky 6-inch blade when hunting, this notion couldn’t be any further from the truth.
     
    Havalon Knives showcased their expanded line of razor sharp hunting knives at the 2015 ATA Show, including the new Piranta Stag. The Piranta Stag offers a good looking and durable Zytel handle, which has been uniquely contoured for a more solid grip.
     
    havalon piranta 2015 ata show
     
    Also highlighted at the show was the all-new Havalon (still in development but will possibly be named, the Hydra) two-blade knife. By featuring both a 2 ¾” Piranta blade and a 5” Baracuta blade this knife design offers the best of both worlds.
     
    havalon hydra 2015 ata show
     
    An additional feature of the Hydra is its ability to convert to a saw. Simply replace the Baracuta blade with the new Baracuta Bone Saw blade and you have everything needed to property take care of any size game.
     
    havalon hydra saw ata show 2015
     
    Although I’ve found the Piranta series ample for whitetail, a longer blade would be nice when trimming game meat. While still in its prototype phase, the Hydra if so named, will provide a compact all-in-one knife for any type of hunting.
     
    havalon hydra knife ata show
     
    Anyone who’s visited this site for any amount of time knows I like organization—especially when in a treestand. And few companies are as ingenious at developing treestand accessories as Hawk Hunting.
     
    At the 2014 ATA Show Hawk Hunting launched its brand along with a variety of treestands and treestand accessories. Now for 2015 Hawk Hunting is promoting even more unique treestand accessories, which are sure to create interest among avid treestand hunters.
     
    One of our favorite Hawk products featured at the 2015 ATA Show was the Tactical Trio Hybrid Tree Hook. This innovative hook provides a ‘swing arm’ design allowing for full right to left adjustability. The Trio Hybrid Tree Hook is also constructed of solid metal and is overmolded with a SilentGrip finish.
     
    Hawk Hybrid Tree Hook ata 2015
     
    Another item we saw at the Hawk Hunting booth was the new Rock Solid Tree Arm. This all-new, all-steel bow arm extends to 24” and is as it has been named—rock solid. The Rock Solid Tree Arm also features three accessory hooks for additional organization and allows quick accessibility of bowhunting gear.
     
    Hawk Rock Soild Tree Arm 2015 ATA SHow
     
    hawk rock soild 2015 ata show
     
    Last but not least was the Hawk Speed Retract Hoist Reel. Incorporating 30’ of anti-tangle line, a gear system providing 5X faster rewind and Hawks easy twist GearTie attachments, the Speed Retract Hoist Reel is just one more treestand accessory that is sure to keep both your pack and hunt organized.
     
    Hawk hoist reel 2015 ata show
     
    While having lunch with an acquaintance who writes for Bowhunting.com, he mentioned a unique product located at the Black Widow Lures booth. It sounded like something I had to see, so I decided to make it a priority and check it out.
     
    black widow deer lures ata show 2015
     
    While I’ve heard of these polymer beads (water beads) being used for various applications, I’d never thought of using them for hunting—how ingenious. (The 2015 ATA Show was definitely a place where I shook my head and asked, ‘Why didn’t I think of that?’)
     
    By soaking what Black Widow Deer Lures is calling ‘Scrape Beads’ in deer urine, these super absorbent beads retain and release odor as needed. Made from a polyacrylamide which can adsorb up to several times their weight, the Scrape Beads can be placed into a scrape in order to distribute scent for a considerable amount of time. This product is also in the development phase and Black Widow Lures informed us they were very surprised at the amount of interest in this product. It remains to be seen just how this product will be developed and the myriad of uses it will provide.
     
    black widow scrape beads 2015 ata show
     
    While in no way did we expect to cover all the products featured at the 2015 ATA Show, these updates contain a handful items we believe will provide benefit to any bowhunter. Stay tuned as we finish up with our favorite item from the 2015 ATA Show. Read 2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 1 and 2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 2 here.

    2105 ata trade show update

    2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 2

    Day two of the 2015 ATA Trade Show began by shaking off a heavy dose of weariness. After a host of meetings and a late night made 4am seem to arrive way too early. After a few cups of strong coffee we headed to the Indianapolis Convention Center for another day at the 2015 ATA Show.
     
    After attending the Target the Heart Prayer Breakfast we made our way over to Elite Archery so we could shoot a product video with the one and only Darrin Christenberry. When we arrived, the Elite Archery booth was filled with curious buyers wanting to know more about these ‘shootable’ bows that are quickly growing in popularity.
     
    Elite Archery’s shooting station was also filled with those wanting to experience the ‘shootability’ of the 2015 lineup. It was here we found our good friend Mark Huelsing of Sole Adventure, and as one would expect, he was doing a stellar job at pointing out the unique features of each individual bow.
     
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    After a necessary detour, my son Austin just had to see Cameron Hanes, we continued our search for interesting and ‘out-of-the-box’ products featured at the 2015 ATA Trade Show.
     
    One of our first stops was to see our friends at Dead Down Wind. As usual, an impressive array of new products lined the shelves. After getting a first hand look at their all-new UV Guard and how well it performed, I saw something even more impressive. (I was impressed because it puts money back into the bowhunter’s pocket.)
     
    uv guard 2015 ata show
     
    For 2015 Dead Down Wind is offering a $5.00 mail in rebate with each bottle of Evolve 3D+ scent elimination spray. It’s their way of saying thank you to those who have continued to support them over the last ten years. What an ingenious way to retain loyal customers.
     
    dead down wind 2015 ata show
     
    Day two of the 2015 ATA Show also found us checking out what new products Wicked Tree Gear had brought to the show. We weren’t disappointed.
     
    For 2015 Wicked Tree Gear is offering an Ultra Light version of their pole saw. The Ultra Light Pole Saw offers a removable head which doubles as a hand saw. Available in both a 10-foot and 14-foot version, the 10-foot version will retail for $99.99 and the 14-foot for $149.99.
     
    wicked ultra light pole saw 2015 ata show
     
    Wicked Tree Gear also showcased an all-new attachment for their original pole saw that will be a great addition for any serious bowhunter—its called the Wicked Utility Hook. The Wicked Utility Hook attaches securely to their Wicked Stick or Wicked Tough pole saws and is the perfect attachment when needing to push or pull a small tree when hinge cutting. Leave it to Wicked, they sure know how to climb above the competition. (Pun intended!)
     
    wicked utility hook 2015 ata show
     
    With a penchant for displaying antlers I wanted to stop by and see what new items Skull Hooker had brought to the 2015 ATA Show. Offering a unique way to display both skull plates and European mounts, Skull Hooker continues to offer innovative products year after year.
     
    For 2015 Skull Hooker has released their Pedestal Mount. The Pedestal Mount allows a trophy to be displayed on a tabletop or desktop in classy fashion. Available in brown or graphite black finishes the Skull Hooker Pedestal mount is a great addition to any man cave or trophy room.
     
    skull hooker 2015 ata show
     
    Once in a while you see a company that breaks the mold. And while I don’t use Slick Trick broadheads they do have a reputation for quality. Furthermore, today’s broadhead companies could learn a lot from their packaging. For 2015 Slick Trick is offering a Pro Pack, which includes 10 ferrules and 12 blades. How ingenious. It’s about time someone realized there’s no law that says broadheads have to be sold in packs of three.
     
    slick tricks 2015 ata show
     
    In the world of bowhunting bigger is often better. So to make sure your vacuum sealer won’t overheat when processing game, Weston Products has released the all-new Pro 1100 Vacuum Sealer. The Pro 1100 Vacuum Sealer is fan cooled, offers a fully adjustable sealing timer and even offers a manual mode that allows you to control vacuum pressure when sealing soft foods such as fish. The Weston Pro 1100 can seal bags up to 11-inches wide and comes in stainless steel for easy cleaning. This is a must have for anyone who’s in the market for a quality vacuum sealer.
     
    weston vaccum sealer
     
    The 2015 ATA Trade Show was filled with dozens of conversations centered around family, business and bowhunting. And while it was easy to spend a considerable amount of time getting caught up with friends we hadn’t seen since last year, we did manage to see more cool products on day three. Stay tuned for more updates and a summary of what we felt were our favorite products at the 2015 ATA Show. Read ATA Trade Show Update – Day 1 and ATA Trade Show Update – Day 3 here.

    Badlands Silent Series

    2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 1

    The 2015 ATA Trade Show commenced with excited archery enthusiasts waiting to gain entrance to a world of innovative and recently developed products.
     
    Beyond the entrance of the Indianapolis Convention Center was a variety of booths containing archery equipment, bowhunting accessories and just about anything relating to archery.
     
    [post_thumbnail size=”post-hero”]
     
    Day one of the 2015 ATA Trade Show was spent perusing booth after booth in search of unique products we believed would benefit the bowhunter. Here are a few of our favorites.
     

    Badlands Silent Series Packs

    For 2015 Badlands offers the bowhunter a new line of ultra quiet hunting packs. Not only does the Silent Series provide a much quieter outer shell, but to insure these packs are the epitome of quiet, Badlands has used magnets and proprietary fasteners in place of buckles and zippers. The Silent Series packs are sure to be a favorite among hunters who understand the advantage of owning gear that’s just as stealthy as the game they pursue.
     

    Lone Wolf Stick Quiver

    For the bowhunter who packs in his climbing sticks and treestand, Lone Wolf now offers a unique solution to quietly transport those climbing sticks. By simply ‘snapping’ the sticks into their designated ‘holders,’ the hunter is guaranteed a quiet entry and exit to and from his or her stand site. Designed for both durability and ease of use the new stick quiver is sure to be a favorite at the 2015 ATA Trade Show.
     
    2015 ATA Show
     

    First Lite Sanctuary Pant

    The First Like Sanctuary Pant provides the last piece to a long overdue system for bowhunters who desire a warm and quiet pant when hunting late season. The Sanctuary Pant is offered in a bib design with heavy duty suspenders, full length zippered legs, articulated knees and the quality First Lite is known for—what more could you ask for in clothing? (More on these pants later.)
     
    First Lite Sanctuary Pant
     

    Hunter Safety System Crow’s Foot

    They say reinventing the wheel is impossible, but it would seem Hunter Safety System has been successful. Unlike traditional gear hooks, the all-new Crow’s Foot by HSS offers a three-in-one solution for organizing gear while in a treestand.
     
    Not only does the Crow’s Foot fold into a small and lightweight package, but an additional feature of the Crows Foot is its recessed auger tip, meaning the screw-in point folds back into the Crow’s Foot leaving no sharp or exposed points to tear your pack or hunting gear.
     
    2015 ATA Show Review
     
    We’re excited for day two of the 2015 ATA Trade Show, for it is sure to introduce us to more innovative products. Stay tune for more updates and feel free to follow us on Twitter for additional show coverage. Read 2015 ATA Trade Show Update – Day 2 here.

    silently transport rattling antlers

    Tip: How To Silently Transport Rattling Antlers

    Most whitetail hunters consider this to be, “…the most wonderful time of the year!” The whitetail rut is kicking in, buck sightings are increasing and the chances of killing a bruiser buck are at an all-time high.
     
    This is also the time of year when mimicking the sound of a buck brawl can be the ticket for getting a buck within shooting range. But how can the bowhunter silently transport a set of noisy antlers?
     
    [post_thumbnail size=”post-hero”]
     
    First, I have to give credit where credit is due. This tip would never have been possible had not Todd Pringnitz, Owner/President of White Knuckle Productions-Whitetails Inc and Wicked Tree Gear, handed me a package at the Indianapolis Deer, Turkey and Waterfowl Expo and said, “Try these!”
     
    What Todd handed me was a pack of two small rubber straps made by a company called Kwik-Strap. Todd informed me these convenient straps were the answer to silently carrying rattling antlers to and from a stand.
     
    Mr. Pringnitz (the whitetail guru) was right!
     
    These small rubber straps can be adjusted to fit most any size set of rattling antlers and will literally ‘silence’ them. Say goodbye to accidental rattling and unwanted noise.
     
    So, if you’re tired of your rattling antlers making noise when you don’t want them to, check out Kwik-Strap today.
     
    These babies work!

    2015 Elite Synergy

    The 2015 Elite Synergy – Initial Review

    The 2015 Elite Synergy was unboxed with a great amount of skepticism. Stripping the Synergy of its clear plastic wrapper and strategically placed bubble wrap, I stood staring at what Elite Archery president Pete Crawford says is the, “…smoothest drawing, nicest shooting bow Elite has ever made.”
     
    But like a blind date off to a bad start, I was asking myself if Mr. Crawford was mistaken? Was the hype surrounding the 2015 Elite Synergy—gusto, gimmick or really genuine?
     
    [post_thumbnail size=”post-hero”]
     

    The 2015 Elite Synergy

    After installing a D-loop, rest, and sending a few arrows downrange, my opinion of the Synergy began to change. (So much for first impressions!)
     
    Having shot the ever-popular Elite Answer, proudly owned an Elite Hunter, and current shooting the Elite Energy 35; the fit and feel of the Synergy suggests Elite took the premium features of each of these previous model bows and integrated them into the Elite Synergy.
     

    Elite Synergy – Ultra-Smooth Draw Cycle

    Halfway through the second draw cycle, I knew the Elite Synergy is destined to become a favorite among hunters and 3D archers. The new Synergy cam offers a silky smooth draw cycle that will have you shaking your head is disbelief. This cam also feels as if you never even reach peak draw weight before settling into a definite valley. Simply put, the new Synergy cam is exceptional.
     
    Obviously the new Synergy cam continues to offer what Elite is known for—a draw force curve that provides less time at peak weight, a deep valley and solid back wall.
     
    Matter of fact the shop manager ask me to put the very bow in mention in the hands of a gentleman—who out of curiosity—drove two hours to shoot the Synergy. After a few shots downrange and a quick explanation of its features, he ordered one. And he’d never shot an Elite before that moment.
     
    If I were a betting man, I’d wager the Elite Synergy’s draw cycle alone makes it a favorite among hunters in 2015.
     
    2015 Elite Synergy Review
     

    Energy Series Riser

    The 2015 Elite Synergy retains the identical riser that made the Energy series so popular. This riser design offers ideal geometry, which in turn delivers an incredibly stable shooting platform.
     
    The riser is cold forged machined and provides superior strength and resistance to twist. Like its predecessors the Synergy riser also has an integrated Riser Cage, making it 30% stronger and 19% stiffer than a standard machined riser.
     
    Earlier this year I took a photo of the Riser Cage design to a Rolls-Royce engineer who works in the development of defense aero-engine products. I asked if the Riser Cage would indeed increase strength and stiffness as claimed or was this simply marketing rhetoric? Without hesitation the engineer immediately explained how the riser design would increase overall strength and rigidity. (No gimmicks here!)
     
    A stiff riser and an ultra-smooth draw cycle are the beginnings of a great bow, but there’s more.
     
    Elite Synergy Initial Review 2015
     

    More Than Numbers

    For the hunter who desires the delicate balance of having a forgiving bow, longer brace height and enough kinetic energy to kill any big game animal, the Synergy offers all the above. With a 7 3/8-inch brace height and an impressive 325 fps I.B.O. speed, the Synergy provides the best of all worlds. (Elite makes no bones about the fact — they don’t chase speed — but 325 fps isn’t too shabby.)
     
    And for the critic who is thumbing his nose at 325 fps, I challenge you to shoot the Synergy before you knock it.
     

    Upgraded Bolts And Bezels

    The 2015 Elite Synergy also comes with upgraded limb bolts and bezels. A much needed improvement over previous designs. This update allows smoother and easier adjustment of the bow’s draw weight.
     
    This attention to detail speaks volumes of the company behind the redesign. There is no question Elite Archery has set out to make the best bow possible. And to do so, they refuse to get stuck in a rut or settle for second best.
     
    2015 Elite Synergy Initial Review
     

    Proprietary String Stop

    Another upgrade on the Synergy and included on the entire 2015 Elite lineup is the proprietary string stop. This is another much-needed improvement. With input from Levi Morgan, Elite Archery has designed and molded their very own string stop. Gone are the days of the having a sting stop that was prone to rotation.
     
    2015 Elite Synergy redesign
     

    Pro Kote Protection

    This year Elite Archery is offering Pro Kote; a ceramic-based, chip resistant, and non-reflective coating which is superior to all previous coatings. For 2015 this durable coating comes standard on all cams, modules, cable guard rods and limb pockets.
     
    Pro Kote is a much celebrated upgrade and will undoubtedly increase the long-lasting performance of the 2015 lineup.
     

    Winners Choice Strings & Cables

    As with any bow, quality strings and cables make all the difference in performance. The 2015 Elite Synergy comes standard with Winners Choice strings and cables made of BCY-X. This is the latest in high performance bowstring material and provides durability, speed and stability.
     

    LimbSaver Broadbands

    For 2015 the entire Elite lineup has been upgraded with LimbSaver Broadbands. These limb-mounted dampeners have been engineered to function over a larger frequency range. LimbSaver has combining its NAVCOM ring and center dampener to produce the industry’s most efficient frequency absorbing limb dampener yet. NAVCOM rings are also replaceable and available in a variety of colors.
     
    Elite Synergy 2015
     

    Warranty And Guarantee

    The 2015 Elite Synergy also comes with a transferable Lifetime Limited Warranty and the Elite Hunt Guarantee. If your not familiar with the Elite Hunt Guarantee, you should be. This guarantee insures that if you’re on the hunt of a lifetime and something happens to your bow and there’s no way to repair it locally, Elite will next day you a bow so you can finish the hunt. How’s that for service?
     

    Synergy Summary

    Shootability is and always has been the goal of Elite Archery. For 2015 that objective not only remains the same, but has been met in the form of the Elite Synergy.
     
    While I’m still very impressed with the Energy series bows, the Synergy offers a package that is unarguably stellar. So, I encourage you to go shoot a Synergy for yourself. Guarantee you’ll be impressed.
     

  • Axle To Axle – 33 ½
  • Mass Weight – 4.4 lbs.
  • Peak Weights – 40, 50, 60, 65, 70, 80
  • Finishes – Ninja, Realtree Xtra, Realtree Max-1, Realtree APS
  •  

    Thank You

    I do want to thank our friends at Bass and Bucks for allowing us to unbox and demo the Synergy. Bass and Bucks is one of the largest Elite dealers in Indiana. They also stock over 800 new and used bows by 20 different manufacturers. Be sure to check out bassandbucks.com for all your archery needs or visit them in Wabash, Indiana.