Cold weather hunting is not for the faintest of hearts. It is grueling, exhausting, and dangerous, due to the harsh temperatures and environment you might find yourself in. However, the risk is worth the reward, as there is a whole host of fantastic beats and animals you can find in these conditions, such as wild hogs, moose, and even coyotes.
Why Hunt in Cold Weather
Despite the obvious challenges, cold-weather hunting can be really beneficial due to how it changes the hunting process. Although you may have to contest with the freezing temperatures, cold weather hunting is great as not only does it eliminate the number of dangerous animals as well as spiders, bugs, and reptiles that are about, but the less amount of foliage means that you can get a better line of sight which can make your final shot a lot easier. You can also track easier in cold weather if there is a lot of snow as footprints are much more visible, especially if the snow is fresh.
To be successful hunting in cold weather, you need to be prepared. There are a lot of challenges you may have to overcome and obstacles that need to be navigated through. However, with this ultimate cold weather hunting guide, you’ll have the knowledge to avoid an unsuccessful haul and maximize your chances of bagging a beast to impress the boys back home. Here’s everything you need to do when hunting in cold weather.
Wear the Right Clothes
A good hunter is a comfortable hunter. One that can focus on locating, tracking, and eventually, immobilizing a target. No matter how good your weaponry is, shivering and battling frostbite will turn you into a bad shot.
The best cold weather hunting clothes are designed to keep you alive. It’s essential to make sure they’re waterproof but also durable and help you make sure you maintain your core temperature. You want to make sure you’re confident with your clothing, as when things get really hairy, it can be the difference between death and survival.
Be sure to at least have the three basic pieces to keep you warm: a jacket, pants, and crucially a vest. These items aren’t the be-all and end-all, though, and it’s recommended to add layers to this to enhance your cold-weather clothing set up.
Don’t Sweat Too Much
It is crucial that when in cold weather, you try to avoid any unneeded sweating. Sweating is a body mechanism designed to cool you down, something you do not want when you are already battling the elements.
The best way to avoid over-sweating is to make sure you are not wearing too much for whatever activity you are doing. If you are walking, you can afford to shed some layers and then layer up again when you are stationary. It’s also a good idea to try not to physically exert yourself, as you’ll want to store as much energy as you can to make sure you’re sharp when a shooting opportunity arises.
You want to stay dry for the same reason you don’t want to sweat too much. Moisture on clothing or your skin can negate any insulating properties, meaning that you’re going to be a lot colder. No matter how tempting it is to take a shortcut through a body of water or crawl through melted snow, it’s recommended that you avoid doing this as it’ll be difficult to dry damp clothing in these conditions, which could end up killing you.