1st time late season hunt, what do you guys pack?

backwoods baw

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Messages
20
Location
Denver
Hi all, my first post here. I've been living in Colorado for 3 years now and this season will be my first late season hunt. I drew a 4th season tag in country that ranges between 7-10k feet west of the Continental divide. I hunted 2nd season last year and had miserably hot temps like everybody else so this year with it being mid November I'm expecting colder temps. What I'm curious to know from some of you seasoned veterans is what do you usually pack for this season and this altitude? It's a five day season from Nov 15-19, I plan on heading up a day early for a total of 6 days. I'm going to lay out what I've got plus what I plan on buying before the season starts. Any gear advice would be much appreciated, including if what I plan to purchase is a good idea or not.

Clothing

First Lite 230g Allegheny bottoms
First Lite 170g Llano Long Sleeve
First lite Aerowool Short Sleeve
First Lite red desert boxer
First Lite aerowool boxer
Kuiu 125 Long sleeve
Kuiu Attack Pants
Kuiu 200 Peloton zip-t
Kuiu Merino 210 Glove
Kuiu 240 Peloton beanie
Kuiu Teton rain pants and top
Kuiu Teton insulated jacket
Kuiu Guide Jacket-Plan to purchase
Kuiu Peloton 240 jacket-Plan to purchase
Kuiu Northstar gloves-Plan to purchase
Kuiu Yukon gaiters-Plan to purchase


Camping

Teton 0 degree sleeping bag
Alps mountaineering 4 season two person tent
MSR 4 Liter water bag
Summit XL sleeping pad
Buddy space heater-plan to purchase

Misc. Gear

Trekking poles
Cabelas 800 gram iron ridge boots with gore tex
Gerber Vital with replacement blades-plan to purchase
Water filtration system
various Kifaru pullout bags medium and large size for food
Outdoor research dry sacs
Horn Hunter Mainbeam XL backpack
Caribou Elk size game bags-plan to purchase
various lighters and survivor packs
first aid pack
Garmin etrex with onx map chips
several paper maps

What am I needing/how does it look? As a newlywed, I would love to break the bank on all sorts of purchases but I've got to be unselfish now :rolleyes: I hope to purchase some nicer boots such as Kenetreks by next year.

Any advice will be appreciated! Thanks guys happy to be here and I've caught the western big game bug in a bad way! I lurk here almost every night trying to soak up any and all tips I can, just finished Robby's new book as well so I am super excited to try and shoot my first mule deer buck.
 

fng4life

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
2,316
Location
Colorado
Welcome to Rokslide! What part of Colorado are you in? I'm around Denver myself.

Pack in or base camp? You have a lot of clothes which from a base camp is nice to try different things. I say you're missing more insulation and not sure you need a guide jacket and a 240 jacket.

I will say I like my 125, teton, guide combo for cold hiking. I don't sweat with it which is key to staying warm. I may get too warm in that and shed a layer but I stay dry. That combo isn't enough for long periods of being still, in mid November. My suggestion is to buy a warm outer layer to put on over or swap with the guide. Something like the uncompahgre, kifaru parka, or equivalent.

That time of year is when the guide jacket shines. Heavy rain is very unlikely, it does good in snow, brush.

Yukon or similar gaiters are a great idea as you may have deep snow.

Teton rain gear honestly is a nice choice because it's so light and compact you won't regret packing it even if you never need it. Very doubtful you would need more substantial rain gear for that hunt. One suggestion with those pants is since they are fragile I recommend tucking them under the gaiters if bushwacking. At some point you may have to decide between protection from brush or having them over your gaiters so moisture doesn't get down the top of your gaiters running into your boots.



Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 
OP
B

backwoods baw

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Messages
20
Location
Denver
I am up in the Broomfield area but am planning to move a little farther north here in the near future.

I will be base camping it, walking in a couple miles every morning. As much as I want to start packing in, I don't think I have enough experience yet but that's on the horizon.

I'm a sit still for long periods kind of deer hunter so I'll take your advice on more insulation to heart. I sweat like an absolute dog no matter how cold it is so I try to hike around as little as possible. And if I can save an extra $140 not getting the Peloton 240 I won't get it.

Thanks for the reply! I'll take a look at the unpronounceable jacket.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
OP
B

backwoods baw

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Messages
20
Location
Denver
Also, in a late season hunt with snow a high probability, do y'all start high and hunt lower or head straight to 7-8k ft range? I took a scouting trip two weeks ago and there's BLM full of juniper, pine, and sagebrush from about 7500-9000 ft. Above that is your usual aspen and conifer patches. As a rookie, the BLM appears to be a prime spot to start off at, I could be completely wrong as I don't have the mule deer experience y'all have.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

fng4life

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
2,316
Location
Colorado
Also, in a late season hunt with snow a high probability, do y'all start high and hunt lower or head straight to 7-8k ft range? I took a scouting trip two weeks ago and there's BLM full of juniper, pine, and sagebrush from about 7500-9000 ft. Above that is your usual aspen and conifer patches. As a rookie, the BLM appears to be a prime spot to start off at, I could be completely wrong as I don't have the mule deer experience y'all have.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
My experience in later season is limited to a few units. The private land ranches and general hunting pressure played a role along with weather. If you want send me a PM with your unit maybe I've been there. I was in a unit last year that had very limited deer tags and very little human threat or contact which completely changed deer behavior from what I was used to.

I plan on getting Robby Denning's book, you should too.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 

TXCO

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2012
Messages
640
Bring a pad to sit on for glassing or hopefully when youre skinning. I cut up an old zrest for mine. Also a tarp/emergency blanket would be good if you shoot something to keep it from getting muddy on melting snow. Wrap your bladder/water in your pack to keep it from freezing.

I agree with fng, you need insulation you can throw on when you stop. Your body should be warm when your hiking but if youre sweating and then stop to glass for an hour or two, its gonna be cold


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

mcseal2

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2014
Messages
2,218
I haven't been on a 4th season hunt like you describe for muleys, but I have learned a little about layering for cold sitting after a hike. One of my best whitetail spots I hike a little over a mile into and then sit for 3-4 hours in one spot. Our rifle whitetail season is in December and temps can be all over the place. Where I elk hunt in Wyoming I hunt early November with some sitting and a lot of hiking also. I seem to be good at sweating no matter what I do like you. I work on a ranch so I'm always outdoors and always experimenting with mixing and matching my work and hunting clothes to figure out how to be comfortable while active and inactive.

Walking in I like to dress really light. I'll wear the lightest synthetic or merino base layer of whatever of the good brands I found at a good price. I almost never buy base layers that are aren't on the very light end. I want something that is thin and dries fast as I almost always sweat at least somewhat walking in. I like to allow myself a little extra time walking in also, so I can stop and dry off a bit before putting on my layers and slipping into my intended daylight glassing location. I'd rather stop somewhere before I go over the ridge into the area I want to glass so I'm not having to much movement putting layers on from my glassing location.

The puffy insulation out now is great stuff and lets me get away with my light base layers. For really cold temps I like the Sitka waterfowl synthetic puffy. It's almost 2lbs so it's heavier than most, but it's warm. I want to try Kuiu's new ultradown jacket when it comes out too, see if it is as warm since it's super light. I don't worry as much about breathability in a puffy since I don't wear them when hiking almost ever. I love the Kuiu Kenai zip off bottoms also. They have been just the right mix of warmth and breathability over a light base layer.

The Kuiu glassing mittens have worked great for me too. I can wear a lighter liner glove to keep the wind off while hiking, put these on over top when I go to sit. I've used the Aleyeskan rag wool gloves too and they are good for a cheaper but warm option. I wear them a lot while horseback in the winter when I need some dexterity with the warmth. I like the Sitka core liner gloves underneath either.

Another item I use is the HPG mountain serape. This poncho/sleeping bag combo is great for breaking up my outline and creating a bigger dead air space around me. It also is fairly heavy and not something I pack all the time, but it is warm and really easy to get on or off while providing insulation for most of my body.

Last idea I'll throw out is one step past the glassing pad to sit on that someone already mentioned. I sometimes take a chunk cut out of a foam saddle blanket to put under my boots. I don't like to wear really heavily insulated boots most of the time that make my feet sweat. Having a couple pieces of the saddle pad I can put between my boot soles and the frozen ground really helps my feet stay warm. If my socks are damp from the hike in, I can remove my boots and put my socked feet on the pads to let them air dry while staying off the wet ground too. Again it's more of an idea for a hunt where weight is less of a worry but that sounds like your strategy anyway.

The Kennetrek boots are great, I love mine. If I was you I might look at upgrading boots for this hunt instead of all the clothing layers you are looking at. Lots of people here seem to like the Costco jackets. If you won't be hiking in it maybe a cheaper, heavier jacket could help save some money toward the boots. If the Cabelas fit you and work than stick with them. I seem to have ankle issues on sidehills without a good boot like the Cabelas Alaskan by Meindl or the Kennetrek Mountain Extreme.

Good luck on your hunt, sounds like a blast!
 
Last edited:

pods8

1
Rokslide Sponsor
Joined
Mar 12, 2014
Messages
3,168
Location
Thornton, CO
If base camp hunting I'd use a bigger tent (even if cheap one) or a camper. Why cram in a 2 person tent in base camp in cold weather where you are likely going to need to thaw/dry gear if the weather turns. That time of year could be 70s or -20s. I've been out for elk in 4th when it was at that sleet temp too which wasn't as fun but luckily didn't hang there too long before going snow.
 

bobhunts

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2012
Messages
964
Location
Colorado Springs,Co.
4th season can change like the mind of a women! Plan on stupid cold and be thankfull if it isn't! Rent a camper or cabin and if it is warm,,,you can spike out. Feed is all down low by this time of year as well as the cows does and the bucks chasing the does.
 
Top