It’s too late in the year for big game hunting in most regions, but there are plenty of small game hunting opportunities across the country. From hunting pheasant and quail to bobcats, there is no reason to stay inside even when the temperatures drop! However, hunting during the winter does come with a few more safety considerations.
Here at Copper Ridge Outdoors, we are dedicated to making your next outdoor hunting trip the best one yet. Not only do we manufacture some of the best hunting gear on the market, but we also offer important advice and support here on our blog. In today’s article, we cover a few important tips for safely hunting during the winter. Read on to learn more, and shop our extensive inventory of outdoor supplies and hunting items today!
Dress for the Weather
In the winter, staying warm means staying dry, which means you should choose your gear carefully. Avoid cotton, denim, and other materials that soak up moisture, and invest in waterproof footwear and a waterproof coat. You should also protect your extremities, including your ears, fingers, and toes. These parts of your body are more vulnerable to frostbite and should be protected with a hat, gloves or mittens, and thick socks. You may also want to carry warming packets with you just in case.
Dress in Layers
Another trick to dressing appropriately for winter weather is to dress in layers. The air trapped between layers will preserve heat, and it gives you better control over your body temperature. You will warm up throughout the day, especially if you are actively hiking after your intended target. Layers give you the option to shed clothes when you get hot, and put them back on once you cool off.
There are a few specific items you’ll need to make the most of your layers. For your innermost layer, choose a fabric that will wick away moisture. For your outermost layer, find a coat that is windproof, if not wind and waterproof.
Prepare Your Weapon
Your body isn’t the only thing affected by cold weather. Low temperatures will affect the workings of your weapon as well. It’s a good idea to clean your gun thoroughly before your next hunting trip, since the cold can lead to malfunction. However, make sure you don’t use lubrication, which can become gummy and cause the action to stick.
Watch for Hypothermia
During your hunt, monitor how you’re feeling and keep an eye on your hunting buddies. Hypothermia can strike quickly. If anyone starts shivering, convince them to put on more layers. If they still can’t warm up and you’re too far from your home or car to return immediately, seek shelter and start a fire. Symptoms can worsen quickly, so it’s important that you act fast if you have any concerns about the health of anyone in your party.
Prepare for the Worst
Mistakes and accidents can happen on any outdoor hunting trip, but if anything goes wrong, winter weather can quickly make a situation even more dangerous. Keep this in mind as you prepare for your next trip. Be aware of the weather forecast and bring a survival kit with you just in case. For ideas on what to include in your kit, as well as advice on what to do in a bad situation, read our series on survival tips!
Practice Safe Hunting
Regardless of the weather, you should always use safe hunting practices. Assume every gun is loaded, keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, don’t touch the trigger until you’re ready to shoot, and so on. This time of year, it’s especially important to remember the three “W”s: tell your emergency contact who is coming with you, where you will be, and when you will be back.
Winter hunting can offer a unique experience, but it also comes with added dangers. Prepare for the worst and you can venture into the cold with peace of mind. Invest in warm clothing, and turn to Copper Ridge Outdoors for high-quality equipment you can trust. From shooting gear to hunting shelters, we are here to help your next hunting trip go right. Explore our inventory and order today!