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Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal Updated: EBJ 128

 

TITLE: ONE MORE BUGLE
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: My name is Caje Golden, I am 23 years old, and I was born and raised in the beautiful state of Montana. I spend most of my hunting season either filming, guiding or hunting for myself. I could not ask for any more; it is truly a blessing and an adventure every single day.
GEAR LIST: Bow Hoyt Axius Ultra | Arrows Gold Tip Kinetic Pierce Platinum | Broadheads Swhacker #261 | Sight Spot Hogg Fast Eddie XL | Rest Hamskea Trinity | Release T.R.U. Ball Sweet Spot Pro | Binoculars Swarovski EL 10×42 | Spotting scope Swarovski STX 85mm | Clothing Sitka Subalpine | Boots Crispi Briksdal GTX | Pack(s) Kifaru Stryker XL, Kifaru Muskeg | Rangefinder Vortex 1800 | Knife Havalon Forge | GPS Garmin inReach Explorer | Game calls Phelps | Tent Kifaru Sawtooth | Sleeping bag Kifaru Slick Bag
FEATURE STORY:
Spot-and-stalk elk hunting is by far my favorite, and if I can leave the calls out of the picture, that is exactly what I want to do. I think this is the most effective way to move in on herd bulls and kill those big mature bulls that everyone wants to hunt. When using calls, it is easy for them to pinpoint you, and in most cases, that is exactly the opposite of what I want to happen. With that said, in this hunting story, calling was still not the first choice, but it became the game changer.

The morning of the 30th was very slow, but it was when we finally heard our first bugle.  A faint bugle, it was not far from us, but it was down in a timber pocket, and we could tell that he was at the very bottom. We quickly made our way closer to where we thought he was; it was right then when Levi saw the legs of an elk going through the timber on the other side of the coulee that we were on. I figured it was one of the small satellites that we had just called in, but Levi had sworn that it was a different bull and encouraged me that we should go after him.
There was a big grass meadow, and for some reason we both decided we would walk straight across it. When we got to the other side of the meadow, still in the wide open, I looked up and spotted one of the small satellites up on the ridge about 150 yards away.
I looked back at Levi and laughed and said, “I told you it was just one of the small bulls that we just saw.”
Levi was still sure that the bull we were looking at was not the bull that he saw the legs of. I told him otherwise and almost had him talked into heading back to the Suburban to go to town for lunch….

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Bow hunting the elk rut might be as good as it gets! Watch twenty elk bow hunts in less than twenty minutes. This video is packed with bugling bulls and close encounters to get your heart pounding!








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Bow Hunting BIG Public Land BULLS!

Bow hunt big public land bull elk with Dan Pickar on this web episode of Eastmans’ Hunting TV. It’s a DIY hunt during the elk rut in Wyoming. Warm weather early season weather adds to the challenge, but Dan manages to get into bow range of a herd bull.

The post Bow Hunting BIG Public Land BULLS! appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Take Your Best Shot – Shooting Positions For Hunting

Accuracy on the range or in competition means the difference between hurt pride and lost money or a big smile and a fat check. These stakes are low in comparison to making a poor shot in the field, hunting big game. A steel plate, if hit poorly, isn’t going to crawl off and suffer until a brutal death overcomes it at the claws and fangs of some predator if it’s lucky or infection and rot if otherwise. We owe it to the animals we hunt to be the best marksmen and women we can possibly be and that means mastering our hunting rifles and the fundamentals of shooting accurately from field positions. This also means using support aides such as shooting sticks, bipods, backpacks, trees and limbs, even rocks or your own body to steady your aim and ensure a clean kill. 

It is my opinion that if you cannot put at least 8 of 10 rounds into an area half the size of your target animal’s vital zone at a given distance then you aren’t proficient enough to pursue that animal to that distance or beyond. 

For example, if I can put 9 of 10 fired rounds into a 5” circle at 400 yards from the prone position and 5” is roughly half the size of a mule deer buck’s vital zone, I’m good to go for that animal at that distance. However, if I’m only 6 of 10 on that same or a larger target at 500 I don’t have any business shooting at a muley buck at 500 yards or beyond. I’m just not comfortable with only a 60% lethality rate for hunting and quite honestly, I don’t think you should be either. 

Now that we’ve covered accuracy standards and being intentional about your practice it’s time to dive into the five most widely utilized field shooting positions and discuss some fundamentals for each one. Again, these are my opinions and there are many different ways to employ each of these positions, the important thing is not that you have textbook form for each position but that you can quickly, easily and accurately shoot from each or as many as you can master. 

Note: I’ve listed the field shooting positions in order of most stable to least stable. I’m also assuming the use of support aides such as sticks or bipods as the entire point here is to be as stable as possible. 

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Utah Poacher Nabbed For Illegal Wyoming Tags

“But, but, I “feel” like a Wyoming resident.” Feelings are apparently not good enough for the Wyoming Game and Fish residency requirements. Shocker! 

Of course I’m being more than a little saucy here but the fact remains that poachers will do and say just about anything to avoid the long arm of the law. Thankfully Craig L. Hunt of Morgan Utah and his “feelings” will pay the price for illegally obtaining over two dozen resident Wyoming deer and elk tags thanks to the stalwart efforts of Wyoming Game and Fish investigators and wardens. 

Hunt is staring down over 20 years in prison and almost a quarter of a million dollars in fines for his “feelings”. Wonder how he feels now? 

Seriously though, I truly do not understand what makes people think that they can steal from the residents of any state by poaching their wildlife and punching a black eye onto the face of honest sportsmen and women. I personally waited the required year to become a Wyoming resident and it was well worth it. 

How long do you think it should take before residency status is granted, for any state? 

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How to cook Mike Eastman’s favorite salmon

Learn how to cook salmon with two easy recipes. Mike Eastman uses simple ingredients to create mouth-watering cedar plank salmon on his Traeger grill. Brown sugar makes one recipe kid-friendly and a vodka brine adds some zing to his other favorite fish preparation.

RECIPES BELOW Get your own cedar planks here: wildwoodgrillingoutlet.com

Mike’s favorite wild fish supplier: sizzlefish.com

Mike’s famous BBQ deer burgers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_PZD…

The post How to cook Mike Eastman’s favorite salmon appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Grizzly Mauls Hunter West Of Cody Wyoming

A grizzly bear mauled a hunter west of Cody, Wyoming on Saturday, October 2nd. The hunter was subsequently flown to Billings, MT for treatment of his injuries. The Wyoming Game and Fish is investigating the incident at this time. The bear, a sow with cubs, was killed by the hunter and his partners and her cubs were euthanized by the Wyoming Game and Fish. 

This incident serves as a stark reminder as to the reality of hunting in grizzly country. The hunter was attacked after a close range encounter with the sow and is lucky to be alive. This is due in large part to him being with other hunters. We here at Eastmans’ extend our thoughts and prayers to him and his family and wish him a full recovery. 

If you choose to hunt in grizzly country this fall please remember these tips to stay safe. 

Never hunt aloneCarry bear spray and a sidearm if possibleStick to open terrain as much as possible to avoid encounter in thick coverFollow proper meat handling and care guidelinesAlways let someone know where you are hunting and your expected returnFor more bear safety tips visit https://www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/es/grizzlysafety.php & https://wgfd.wyo.gov/Wildlife-in-Wyoming/More-Wildlife/Large-Carnivore/Grizzly-Bear-Management/Bear-Wise-Wyoming?

 

Source Link: https://wgfd.wyo.gov/Regional-Offices/Cody-Region/Cody-Region-News/Hunter-injured-in-Wyoming-grizzly-bear-attack

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Elk Feedgrounds Shut Down by Environmental Groups

Filmed in the 60’s on the Jackson Hole Feed Ground

The battle of the elk feedground issue in Wyoming continues. The Sierra Club, Western Watersheds Project, Wyoming Wildlife Advocates, and the Gallatin Wildlife Association “challenged the U.S. Forest Service for continued permitting of winter elk feeding at the Alkali Creek feedground in the Gros Ventre drainage, Dell Creek feedground in Sublette County and Forest Park feedground in Lincoln County”.

They claim, “the Forest Service has continued to ignore science, ignore legal directives, and put Wyoming wildlife at grave risk of catastrophic disease outbreaks,” said Connie Wilbert, Director of Sierra Club Wyoming.”

On the other side of the fence was a post made by former Game & Fish commissioner Mike Schmid, “Pay attention folks , especially all that love our mule deer and Elk. CWD is the new boogeyman that is being pushed to close our elk feed grounds and the folks behind it are winning. The unintended consequences of closing these feed grounds will be devastating to our mule deer with increased competition on their crucial winter range. It will also create much more conflict with our ranching community as elk move onto to private lands to winter, getting into their hay supply and possible transmission of brucellosis, two of the main drivers behind the feeding program.”

This topic seems to keep heating up, especially on the federal level. Will things trickle down to the state level as well with it being pretty contentious already? Time will tell, but it sure looks like the fight is ramping up! Which side are you on?

The post Elk Feedgrounds Shut Down by Environmental Groups appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Most Common Game Violations

Rifle Seasons are either right around the corner or already here in some places and that is when the vast majority of hunters hit the field. Every state is different in what is required in the field. It is worth taking the time to talk through three of the most common things you should be studied up on and so you aren’t outside the law!

Make sure you have all of the required tags/licenses for where you are hunting and for what you are hunting. Some states require you to have an overall hunting license and individual tags. Others like Wyoming sell individual licenses for each animal you will be hunting. Make sure you have them all and don’t trust the non-hunter behind the counter to know what you need. Pick up the regulations booklets that should be present in just about every store that sells licenses/tags and physically check. Not much could be worse than not having all the tags/stamps you need and walking away with a fine or worse for a lack of due diligence, ignorance is no excuse!Do your homework on blaze orange requirements for firearms seasons. Some states require zero orange, some require a very specific number of square inches and others simply require “one article” of orange clothing which can feel fairly subjective. Err on the side of caution in regards to following the rules here as it can be a sticking point with a warden. Example, for me in Wyoming I make sure that my hat is completely blaze orange to meet my requirement. Having one blaze panel is a little iffy in my mind from a spirit of the law perspective and so I make sure the whole hat is orange. Every state has a few differences on what they consider wanton waste in regards to meat. Alaska is far and away the most strict and the more you have picked off the bone the better. In Wyoming the rib meat is optional but don’t forget the tenderloins if you go the gutless route for field processing. Again spending a little bit of time with the regulations of the state you are hunting will help make sure there isn’t a painful interaction with a game warden. Personally, my preference is to eat as much as possible including hearts and livers. Also, don’t forget that neck meat makes a great roast. 

Bottom line is that it is your responsibility to know the regulations in the state you are hunting and in the area you have a tag. A little bit of work before the hunt ensures you won’t have to deal with a headache later.

 

The post Most Common Game Violations appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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LIVE LIFE PREPARED WITH FIELDCRAFT SURVIVAL

As hunters we tend to feel like we are a little more prepared for the worst-case scenario than the average human being. In some senses, we probably are, in particular in our abilities to acquire our own sustainable protein. But what if being prepared is far more than just having a year’s stash of meat in the freezer? What if being prepared is a lot more like “prepping”? 

I submit to you that being prepared is a mindset in all circumstances rather than just how much food and ammunition you have in your basement. For instance, until I had hunted with a friend who served in the special forces and had done two tours in Iraq as a medic, I had never considered the importance of bringing a tourniquet and wound pack on a rifle hunt. He brought them along and it changed my mentality about such things and there is a tourniquet with me on every hunt and in both of my vehicles.

This change in mindset is what propelled me to reach out to Mike Glover of Fieldcraft Survival several years ago when I first encountered his social media. I knew that the Eastmans’ Audience would love what Fieldcraft has to offer. Fieldcraft Survival has media, live teaching, and products that are designed to help the everyday American live a prepared life under all circumstances. 

Glover and his team teach that preparation is a mindset that gives you the ability to not just survive a situation but rather to be the backbone of preparedness in your family and community to help it thrive. That begins with training and we had the privilege to have three instructors from their team come to our home base and teach our team pistol fundamentals. We had beginning shooters up to experienced handgun shooters and every one of us walked away with new skills and mindsets that made us much more capable with a pistol. 

However, they don’t just teach pistol courses. Want to take your marksmanship to the next level with your rifle? They offer that too. Want to learn about basic first aid and safety? Got you covered. Want to learn how to navigate land with nothing but a compass and map? That is on the list as well. If it involves being more prepared Fieldcraft Survival has it covered and Kevin Estella who has been a contributing author to EHJ has been growing the courses offered every opportunity he can.

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Big Bulls on Public Land – Rifle Elk Hunting

Go elk hunting for big Wyoming bulls on this episode of Eastmans’ Beyond the Grid. Eastmans’ family friend John Stovall has waited 13 years for the chance at his dream hunt, a public land hunt for elk out West. Ike and Guy Eastman join John for this late season hunt in Wyoming elk country. The crew is also joined by Austin Lester of Fieldcraft Survival.

The post Big Bulls on Public Land – Rifle Elk Hunting appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Leupold Giveaway

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This review features Leupold’s performance eyewear and sunglasses. These sunglasses are built tough and with the features, you need to protect your vision during any outdoor activity. Todd Helms has put these sunglasses through the paces from summer fishing to wingshooting and big game hunting.

The post Leupold Giveaway appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Bergara B-14 Wilderness Ridge Rifle Review (Eastmans’ Hunting Journals)

This rifle review features Bergara’s B-14 Wilderness Ridge Rifle. This rifle boasts high-quality steel and a one-piece fluted bolt for maximum accuracy in an affordable factory package. It’s designed to be tough as nails and minimized for weight to tackle any hunt you can dream up. Each stock is hand painted and features a soft-touch feel for improved grip. Eastmans’ Todd Helms put the rifle through its paces at the range and wasn’t disappointed.

The post Bergara B-14 Wilderness Ridge Rifle Review (Eastmans’ Hunting Journals) appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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October Playbook for Big Bulls

Frustration we really starting kick into high gear on us. With a lack of elk, and more and more miles being put on the horses, our hearts, minds and stock were getting worn down to the breaking point, and now we were starting to fight amongst ourselves, a true recipe for disaster. As stubborn as we could possibly be, we were sure those bulls we had seen in September had to be in here somewhere. Our desperate searches had turned up piles of cows and small bulls but the big guys were nowhere to be found. And add to this, there seemed to be a giant late October snow mass rapidly boiling over the top of the Tetons. Our desperation turned to anger as we both realized this hunt was just about over for all involved. These bulls would be as safe as ever as the elk season was set to close in mere hours amidst a classic Gros Ventre whiteout. The fact of the matter was, these bulls, whereever in the hell they are were as safe as Fork Knox gold for this year. 

Not having a solid game plan and lack of understanding of elk behavior had cost me yet another elk hunt on my home turf in the Teton valley of Wyoming. A sure elk Mecca had dealt me yet another blow to the ego and now I had a ton of calculus homework to catch up on before morning. The good news, I was only 17 years old and had a lot to learn about elk, with an entire elk hunting career ahead of me. This setback, while devastating at the time, was sure to be temporary. But college in Indiana was ahead of me, and my elk learning curve would be postponed for the better part of a decade. Rule numero uno in elk hunting is of course patience. 

Back then my learning curve as an elk hunter was just starting. Now with nearly 35 years of elk hunting under my belt, that hunt would have surely turned out differently. What I failed to realize then is the behavior of bulls and it changes throughout the month of October. The month of October is a transition month for bull elk, as they go from nearly peak rut activity in the first week to nearly complete isolation during the final week of October and well into November. 

Each week of the month will present a different behavior pattern and the effective hunter must alter his or her hunting strategies slightly to adjust to these changes. 

The First Week: This week is probably the favorite by far for most elk hunters. This week the elk will usually be doing elk things, the rut. The bulls will still be with the cows and running around like mad trying to breed every hot cow left in the herd. The bull knows the rut is winding down but he is not ready for it to end. The strategy here is mostly to look, listen and feel. Glass for elk herds in the meadows, slides and bare ridge tops. The elk will gravitate to the best feed. Water is no longer a huge issue in most areas as the frost and snow have come home to roost for the winter. With the cold temperatures the elk seem to like the south-facing slopes more and more, and the dark deep timber we hunted in September is now longer the top of the ticket. Listening for elk deep in a pocket or canyon is very effective. I try to do much less calling now and more listening and glassing. These elk will be very patternable and less likely to travel like nomads from drainage to drainage like they did in September’s hot Indian summer days. Once you find a herd, be patient, size up the bull and make a game plan that is rock solid. These elk will tend to stay put for days on end so you have the time to work them properly. 

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Bow Kills! Bulls and Bugles – Bow hunting at it’s best!

Bow hunting the elk rut might be as good as it gets! Watch twenty elk bow hunts in less than twenty minutes. This video is packed with bugling bulls and close encounters to get your heart pounding!

The post Bow Kills! Bulls and Bugles – Bow hunting at it’s best! appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Hunt Maps for Free! Far Wide App Review

This review features the Far Wide mapping app. This is a FREE mobile and desktop mapping app built for hunters by hunters. Far Wide features the map layers and tools hunters rely on. Drop markers, draw lines, and make a plan for your next hunt. Far Wide also features its own outdoor hunting community. Share your trophy and field photos right inside the app.

CLICK HERE TO EXPLORE THE FARWIDE APP

The post Hunt Maps for Free! Far Wide App Review appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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Bow Sider Giveaway

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Where Did All The Mule Deer Go?

Buck Uncle Billy Kolues killed he is in the center

Circa. 1960 – As my father and I drove towards Cora, Wyoming I had vivid dreams of hunting giant snow-bound mule deer bucks. Although only 12 years old and not yet legal to hunt for another two years it was a true treat for me to even be allowed to tag along on such an adventure with my father. Our final destination was to be the famed Red Desert for the late season deer hunt.  However, let it be noted that I later found out he brought me alone not so much for companionship but for my ability to help shovel out the snow-bound truck and help to put on the shiny truck jewelry – aka chains. Our “old school” rig, a bright shiny new 1958 yellow half-ton two-wheel-drive Chevy pickup steadily groaned down the ice-packed highway at a blazing rate of nearly 35 miles per hour. Dad would have to pull over and scape the windshield from the inside about every 30 minutes, further expanding the painfully long dark drive to our destination. 

I knew what I was in for on one of these excursions, however. Whenever Dad would get stuck in the massive snowdrifts out came the shovels with me doing most of the digging and pushing. You see my father always pushed the envelope. Whether guiding in Alaska in the ‘50s and going down in the Arctic Ocean or helping to open up the Northwest Territory to hunting. So, when it came to hunting the late season desert it was always pedal to the metal until we got no farther. This meant I could easily count on at least two, three or maybe four times worth of shoveling and excruciating pushing sessions on the old Chevy desperately trying to get it out of snow drifts each and every day of hunting. 

In 1960 the local rumor was that massive volumes of mule deer would pile out of the numerous Wyoming mountain ranges slowly following the creek drainages down to the massive wind-swept openness of the Red Desert of southern Wyoming each December. 

It was the 15th of December as we stopped at the small town of Cora, Wyoming to fuel up with gas. A large round thermostat on the side of the gas station pointed to -31 degrees. 

As the station attendant came out all bundled up like the Pillsbury Dough Boy, Dad jumped out of the tuck and said, “I hear there is a lot of mule deer around here. Where can I find them?” 

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Buck Hunting Knife Giveaway

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CWD: Transporting Game Across State Lines

So you finally get to go on your long awaited western big game hunt AND you’re successful, congratulations but you may not be out of the woods just yet. Are you CWD savvy? In other words, do you know the rules and regulations surrounding one of the hottest topics in hunting today regarding the transport of your meat, cape/hide and antlers or horns? You had certainly better know or stiff fines, upward of $1000, and misdemeanor charges could be in your future not to mention the possible confiscation of your prized animal. 

How do you avoid being in violation of CWD regulations? Well for starters the days of field dressing an animal and transporting it whole across state lines are over. Even quarters and whole heads are subject to fines. You’ll need to do a bit more work or have your animal processed completely before you bring it home across state lines. 

If you’re the DIY type you’ll need to do the following in order to be in compliance. (Be sure to check with your state and the states you’ll be traveling through on what you can and cannot bring back with you before you go. Most state game agency’s websites have rules and guidelines posted, if not, call!)

Remove ALL bones from the meat of your animal. Deboning your quarters and remove backstraps from the spine, leaving only meat. No Lymphs/Glands! You’ll also need to remove the various lymphs from your meat and cape. There is one in each front quarter and one in each rear quarter, two in the throat and four in the face of most cervids like deer and elk. No eyes or brain matter. If you’re going to mount your trophy you’ll need a clean skull cap and cape. If you’re doing a European mount you’ll have to remove the brain and eyes and clean the skull thoroughly for transport. 

If you have some extra time in your schedule the smart play is to have your animal completely processed before you bring it home. Consider having a local taxidermist do your mount whether it’s a Euro or traditional skin mount. This will add cost and time to your hunt as the finished product will either need to be shipped or you’ll have a return trip to pay for and you’ll most likely have to wait a couple days for a processor to butcher your animal. 

The benefits to this approach are numerous; you’ll have more time to sight see, relax, hunt small game or fish on your western vacation, you’ll be supporting even more of the local economy with your hunting dollars and by spending more time and money you just might create relationships with local business and landowners that could lead to increased opportunities in the future. Not everyone will have the luxury of spending extra time or money but if you can it’s the right play. 

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Kryptek Review: Sonora Hooded Shirt

 

This review features Kryptek’s Sonora Hooded Shirt. This is a lightweight hooded shirt perfect for warm early season hunting but it doubles as a baselayer as the seasons turn cooler. It features buttons instead of a traditional zipper for temperature regulation and maximum comfort. The hood offers concealment as well protection from the sun and elements. Brandon Mason was a big fan of the thumb holes on this shirt as well.

Get your Kryptek Sonora Hooded Shirt for FREE here: https://www.eastmans.com/e-gs2021

The post Kryptek Review: Sonora Hooded Shirt appeared first on Eastmans' Official Blog | Mule Deer, Antelope, Elk Hunting and Bowhunting Magazine | Eastmans' Hunting Journals.

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