HuntStand’s Ultimate Predator Hunting Gear Guide

With the potential for fast-paced, heart-pounding action even in the depths of winter, it's no wonder predator hunting is growing fast and furiously. Here's the gear you'll need to hunt nature's wiliest hunters.

by HuntStand



With the potential for fast-paced, heart-pounding action even in the depths of winter, it’s no wonder predator hunting is growing fast and furiously. Here’s the gear you’ll need to hunt nature’s wiliest hunters.


Knight & Hale Cottontail Rabbit Call. “Go-to” calls. Bowhunters have their favorite grunt, and for predator hunters, arguably, it’s the cottontail rabbit call. It’s not hard to see why. Cottontail rabbits are found over much of the nation and their familiar distress call can be used most anywhere in the country to call coyotes, bobcats, foxes and other predators. This smart Knight & Hale design features increased volume and a unique barrel design complete with an ergonomic look and feel. The Threadlock barrel threads quickly and easily into the shortened end piece for ease of disassemble. The wedge, reed, and sound board are also changed, so the reed locks into place. This allows the Cottontail Call to be reassembled just as it came from the factory.

Cottontail600Duel Micro Cottontail Distress Call.  The range of the eastern cottontail rabbit encompasses literally dozens of U.S. states (and beyond), so it’s no wonder this call is so effective virtually wherever predators roam. The compact, “micro” design of the Cottontail Distress delivers big sound, perfectly mimicking both a screaming cottontail in distress, as well as a bird in distress. Both sounds are a virtual “911” for most every predator on the continent, from fox to coyotes to bobcats and beyond.

DuelHowler600Duel Open Reed Coyote Distress Call. You gotta love the fact that when it comes to predator calls, a distinct “old school” vibe continues to persist, even in the midst of the digital-caller revolution. Why do veteran predator callers use and depend on hand calls? Nothing fools wary foxes and coyotes like an emotion-filled call, sounds you just can’t achieve with most electronic calls. Of course it doesn’t hurt that Duel Predator Calls feature Dual Chamber Technology that produces some of the most-realistic sounds you’ll hear anywhere. The Open Reed Coyote/Distress makes use of a compact, single-reed design that helps you deliver barks, howls, and pup distress sounds, as well as a predator-hunting staple: the screaming cottontail distress that works most anywhere, for most any predator.

nullCode Blue Howlin’ Heat Coyote Attractant. Coyote noses being what they are, it seldom hurts to add a little “familiar scent” to your next calling setup. Each 2-ounce bottle of Howlin’ Heat contains 100-percent natural coyote urine enhanced with coyote estrous, for a truly lifelike scent profile of a female coyote in heat. This scent is designed to be ideal for extended hunting and trapping seasons, luring cagey call-shy coyotes into range, and can also be used as an effective cover scent.

CabelaPredator600Cabela’s Instinct Predator Softshell Jacket & Pants. Predator hunting can mean many things to many outdoorsmen. Still, you can pretty much count on a typical hunt mixing some long treks into remote or isolated terrain where you’ll sit for 10 to 30 minutes, waiting for something furry to arrive. You can also count on fairly cold to downright frigid conditions. All of it means your clothing better be plenty versatile. Cabela’s Instinct Predator Softshell Jacket and Pants ($220 each) are designed to keep you on stand longer, and in more comfort, even when faced with blistering winds and bitter-cold temps, and still provide lightweight mobility when you need it. And the great-looking Cabela’s Zonz Western camo ensures you won’t “blob out” in open terrain. The included WindShear membrane delivers 100-percent windproof protection whether the garments are used as stand-alone pieces when temps are mild, or as your protective shell in cold weather. The Jacket features waterproof Kevlar elbow patches, jersey-lined sleeves that allow unrestricted freedom of movement, as well as pit zips, adjustable hood and cuffs, and zippered pockets. The Pants feature waterproof Kevlar puncture-resistant knees and seat, a soft fleece lining that seals in body heat while remaining breathable, and zippered legs for easy on and off over boots.

ArcticShield2600ArcticShield Classic Elite Parka and Bib. Based in frigid Minnesota, ArcticShield knows a thing or two about keeping diehard predator and big game hunters warm in the worst conditions. Both the Classic Elite Parka and Classic Elite Bib are available in Realtree Xtra camo, and feature ArcticShield Retain heat-retention technology that uses your own body heat to keep you warmer longer in extreme temps, without all the weight and bulk of typical cold-weather apparel. The quiet, polyester tricot exterior easily sheds rain and wind, and the fully relaxed fit adds comfort. The Classic Parka features two top-loading gusseted cargo pockets with “pass-behind” handwarmer pockets, two zip chest pockets, as well as two zip side pockets and a zip interior patch pocket. The full-fit, relaxed bib features thigh-high zip leg gussets for easy on/off over heavy boots, and handy hook-and-loop leg cuff adjustment.

CabelaCoverup600Cabelas Men’s Waterproof Canadian Coverup Jacket. Predator hunting conditions can change directions faster than a coyote that’s been missed cleanly by a barrage of .22-250 bullets. Cabela’s Men’s Waterproof Canadian Coverups ($100) are designed to fit easily over your current layering system, allowing you to hunt in widely varying conditions without spending a fortune on camo outerwear. The Jacket is oversized so you can pull it on over insulated coveralls or other bulky hunting clothes. Whether you hunt from a riverbank or the middle of the wide-open western prairie, you’ll be concealed and protected by Cabela’s proven Revolution Fleece and a 100-percent waterproof, breathable Dry-Plus membrane. Especially handy are two front zippered storm pockets, a three-piece adjustable hood, and drawstring at the waist. Choose from Cabela’s Zonz Western Snow, and Cabela’s Zonz Woodlands Snow camo.

HuntworthWomen600Huntworth Ladies Hooded Jacket. Predator hunting is not just a man’s sport. Wide-ranging outdoor wear designed specifically for women is growing just as fast as the numbers of women who are getting involved in the shooting sports, and it’s great to see. Hunting apparel specialist Huntworth is one of the companies on the leading edge, and a great example is its new Ladies Life Style Snow Camo Hoodie Jacket ($80), which adds to its extensive line of camouflage clothing.  The jacket is designed to be both fun and warm, and able to cross over from use in the field to an everyday-wear fashion statement. This black, snow camo-accented design has a slimming cut that features 2-way stretch performance fleece construction. The hood is trimmed with silky soft faux fur, and the jacket body and hood is fully lined with a super soft-to-the-touch long pile sherpa fleece for added warmth; a lighter pile lining in the sleeves delivers improved flexibility and comfort.

HuntworthBeanie600Huntworth Tango Ladies Beanie. Getting geared up for predator hunting isn’t exactly the stuff of fashion runways, but women looking for smart-looking, and unusually functional apparel need to check out the wide-ranging lineup from Huntworth. The Tango beanie ($20) will keep a sportswoman’s head in the hunt with a near-perfect mix of warmth, versatility, and style. The lightweight Tango is easy to pack and hard to take off, with a soft honeycomb stretch fleece lining and plush long pile fleece along the inner ear band. The 4-way stretch performance fleece shell has a durable water finish that sheds moisture and light snow, and the special ponytail slot keeps long hair tucked neatly away so you can concentrate on the hunt.

Cabela's Edition X-Bionic Base Layers, merinoX-BIONIC Cabela’s Edition Energizer First-On-Skin Shirt and Pants. Smart predator hunters know that their start-and-stop, hike-and-stand strategies demand the right high-performance base layers. These next-generation garments actually make your sweat work for you, using thermo-regulating technologies that help cool you down or warm you up depending on conditions. And all while keeping you at the optimum performance body temperature of 98.6 degrees. How does it work? Sweat Traps move perspiration through microducts, allowing it to absorb your excess body heat, then evaporate and release from the warm, outer surface of the garment. Strategically placed compression panels aid circulation through capillaries to increase oxygen levels in muscles for cooling, without hindering range of motion. Odor-neutralizing fibers keep you fresh. Available in merino wool ($200; tan) or nylon ($180; black).

CabelaPacWhite600Cabela’s Predator Extreme Pac Boots. It’s tough to sit motionless and fool wary predator eyes when the bottom has dropped out of the thermometer and your feet are telling you they’ve had enough. These 11.5-inch pacs are constructed from the inside out to deliver warmth and comfort in brutally cold environments predator hunters face regularly; innovation begins with removable 9mm Texel liners that warm your feet and draw moisture away from the surface of the skin. These liners also sport Cabela’s exclusive chemical heat-pack pockets under the toe areas. For even more insulation, the boots are outfitted with a layer of 1,200-gram Thinsulate Ultra Insulation for optimum heat retention. The moisture-wicking liners and removable Moisture Trap footbeds work in unison to draw perspiration away from the skin, so your feet stay dry and warm. And thanks to Cabela’s exclusive Dry-Plus linings, the Predator Extreme (Currently on sale for $150, a $50 savings) also delivers waterproof performance. Choose from Brown/Mossy Oak Break-Up Infinity, and Brown/Mossy Oak Winter Break-Up camo. 

CabelaYote600Cabela’s Speedy ’Yote Kickstand Vest. Hike for 15 minutes. Sit motionless for 20. Repeat. Much like turkey hunters, savvy predator hunters can cover a lot of terrain, and have some fairly unique needs. Many features of the specialized, functional Speedy ’Yote vest (Currently on sale for $105, a savings of $45) are the result of avid predator hunter input, including the mesh back panel that delivers increased air flow during long treks, and the expandable pocket designed to hold large electronic calls. Cabela’s has even added a kickstand so you can create a comfortable seat wherever you set up. Patented Speed Seat technology features a rapid stow and deploy seat that quietly flips up and down in a flash. Once deployed, the three-layer, 3-inch-thick Memory Tech seat provides serious comfort even in the rockiest terrain. When you’re on the move, the wide, adjustable, padded shoulder straps distribute weight evenly, and the adjustable sternum strap and two waist buckles allow for true “custom fit” adjustability. You’ll also find three designated, zippered pockets with glove-friendly zipper pulls, and a flip-down workstation that safely secures your hand calls. A second flip-down mesh pocket stores extra batteries and incidentals. More smart features include two spacious, zippered interior mesh pockets and a 1-quart mesh side water-bottle pocket (bottle not included). Choose from Cabela’s Zonz Western, and Cabela’s Zonz Western Snow camo.

STYRKAStyrka S7 Series Binoculars. Styrka is a Minnesota-based optics company with over a century of optical expertise, and it certainly shows in its new flagship S7 Series binocular line. Included are three models (8×42, 10×42 and a very compact 8×30), all backed by the best warranty in the optics industry: the Styrka Pride Warranty. Under Styrka Pride, not only is the optic covered unconditionally, but once a year it can be returned to Styrka for a cleaning and thorough inspection to make sure everything is working as it should. After some extensive field-testing this fall, HuntStand Executive Editor Mark Melotik considers the 8×30 model to be a near-ideal bowhunting binocular, and he considers the 10×42 a great choice for predator hunting most everywhere. He especially likes the sharp, crisp images in the low light of dawn and dusk, and the compact, lightweight designs. The S7 line features extra-low dispersion (ED) objective lenses; coupled with Styrka’s proprietary SXL-MAX flat multi-coatings, the optical design delivers razor-sharp, high-contrast images to help you find more game in any terrain. All models are fully waterproof and nitrogen purged for use in any weather condition.

CabelaEuro600Cabela’s Instinct Euro HD 10×42 Binoculars. One of the most-exciting ways to hunt predators is to spot-and-stalk the cagey furbearers as they take a midday snooze. The first rule of consistent success? You must see the predator before the predator sees you. Cabela’s is helping predator hunters everywhere close the deal on more fur with this premium glass, developed in a partnership with European optics specialist Meopta. The result is Cabela’s Instinct Euro HD Binoculars (Currently on sale for $840, a savings of $360) that deliver performance matching or surpassing the best names in optics. The MeoBright 5501 fully multicoated optical system and phase-corrected prisms deliver amazing 99.9-percent light transmission per lens surface and nearly nonexistent color distortion, for excellent low-light performance. All that technology is housed in a sleek, ergonomically designed aluminum-alloy body that reduces carry weight and has a rugged layer of textured rubber armor. It’s also nitrogen purged, sealed and guaranteed to provide a lifetime of fogproof, waterproof performance. This fine glass includes lens covers, a padded aircell neck strap, and a padded case with shoulder strap.

insolesThermaCELL ProFlex Heated Insoles. Predator hunters need “on the go” comfort. Ultimate flexibility/mobility. Fast, dependable, on-demand heat. If you’re an avid predator chaser you need to check out the new ProFlex Heated Insoles that are designed to deliver even more comfort and ease of use than the company’s Original Heated Insoles. The upgrades come via a new flexible polyurethane insole material, and a smartly designed removable/rechargeable battery that’s hidden in a unique heel compartment. So you don’t have to remove the insoles to change or charge the batteries.

You’ll still find quick and convenient remote operation, and ThermaCELL boasts at least 2,500 hours of use, or about four winters of heavy use. To use, simply cut the insoles to fit, then adjust the temperature utilizing the wireless remote control to the setting of your choice: no heat (standby), medium (100 degrees F), and high (111 degreesF). The heating performance of the ProFlex is the same as the Original. “You’re not going to feel your feet getting hot,” noted HuntStand Executive Editor Mark Melotik, an avid heated insole user. “But if my experience is typical, they should feel remarkably comfortable, well down into the type of temps where you’d typically be forced to bounce/tap/exercise your feet to promote some semblance of circulation. Admittedly, it was kind of unusual to simply not feel any foot discomfort in temps where it is usually a simple fact of life.”

Layout 1PEET Footwear Dryers/Deodorizers. Smart predator hunters do all they can to prevent body odor from sabotaging a close-range encounter with their quarry, and now footwear-drying specialist PEET is offering several smart, affordable solutions. For years, PEET footwear dryers have been keeping outdoorsmen and women more comfortable in the field, and now, with two all-new products, this innovator is also targeting odor-targeting bacteria—using strictly controlled ozone (O³) molecules that penetrate odor and pollution molecules, destroying them by altering their chemical make-up. So odor isn’t covered up—it’s destroyed (read more here). The PEET Ultra Dryer & Deodorizer ($50) is designed with the roving hunter in mind; the twin dryers/deodorizers easily fit into any pair of hunting boots after a full day’s hunt. In addition to drying wetness and sweat, its O³ science destroys odor molecules so you and your boots are ready to go the next morning. The PEET D’ODORIZ’R Module ($70) is PEET’s most-powerful odor-eliminating product. It’s also the most versatile. It can be operated in three distinct ways to overpower odor-causing bacteria, mold and mildew. The Module may be inserted into boots or waders, attached to several PEET Dryer models, and can also be used as a “stand-alone” unit for deodorizing small room areas.

work-sharp-guided-600Work Sharp Guided Sharpening System. When it’s time to put up your hard-earned fur, wise predator hunters know investing in a dependable blade-sharpening system saves time and maximizes profit. A great example is the affordable Work Sharp Guided Sharpening System ($60) that is a complete sharpening solution for every knife you own, and even comes with a 42-year warranty. It features the innovative Pivot-Response System that allows the abrasive to follow the curve of the knife while sharpening—making manual sharpening faster, easier and more precise than ever. The System includes an Angle-Guided Bench Sharpener (17 degrees and 20 degrees), interchangeable coarse and fine 6-inch diamond plates, and an angle-guided field hone. It sharpens pocket knives, hunting knives, serrations, tools and more. (Click here to see a review of the System by HuntStand’s Josh Dahlke.) While you’re at it, you might want to consider the Guided Sharpening System Upgrade Kit ($35) that includes two additional diamond plates (extra coarse 220 grit and extra fine 800 grit), and a leather strop kit complete with a natural leather stropping plate, angle guides and 0.5 micron chromium oxide honing compound. The diamond plates and leather strop are 6×1.25 inches and are designed to fit the Guided Sharpening System.

Mossberg PatriotMossberg Patriot Bolt-Action Rifles with Premium Vortex Optics. Looking for a great predator rig that can also double as your youngster’s first big-game rifle? The newest member of the Mossberg centerfire family, the Patriot bolt-action rifle, is now available in a premium scoped combo package featuring the latest riflescope technology from Vortex Optics: the Dead-Hold BDC (Bullet Drop Compensation) reticle. Five popular calibers offering this scope option are available, ranging from the .243 Win.—a time-honored coyote killer—up to the .300 Win. Mag., with a classically-styled walnut stock or black synthetic stock, matte blue metal finish, and factory-mounted Vortex Crossfire II variable 3-9x40mm scope. The newly-released Patriot series of bolt-action rifles combines the most requested features of Mossberg’s field-proven centerfire rifles in a re-engineered bolt-action platform. HuntStand’s Josh Dahlke, host of THE HUNGER, has been using the Patriot line of rifles during all of his big-game hunts this season. Hunter-inspired, these newly-designed rifles feature a streamlined bolt handle; aggressively-checkered bolt knob; spiral-fluted bolt; and classically-styled stock. In this convenient scoped combo package, you can choose from a handsome walnut stock or more weather-resistant black synthetic stock.

IMG_5957-600Ruger American Bolt-Action Rifle. Savvy predator hunters know fenceline, field-edge, and other “wide-open” setups demand a flat-shooting tack driver.  And when you can reach out and touch those long-range predators without breaking the bank, well, all the better. HuntStand Executive Editor Mark Melotik found a nearly ideal solution this past fall in the value-priced Ruger American rifle, chambered in the flat-shooting 6.5 Creedmor. Melotik actually used this rifle to score on a fine Wyoming pronghorn, pairing it with a crystal-clear, powerful Cabela’s Instinct Euro Riflescope (the 6-18x50mm, all models are currently on sale). But it was obvious the gun and load are a near-ideal combo for long-range predator duty. With this sleek combo your long-range deadliness is largely dictated by your practice time and personal shooting skill. If your aim is true, this gun/scope combo will do its part.

varmageddon-predguide-600Varmageddon Ammunition by Nosler. Oregon might have a higher-than-average population of hippies and vegans, but there are plenty of anti-granola, pro-hunting companies that call the Beaver State home. Leupold, Danner and … Nosler. When it comes to awesome ammo that’s tailor made for pounding predators while preserving their precious pelts, Nosler has it nailed with the company’s Varmageddon loads. These rounds are made for extremely rapid expansion and devastating instant energy transfer, meaning dead-on-contact songdogs with little to no pelt damage. Watch this YouTube video to see how the bullets perform in ballistic gel.

ihunt-combo-enewsThe iHUNT App by Ruger. As you could imagine, the HuntStand team is, well, very picky about the hunting apps we download for our own smartphones. Few apps make the cut, and many get ditched shortly after installation. But there’s one hunting app we give two thumbs up: the HuntStand app by Ruger. The HuntStand app is packed with more than 600 high-quality animal calls—everything from deer to coyotes, turkeys to alligators, and new calls are constantly being added! More than 500,000 hunters have downloaded the app because it’s simply awesome. We’ve partnered with HuntStand to give you a dynamite deal on their new wireless Bluetooth speaker and app combo package. You can click here to buy this deadly combo for 25 percent off! Just use coupon code HUNT25 at checkout to take advantage of this killer offer.

That’s a $15 savings just because you’re a loyal HuntStand user. 
If you’d prefer to try the HuntStand app first, for free, click here to download it right now.

Discover killer predator hunting tips and tactics from Team HuntStand right here.



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