5 Hunting Gear Recommendations for New Hunters

A hunter in the woods with a hunting gear pack.

Here's the scenario: You just passed your hunter education course and posted your success to X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, and – let's not forget – Instagram. 

You're finally done and certified, so what's next? 

You're not about to just stroll out to your hunting lease or public land with a rifle or shotgun, are you? No way! Now, you need to do the second-best thing about hunting, which is the first-best thing besides actually hunting – collecting the right gear! 

After all, Wal-Mart and Bass Pro Shops will be a long way away if you find yourself out in the field unprepared. So, today, we talk about what you should take into the field and our three best hunting gear recommendations for new hunters. 

Hunters walking into the woods with hunting gear.

Start With Some Basics

Before we get specific, hunters should always have some basic items in the field, like a first aid kit, a GPS device or cellphone, and plenty of blaze orange for public land hunts. These aren't necessarily "hunting" items but are essential for every hunt. 

Next, you need "hunting" gear! However, walking into an outdoor retail store as a new hunter can be overwhelming because you'll see more choices of camo, boots, knives, tree stands, and every other piece of hunting equipment than you ever imagined. 

5 Gear Recommendations for New Hunters

So, our Hunter-Ed experts and experienced hunters compiled some ideas for recommended gear that we think new hunters should consider.

1. KUIU Gear

KUIU logo, hunting gear recommendations

If the price tag scares you, here's what an experienced hunter says: buy the best clothing and boots you can afford.

Choosing cheap hunting clothing can produce less-than-ideal results in the field. Low-quality camo and boots won't perform well and can tear or break down after only a little use. 

KUIU is a high-quality, highly-respected brand for hunters, but there are several great companies out there. So, while you don't need to spend more than you need to, don't go cheap. Choose good-quality clothing that fits your budget and is comfortable for a long day in a hunting blind, and you'll enjoy more longevity through more hunts. 

While you can kill an animal with a budget firearm or bow, you can't kill them if you're not out there. Compromising on clothing could make your hunting experience less than ideal. Being comfortable is the best thing you can do to help your odds of being successful. 

The more comfortable you are, the longer you can stay out, and thus, you're more likely to be there when the opportunity arises!"

Close-up of a hunter's boots while in a tree stand, hunting gear concept.

2. A Good Pair of Boots

Along with our sentiment on good-quality clothing, don't skimp on boots! 

If your feet aren't comfy, your hunt simply won't be as enjoyable as it should be. There's nothing worse than cold or wet feet! Consider your environment and get good boots that fit not only your feet but also the conditions in which you are hunting. 

Consider LaCrosse Hunt Pac Extreme boots for your first hunting boot purchase. Insulated and waterproof, these boots can help you track a deer or other game all day while keeping your feet comfortable. 

3. A Hunting Pack

It's amazing how much gear you will accrue over the years. Depending on what you carry into the field, you'll need something sturdy to carry it! 

Get a good backpack that's waterproof, quiet, and comfortable. There are many brands to choose from, but a Tenzig day pack is a solid choice. 

Again, as with any hunting gear, it's worth spending your hard-earned cash on something durable and comfortable. However, the type of pack you buy will depend greatly on the type of game you pursue.

A rifle and scope laying on a deer kill, hunting gear recommendations.

4. Good Optics

Recommended by Mia Anstine

What she says: 

"Gear is an important part of the hunt. A reliable firearm is important, but the quality of the optics on top is more important. Don't skimp on your scope. Remember to take care of your scope." 

She continues, "With your scope, practice acquiring your target at the range, and remember to look at the target in and out of the ocular. This will help you see what is around and beyond your target when you are on the hunt. Good luck and happy hunting!" 

Mia's favorite gun accessory is the Zeiss Conquest variable scope.

5. A SlideBelt Survival Belt

This one might not be a necessity, but it's a pretty cool piece of gear to have in the field. 

Why poke holes in a perfectly good piece of leather? With SlideBelts, you don't need holes in your belt! 

The company has been around since 2007 and now offers a line of survival belts. These belts include a cutting tool, firestarter, LED flashlight, bottle opener, and places to hang tools. 

Watch the video for more ways the belt can be used.

Hunt Successfully With Hunter Education and the Right Hunting Gear 

With the right gear and your hunting safety certification, you're ready to hit the field for a successful hunt. 

We hope you find this hunting gear list helpful as you plan your first (or next) deer, turkey, or coyote hunt. If you plan to hunt with buddies, make sure they're safety-certified like you are! 

Help them find the Hunter-Ed course for their state to start learning. Then, gear up and go hunting. 


Originally published September 3, 2014. Content updated April 17, 2023.