Right clothing for deer hunting?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by MJRW, Nov 24, 2008.

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  1. MJRW

    MJRW Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    Greetings. This is my first foray into the hunting forums. I recently went on my first hunt. Took three pheasants on five opportunities and it altered my perspective on hunting substantially. Going from consumer to a predator is a ponderous event. I fully intend to do that again and I'll be cooking two of those pheasants tomorrow (gave my brother one of mine since he only got two pheasants and he's staying at my folks so it is a lot more mouths).

    That said, I now find myself with an opportunity to deer hunt which I fully intend to capitalize upon. I haven't decided which gun I will hunt with as of yet. I am on the lookout for a Remington 700 in .30-06 or .308. I'd also consider .270 if the price were right. Until then I am either using a friend's .30-06 Remington 700 or another friend's .30-06 Remington 7600. I retain the option of a Remington 870 Express 21" barrel, but I suspect I would have to scope it which is something I don't want to do. I think I'm fine with what I intend to take the deer with, I'm stuck a bit on clothing.

    I intend to hunt in the southwestern portion of Northern Virginia in the Remington area within two weeks. I expect the weather to be around freezing to about 40 degrees in the mid-day. My attire question are as follow:

    1. I don't know what patterns are appropriate.

    2. What level of cost should be reasonable for a foray into hunting.

    3. Is scent locking technology necessary?

    4. I've been going between a light overall style and putting layers under that or going with heavy pants and coat. Thoughts on this?

    5. How much blaze orange is a good idea on a private game preserve?

    6. I intend to use my Keen hiking boots, would this be ok?

    I thank you all in advance.
  2. Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow

    Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow member

    Nov 14, 2007
    Well, first and foremost clothing is about regulating your body temperature properly - staying warm when it's cold and shedding layers as the morning warms up, so that you don't sweat. I carry a backpack which is for carrying snackage & water, and for storing shed layers of clothing as it warms up - pretty much indispensable in my view. But it all depends on the temperature and wind as to how cold it's gonna be. If it's really cold (low temp under 20 and/or high temp under freezing, then I run with lots of layers: Hands get fleece flop-top mittens over winter golf gloves. Feet get pac boots with merino lambswool over silk socks. Head gets knit or fleece orange hat. Neck gets a fleece "boot" for lack of a better word. Lower body gets 3 layers: underlayer, pants, and overpants. Upper body gets 3 layers: underlayer, sweatshirt, & heavy coat.

    As for "scent-lock", egad, no way man. First it's BS - no clothing is gonna lock your scent in if you stink, and secondly, you have to use the wind regardless, so it's unnecessary.

    Patterns? Camo is for people, not deer. Deer see movement, not colors. Having said that, it would hurt to to break up your outline a bit if hunting where the deer are close. Some plaid clothing like the old hunters red plaid is good, or just any camo pattern is fine - it can't hurt, but it certainly absolutely doesn't matter WHICH pattern for deer. Turkeys & ducks are a different story.
  3. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

    Oct 17, 2006
    Along "That Dark and Bloody River"
    Roper boots

    cheap thermal socks

    blue jeans

    Harley-Davidson T-shirt, under a

    flannel shirt, under a

    medium green or blue hooded sweatshirt, under a

    required blaze orange vest

    cheap brown cotton gloves

    brown or black Stetson

    Forget the silly "scent-block", or any other scent product.

  4. uk roe hunter

    uk roe hunter Member

    Jun 30, 2006
    hunting kit.

    I wear an M65 jacket in camo (removeable lining) in the winter it is over a British army heavt wool jumper and norwegian top with a thermal vest. for trousers i wear some green or drab trousers. big thick aircrew socks and walking boots or wellingtons.

    in the summer i wear a bush hat, in the winter i wear a knitted hat. i wear fingerless mitts in the winter.

    i have army surplus goretex waterproofs.

    Here in the UK it doesn't get very cold, 4 or 5 degrees is a cold morning here. We also don't have to wear orange.

    it's not a fashion parade.... despite what the hunting shops might have you think
  5. Lon371

    Lon371 Member

    Mar 25, 2006
    Camo patterns dont really matter.
    Where layers as stated above. I am very cold sensitive. I wear poly propylene long johns. Any kind of gloves you can shoot in or get off quick(thats why he have posckets) A neck gator and ornage hat.

    Now that the hunting bug has bit, start subscibing to all outdoor cataloges and build a spare room for hunting stuff.;]

    Be safe, and good luck.

  6. Sinixstar

    Sinixstar member

    Nov 4, 2008
    My understanding is - deer do not have the greatest eyesight in the world, and are colorblind on top of it. Camo helps break up the recognizable pattern of a human figure - but beyond that.....

    as far as scents go - i don't think you need to use any gimmicky scent-blocking stuff, but at the same time some basic sense is in order. Don't splash on the cologne, don't use scented detergents or fabric softeners on your clothes (which, for anything waterproof would destroy the waterproofing anyways), etc.

    It's not nearly as complicated as some might have you believe.

    One thing I did read some time ago though - is that phosphates in detergent can make you "glow" in a deer's vision. Not sure if that's true or not - but those same phosphates again ruin waterproofing, and should be avoided.
  7. Al Thompson

    Al Thompson Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 21, 2002
    South Carolina
    I have no camo hunting stuff, think it's a massive waste of money for deer or hog hunting. One thing I've found that works is some form of face covering - head net or what ever (ski mask).

    I do like blaze orange - Cabela's windstopper jacket has worked very well for me from Canada to South Carolina. I also really like fleece or wool for clothing, despise cotton. :)

    I would not spend much money on clothes - surplus stuff works just fine!
  8. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator Staff Member

    Jan 8, 2008
    Southern Virginia
    All of what has been said is good stuff. find what works for you.I use surplus and cheap. Im in Southern Virginia.layers are the key and carry a backpack for binos, compass, machete,fire,small tarp and to pack shed layers.
    From top to bottom
    orange hat- wool
    neck gator or scarf
    polypropelene top and bottom draws
    wool shirt
    thermal insulated or fleece hooded sweat shirt
    flannel lined jeans
    2pair sock thin and thick
    insulated waterproof boots
    field jacket
    down vest
    adjust accordingly, better to have it and not need it
    just my .02 good luck and god bless
  9. MotorOilMcCall

    MotorOilMcCall Member

    Nov 3, 2008
    Camo baseball hat (different from what I usually wear, hats hold nasty scent, and you WILL get sniffed out if your not in the right area). Neck gator, reversible, usually orange for deer, camo for turkey. Undershirt, t-shirt, sweatshirt, camo rainproof jacket. 2 pair of gloves, one tucked inside another. Hand warming belt (tuck your hands inside it like a football quarterback). Boxers, Long johns, pants (jeans or sweatpants), then the rainproof camo pants over that. 1200gr Thinsulate Hunting boots (Irish Setter) with wicking socks under wool socks.

    Now, you're in VA... I don't think you're gonna need to be dressed for single digit weather, with blowing winds and snow flying, like we get here in WNY (or even worse, sub 0 weather)... Just remember to layer, and stay away from cotton on your hands and feet. Camo patterns don't mean anything to deer, but if you hunt from the ground, wear something to break up your profile, even an orange suit with light camo is good enough. Turkey is what you need various types of camo for.

    As far as how much orange you need... As much as you have that doesn't show off your profile. I wear a vest with light camo on it, the orange neck gator, and orange bands around my legs (sewed them on myself). I'd rather loose one or two deer than an extremity or worse.
  10. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 22, 2002
    Terlingua, TX; Thomasville,GA
    Check out your nearest Goodwill store. Khakis or any earth-toned shirts and pants. That stuff is cheap enough that you won't worry about dirt or blood getting on them. Get them large enough to wear winter undies beneath.

    Deer don't see colors; only shades of gray. What they detect quickly is motion. And, of course, white is a danger color to a deer...

    My hunting has almost always been in the dry, so leather boots have worked out just fine.

    Scent block? I've always worked the wind, only checking downwind to see if something is sneaking past. My actual "try to find Bambi" is looking into the wind or crosswind. Whether in a stand or just sitting, I vary the location with the wind. If sneaky-snaking or just cross-country walking hunting, I work into the wind or cross wind.

    Carry a strip of toilet paper with you, so if you kill a deer you can flag the spot and maybe a point or two on the way out to a jeep trail. Nice to be able to find him again to haul him to the truck. :) And a canteen of water is good for hand-washing after field dressing.
  11. nickE10mm

    nickE10mm Member

    Jul 29, 2005
    I wear medium weight polypropylene long underwear (top and bottoms), heavyweight (army style camo) wool pants, a longsleeve camo cotton shirt, a longsleve camo fleece sweatshirt, and my army camo medium weight wool jacket with hood. I also wear a fleece neck gaiter (which I can pull up over my head as a hood as well) and a semi-insulated blaze orange west. I normally wear a normal blaze orange baseball cap but if its REALLY cold I have a blaze beanie (that's GoreTex as well). I have 600gr GoreTex/Scentlok boots not because I think I need Scentlok but because they were the boots I liked and they happened to have scentlok. Whoopdie doo.

    Keep in mind, I don't wear the camo because I think it helps me hide from deer but I do think any dark, brownish / greenish color clothing is harder for a deer to see than, for example, blue jeans, which they say a deer CAN see quite well. More important than anything is holding still and playing the wind. Don't worry about scentlok... just play the wind.

    SUN AT YOUR BACK AND WIND IN YOUR FACE.... That's the rule!
  12. Geno

    Geno Member

    Jun 11, 2005
    I bought my most recent hunting outfit for the warmth, and to boot it just happened to be a reversable green camo/white camo. It bought it around 75% discount through a local store after deer season. I guess they didn't want to store it for 11 months.

    For me, the single most important factor for the clothing, is to have layers for warmth. I wear longjohns, Carhardt jeans and the hunting over-clothings. You will likely note that still-hunting versus stalking can make a huge body-temp difference. It leads me to have to dress-up, and dress-down.

    I argue that a good quality pair of boots, a good hat, a good gloves/mittens are the three most important items. I have witnessed too many hunters forced to leave the hunt for cold or wet feet, frosted fingers and ears. As I recall, a highest percentage of body heat is lost through the head. Re: camo patterns (those that are blaze organ) must be a certain percentage orange.

    If you wear glasses, and do chose to use a foam facemark as I do, you need to buy an anti-fog solution for your lenses. Re: scents? Nope! When I get to the hunting area, in the edge of the field, I do the ol' stop-drop-and roll. Think I'm kidding?! I'm not. <<smirking in embarassment>>. Anyhow, don't know if any of this really helps, but it's part of what I do.

    Be safe and have an awesome hunt! Take a camera and post some pics.

  13. mbt2001

    mbt2001 Member

    Dec 5, 2005
    I live in Texas so our approach will be a little different than yours, as it is colder where you are...

    Underwear - I have cold rated weight and lightweight thermals. Sometimes you don't need any at all, tempratures below 30 and most likely you need either the lightweight or the cold rated.

    Pants - I usually wear solid (Khaki or like) BDU pants, jeans or flannel lined overalls (carhart).

    Shirt - Again, I usually have a T-shirt (brown or olive surplus) with a BDU shirt thrown over it. On cold days, I have a thermal, same t shirt, sweater, BDU... REALLY COLD DAYS, I have all that plus an M-65 field coat (nix the BDU shirt).

    Boots - Usually mil spec desert boots with OD mil spec socks or wool socks. I have a pair of 1,000 thinsulate Irish Setters for those rare occasions when it is raining or sub 20's.
  14. Wedge

    Wedge Member

    Oct 6, 2003
    If hunting on a stand, I wore the warmest clothes I could find, but still layered.

    If hunting in a drive I would usually just wear a safety vest and an orange hat.

    Thermal, wicking long johns and socks. Wool socks over that. Nice hiking boots well water proofed. Some camo pants, camo sweater. Heavy blaze orange camo coat if not hiking or if REALLY cold. Only thing I spent a lot of money on were the coat and the boots. Gloves, hats sometimes a scarf or facemask depending on the cold. Always started the beard growing about a month before the season started too.

    I was hunting in Western New York though, so a foot or more of snow and temps high in the teens were usual. Nice thing is it was all about layers...could always mix and match to stay warm or cool off.

    don't over think it. You really want to do just a few things with your clothes. 1) Stay warm and dry. 2) Break up your pattern somewhat. 3) Be visible to other hunters.
  15. deepsouthshooter

    deepsouthshooter Member

    Mar 7, 2008
    All great advice for staying comfortable while hunting and I don't think anyone has mentioned it yet so don't forget to put on your lucky underwear since successful hunting sometimes is more luck than skill. Have a great hunt.
  16. Blackfork

    Blackfork Member

    Aug 26, 2006
    East Texas
    Alpenflage jumpsuit and some pump spray.

    I rattle for bucks. I wear US army long underwear, which is cheap and very effective, layer up and usually wear a Swiss jumpsuit over it. Works for East Texas. I put doe pee in a small pump bottle and buck scent in another. I spray my rubber boots when I get close to the stand and have had deer follow me in.

    Alpenflage about 20 bucks on Ebay. Just bought some for a friend.


    Here's this years deer:

    Attached Files:

  17. MAGNUM44

    MAGNUM44 Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Any and all clothes made of gortex & polar fleese hold in the body heat without sweating at all, mind you this stuff is for the coldest weather, hunting, Cabela's & Bass Pro Shop has the best selection, & dont forget the polar fleese under ware
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