November 06, 2023
It rears its ugly head every year. No, not that infamous Christmas sweater, but what to get that bowhunter on your holiday shopping list. Well, the good news if you struggle with this year-in and year-out is that there are several high-quality items that are universally appreciated by every archery hunter, even those who are fanatically loyal to specific brands and products.
For this year’s holiday buying guide, we’ve selected a variety of gift ideas to cover every price range, from highly affordable stocking stuffers to high-end products for those shoppers for whom sticking to a budget is never a concern. Here are our top picks we feel will absolutely make your holiday shopping easier and bring a huge smile to the face of your favorite bowhunter. Happy holidays and good luck!
Bushnell CelluCORE™ 20 Solar Cellular Trail Camera
The CelluCORE™ 20 Solar Combines the reliability and image quality of the CelluCORE 20 with an integrated solar panel to dramatically increase battery life. The Dual-SIM configuration of the CelluCORE™ 20 Solar allows it to automatically connect to AT&T or Verizon — whichever offers the strongest cellular network.
$149.99 | bushnell.com
Moultrie Mobile Edge Pro Cellular Trail Camera
Following the popularity of the Moultrie Edge comes the Edge Pro, complete with a new technology — False Trigger Elimination — that filters out unwanted photos. This means, you control what your cameras captures so you only get the images that you want to see — and in the process significantly extend your battery life. The Edge Pro will detect and connect to the strongest nationwide network.
$179.99 | moultriefeeders.com
Chêne Gear PrimaLoft Synthetic Down Jacket
All new for 2023, the Chêne Gear PrimaLoft Synthetic Down Jacket is a high-performance outer layer that delivers enhanced warmth without extra weight and bulk, even in wet conditions. Built for up and down each of the flyways, the inside of the coat is constructed with Primaloft’s 100% synthetic Silver ThermoPlume insulation with CrossCore Technology, which provides superior insulation, body temperature regulation and comfort, while the water-and-wind resistant outer layer delivers rugged durability.
$400 | chenegear.com
Barnett Hyper Raptor
When it comes to kids and bowhunting, crossbows have been an absolute game-changer, allowing parents and mentors to introduce youngsters to the sport at an earlier age. Well, if a horizontal bow is on your kid’s wish list this year, one model that’s definitely worth considering is Barnett's Hyper Raptor, a fast, accurate, hard-hitting crossbow that’s packed with bowhunter-friendly features.
For starters, the bow comes as a ready-to-shoot package, complete with three bolts, fieldpoints, quiver, 4x36 illuminated, multi-reticle scope and more. Plus, it’s compact and easy to handle — only 7.25 inches wide when cocked — and doesn’t weigh as much as some other crossbows on the market, checking in at only 7.12 pounds. It also offers a number of important safety features, including an Anti-Dry Fire trigger system, nock sensor to ensure the bow is loaded properly and “finger safety reminders” to prevent fingers and hands from slipping into the flight path. Plus, it also has adjustable length of pull and micro-adjustable cheek piece to ensure a solid fit and proper eye relief.
As for speeds, the included HyperFlite bolts are capable of traveling up to 410 fps, with a hard-hitting impact of 142 foot-pounds of energy, capable of knocking down any big-game target. All of this in a crossbow that checks in at under $600!
$599 with Rope Cocking Device; $699 with Pre-installed Crank Cocking Device | barnettcrossbows.com
Covert Scouting Cameras WC20
It’s a safe bet you’ll never hear a single bowhunter say, “I have too many trail cameras,” which makes giving a model like Covert Scouting Cameras’ WC20 a great gift. Not only does this trail cam come at a sweet price, it also offers all of the features you need to keep tabs on and get great images of the deer, turkeys and other game in your favorite hunting area.
Available in two models — Verizon and AT&T — the WC20 takes 20MP photos and 1080p video, with photos transmitted right to your cell phone via the Covert app. Other highlights include a turbo-shot burst mode (1-3 shots), .3-second trigger speed and 40 IR No-Glow LEDs and 100-foot flash range. Images are stamped with date, time and other data so you know when your target buck is showing up, and getting the camera up and running is easy thanks to the QR Code setup and 1.5-inch color screen. The camera runs on 12 AA batteries and it comes with a two-year warranty.
$129.99 | covertscoutingcameras.com
Dead Down Wind Black Premium 3-Piece Kit
If your favorite bowhunter is obsessed with minimizing his or her odor in the field, then one gift that’s invaluable is a scent-control kit. Enter the new Dead Down Wind Black Premium 3-Piece Kit, featuring a 12-ounce bottle of Field Spray, 12-ounce bottle of 3-in-1 Wash and 20-ounce bottle of odor-neutralizing Laundry Detergent. Combined, these three items will prepare your clothes and yourself for a trip to the stand or blind.
Dead Down Wind uses enzymes in its products that break down human odors and other scents at the molecular level over long periods of time, helping to conceal you from the noses of wary whitetails, elk and other game. The new Black products also feature NIDORX, which Dead Down Wind notes works even faster to get to the source and destroy human and pet odors, as well as food, gas and other smells.
Deer and elk can smell thousands of times better than humans, so don’t leave it to chance that you can stay undetected from them, even if you play the wind.
$29.99 | deaddownwind.com
SEVR Ti 1.75 Broadhead
When it comes to bowhunting, there are really only three things you absolutely can’t do without — a bow, arrows and broadheads. Hence, a handful of razor-sharp game getters is always appreciated.
One excellent example is the SEVR Ti 1.75, a rear-deploying mechanical that’s designed for maximum accuracy and penetration. This broadhead features a 1.75-inch cutting diameter, with a swept-back blade angle for enhanced performance. It also features Lock-and-Pivot Technology, which means the blades stay closed in flight yet locked open upon impact, pivoting as needed once they enter the animal to keep the arrow driving straight through. The result is a substantial wound channel and robust blood trails leading to short tracking jobs.
$15.99 each | sevrbroadheads.com
Leupold BX-4 Range HD Rangefinding Binocular
It’s the item your favorite hunter never knew he or she needed. Most bowhunters carry both binos and a rangefinder for first glassing for and identifying deer, elk and other game, then determining distances as the animal approaches the stand or the hunter stalks close enough for the shot.
Well, the new Leupold BX-4 Range HD TBR/W 10x42mm Rangefinding Binocular handles the job of both pieces of gear. Featuring Leupold’s proprietary laser engine and ballistics software, these binos provide lightning-fast distance readings, with a high-contrast, red OLED display that’s visible in any lighting conditions. They can detect distances out to 2,600 yards on reflective objects, 1,600 yards on trees and 1,100 yards on game like deer and elk. In fact, they even feature a Bow Mode, for providing angle-compensating distances on those steep-angle shots to ensure you’re getting an accurate reading for your archery shots. Of course, the BX-4 Range HDs also feature Leupold’s Elite Optical System, resulting in excellent light transmission, clarity and glare reduction. They come in rugged housing, are waterproof and fog-proof and feature Leupold’s Lifetime Optics Guarantee Two-Year Electronics Guarantee.
$1,599.99 | leupold.com
Primos Neoprene Bow Sling
I learned the hard way this year how important having a good, quality bow sling is, especially if you are doing a lot of walking, like on a Western elk hunt or backwoods deer hunt. After preparing for weeks for my Alberta elk hunt, I thought I had everything I needed for the outing; however, the one item I didn’t upgrade was my 15-plus-year-old bow sling. Well, bow slings have come a long way over the past decade-and-a half, and my old model — basically a carrying strap — simply wasn’t up to the task in the incredibly dense forests I was hunting.
One model that is ready for any terrain is Primos’ Neoprene Bow Sling, which has received a makeover for 2023. Designed to protect the all-important cams, cables and strings from getting caught and/or damaged in the field, this lightweight bow cover fits most bows from 28-38 inches long and comes with a Butler Creek Featherlight adjustable shoulder strap, making it easy to throw your bow over your shoulder or even your back when hiking. That said, it’s super easy to free your bow for the shot when the moment of truth arrives, taking literally only seconds to pull the cover off.
On my hunt, I ended up borrowing my guide’s Primos Bow Sling and loved it. Now, I’m getting one for myself this Christmas!
$43.99 | primos.com
TruFire Edge FT Shooting Release
If you shoot an index-finger release aid and are in search of a model that offers even more flexibility, look no further than the Edge FT from TruFire. The Edge FT release aid features an index-finger trigger that’s located further up the barrel of the release, resulting in the ability to accommodate longer draws, enhanced comfort and increased accuracy. The new profile maximizes draw length by nearly one inch while allowing archers to still find their anchor point comfortably and easily. Release highlights include auto-closing trigger, customizable tension and travel adjustments, adjustable release length, comfortable leather buckle strap and TruFire’s FoldBack design, which lets you fold the release out of the way when not in use.
$89.99 | FeraDyne.com
Whether a person hunts close to the house or loves to embark on road trips to other states, a yearly subscription to onX Maps is a much-appreciated gift that also won’t break the bank.
To start, onX shows public and private property boundaries, as well as owner names, for the vast majority of properties across all 50 states. Throw in features like 2- and 3-D satellite and topo maps, tree species and habitat maps, the ability to see when you have the optimal wind at your stand locations and to share waypoints with others, plus a host of custom mapping tools, and you have an incredible resource for scouting and planning for the season, whether you hunt 30 minutes away or you’re planning a dream hunt out West.
New for 2023, onX has partnered with trail cam manufacturer Bushnell and others to have your trail-cam photos feed right into the onX app, giving you the ability to tie those images to the trail-cam icons you set on your maps, ultimately providing even more intel as you plan your next hunt or sit.
$29.99 for one state; $99.99 for all 50 states | onxmaps.com/hunt
Millennium Bowlite L-116
If you hunt your own property or other private lands, ladder stands are an easy-in, easy-out option for hunting whitetails, and the Bowlite L-116 has been created especially for bowhunters.
Designed to be compact and easy to move, the Bowlite L-116 is a single ladder stand that stands 16 feet tall and weighs only 53 pounds. Made of powder-coated steel, the stand features Millennium’s renowned ComfortMAX contoured, tight-sling seat; integrated accessory hooks; and a 20x18-inch platform. Seat dimensions are 19.75x17 inches, providing plenty of room for a comfortable sit, and the total weight capacity for the stand is 300 pounds.
$189.99 | millenniumstands.com
TETHRD LockDown Saddle
In recent years, tree saddles have become all the rage because of how flexible and mobile they allow a bowhunter to be. Since they’re lightweight, it’s easier to venture further from the roads and parking lots. Plus, they allow you to still get elevated, even if you don’t have the absolutely perfect climbing tree. All in all, they’re awesome for keeping the deer in suspense, since you really never need to hunt the same tree twice, if you don’t want to.
TETHRD’s new LockDown Saddle is engineered to be extremely user-friendly and comfortable. Highlighting its innovative design is the Expandable Saddle Body with LockDown Link construction that allows the saddle to expand and contract with you while on the hunt. The adjustable, replaceable LockDown Links keep the pleat closed while in transport mode moving to and from your hunting area, while the expandable body allows the saddle to move with you as you’re walking, climbing and hunting.
The LockDown also offers many of the other features TETHRD is known for, including the UtiliBridge, integrated lineman’s loops and Comfort Channels that provide seven different settings for adjusting the saddle while in the tree. Plus, new, oversized LockDown pockets provide plenty of room for holding and quickly accessing essential gear.
$429.99–$449.99 | tethrdnation.com