How To Organize Hunting Gear In The Offseason?
After the intense hunting season ends, it will be several months when you will use your hunting gear again. It is extremely important to store your expensive hunting gear properly until the next season. Come the next season, you need your hunting gear to be good to use.
The elements and pests can wreak havoc with your costly gear and render them useless. Imagine finding your camo or hunting boot gnawed upon by rats or affected with mildew when you set off for the new hunting season!
It is easy to keep your hunting gear in tiptop shape and ready to use even after prolonged storage. Here are some tips to keep your gear in top shape for the next hunting season-
Take an inventory
Before you put away your hunting gear, it is wise to examine your gear and take an inventory of any damaged equipment. Check harnesses, treestands, and clothing for any wear and tear and fading. A faded camo will not work well to camouflage. Check if the zippers, straps, and clips work the way they are supposed to work.
The best time to take stock of your hunting gear is at the end of the hunting season. Moreover, you can take advantage of reduced prices during the offseason to replace the damaged gear or upgrade the existing gear.
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Wash and dry hunting clothing
Hunting clothing must be washed and dried thoroughly before being stored away. You must use a specially formulated detergent or baking soda to wash away the existing scents. It is important to cycle your washing machine with fresh water prior to washing. This will remove any smells from your previous washes.
Sanitize animal calls
Animal calls have a tube-like chamber where the saliva tends to accumulate over time. These become breeding grounds for germs when stored without cleaning. It will be a major health hazard next time you use them! You can clean your whistles by giving them a rinse in cool water and air drying them thoroughly before storing them.
Change your hunting boot’s insoles
Your hunting boot’s insoles absorb a lot of moisture during the hunting season and are breeding grounds for bacteria. It is better to replace them with new ones rather than trying to salvage them by washing. During the off-season sale, you may even find a new, much better one at the fraction of the cost.
Cleaning and breaking down your gun is essential before storing to keep your gun in good condition. Dismantle all the working parts including the barrel. A small amount of solvent can be used to clean the gun’s bore. Don’t forget to run the cleaning brush from the breech to the muzzle.
To prevent warping of the barrel, store the gun barrel side up. It is recommended that you buy a suitable gun rack for storing away your firearms.
Remove all batteries from devices that use them
Batteries can leak and damage your electronics. Be it a simple flashlight, GPS device or a headlamp. Leaking batteries corrode the interiors and ruin the equipment. You can start the next hunting season with fresh batteries and enjoy the full functionality of your device.
Use a scent-free area to store you hunting gear
If your gear picks up scents from the surroundings while storing. As a result, your next hunting expedition can become a disaster! A thorough wash and drying eliminate scents. Use scent-free containers to store them during the off-season.
Scent-free bags and plastic containers work well. You can use odor-absorbing drier sheets, wafers that absorb scent or even clippings from evergreens to help your gear smell natural.
Use a climate-controlled storage unit
Your attic, garage or an outdoor shed can be some of the worst places to store your gear. The elements can wreak havoc with your hunting gear and not to mention the pests! Temperature fluctuation and moisture can warp and ruin your gear.
A cool dark place will keep your gear in top condition. You can seriously consider reserving a closet in your home to store your hunting gear safely. If you don’t have an extra closet in your home, you can consider renting a climate-controlled storage unit to keep your gear safe.
Remember, the off-season is a great time to buy new gear and replacing existing ones. But at the same time, you must store away your expensive gear so that they perform optimally during the next hunting season.
All avid hunters pay extra attention to their chosen hunting weaponry and more or less maintain them properly. But in most cases, the other hunting gear is neglected. The above tips cover most of the aspects of organizing your gear during the off-season. The crux of this entire article is- keep all your gear clean, dry and odor-free.
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