Many hunters loan their
friends equipment to get started. Don’t hesitate to ask if you need something.
When you’re ready to buy, you can purchase quality hunting gear from your local
department store chain, sporting goods store, gun shop, or online (except modern
1. Firearms: Modern firearms that are legal for deer include any center-fire
(aka “high powered”) rifle or pistol, or shotgun used with slugs. For slugs, a
shotgun should be “open-choked”: cylinder, improved cylinder, or rifled barrel
designed for slugs. Muzzle-loading hunting guns range from centuries-old
technology to cutting-edge in-line rifles that accurately shoot well beyond a
2. Clothing: Most importantly, you need a solid hunter orange hat and
vest or jacket to cover your head and chest/back for safety. Otherwise, many
wear camo underneath but you can also simply wear green or brown. Avoid blue or
white clothing. Consider using a scent cover/blocking wash for your clothes
before you deer hunt. Dress with adequate layers so you can adapt to the
3. Rubber boots don’t absorb scents, but most don’t provide the level of ankle
support of other hunting boots; use footwear that fits the terrain you’ll be
4. Day-pack: Carry along a backpack with drinking water, snacks, first-aid kit,
knife and disposable gloves for field dressing, and raingear. Rope or other
means (such as a game cart) for dragging a harvested deer is also helpful if
you’ll be far from your vehicle.
5. Binoculars are helpful for locating deer and positively identifying your
6. Scope: Optics for your rifle or slug gun is also helpful for more accurate
shot placement; it is a must to sight-in or practice with a scoped firearm
before each season. Inexpensive binoculars and scopes are available at most
sporting goods and department stores.
7. Rangefinder: This device
pinpoints the distance from your eye to your target, and can help you avoid a
missed opportunity caused by failure to properly adjust your aim for distance.