Essential Cold Weather Gear

shutterstock_68945503Early in deer hunting season, summer is still petering out and many places around the country remain warm, but as the season progresses, the days get shorter and the air chills. As the seasons change, proper cold weather gear can greatly enhance the hunting experience. There are many varieties of cold weather clothing and ways to stay warm, but here are some essential items to consider when planning the next cold-weather hunt.

Layer up!

The key to staying warm in cold weather is layering up, and the base layer (the layer closest to the body) is an important consideration. Many companies make base layers, but the best options are those that are able to wick moisture away from the body. Cooling sweat does not help one warm up! Many outdoor companies sell solid options for base layers, including both tops and long underwear.

After the base layer, a wool sweater or fleece is a good option. Wool is a time-tested material that is partially water resistant and will keep you warm in cold conditions, but there are a lot of newer, lightweight options that will also get the job done.

Depending on the conditions during the day of the hunt, the outer layer should provide wind and/or rain protection. Unfortunately, rain pants can be pretty noisy when walking, but there are a number of quick-dry fabrics available that are fairly water resistant. The choice will really come down to the conditions on any given day, however. Explore Products offers a variety of outerwear designed for cold-weather hunting.

Feet and hands

Gloves or mittens are a crucial component of cold weather gear. Wool mittens provide a lot of warmth, and there are many brands that make the flip-open fingertips. Dexterity of the fingers is critically important during the hunt, so hand coverage that either flips open or lets you maintain dexterity is probably the best option.

While gloves are critical to have, hands can at least be sat on or tucked into armpits to warm up. Not so with feet. A thick wool sock will be hugely beneficial during cold weather and may be the difference between misery and comfort. You can scale up the thickness depending on how cold the weather is. It can also be nice to wear a liner sock under the wool to provide an extra layer against the cold and help keep the socks from slipping when they get wet.

For both hands and feet, it’s always a good idea to carry some feet and hand warmers, you never know when they may come in handy.


Much of the body’s heat is lost through the head, so it is essential to have good head gear if you want to stay warm. Wool hats are fairly easy to find, but a tightly woven hat will obviously keep your head warmer than a loosely woven hat. In addition to a hat, consider keeping a balaclava handy. The balaclava covers both the top of the head and neck, and can be pulled up over the nose for particularly blustery days.

Everybody has different preferences for staying warm, but following these basic guidelines will help any hunter stay warm in cold weather. Much of this gear is available through Explore Products.

Bowhunting Offers a Traditional Experience

imgres-6Bow hunting is one of the most challenging types of hunting and it requires a great deal of patience and skill. Unlike a rifle, which must only be aimed and held properly, a bow necessitates knowing the appropriate amount of strength to use based on the distance the arrow must travel. Though the skill and knowledge of the hunter is the most important factor in bowhunting, the bow, arrows, and other gear are nearly as critical.


Bows come in a few different styles, sizes and shapes. The most simple bows only have one string, while the most powerful ones involve several strings that are wound around multiple gears. Known as compound or composite bows, these bows amplify the amount of force generated. In ordinary circumstances, the length of the bow determines how much force can be generated, but with a compound bow, even a short bow can generate an enormous amount of force. Because of this, they are ideal for hunting deer and other large game. Compound bows are also more adjustable, making them better for those who want to hunt various different types of game with the same bow.


Longbows are a more traditional type of bow, and they do have a certain appeal, since they look more like the classic bows that people typically associate with archery. While you can generate as much force with a longbow as you can with a compound bow, the amount of strength needed to generate that much power and speed is increased dramatically. The amount of strength needed to pull a bowstring back is measured in pounds, and the number of pounds needed increases with the power of the bow. Light bows meant for practice start as low as twenty-five pounds, but bows used for hunting are usually no less than fifty pounds. That being said, with compound bows, even a modest number of pounds can generate a lot of speed and force. Longbows are more traditional and authentic, but they require a strong and competent archer in order to be used effectively for hunting.

Much like with rifle hunting, there are a lot of accessories that can make your bowhunting experience more enjoyable.  Scopes are a common feature of compound bows to increase accuracy, but are not often found on longbows. In addition, all bow hunters require a Quiver to hold all your arrows.  Quivers vary in terms of size and material. Finally, you will also need a bow case, to transport your bow and keep it safe from debris, water and other harmful elements

Top Apps For Gunsmiths & Collectors

It is safe to say that technology has drastically changed they way we do everything.  No matter what you do, or what your passion is, there is an app for that.  For those that collect guns or practiced gunsmiths the adage rings true.    While some of these apps are designed for the iOS or the Android , there are many to choose from.  Below we have identified some of the most popular smartphone apps for gun collectors and gunsmiths. 

Legal Heat (by National Training Solutions, Inc. dba Legal Heat)

This app for Android and iOS devices is a reference for firearm laws in 50 states, ideal for individuals traveling with a gun. The open carry and concealed law summaries are written by attorneys, and the app has been featured on, U.S. Concealed Carry Association and ITS Tactical. It is also exclusive in its category, there being no other app gunsmith_signwith the legal credibility that Legal Heat offers. The app provides overviews of key laws, which are updated regularly. The app also describes constitutional provisions, duty to retreat laws, special notes etc. Legal Heat is highly regarded by users, and has received a total rating of 4.4 on Google Play Store, with 392 (out of 580) users offering it full 5 stars. The app content can be accessed offline.

Free Shot Timer (by Innovative Applications)

The Free Shot Timer (version 2.2), available only for the iPhone at the Apple Store, is a nifty tool designed to be an accurate stand-in for expensive standalone shot timers. With ease of operation and accuracy being the top requirements of shooters of all skill levels, these are the factors that influenced the design of the app by Innovative Applications. With the sensitivity heightened, users have placed their smartphone in the pocket at practice ranges and obtained accurate shot timings without the app falsely picking up shots fired by other shooters. In an effort to increase user-friendliness, the programmers have added adjustable start-delay functions, adjustable par time, the ability to save or print shot data (with AirPrint) and other features.

PPC Timer

Yet another timer app, only available for Android, the PPC Timer is free to use with a high rating (of 4.2) on the Google Play Store. It is a timer customized for Precision Pistol Competition training for competitors and range officers. Features include a score calculator, support for revolver and semi-automatic 1500 matches, distinguished matches for revolvers and semi-automatic, stock semi-automatic, service revolver, Police pistol, standard 1200 as used by the Canadian Police Combat Association and others. The PPC Timer is easy to use, only lacking the ability to upload scores to a storage on the cloud.


Yet another reference app available for both Android, iPads and iPhones, Posted! Lets conscientious and responsible gun-owners know the anti-gun locations across the United States. The content includes locations like government buildings, schools and other establishments where statutory anti-gun or “no carry” rules apply. Residents of open or concealed carry states and licensed firearm permit holders can usually take their firearms anywhere except to these locations. Pro-gun establishments can also be added to the map. The content on the app is crowdsourced by users, which means it is an every-growing list. Users can also contact the businesses listed to express their opinion. Posted! Is available at a nominal price of $.99.

Five Reasons To Start Bow Hunting

elk-bowhunter-at-sunriseThe industrialization and modernization of society have brought many great things to the world in general.  People are now more connected, can produce more in less time, have higher qualities of life, and generally live longer than they ever have before in history.  However, there have been some downsides to this industrialization and modernization.  Perhaps the most prominent is the fact that many people are far removed from the products they consume.  The most obvious example of this is food.  Most people have never lived on a farm or ranch, so they don’t understand all of the hard work that goes into producing their food.  They don’t know what type of chemicals are used on them, how the animals are killed, and how all of that food is transported to their local grocery store.  In other words, people are far removed from the processes that produce all of this food.  Many people who eat meat probably couldn’t even kill an animal by themselves.  This isn’t to say that people are bad because they are far removed from this process, just that it is different than the way things used to be.  It is with this all in mind that the claim can be made that people should get into better contact with their food.  One way to do this is for people to start hunting for their own food again, preferably with bows.  Here are five reasons for people to start bow hunting.

1.  Get in touch with nature.  One of the biggest reasons people should consider bow hunting is that it allows them to get back into touch with nature.  When a person is out in the forest or up in the mountains, far removed from society in general, it becomes easier to put everything into perspective.  This perspective usually results in a greater appreciation of all of the things the natural world provides for humans.

2.  Understand what it means to produce your own food.  When you are removed from the process of how food gets to your table, you start to not appreciate it.  Hunting for your own food gives people a better understanding of just how valuable food really is.

3.  It’s natural.  Huge factory farms where animals are crammed into incredibly small areas is simply not natural.  It leads to diseases and health issues for the animals.  These are then passed onto the humans who are consuming them.  Hunting for your own natural meat is a great way to improve your health.

4.  It’s enjoyable.  Being out in the wilderness, tracking different animals is one of the most enjoyable experiences a person can have.  Try it out and see what you think!

5.  Safety!  One of the best reasons to bow hunt rather than to hunt with guns is that areas that are designated for bow hunting generally have less hunters in them.  This decreases the chance of there being an accident.

If this has convinced you to try out bow hunting, be sure to get your supplies from a great hunting gear store.  Explore Products,,  is a great place to start.  Their knowledgeable staff will be able to answer any questions you might have and get you started with the art of bow hunting.


Reasons To Take Up Gunsmithing As A Hobby

gunsmithing2Gunsmithing is the art of building, modifying, altering, or adding accessories to a firearm. Gunsmiths add various scopes to rifles to make them more accurate, add handles to shotguns to make them easier to hold, add magazines to pistols to enable them to carry more rounds, and make numerous other modifications. People who own firearms, either for hunting or for recreational use, should seriously consider taking up Gunsmithing as a hobby.   There are many great reasons to do so.

  1. Knowledge.

For gun enthusiasts, taking up the hobby of gunsmithing will greatly improve their understanding of the firearms they own. What better way to understand how something works than to take it apart and make modifications? While browsing online through various gunsmith tools, you’ll stumble across numerous kits, accessories, and parts that you didn’t even know existed. You’ll learn about cleaning pads, parts kits, trigger kits, conversion kits, maintenance kits, various scopes, and other gun accessories. The more knowledge you have about your firearms the more capable you will be of using them to their best ability.

  1. Safety.

Owning a firearm is a serious matter. Firearms are dangerous, so they should be cared for properly and used only in environments where they are safe. Taking up gunsmithing as a hobby will provide you with a better understanding of your firearms, which will lead to you understanding how to safely use them.   When it comes to safety, the more you know about your guns the better.

  1. Functionality.

A great reason to take up gunsmithing as a hobby is that it will increase the functionality of your firearms. For example, you may wonder why you are so inaccurate with your AR15 when you take it to the shooting range.   However, after taking up gunsmithing you’ll quickly realize that there are numerous scopes and rail risers available that will greatly increase your shooting accuracy. Numerous gun parts, tools and kits will boost the functionality of every firearm you own.

  1. Individuality.

Another great reason to take up gunsmithing is that it allows you to make your firearms your own. When you purchase a firearm at a store, you do so knowing there are thousands of other people with the exact same gun. After learning about gunsmithing, however, you’ll be able to modify your firearm to make it your own.

  1. Durability of your firearms.

Firearms are a big investment. They require you to purchase a safe and ammunition, and to spend money taking them to the shooting range to test them out. As such an investment, they should be cared for properly. By learning about gunsmithing, you’ll quickly realize how to take your guns apart and clean them. You’ll learn that specific types of guns have parts that are more likely to break, so you’ll be able to stock up on those parts and make fixes when the time comes. In other words, you’ll learn how to care for your investment and keep it working properly for as long as possible.

Phoenix Technology Gun Stocks

Phoenix Technology makes several series of replacement guns stocks to make your shotgun or rifle more of a tactical weapon. Most shotguns for example, come with a wood or composite stock that is good for hunting, but is not as adaptable for a tactical or self-defense role. The Phoenix Technology Kicklite series of tactical shotgun stocks can easily adapt your sporting shotgun to a self-defense weapon.

The Phoenix Technology Kicklite Shotgun Stock is an adjustable gun stock for the Mossberg 500, Winchester 1200 or Remington 870 that replaces the factory stock. The Kicklite series is engineered to greatly reduce the perceived felt impact of shotgun loads, while giving an adjustable component to the overall length of the stock. Injection molded of premium grade glass filled nylon and shock absorbing elastomers in the US, the Kicklite series is easy to install and comes with mounting hardware and tools to make the job easy. These can be purchased as the stock only, or as a kit which includes a matching replacement foregrip and a shotshell holder.

Phoenix Technology also offers pistol grips for shotguns for a more compact tactical style gun, without the full length stock to get in the way. These are easy to install, and usually do not require special tools. There is also a series of shotgun fore grips with picatinny style rails to give mounting points for flashlights and other shooting accessories.

For rifles, Phoenix technology offers adjustable gun stocks for AR-15 and AK47 rifles, as well as fore grips for AR-15s. The new skeleton style front AR-15 grip is a unique design, and offers a lightweight, sturdy front grip to help control your AR-15 or M4 rifle.There is also a padded front grip that has a rubber coating to prevent slippage.

If you want good quality gun stocks and accessories that are made in the USA, Phoenix Technology has a product to meet your needs. Explore Products has discount prices on the full line and can help you with your selection.

Weaver’s Complete Line Of Gunsmith Tools

Weaver Optics has long been known for their quality rifle scopes, scope rings and bases and optics accessories. What many shooters do not know is that Weaver also has a full line of quality gunsmithing tools for both the professional gunsmith, and the sport gunsmith enthusiast.  You can add kits to achieve whatever level of gunsmithing you prefer to do, whether it is mounting a rifle scope, or performing routine maintenance, and advanced gunsmith repairs.

A good starting point for any gunsmith is to purchase a good quality gunsmithing screwdriver set. Many novice gunsmiths or shooters make the mistake of using standard screwdrivers to perform gunsmithing tasks. Standard screwdrivers are not designed to work on high quality finished screws, and end up marring the screws surface, or even stripping the head out of the screw. Weaver makes a 36 piece gunsmithing screwdriver set that has bits for most gunsmithing tasks. The interchangeable bits are easy to use, and are designed specifically for gunsmith needs. Weaver also makes a more advanced 77 piece gunsmithing screwdriver set for more advanced gunsmith needs.

Another important gunsmith tool is the Weaver Gunsmithing Torque Wrench. It is important to set gun screws to the proper manufacturers recommended torque to insure they do not come loose from the impact of gun recoil, and to also not over-tighten or strip the screws. The Weaver Torque Wrench uses interchangeable bits like the screwdriver sets mentioned above, and also include 10 standard bits to start with. And, to keep those screws seated, use Weaver’s Surethread Gunsmithing Adhesive.

If gun scope mounting is your need, Weaver makes several different scope mounting kits with or without lapping tools. These kits are available for 1″ or 30mm tube riflescopes. The Weaver Deluxe Scope Mounting Kit with Lapping Tools is a comprehensive gunsmith kit that includes everything needed to professionally mount a gun scope. The kit includes a torque wrench, SureThread compound, 10 common mounting bits, level system, alignment pins, lapping bars and lapping compound plus a hard storage case. This is a great gift for the shooting enthusiast that has several guns with optics attached.

A good overall gunsmith tool kit is the Weaver Deluxe 88 Piece Gunsmith Tool Kit. This kit includes 54 flat bits, 3 phillips bits, 4 torx bits, 8 hex bits, 3 specialty bits, hex drill bit adapter, hex bit square adapter, 2 extended length bits, magnetic bit driver, 9 punches, double faced hammer, bench block and a hard storage case. You can perform most gunsmithing operations with a set like this.

No matter what level of gunsmith experience you have, you can be assured that Weaver has a high quality gunsmithing tool to meet your needs.



Some Effective Tips To Help You Enjoy A Great Bow Hunting Experience

Before there were rifles, hunters used bows and arrows to hunt their prey.  Today, be it in the Deep South or Northwest, bow hunting is still a popular sport.  Whether you are a novice or a seasoned professional, bow hunting offers hunting enthusiasts a thrilling yet calming experience every season.  While bow hunting equipment has evolved over time, becoming more accurate and sophisticated, the sport of bow hunting has remained the same.  However, despite this there are certain rules and tips all hunters must take into consideration before setting out on the hunt.

 Tip 1.   Be mindful of state laws and regulations.

Before you go bow hunting, it is important to understand that individual states have different laws and regulations regarding the sport.  So it is vital that you check with your local parks and wildlife departments.

Tip 2.  Always purchase the right bow hunting equipment.

We have all heard the old adage that an artist is only as good as the tools they use.  This is true of hunters as well, especially in bow hunting.   Before you purchase your bow hunting equipment, it is important to consider the quality and brand of your bow and arrows.  Take into consideration what you will be hunting, how far you will need to be able to shoot from, etc. When you make a purchase online, you can go through numerous reviews and testimonials. Online retailers also offer some great discounts, warranties and guarantees. 

Tip 3.  Be prepared. Invest in extra Bow Wire.

Last but not the least, it’s important to invest in some extra bow wire before you go bow hunting. At times, the bow wire may break out in the middle of a hunt. In such situations, an extra wire can come in handy.

Tip 4.  Be smart, be safe.

Hunting brings with it certain inherent dangers, and as such should be approached with a certain level of caution.  Always wear gear that makes it easier for other hunters to see you, in case you are in a heavily hunted area.  We also recommend keeping a first aid kit handy, as well as a way to contact emergency officials should the need arise.

With these simple tips, you will be able to embark on a thrilling, fun and exciting journey.  For more information or to find the best bow hunting equipment on the market visit

Plano Waterproof Gun Cases

Sometimes a sportsman needs a waterproof gun case. This could be for travel purposes on a hunting trip ex: when a plane is loaded in the rain, or it could be needed for gun storage in a damp environment. For a gun case to be considered waterproof, it is going to need to be O-ring sealed. There are many high end waterproof gun cases on the market. But for the average sportsman, the cost may be prohibitive.

Plano has a series of waterproof gun cases called the Plano All Weather Series Gun Cases. This line up includes waterproof handgun, shotgun and rifle cases, as well as several tactical sizes. The All Weather series is a molded construction hard gun case, and features reinforced ribbing, as well as a continuous Dri-Loc® seal and a low-profile pressure release valve. The seal is water tight, air tight and dust proof. The Plano All Weather series also has dual stage lockable latches, is airline approved, and has oversized handle that are easy to grab – even while wearing gloves.

For handguns, there are two sizes. A large with outside dimensions 17.25″ x 12″ x 7.25″, and extra large with outside dimensions of 20.75″ x 16.5″ x 9.25″. There are two layers of foam in these handgun cases, so multiple handguns and pistols can be stored in two separate layers.

For tactical gun case needs, the Plano All Weather 108361 and 108421 gun cases cover most situations. These tactical cases are 36″ and 43″ respectively, and feature cubed foam that can be customized for most rifles. These are generally one gun configurations.

For longer scoped rifles, shotguns or two rifles, the Plano All Weather 108191 gun case has an interior dimension of 51 5/8″ x 12 7/8″. This rifle case has all of the features of the smaller All Weather gun cases, plus it includes heavy-duty wheels and comfortable fold-down handles for easy mobility during travel.

No matter which Plano All Weather gun case you choose, it is important to remember to store your guns with a desiccant or moisture absorbent product inside. This is because the O-ring seal not only keeps moisture out, but traps moisture inside which can condensate on the guns and lead to corrosion.

Determine what type of gun storage or gun transportation situation you are likely to encounter, and you may find a need for a sealed, all weather gun case.

Three (3) Gun Competition Gun Cases

Three (3) gun shooting has gained popularity in recent years. This is a shooting competition where competitors shoot with a rifle, a shotgun and a handgun. Competitors have had trouble in the past finding a gun case that can not only hold these three types of firearms, but hearing protection and other shooting accessories as well. There have been several gun cases that solve this problem.

SKB has released their 3 Gun Competition Gun Case model 3i-5014-3G. This injection molded, watertight gun case features a custom foam insert that allows the three-gun competitor or shooter to travel without handling multiple cases. The gun case features a heavy duty 2 lb. density closed cell foam with a re-enforced rigid multi-layer divider. Plus there are six roomy accessory cavities for shells, eye and ear protection or a cleaning cloth. Please be aware that you can not fly with ammunition in the same case as guns. This three gun case is made in the USA with a lifetime warranty, plus $1500 protection on the guns them selves if they were to get damaged in the gun case.

Another option for 3 gun shooters is the Plano All Weather double rifle / shotgun case. Though this case does not have a custom interior, competitors can place a rifle in one layer, and a shotgun and handgun in a second layer of the case. This gun case is perfect for new competitors since the price is more mid grade, which helps when starting out in this sport. The Plano All Weather series gun cases are waterproof, and have padlock receptacles to lock the gun case for air travel. You would probably want to keep your handgun in a separate soft gun or gun sock within the Plano case to keep it from rubbing into the rifle or shotgun.

When choosing a three gun case, be sure to consider your overall involvement i the sport, which will help you decide what level of investment you want to put into the gun case. Also, if you haven’t been competing very long, you may change firearms several times before finding a gun set that fits your style. Be sure to pick a gun case that can accommodate these changes.