The 2019 Field & Stream Father’s Day Gift Guide
Hunting, fishing, shooting, and camping gear any dad would love to receive this holiday
You would think that with a father so passionate about all things hunting and fishing that it would be easy to find him a gift for Christmas, his birthday, or Father’s Day. Wrong. It’s never easy. How do you get something for someone who seemingly has everything already?
This year, I’m committed to knocking the ball out of the park for this upcoming Father’s Day. I want to my dad something he’ll really love. I started shopping early, as did a few of the Field & Stream editors, and to help those who agonize and suffer when it comes to shopping, we collected our favorite ideas and listed them below. Take a look, forget the new necktie and gift card routine, and get your dad something he’ll really appreciate this year. —Ben Romans
I’ve never known my dad to not carry a knife. Even when he’s not hunting or fishing, he always has a small blade in one of his pockets. If your father is like mine, the CRKT Bev-Edge is a great everyday-carry blade. Made from high-carbon stainless steel, the 2 ½-inch long blade holds its edge well. A ball-bearing pivot design makes the knife easy to open, and the company’s Frame Lock design ensures it locks into place when it’s open. There’s even a bottle opener on the back of the handle that’s handy whenever Dad will want to open a cold brew. —B.R.
Droptine 12 Point Bourbon
If your dad enjoys a restorative glass of bourbon or two after a deer hunt, you need to get him a bottle of Droptine 12 Point Bourbon. The first time I tasted this bourbon, I knew two things right away: 1) It’s delicious. 2) There’s something different about it. That “something different,” it turns out, comes from the double-barrel-aging process this whiskey goes through. First, like every bourbon, it’s aged in new charred-oak barrels, then it’s finished in brandy barrels. I don’t think I’ve ever had a glass of brandy in my life, but apparently I’m missing out because the flavor it lends to this bourbon is pretty special. This bourbon is rich and smooth—and let’s not forget: The label featuring the whitetail buck is pretty great, too. Cheers to your dad. —Colin Kearns
XOP-EXTREME Backyard Expression Tree Stand System • Price: $85 Xtreme Outdoor Products
Why make your dad work harder than he needs to when he’s heading out to hunt? The Backyard Expression Treestand System makes it easier to transport portable treestands that might not have carry straps. The unit attaches to most treestand models and then fits over the shoulders and around the waist like a backpack. The clips make it easy to attach and detach a treestand, and the pack has padded shoulder straps and hip belt for comfort, silent neoprene buckle covers, and is made of tough, military-grade materials. —B.R.
Wyoming-based optics manufacturer Maven has been garnering a lot of attention in recent years because of their ability to produce high-quality scopes and binoculars at reasonable prices. The 10x42mm C.1 is a good example of their work. It has a lightweight polymer frame, and fully multi-coated, low-dispersion glass that offer a clear, high-contrast view. The entire unit is waterproof, fog-proof, and scratch resistant. However, should your dad somehow damage these binocs, Maven includes an unconditional lifetime warranty and will either repair or replace them. —B.R.
Bolderton Elite Sportsman’s Chair • Price: $110 Bolderton
My dad has bad low-back pain and it’s sometimes painful to sit on a stool in a deer blind without any lumbar support. On the other hand, hauling a heavy chair into the field doesn’t make life any easier. A good solution is the Elite Sportsman’s Chair. It’s a lightweight, collapsible seat replete with an adjustable backrest that’s comfortable on those long sits. The aluminum frame has adjustable legs, the seat and backrest are cushioned, the base is surrounded by mesh and zippered pockets that are prefect for snacks, ammo, or other gear, and there’s a zippered drop-down shelf in the front between the legs. The chair has a 300-pound capacity and comes with shoulder straps for easy transport. —B.R.
If your dad is a gear nut, chances are he’ll love this latest from Yeti. Like everything Yeti produces, the Load Out Go Box is pretty much bombproof (and, well, pretty expensive). It’ll withstand hard use season after season, while keeping your gear organized in the duck blind, boat, or the back of your truck. The Go Box comes with a divider, tool caddy, and Pack Attic. —C.K.
Hoppe’s Boresnake Viper Bore Cleaner • Price: $16 Hoppes
On a trip out West last fall, a friend had a box of new bore snakes he got on a steal and didn’t much need. I grabbed one for .22s and another for .17s. I have been using bore snakes for shotguns for years—but never much on rifles. Boy, was I missing out. For semi-auto rimfires—Ruger 10/22s and its clones, Marlin 60s, Savage A17s—these are indispensable. No need to have cleaning holes machined into stock actions, or go in muzzle-first with a rod, or break the rifle all the way down. For a deep scrub, like when using a copper solvent on a .17 barrel, they’re not ideal, but for a quick cleanup they can’t be beat. I keep one in both calibers in my gunroom, and in my range bag. They make a perfect Father’s Day gift, because even if you pops has one—or a few—he can always use another. —Michael R. Shea
I have yet to meet a dad who doesn’t appreciate a good multi-tool. They’re easy to use, easy to carry, and easy to lose if you lend one to a friend with sticky fingers. Gerber makes some of the finest multi-tools around, and the Center-drive model is one of the simplest and most useful to date—not only because it comes with the standard plier and knife, but also a 12-piece magnetic bit set. Closed, the tool is just shy of 5-inches long; open it’s 6 ½, making it 30-percent longer than similar tools. The sliding, spring-loaded plier jaws open with one thumb or the flick of a wrist, and the center-axis driver makes it possible to add more torque when adjusting a screw that won’t budge. Every tool comes with a black storage pouch. —B.R.
Along with the Spur, the Superdot was launched last year, and represents Nikon’s first go at red-dot optics. The Superdot weighs 4.2 ounces, is 2 inches long, and has a 1.7-inch-tall tube sight with a 22mm field of view, 1x magnification, and a 2 MOA red dot. It’s lightweight, waterproof, and shockproof on an aluminum chassis. It comes with two co-witness pedestals, 1/3rd and full—the later gave great head position and co-witness with Magpul MBUS flip-ups on my Bushmaster 5.56. This is a great gift for tactical dads, or dad’s who hunt and want a turkey-gun optic. —M.R.S.
When the snow melts around our family cabin in the spring, my father will spend hours walking around in mud, digging and channeling the water away from the foundation, and he swears the only reason he’s able to do it for so long, is because his Deck-Boss boots are so comfortable. Grunden’s unveiled these rubber, calf-height models a few years ago, and customers have raved about them ever since. They’re lightweight, have a grippy, SRC certified slip resistant Herkules Grip sole, a 15-inch foldable upper, and extra-thick outer bands if someone needs to tuck their pant cuffs. These boots are equally suited for dirty chores, walking in shallow water, or on the boat while fishing. —B.R.
Abu Garcia Revo X Low Profile Combo • Price: $150 Abu Garcia
My dad is a big fan of buying rod and reel combos, because they can be such a great deal—and that is exactly what Abu Garvia’s Revo X pairing is, a great deal (with plenty of five-star reviews from satisfied anglers, to boot). The rod is a 7-foot stick made from a 30-ton graphite composite and features a compact, bent, high-density EVA handle. The reel has seven stainless steel ball bearings and one roller bearing, Abu Garcia’s Carbon Matrix drag system, brass gears, and the company’s MagTrax brake system, all contained in an alloy frame. This setup is equally suited to tame anything from peacock bass to pike. —B.R.
Stio Eddy Drift Shirt
Stio has long been known for making high-performance clothing for now outdoorsman. Now, with the Eddy Drift, they’ve made their shirt designed specifically for anglers. The shirt is wind- and water-resistant and features oversized pockets for fly boxes and adjustable sleeves. It also comes in four sharp plaid patterns. —C.K.
If your dad likes to spend a fair amount of time at the range, give his shoulder a break and improve his accuracy at the same time by giving him the gift of a good shooting rest. Caldwell has a solid reputation for building solid, affordable shooting rests, such as the Lead Sled 3. Weighing about 15 pounds, the sled has a sturdy base that won’t move on the shooting bench, and the front elevation rest and recoil pad lock into place, reducing the chance of movement during a shot. If the sled shuffles for some reason, you can add barbell weights or a 100-pound lead shot bag to the rest. The pads and rest are rubberized so they won’t damage guns at points of contact, and the front arm has a four-inch adjustment range. —B.R.
Darn Tough Hiker Micro Crew Cushion Socks • Price: $22 Darn Tough
My dad prefers to hunt in public roadless areas where unless you’re saddled on a horse, only strong legs and lungs can get you in and out. So naturally, his feet play a large part in how much he can handle, and he spares no expense when it comes to boots—and socks, which are often an overlooked asset among hunters. Thankfully, Darn Tough, a Vermont-based sock manufacturer with a reputation for using high-quality Merino wool, created the Hiker Micro Crew Cushion sock. Made from a blend of a Merino, nylon, and lycra spandex blend, they’re comfortable, and durable. What’s more, Darn Tough’s signature stitching ensure more stitches per inch for comfort, and reinforcement over common wear zones. —B.R.
Bushnell Elite Tactical DMR ii 3.5-21×50 • Price: $1,500 Bushnell
If you really love your dad, you will buy him this scope. Yes, it’s not cheap. But it performs like European optics that cost twice as much. So, in a way, you’d be saving him money in the end. (See what I did there? You’re welcome, Dad.) The backbone of this first-focal plan beast is a 34mm tube, heavy-duty turrets, and a throw lever zoom, which runs from an up-close 3.5x to reach-out-and-touch them 21x—all in a short 13-inch tube. The illuminated G3 Christmas tree recital is fast, giving you 10 MOA of hash marks for elevation, and 8 for wind, so you don’t need to run the turrets on every shot. The turrets have a zero stop, and 100 MOA of elevation adjustment, and 60 MOA for windage. This all adds up to a killer precision rifle optic. I was told so earlier this year, when I signed up for a precision rifle school. I emailed the instructor, and asked about scopes providing a list of tubes I could bring. He wrote back in less than an hour: “dmr all the way.” —M.R.S.
LaCrosse Alphaburly Pro Boots
These are my favorite hunting boots that I own. I wore them all of last season: on a few waterfowl hunts, on deer hunts, and on one falconry hunt for rabbits—a true highlight of my season. On every outing, my dogs stayed warm (thanks to the 1660G Thinsulate), dry (ditto to the natural rubber over insulating neoprene), and comfortable (ditto again to LaCrosse’s Active Fit design feature). Your pop will love these boots, and giving a pair to him on Father’s Day will give him plenty of time to break them in before the season. —C.K.
Wheeler Firearms Accurizing Torque (F.A.T.) Wrench • Price: $40 Wheeler
Of all the tools in my gun room, nothing gets worked out more than the F.A.T. wrench from Wheeler. I use this affordable torque wrench to install scopes, stock rifles, and tweak action torques on small-bore target guns. It comes with nine bits that fit most gunsmithing bolts and screws, but I tend to lean my 43-piece Wheeler Gunsmithing set for the odd bits. Combined, there isn’t much firearms-related you can’t take apart, and then reassemble to the correct torque. If Dad is remotely hands-on with his gun collection, this will make his Father’s Day. —M.S.R.
Nexgen Outfitters Whitetail Caddy Pack
When the Cabela’s headquarters in Sidney, Nebraska, shut down last year, a group of former employees leveraged their knowledge of the outdoors industry and started their own enterprise called Nexgen Outfitters—a hunting, camping, shooting-sports, and outdoor-lifestyle online specialty retailer. The Nexgen Outfitters Whitetail Caddy Pack is one of their debut items. It’s outfitted with a total of 18 pockets and pouches (seven outside, 11 inside) in addition to a 1,950-cubic-inch main compartment. The exterior is made of a durable, quiet, tricot polyester, backed by a water-resistant polyurethane laminate. All seams are double-stitched and the shoulder straps are padded and adjustable for a comfortable carry and custom fit. The adjustable waist belt can be stored in two pockets in the back panel when not needed, the bottom of the pack is engineered to stand freely on its own next to you in a blind, and it’s hydration-bladder compatible (though a bladder is not included). –B.R.