2013 Father’s Day Gift Guide
Father’s Day is almost here. Is your pops one of those guys that has everything, or when you ask him...
Father’s Day is almost here. Is your pops one of those guys that has everything, or when you ask him what he wants, you get, “Ah, I don’t need anything,” or a similiar response? This list will definitely help. We have shooting gloves, a cooler, a grill, boots, and lots more–from the affordable to the extravagant. They’re all sure to make the old man crack a smile. Scroll through and get some ideas.
MacWet Shooting Gloves
In England: £27.99; online: $45-$50 (macwet.com) Serious target shooters, high volume dove hunters, and any dads that shoot anything will love a pair of MacWet gloves for Father’s Day. Skin-tight and thin enough that you can easily pick up a dime while wearing them, MacWets offer exceptional dexterity. In fact, I am wearing a pair as I type this. Seriously.
Hailing from England, a famously damp island, MacWets are made of Aquatec fabric that both wicks moisture and retains its gripping power when wet. I have worn mine shooting on days both dry and very rainy and they perform exactly as advertised. They are so thin that at times I really have forgetten I had them on as I was shooting. I do not usually rave about gloves but these are terrific. Wild Chef blogger Dave Draper, a self-confessed glove snob, will wear nothing else.
They come in both a micromesh hot weather glove and a Climatec version for cooler days (I use “cooler” advisedly. These gloves are wonderful but they aren’t warm). You can choose a short or longer cuff and several earthy colors as well and they are machine washable. –Phil Bourjaily
Gerber Bullrush Multi-Tool
$69; (gerbergear.com) This isn’t Gerber’s first multitool, but it’s their most solid offering in a while. The simple fact is, there’s only so much handle space available in any multitool, and the more gadgets you try to squeeze in, the thinner and flimsier they become. That goes for the locking systems too. Gerber has realized this and made the Bullrush a compact unit with six useful, robust tools, each with it’s own liner lock: full size pliers, a partially serrated tanto-style blade, a strap/cord cutter, flathead screwdriver, a good sized Phillips screwdriver, and wire cutters. If dad likes his 80-function Swiss Army Knife, this isn’t for him. If he wants a tough multitool that’s easy to carry and truly comes in handy, wrap this up for him.–David Maccar
Costa Tuna Alley Sunglasses
Starting at $170; costadelmar.com I’ve got a large head. There, I said it, and one problem that comes with a monster cranium is finding a pair of shades that fit well. To that end, I’ve been wearing Costa’s new Tuna Alley glasses all spring, and loving them. The large wrap-around frames are not only super comfortable, they really up the blockage of glare. Couple that with Costa’s proven 580 polycarbonate (or glass) lenses, and you’ve got shades that will help you spot more fish in any light conditions. And if you want to hook up your dad who wears glasses with a pair of Tuna Alleys for Father’s Day, fear not; they’re available with custom Rx lenses. –Joe Cermele
Trophy Ridge React Bow Sight
$150 in black; $160 in camo, www.trophyridge.com. You know what a father really needs? Time. So save him some with this 5-pin tool-less adjustable sight, which makes dialing in long-range pins faster and easier than ever. After manually sighting in two pins, the 20 and one other, the sight automatically sets the correct gap between the remaining pins, making you dead-on from 20 to 60 yards. Calibrated for arrow speeds ranging from 240 fps to 330 fps (remember, that’s “arrow speed” not IBO; the former is typically less that the latter) it should work well on just about any modern bow. –Dave Hurteau
Carhartt Rain Gear: Huron Packable Jacket and Bad Axe Jacket
Huron: $120, Bad Axe: $279; (carhartt.com) Finally, a packable jacket that’s truly waterproof and doesn’t skimp of features. Sudden summer thunderstorms have a way of creeping up on you. Having this fully taped Huron jacket (left) made of 3-ounce, ripstop nylon in the glove compartment will make dad a very happy man at some point. The Huron features an attached, adjustable hood, a full length front zipper with outer and inner storm flaps, a waterproof chest pocket and generous front, zippered, slash pockets. Plus, two-way zippered side seams let you adjust ventilation or access gear on your belt.
The Bad Axe is a heavy duty rain jacket has a tough nylon shell with a three-layer waterproof breathable membrane and is lined for added comfort and warmth. Zippered vents in the armpits and on the sides allow for ventilation if necessary. All zippers on the Bad Axe are waterproof and the seams are taped. The elbows and shoulders are reinforced with another layer of heavy-duty nylon. This jacket will handle the roughest storms, is comfortable, looks good for every-day wear and would make a great fishing jacket that will last for years._
The best thing about these two jackets is that they are truly breathable. A rainjacket is great if it keeps the water off, but if you end up getting soaked from the inside from perspiration, what’s the point? These two jackets really do breathe, letting you truly stay dry.–DM
SOG Twitch II
$85; sogknives.com Every father needs an everyday knife, one that he can take on the stream or in the boat. New from SOG for 2013 is the rosewood-handled Twitch II, a knife that can cut line, slice an apple, whittle a stick or gut a trout and look pretty and “woodsy” doing it. This classic-looking knife uses modern “SOG Assisted Technology” for a super quick opening, and has a 2.64-inch blade made from quality AUS-8 steel. It can even be engraved through SOG’s website to provide dad with a gift with that extra special touch. Oh, and it fits nicely in a fishing vest–if your dad still wears one of those. –JC
Black Diamond Equipment Voyager Lantern and Flashlight Combo
$39.95; (blackdiamondequipment.com) There is simply no reason not to take this compact lantern/flashlight with you whenever you spend a night in the woods or without electricity. When packed away, it’s just 4.2 inches tall and extends to 6.25 inches when used as a lantern, which puts out a healthy 75 lumens at full power. (Just hold down the power button until the light is at the desired dimness.) In flashlight mode, it puts out a 50-lumen beam from the rubberized base. You can hang the Voyager from just about anything with a collapsible double-hook hang loop, which also allows you to activate the lantern and the flashlight together for maximum light output. The whole thing runs off four AA batteries for 100 hours on full power. It won’t replace the big propane-powered lantern for illuminating an entire campsite, but as a personal light source, it can’t be beat, especially for its size, weight, durability, and price. –DM
XTRATUF II Deck Boots
$155; xtratufboots.com Whether dad likes striper fishing in the Atlantic, salmon fishing on the Kenai, or walleye trolling on the Great Lakes, help him treat his feet right in sloppy seas and rainy days with a pair of XTRATUF II deck boots. Unlike those cheap-o rubbers you can pick up in the tackle shop, these XTRATUFs feature 6mm EVA insoles that make them feel like bedroom slippers. Neoprene uppers trap heat and offer more flex around the leg, and slip-resistant Chevron heels and outsoles help your aging dad avoid unnecessary knee and hip surgeries. –JC
Dexter Russel Sani-Safe Boning Knives
$22; dexter1818.com. I have raved about these highly useful, inexpensive knives before, and I can’t miss an opportunity to do so again. The brand Dexter-Russell Sani-Safe is well regarded in commercial kitchens because the company produces inexpensive, practical knives that really work. This 5-inch Narrow Boning Knive is a perfect example. As long as you touch up the edge regularly, it will do the job all day long. And you can’t beat the price. The entire collection of boning knives, with their large, no-slip handles and array of blade lengths and stiffnesses, are perfect–perfect I say–for butchering deer. And the shorter ones, the 5-inchers, are also wonderful for slicing your rare-cooked venison steak nice and thin. Far better than any so-called “steak knife.” You can sometimes find these on amazon.com for as little as $12 per. So don’t get just one. –DH
Cabela’s GORE-TEX Bass Angler Guidewear
$229 – $269; cabelas.com Rain nor sleet nor hail will stop dad from getting on the water (or getting the morning paper) if he’s wearing a set of the latest generation of Cabela’s GORE-TEX Guidewear. Previous versions of these bibs and jackets were affordable and reliable and have become trusty old friends to anglers across the country. The new digs still won’t break the bank, and they have more perks than every before. For starters, the heavy-duty (yet maneuverable) fabric resists tears. Three layers of GORE-TEX laminate stop even the hardest wind-driven rain from seeping through. I’ve been wearing a test sample jacket and bibs since the fall and have put them through the wringer. I can tell you that they are just as comfortable and reliable as the most expensive GORE-TEX raingear on the market. The adjustable cuff seals are a nice touch, and nothing I’ve had zipped in the sealed chest pockets during rainy outings has even gotten damp. –JC
Pelican ProGear Elite Coolers
$259 – $480; pelicanprogear.com Pelican has been making military-grade cases for every kind of gear imaginable for many years, but only recently have they entered the cooler game to help you and your dad treat your catch, bait, and perhaps adult beverages like precious cargo. Available in models ranging from 35-quart to 95-quart, I can attest to crazy ice-keeping capabilities of these coolers. I’ve been using one since the early spring on my boat and it’s kept ice for three days straight (though they’re rated for seven days) thanks to the freezer-grade gaskets. The heavy-duty latches and handles can take a serious beating, and the non-skid feet don’t move no matter how rough it gets. On a lesser note, my dad is far more comfortable stepping off the dock onto this rock-solid box than the old conventional marine cooler I used to keep onboard. –JC
Crazy Creek Air Chair Plus
$124.50; (crazycreek.com) I don’t normally go for seemingly gimmicky camping gear, but this cool seat from Crazy Creek was a big surprise to me, and dad will feel the same way. When rolled up (just use the attached straps, no case or sleeve necessary) the chair is a about the size of a folding blind, and weighs a scant 2 pounds, 3 ounces. Unroll it, inflate it (no need for a pump, the separated air chambers make lung power more than enough), clip the straps, and you have a comfortable seat with 2.5 inches of air cushioning and back support. It’s especially great at camp but its light enough to carry on short hikes. Unclip the straps on the inflated seat, pull out a hidden section that inflates separately and the chair quickly converts into a comfortable air mattress that beats any bedroll out there. I keep mine in my truck, all the time, with my sleeping bag. –DM
Randall Made Knives Model 25 Trapper
$435; randallknives.com. This is what I want for Father’s Day. At over $400, I won’t be getting one unless all of you take up a collection. But for those of you with well-heeled loved ones (or loved ones who enjoy spending your money generously), you might want to send them a link to this write-up. As an all-around hunting knife, the Trapper is eminently practical and catch-your-breath beautiful. The drop-point blade is available at 5 or 6 inches; the handle is stag and leather; the hilt is nickel silver; the butt cap is Duralmin; and the knife itself is hand crafted by the legendary Randall family. A true heirloom gift. (Just don’t put this one on the electric sharpener.) –DH
Eddie Bauer Waterproof Shooting Jacket
$179; (eddiebauer.com) This jacket is so versatile, dad might start looking weird without it on. If he spends a lot of time shooting outside, it will become an especially invaluable garment. It’s waterproof, breathable, and windproof, while remaining lightweight, thin, and unrestrictive. There are pockets on the inside of each shoulder for recoil pads, elastic sleeves with adjustable outer cuffs, two huge dump pockets at the hips that can fit a box of ammo in each with dividers, and two zippered slash pockets higher up that can serve as handwarmers. There’s also a zippered inner pocket and a really effective, adjustable hood that zips off. It’s a field jacket, a shooting jacket, and it does just fine on a chilly morning on the boat, too.–DM
Cabela’s New ProVault 24-Gun Safe by Liberty
$880; cabelas.com. Dads, you may have to get this one for yourself. But it’s easy to justify, because this is not a gift just for you but for the whole family. As a father–I’m sure you’ll agree–your number one job is to keep you family safe, and that includes keeping your guns locked up securely when you are not using them. Why this particular safe? Because it does a solid job of protecting up to 24 long guns at a reasonable price, including 20 minutes of fire protection at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. If you want much longer fire protection than that, you typically need to shell out the big bucks. –DH
BOGS Highliner Pro Tall Lite Boots
$130; (bogsfootwear.com) Whether dad is gearing up for a muddy trek to a remote trout pond or working in the garden, BOG’s new Highliners are an excellent tall-boot choice for warmer weather. They’re not insulated so your feet won’t roast, but a 2mm layer of Max-Wick will keep them from getting sweaty. Constructed of pliable rubber, the boots don’t feel cumbersome on your feet and can actually be rolled down if it gets really hot outside. The EVA insole is nice for long hikes (I wore these this spring while stalking pickerel in the NJ Pine Barrens) and my wife loves the DuraFresh anti-odor protection. –JC
Sage Rod Tubes
$80 – $140; (sageflyfish.com) Sage certainly comes out with some slick sticks, but it seems they’re pretty innovative in the rod protection department, too. They recently released a new line of aluminum rod tubes that feature a unique mix of concave and convex curves to improve strength, as well as oversized rubber end caps that prevent scratching and damage to rod tips. You can buy single rod tubes, or multi-tubes that measure up to 44 inches. I’ve carried up to six rods in my case, which is much more convenient than lugging six separate tubes, and, frankly, I think they’re better protected in Sage’s heavy-duty tube. The tubes are lightweight, large models have shoulder straps, and they all feature a pre-lined space on one end cap to write your contact info…or your dad’s if you’re buying this for him. –JC
Simms G4Z Waders
$800; (simmsfishing.com) I know what you’re thinking: $800 for waders!? Yes, they’re pricey, but come on, your dad brought you into this world, isn’t he worth it? If dad is the kind of guy that likes gear he doesn’t have to replace every other season, a pair of these bad boys will save him trips to the el-cheapo wader aisle for, like, the rest of his life. Simms’ new five-layer GORE-TEX fabric lines the seat, waist, and legs of G4Zs, offering more breathability than any competitors, and perks like hand warmer pockets, adjustable stretch mesh/elastic suspenders, and windproof technology keep dad extra comfy. My dad particularly likes the zip-front, because it makes getting rid of his morning coffee less of a production. –JC
Cabela’s Guidewear BOA Wading Boots
$110; (cabelas.com) If your old man is anything like mine, it takes him an hour or so to get his waders on and lace his wading boots. Meanwhile, you’re watching trout rise 200 yards downriver and knowing that after he’s finally suited up, it’ll take another year to wade down that far. Help him speed up the process with a pair of Cabela’s new wading boots with a BOA system. Turn the dial on the tongue and the fine wire laces tighten right up. When the day is done, lift the BOA dial up and the laces loosen instantly. These boots also feature screw-in traction studs and Vibram soles to keep your pop upright on the slickest rocks. –JC
L.L. Bean Silver Ghost Fly Rod
$300 – $380; (llbean.com) L.L. Bean has been making reliable, affordable flyfishing gear for a long time, but recently they decided to introduce a high-end stick for Bean fans looking for more than a starter rod. The Silver Ghost series features a plethora of models and lengths (including switch rods) ranging from 4- to 12-weight. I had the chance to give a 9-foot 5-weight a shakedown this spring on a Pennsylvania trout stream and was most impressed by the backbone it provided when fighting heavier trout despite the rod’s overall light weight. The fast five delivered heavy dumbbell-eye streamers as beautifully as beadhead nymphs, and I’d use it anywhere I’d normally lean on a 4- or 6-weight. If you’re dad’s a fly guy, he’ll thank you much –JC
The Trucker’s Friend
$49.99; (innovationfactory.com) This is basically a 2.6-pound multitool for your hunting vehicle or ATV. It takes the place of so many heavy duty implements that now I can’t imagine not having one around. There’s a large hammer head on one side that lets you pound and remove tent stakes (or nails) with ease, or knock caked ice off your mud flaps, or hammer in a wedge to split a log. And you can carve that wedge with the semicircle-shaped axe head opposite the hammer, which serves as a hatchet that’s great for chopping kindling or stripping larger logs. And the long fiberglass handle (15 inches) lets you get some good momentum behind every swing. Other onboard tools include a tapered front so the tool can be used as a pry bar, a spanner for hose couplings, a tire chain hook, and a wire twist. Dad will find tons of uses for this handy tool. –DM
5.11 Tactical TRIAB Packs
TRIAB 18: $139.99, COVRT TRIAB: $169.99; (511tactical.com) Nobody turns down a quality backpack, and dad will certainly appreciate the TRIAB 18 from 5.11 Tactical. Don’t let the company’s name fool you. They’ve been moving slow and steady into the outdoor market using all their experience in producing rugged military and law enforcement gear. The TRIAB is an all-purpose day pack that can serve many functions. Made from 1050 denier nylon, it’s spacious with a 20″ x 14″ main compartment and has plenty of zipper- and velcro-secured organizer pockets inside for small stuff. It works great as a light everyday pack, but you can load it up if you have to, and the strap on the bottom of the pack is perfect for carrying a bedroll, sleeping bag, or rolled up jacket.
There’s lots of webbing inside and out for attaching gear or additional pouches, plus two expandable mesh water bottle sleeves on the outside. The great thing about the design is it can be carried as a sling bag over either shoulder, freeing up your shooting shoulder if necessary. All the pockets are accessible from either side without taking the pack off and the unused strap tucks away neatly. The TRIAB can also be carried using both straps, making it a regular backpack as well, with an included, detachable chest strap. The TRIAB 18 comes in Sandstone (khaki) or Midnight Ash (black and grey). There’s also a less tactical-looking version of the pack called the COVRT TRIAB (pictured right). It looks more like a bookbag and lacks the MOLLE webbing. –DM
EdgeCraft Sportsman Two-Stage Diamond Hone Knife Sharpener 42
$70; basspro.com. Like many fathers, I still enjoy putting a fine edge on a knife by hand. But it’s a moot point because with kids, there’s no time for that sort of thing anymore. A few years back I got an electric sharpener very much like this one and haven’t looked back. I admit there’s not the same swelling of pride when you carefully brush your thumb across a blade honed to a wicked sharpness with this machine, but the blade still gets seriously sharp, and in no time. And this sharpener just happens to be on sale for Father’s Day at Bass Pro. –Dave Hurteau
Coleman NXT 300 Portable Grill
$249.99; (coleman.com) What summer accessory does dad need more than a grill? This new offering from Coleman can serve as an awesome tailgating or camp grill (that fits well into an SUV or pickup bed) or as a permanent grill for the backyard or lodge.
The whole wheeled affair collapses on scissor legs into a compact unit when not in use and raises to a perfect cooking height. The NXT 300 products 20,000 BTUs and the 339 sq. inches of cooking surface is enough to grill up 18 burgers at once. The InstaStart matchless ignition systems lets you get going in a snap and with the built-in thermometer you can check the temperature without opening the lid.
Coleman sells griddle and stovetop cooking surfaces for the grill, making it pretty versatile. Plus, you can hook up small 1-pound propane tanks or add an adapter to use a full-sized 20-pounder. With extendable stainless steel tables on either side, there isn’t much this grill can’t handle. –DM
$50; gerbergear.com If you’re dad is more the kind of guy that’s into modern, tactical blades instead of those with pretty wooden handles, he might appreciate Gerber’s new Outrigger, and you might appreciate the $50 price tag. Sporting a 3-inch blade, an aluminum handle with a SoftGrip overmold, and weighing in at 4 ounces, this knife is comfortable in your hand, won’t weigh down your pocket or chest pack, and opens in a flash thanks to an assisted opening mechanism. It’s just the right length for bigger fishing tasks (cutting bait, halving a sandwich, cutting dock line) but small enough for the little stuff (nipping line, opening beef jerky, cutting a cigar). –JC
$45;** (bulleitbourbon.com) You won’t find a finer bourbon at a better price than Bulleit 10–the brand’s new select reserve that’s been aged for, you guessed it, 10 years. Even at 91.2 proof, this stuff is super smooth. It has classic notes of vanilla, caramel, and dried fruit and a long smokey finish. Believe me when I say that this is an utterly awesome bourbon–one that your dad’ll surely enjoy come Father’s Day. And if you’re lucky, maybe he’ll even pour you a glass. –Colin Kearns