Published Nov 12, 2021 3:00 PM

Hunting season is in full swing throughout most of the country. Duck hunters are breaking ice and deer hunters are layering up for late season all-day sits. While it might be easy to recognize peak hunting season by the lack of presence of the hunters in your life, it isn’t as easy to find the best holiday gifts for hunters.

Most hunters are gear junkies. Which means they have more hunting gear, gadgets, and equipment than they probably need. The positive side to this is that hunters are always looking for new gear to help improve their adventures.

You don’t want to give something that will end up in the land of misfit hunting gifts in the garage. You want to find gifts for hunters that will have a lasting impact on their hunt and improve their days in the field. This means finding products that are useful, durable, and effective. It doesn’t have to be expensive or fancy, but rather helpful and reliable.

This holiday gift guide will spark ideas for various hunting pursuits including, deer, waterfowl, big game, and upland birds. Check out our list below to see what the gear editors at Field & Stream chose for the best gifts for hunters this season. From the best hunting knife to the best spotting scope, hunting boots to waterproof bags, it’s all here.

Best Cellular Trail Camera: Browning Defender Wireless

A well-built and quality camera that takes sharp photos and videos. Amazon

At the top of the list of best gifts for hunters? Browning’s quality trail cameras. Browning offers a wide range of plan options so you can find the one that fits your needs. Camera setup is simple and easy with the Browning app that allows the user to manage settings and pictures/videos. There aren’t many other cameras out there that will beat the Defender’s .22 second trigger speed. I’ve always stayed loyal to Browning trail cameras because of their reliability and when it came time to dive into the wireless market, the Browning Defender was my choice. Coming in at $300, the Defender is worth the money for high performance, especially when you don’t get as many days in the woods to scout as you would like. -RC

Best Hunting Knife: Benchmade Saddle Mountain Skinner Fixed Blade

The S30V stainless blade retains its edge throughout the entire season. Cabela’s

I’ve used a variety of Benchmade knives over the last two decades, all of which have served me well. When it comes to the best hunting knife, there’s no doubt. I’ve grown particularly fond of the Saddle Mountain Skinner. Though it was designed with big game in mind, I’ve found the blade shape works just as well when breaking down giant Canada geese as it does field dressing deer. The CPM-S30V steel used in the 4.2-inch blade holds an edge, and offers a measure of protection against rust. Tang through handle construction means that it will stand up to the things you shouldn’t use your knife for, but will. The made-in-the-USA skinner comes with a pressure-fit leather sheath that keeps the blade handy and protected until needed. And at $155, it’s a bargain for a knife you can pass down. -JA

Best Multi Tool: Gerber Truss, Black MOLLE

Wide range of accessories and tools that come in handy in the woods and at home. Amazon

One thing that my father always stressed was that every outdoorsman should have the best multi tool. I finally took his advice and started carrying my multi tool not only in the woods, but also at home. The Gerber Truss multi tool has 17 tools built into it without compromising weight or size. I personally find the needle nose plier to be extremely useful as well as both screwdrivers and the serrated blade. It came in handy last season when I had motor troubles out duck hunting. Safe to say it comes with me on every hunt. This affordable multi tool comes in at $55 and is the definition of useful and reliable gear. -RC

Best Hunting Boots: Danner Pronghorn Insulated Gore-Tex Boots

Built for all-day comfort and stability over a variety of rough terrain. Cabela’s

Danner has updated the Pronghorn series some five times over the last 20 years, each offering improvement over the previous version. The latest go-round of the best hunting boots is built using Danner’s renown 851 last and utilizes the new TERRA FORCE NEXT foot platform to give hunters an incredibly tough, light, and stable boot. The resulting boot provides lightweight strength and support so you can cover miles in the backcountry in search of your favorite game. A Gore-Tex membrane keeps water out while letting your feet breathe, eliminating the clammy feeling often associated with hunting boots. The 800 grams of PrimaLoft provide plenty of warmth while on stand, but isn’t so much that your feet will overheat on the hike in. Danner and Vibram partnered to build the outsole, which delivers reliable traction on rugged terrain. Built in the USA, the insulated Danner Pronghorn retails for about $260. -JA

Best Spotting Scope: Vortex Razor HD Angled Spotting Scope

High-density extra-low dispersion glass and triplet apochromatic lens system delivers clear views across the entire field of view. Cabela’s

Good glass isn’t cheap and cheap glass isn’t good. But the Vortex Razor HD Gen 1 spotting scope provides excellent light transmission and clear views for less than $800, making it a bargain in the field. The high-density extra-low dispersion glass delivers excellent resolution and color fidelity for true high-definition images. A triplet apochromatic lens system means there’s no color fringing or degradation of resolution at long viewing distance for excellent resolution across the entire field of view. XR anti-reflective coatings and full multi-coatings on all air-to-glass lens surfaces increase light transmission for maximum brightness. It’ll stand up to hard use, with an ArmorTek coating protecting exterior lens surfaces from scratches, oil, and dirt. For waterproof and fog proof protection, the Razor HD Gen 1 Spotting Scope is O-ring sealed and argon purged. Pick up one of the best spotting scopes and up your glassing game in the field or on the range. -JA

Best Electronic Hearing Protection: ISOtunes Sport Advance

Rechargeable ear protection with long battery life for the range and in the field. Cabela’s

Protecting your hearing as a hunter is an important aspect of safety in the field and at the range. I know countless numbers of fellow hunters who have serious hearing loss due to hunting, shooting, and the lack of hearing protection. The ISOtunes Sport Advance is a super comfortable option for hunters looking for great ear protection without compromising the ability to hear. This pair of shooting earbuds has a tactical sound control design that allows for conversation and environmental awareness while shutting out the loud percussive noise of a firearm. I’ve found these earbuds to be extremely comfortable, and make it easy to hear your friends talk, or ducks fly overhead. I spent countless days at the skeet range this summer, and my pair of ISOtunes Sport Advance was in my ears every time. It has Bluetooth connectivity and all-day battery life. When the shots start to ring out these earbuds make for a safe and comfortable shooting experience.  -RC

Best Hunting Rain Jacket: KUIU Chugach Rain Jacket

Fully waterproof design paired with lightweight construction make for an ideal hunting rain jacket. KUIU

Being wet in the woods is not only extremely uncomfortable, but also dangerous. I started using the Chugach rain jacket this fall and I have put it through the wringer. During a hunt in Southern Idaho, this jacket protected me from a downpour while in camp. It kept me completely dry and as comfortable as I could be in the cold weather. The jacket comes in various patterns for different pursuits including the Valo pattern that is ideal for open terrain lacking cover, including dormant hardwoods, tundra, sage, underbrush, and grass. My favorite feature of the jacket is how easy it can pack down into a backpack, bag, or vest. -RC

Best Binoculars for Hunting: Vortex Diamondback HD Binoculars

Vortex’s Diamondback binoculars offer impressive brightness that shines when the sun is low. Cabela’s

Game moves most often in the low-light periods of dawn and dusk. Having binoculars that make the most of available light can make connecting with the buck of your dreams that much easier. Vortex’s Diamondback HD offers impressive brightness starting at only $220, making them an excellent bargain. An HD optical system featuring multiple anti-reflective coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces and multi-layer prism coatings are the secret sauce that provides light transmission and crystal-clear resolution way beyond their weight class. You can glass all day, thanks to the lightweight magnesium chassis that keeps the ounces down. Rubber armor on the exterior provides a secure hold and helps to absorb bumps and bruises in the field. To keep water out, and prevent internal fogging, the Diamondback HD is argon gas-purged and O-ring sealed. An included binocular harness keeps them close at hand but out of the way. -JA

Best Field Pants for Upland Hunters: Orvis Missouri Breaks Field Pants

Field pants that can withstand the toughest briar patch and remain comfortable for all-day walks. Orvis

It’s safe to say that field pants are one of the most important pieces of gear for upland hunters and great gifts for hunters. You need to be able to fight off the nastiest briars and thickest brush without becoming tired from lugging around heavy overalls or pants. The Missouri Breaks field pants do just that by combining durability and a lightweight design. The pants are made from a technical stretch base fabric that is a blend of 98% cotton and 2% spandex. The front is reinforced with an extra layer of very tightly woven cotton canvas that will help protect against thick brush or briar patches in the field. These pants handled a Western chukar hunt, Maine grouse hunt, and Northeast pheasant hunt tremendously well for me this season. Priced at $129, these are a great choice for upland hunters wanting to shed some weight in the field. -RC

Best Headlamp for Hunters: Princeton Tec Axis Rechargeable 450 Lumen Headlamp

This rechargeable headlamp offers flood, spot, and red light options to cover all scenarios. Cabela’s

Moving around before the sun comes up requires a hands-free light source. Princeton Tec’s Axis offers up to 450 lumens of night-shattering light in a rechargeable package. The Maxbright LED spot beam provides plenty of distance when you’re moving along at a good clip. Use the Maxbright LED flood beam when you’re tackling chores like field dressing or setting a decoy spread. Two red LEDs are built in for close-in tasks and protecting your night-adjusted vision. Long-life lithium-ion rechargeable batteries are included, and conveniently charge with a micro-USB port. The built-in battery power meter shows when charging is complete, and modern rechargeable battery technology delivers a consistent output in a wide range of temperatures. This made in the USA headlamp can be yours for about $60. -JA

Best Gifts for Duck Hunters: Sitka Gradient Cold Weather Bib

Snug fit and extremely warm underlayer bib for cold days in the duck blind. Amazon

Staying warm in the duck blind is always on the top of my list, especially in the late season. If I’m not warm, then I’m uncomfortable and unfocused on the hunt. I’ve been using the gradient cold weather bibs on my recent duck hunts as the temperatures have started to drop here in the Northeast. On a recent hunt in Maine, I threw these bibs under my waders and helped break sheet ice to set the spread. This is one of the best layering options for duck hunters and the bibs will not compress under pressure while wading in water. The low profile design is ideal for hunters and the snug fit makes sure the bibs won’t ride up when you put your waders on. Make sure to check out their sizing guide as you want a proper fit to get the best performance. When the temps start to drop and the ducks start to fly, these bibs will keep you toasty in the marsh all day. -RC

Best Rangefinder: Sig Sauer KILO2200BDX OD Rangefinder

One of fastest rangefinders on the market, packed with a suite of digital solutions for long range hunters and shooters. Cabela’s

Sig Sauer has been well-respected for their excellent arms since their inception in 1853. In 2015, they jumped into optics in a big way. Their rangefinders, like the KILO2200BDX OD, were instantly well-received, thanks to the industry’s fastest digital signal processor. The KILO2200BDX OD Rangefinder provides near-instantaneous downrange readings up to 1,000 yards on deer, 1,400 yards on trees, and 2,200 yards on reflective fixed targets. Capabilities of the fast little unit include both line-of-sight and angle-modified ranging, so you’ll never have to guess how to compensate from your tree stand. Long range shooters and hunters will appreciate the Onboard Applied Ballistics Ultralite calculator that provides a ballistic solution in the rangefinder display and can be used with or without a BDX rifle scope. The KILO2200BDX OD can send ballistic drop data to a BDX Ballistic Data Xchange scope via Bluetooth to provide an illuminated holdover dot and wind hold, and can interface with the BDX smartphone app. All this, and a price tag around $280. And Sig is so confident in their optics they stand behind them with one of the best warranties in the business. These make for great gifts for hunters -JA

Best Jacket for Upland Hunters: Orvis Upland Hunting Softshell Jacket

A comfortable jacket to wear under a hunting vest to protect againt brairs and thick brush. Orvis

Mastering a layering system is often one of the most difficult things to do for upland hunters. The Orvis upland hunting softshell jacket combines breathability, durability, and comfort. It fits nicely and is super comfortable for an all-day hunt. I wear my vest over this jacket and it keeps me protected from thick brush in the grouse woods and adds another layer of warmth on the windy days in the pheasant fields. It is water-resistant and the contour cuffs design help protect your hands from briars, wind, and debris. It comes in a slate and tan/blaze color. The jacket is so comfortable that I enjoy wearing it around during the fall as an everyday jacket. There isn’t any upland hunter who wouldn’t enjoy wearing this in the woods. -RC

Best Hunting GPS: Garmin eTrex 32x Handheld GPS

The eTrex 32 is priced like an entry-level unit, but has big features to help you in the backcountry. Cabela’s

Garmin’s eTrex 32x fits easily in a shirt pocket, but is stuffed with a lot of tech. Though it is priced right in line with a lot of entry-level models, the 32x includes an electronic compass and barometric altimeter. These two features are welcome when navigating the most out-of-bounds section of BLM land, helping make sense of your location even if you don’t have the right map downloaded. But odds are good you can see where you are on the preloaded TopoActive maps. These feature routable roads and trails so you can plan your trip whether you’re hiking, fishing, or hunting. You can add even more maps, thanks to the 8GB of internal memory and a microSD card slot. A subscription to BirdsEye Satellite Imagery makes this an even more powerful hunting tool that works past the edge of cell service. -JA

Best Luggage Bag for Hunters: YETI Crossroads 29″ Luggage Bag

A great luggage bag for hunters flying across the country with multiple compartments for strong organization. YETI

There is no arguing that big hunts call for large amounts of gear and clothes. The YETI crossroads line is some of the best luggage bags on the market. I like the crossroads 29″ for big hunts that entail long travel and flying. The bag is extremely durable and water-resistant. You don’t have to worry about bag handlers being careful and it provides a great amount of storage and organization. The bag has a 70/30 split clamshell opening that has a mesh divider to keep clothes separate. I like to put my boots, jackets, and hunting vest in the large compartment and smaller items in the mesh pockets. The bag also comes with small and medium YETI packing cubes for even more organization. The built-in wheels and extension handle make carrying the bag through the airport a breeze. Hunters need durability and organization out of luggage bags—and the YETI crossroads line provides just that. -RC

Best for Conservation: Backcountry Hunters & Anglers

Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is a nonpartisan group of sportsmen and -women that fight for the wild places we all enjoy and the outdoor opportunities they represent. BHA

Having the latest and greatest hunting equipment doesn’t mean much when you don’t have a place to use it. Backcountry Hunters & Anglers has sought to conserve North America’s heritage of hunting and fishing in a natural setting since they were founded in 2004. From the Steens Mountain Wilderness in Oregon to the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness in Idaho and the Boundary Waters of Minnesota and beyond, BHA has worked to protect the wild lands that game and sportsmen rely on. A membership to BHA helps them fight for the public lands that give us the places to practice our passions.

Field and Stream is here to help you find the most useful and expert shopping recommendations for the best gift ideas. Searching for more unique gifts? Check out more gift guides here: Best Fishing Gifts or the Best Father’s Day Gifts.