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Deer hunters want gear that will increase their chances of success. While nothing can guarantee a big buck walking by your stand, there are pieces of equipment that can improve your days afield. Modern trail cams now let you know what deer are doing at the click of a button and tree saddles are so light you can hike miles in and still get elevated.
There are plenty of hunting gimmicks and gadgets that aren’t worth it. But there are also plenty that are. That’s why we asked our deer hunting experts as well as the Field & Stream staff for their best gear recommendations. This list is a cumulation of field tested gear that has helped our team in the woods. We can’t guarantee your deer hunter will punch their tag, but this gear will make their experience in the woods more enjoyable and comfortable. Here are the best gifts for deer hunters this year.
Best Deer Hunting Gifts: Reviews and Recommendations
Take your scouting to the next level with the Moultrie Mobile Edge Pro cellular trail camera. There’s a lot to love about the new trail cam, including 36 megapixel resolution, enhanced night vision, and FHD 1080p video with HD audio, all for crystal clear imaging. But perhaps the biggest highlight is the False Trigger Elimination technology, which greatly reduces image triggers from tree branches, grass, or any non-target species movement. A.k.a. it only sends you pictures of exactly what you want exactly when you want it.
This stand was dubbed The Luxury Suite by one of my hunting buddies. It’s a fitting name considering the nylon mesh backrest and mesh flip-up seat are very comfortable, and the padded armrests and flip-down footrest are features that just help a guy settle in and not fidget. Oh yeah, there’s even an accessory shelf (with a beverage holder no less) you can mount on an armrest. I also love the powder coated finish, which results in safe and secure steps and reduces clanging and banging. Finally, the nut-bolt combos come with silicone washers that eliminate squeaks and creaks. —Scott Bestul
The M18 Savanna is the first affordable rifle I’ve seen that I’d be proud to own. In fact, I bought it after our annual Rifle Test. What I like most about the M18 is that it’s still a Mauser, made by the same people who make five-figure-priced safari rifles. Aesthetically and ergonomically, it feels and looks like a hunting rifle should. It has a high-quality, cold-hammer-forged barrel, an adjustable trigger, a three-position safety, a 60-degree bolt throw, and a threaded muzzle. Make no mistake, the M18 is still a plastic, utilitarian rifle, but it’s made from the kind of plastic that feels like it can take a beating. After the deer hunter in your life shoots the M18, they won’t want to abuse it. —Matthew Every
You can’t go wrong with a classic gift because it never goes out of style. And it’s hard to find a more classic piece of deer hunting equipment than a Buck 110 folding knife. Buck offers custom 110 folders on their website. You can choose from different blade shapes, scales, leather pouches, and custom engraving to put together the perfect gift blade. There’s also the option for high-quality steel, like S30V, for years of use in the field. The Buck Custom Knife Shop will also customize eight other kinds of Buck knives from fixed blades to folders. Just keep in mind that there’s a six- to eight-week lead time, so you’ll want to put your order in soon. —M.E.
For hunters who own an expensive pair of binoculars, a quality binocular harness is a must-have item. Vortex adds a ton of value to this setup by including the rangefinder pouch and a bonus neck strap for your optic standard. That’s something not many harness makers are doing. Additionally, I just love the whisper-quiet operation of the pouch here. Vortex clearly did a lot of testing to make something that protects an optic, but isn’t going to spook that buck or bull of a lifetime. – Travis Smola
The Carnivore chews up the toughest cuts and turns them into burgers and sausage like nothing. You could probably put the whole deer in this thing, skin on, and it wouldn’t bat an eye. (Don’t put the whole deer in.) It’s quiet, doesn’t heat up quickly, and has a Cool-Tek Gel Ice Pak that keeps the grinder head cold for smoother grinding. It comes with two grinding plates, a stomper, and a sausage stuffing kit. If this model seems a little too pricey, there’s a ½-horse version for less. But I think a 3/4 -horse (at least) is the way to go. Plus, you can offset the extra cost by just getting another deer. —Dave Hurteau
I’ve been utilizing the Reveal X Gen 2.0 during my early season scouting and it’s proven quite addicting having images sent directly to my cell phone all day. The Reveal takes some very nice images both during the day and night. It was also surprisingly easy to setup. Tactacam gives the best of both worlds with this offering by including an SD card slot that allows the user to use it like a traditional trail cam if they choose.
The Vivahome 440-Pound Electric Hoist takes a lot of the grunt work out of hanging and processing a deer after the harvest. This hoist is compact, sets up easily, and will hang the heaviest buck with the press of a button. Plus, at a very affordable price point that’s only little over $100, there’s actually a decent chance one of your loves could spend that much on you. In my case, we’ll see. I may have to buy one myself after Christmas. If I remember. —D.H.
The MEAT! Butcher Knife Set and Knife Rollup are ideal for the hunter who processes on their own. Each knife came razor sharp, and they performed great on the deer I cut up with them. The knives are made with a full-tang construction and have a no-slip rubberized handle. For about 100 bucks, you get a curved boning knife, a straight boning knife, a breaking knife, a granton butcher knife, a cimeter knife, and a sharpening rod. Honestly, I don’t know what makes any one of those shapes better than the other, but when I unfurl the roll, I look like I know what the hell I’m doing, and that’s half the battle. —M.E.
The Muddy Extreme Multihanger is a great accessory gift for only $13. It has sharp metal teeth that easily screw into any tree with a support leg for a secure mount. They are also vinyl-coated to prevent scratches or damage to your bow or gun. I hunt whitetails from the ground, and the Extreme Multihanger works just as well there as it does in the tree. I throw my pack on the hook for easy organization and keep my gun in my hands. The hook pivots in any direction for your desired setup. —R.C.
Ozonic technology has made a believer out of me. I had an evening this October when 16 does and fawns walked directly downwind of my stand on an unexpected path, and I held my breath each time as they’d stop, test the air, and then move along. Not a single one of them spooked, and there is no doubt in my mind that it was because I had the HR500 running. It works. —W.B.
The Maven ranges reflective objects out to 2,400 yards and deer out to 650, which is plenty far for most hunters. You can toggle between a black or red LED display, line-of-site or angle-compensation readings, and between field or forest modes, the latter of which makes it easier to range objects through brush and branches. But what impresses me most about the CRF.1 is the quality of the 6×22 optic and the speed and reliability of its readings—all at an affordable price. It’s a can’t-miss gift. —D.H.
I carried the Raghorn round the elk woods for a week in September and finally put it to use on a mule deer I shot in late October. It didn’t disappoint. The Raghorn is lightweight, sharp, and durable. Designed for backcountry adventures, it performs just as well in the deer woods. The 4-inch drop point steel blade gives this knife a lightweight feel (3.56 oz) and durable construction. Plus, the fixed blade allows for excellent control and great push-cut performance. —R.C.
A simple bag of deer corn is a great gift for that hunting buddy who only sees a deer when he’s helping drag yours. The truth is you might as well buy two or three bags. You don’t want anyone to think you’re a novice, and admit it, you could probably use a little help with your deer hunting too. —Richard Mann
If you’ve got a serious deer hunter on your gift list, get them a tough, quiet set of climbing sticks that won’t break the bank. Each section of the Ranger sticks come with angled, cleated steps that ensure a non-slip ascent. Each section is 32”, which means a 3-pack will get you plenty high in a tree. If you need to get a few feet higher, simply add a screw-in step or, better yet, add Hawk’s Monkey Bar strap-on steps, which come in a 4-pack for $35. Your hunter will get as high as they need to go with an easy and secure setup. —S.B.
With either 800 or 1,200 grams of Prima Loft insulation, the Irish Setter MudTreks are a solid gift for hunters in colder climates that are also exceptionally muddy. That insulation just radiates heat better than any other rubber boot I’ve ever usedl. Combine that warmth with a surprisingly comfortable footbed, and you’ve got a solid muck boot that’s versatile for a variety of situations. It’s perfect for my corner of southwest Michigan, which sees standing water in most sections of the deer woods almost year-round. -T.S.
Kuiu launched their Pro Brush Pants back in March, and I’ve been putting a pair through their paces ever since. These pants are purposely built with reinforced panels on the legs to protect from thorns, briars, and brush. I was able to breeze through some normally nasty, thorn-choked spots in my area during shed hunting season like they weren’t even there. These would be great for any hunter who lives in an area filled with dense thorns and briars. I think they also have the versatility for upland hunters to bust some serious brush for pheasants and quail.
This tenderizing tool features forty-eight stainless steel spring-loaded blades ride up and down in a sturdy handle. These blades slice through fascia, fats, and connective tissue to take the chew out of the meat. The tool is a cinch to use. Just place it on the meat, press the handle firmly, and repeat. The results on tougher cuts such as flank steak are striking, and even on cuts that need little tenderizing, such as backstrap, the tool will take them to the next level. Since the blades cut small slits into the meat, marinades penetrate deeper and more quickly than they would with a fork. I’ve used this device on venison, bear, and duck, and simply put: It works. —T. Edward Nickens
Why Trust Us
For more than 125 years, Field & Stream has been providing readers with honest and authentic coverage of outdoor gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outdoors, and that passion comes through in our product reviews. You can count on F&S to keep you up to date on the best new gear. And when we write about a product—whether it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cover the good and the bad, so you know exactly what to expect before you decide to make a purchase.