I love hunting. Man versus nature. My cunning against the animal's. That's why I take only the most basic gear, because I believe in the hunter's code of "fair chase."
For instance, some hunters who track coyotes use semiautomatic rifles that fire 30 to 40 shots in about 10 seconds. That's not hunting. The magazine on my Browning semiautomatic ($690) limits me to only five shots every two seconds. And don't forget: It takes at least another 10 seconds to reload.
I believe in the burden of the hunt before the glory of the kill. That's why I won't use camouflaged remote digital movie cameras when deer hunting. How hard is it to sit in the cabin and watch on a monitor until the deer show up? I use only my motion-activated Buckshot 35 Infrared Scouting still camera ($380) with date and time stamping.
Of course, in the interest of maintaining a fair and equitable hunt, I do allow myself some of the same advantages as the game. For example, deer can maneuver their ears to pinpoint sound. To make up for that, I allow myself to use the Game Finder Mega Ears Hearing Muff ($160), which allows me to hear a bug's arthritic knees creak.
And because deer can see better than us in low light—their eyes can gather 10 times as much light as humans'—it's only fair that I use the U.S. Night Vision 441 riflescope ($2,570) with infrared light source. With one of those puppies I could see to the back of a Tora Bora cave. In daylight I'll switch to my Bushnell Mini HOLOsight ($250) scope, which projects a red laser dot on the hide of the target. Hey, if a deer could use one on me, you don't think the sonuvagun would?
Deer are a worthy adversary because of their keen sense of smell. That's why I feel forced to put every stitch of my ultra-warm hunting clothing through the charcoal-filtration system of my portable Scent Master ($160) to remove all human odors.
I'll also wear my Primetime Scent Wafers ($9)—now in cow elk urine! I'll use my Scent Machine ($50) to release a precisely measured aerosol spray of scent every 3-5 minutes as I walk. And when my Wildlife Research Ultimate Scrape Dripper ($20) drips doe urine scent, it convinces bucks that does are around, not me. You ought to see the bucks' faces when their date with a hottie becomes a date with hot lead! Doh!
O.K., I admit I allow myself a few creature comforts. For instance, I'll hunt from my heated camouflaged tree stand ($240) with cushioned back, armrests, lumbar support, umbrella and footrest, but at least I didn't do what some guys do and add a DVD player. Like I say, I'm a purist.
And true, I'll pack my handheld Global Positioning System device ($350) with electronic compass, barometer and database; my radio-controlled, 400,000-candlepower spotlight ($216); my hands-free, voice-activated, two-way radio ($130); my Carry-Lite Deer Decoy ($140); my Rattlin' Antlers ($23); my Cough Silencer ($20); and my Grunt-Snort-Wheeze Deer Call ($15). But what are you going to do, put the genie back in the bottle?
It's a battle of wits, I tell you. Sure, some of my hunting buddies laugh at my full-length Shaggie camouflage coat and hood ($150)—the one that makes me look like Cousin Itt from The Addams Family—but think about the risks I take wearing it! Some tanked-up yokel sees what looks like a giant pile of leaves clomping through the forest, you don't think he'll fire on me like I'm in a carnival shooting gallery? And remember, Bobby Knight could be out there!