2016 Gear List: Billy Kennington

2016 Gear List: Billy Kennington

In regards to my gear list, 2016 has brought some significant changes. I have upgraded three of my main gear areas including: clothing, pack, and finally safety equipment.  I anticipate writing a full review of these items throughout the fall so please stay tuned for more specifics!

After much debate, I decided to upgrade and utilize Sitka Gear this year.  This decision did not come easy due to great quality in various companies that offer specialized hunting clothing. However, of all the brands that I researched, Sitka’s performance layering system fit my style of high country hunting the best. Sitka was the most versatile and has me covered from early season scouting, archery, and mid to late season rifle elk hunts.  Sitka is lightweight and comes in multiple tried and tested versatile performance fabrics. Sitka has a proven track record, high level of durability/functionality, and frankly the gore-opti fade concealment pattern is just plain sweet! I have bounced around purchasing numerous packs over the past few years and never have been truly happy with the functionality, fit, and weight of those packs.

Earlier this winter, I was able to borrow and complete some heavy pack training with a pack designed and produced by Exo Mountain Gear. This pack was the first that I have encountered that I was satisfied with in regards to form, functionality, and versatility. I was even more pleased that a newer version of the Exo pack was released this summer with a redesigned titanium frame and belt system. After learning that an already great pack was even better, I quickly purchased the new Exo Mountain Gear K2 3500. I have already used this pack on numerous heavy training outings and also numerous overnight and day scouting trips. This pack has met and far exceeded my expectations. I look forward to coming out heavy with it this Fall!

We are expecting our third child in October. To make sure that my wife could contact me as needed, I decided to look into the various satellite communication devices available. Due to the lower contract monthly fee, price of the unit, and overall quality of service, I opted for the Delorme Inreach SE. This equipment allows me to send or receive txt messages anywhere in the world. I can also contact help immediately in the case of an emergency. Already the Inreach SE has been a great addition to my gear arsenal and it has already become an important part of my gear. I foresee using the Inreach SE for many years to come.

As a disclaimer, I realize that trends within the industry continue to push towards lighter and more efficient gear.  Unfortunately, I am on a limited budget and can only upgrade a few items each year and sometimes just can’t afford the latest and greatest.  I realize that my pack may be heavier than some, but I do take into consideration the full aspects of my gear list including: price, functionality, weight, and safety.

As in most mountain hunter’s arsenal of gear the items that I choose to take is dependent on type of terrain, species that I am hunting, weather, and days in the field. I have broken down my typical gear lists to include: a list of “on person item” (I choose not to include weights on this area since they are “on person”); a baseline of items always on my back and then gear that I am using for scouting, archery, and rifle seasons. On Person Items:

  1. Sitka Mountain Pant
  2. Sitka Core Light Weight Hoodie
  3. Altitude Outdoors Hat
  4. Solomon X Ultra Mid 2 GTX Goretex Hiking Boots
  5. Dickey Merino Wool Socks
  6. Vortex Viper HD 10x42 Binos with Harness
  7. Mountain Smith Carbon Lite Trekking Poles
  8. IPhone 5s
  9. Hunting License/Hunters Safety
  10. BIC lighter
  11. Wind Checker
Pack Baseline:
  1. Exo Mountain Gear K2 3500 Back Pack with Crib Load Panel : 5 lb. 8.8 oz.
  2. Big Agnes Seed House SL 2 Tent: 2 lb. 13.2 oz.
  3. Kelty Dry Down 30 Degree Sleeping Bag: 2 lb. 11.4 oz.
  4. REI Stratus Sleeping Pad: 1 lb. 4.2 oz.
  5. Jet Boil Flash Lite Cooking System with 1 Can JetBoil Fuel, Jet Boil Spoon: 1 lb. 3 oz.
  6. Vortex Viper HD 15-45x65 Angled Spotting Scope: 3 lb. 3.8 oz.
  7. Vortex High Country Tripod: 2 lb. 4 oz.
  8. Vortex Bino Adapter: 4.4 oz.
  9. S4 Scope Adapter: 4.6 oz.
  10. Black Diamond Spot Headlamp: 3 oz.
  11. Intovate Battery Pack with Iphone and Inreach cords – 5 oz.
  12. Delorme Inreach SE – 6.8 oz.
  13. First Aid, Emergency Blanket, Fire Starter, Toilet Paper- 9.6 oz.
  14. Sawyer MINI Water Filter and Bag: 2.8 oz.
  15. Toiletries – 2.2 oz
Pack Baseline Weight: 342.8 oz. or 21.43 lbs. Scouting Gear:
  1. Sitka Kelvin Light Hoodie : 1 lb. 1.2 oz.
  2. Sitka Traverse Glove : 3.6 oz.
  3. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Jacket) : 14.2 oz.
  4. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Pant): 15.6 oz.
Total Scouting Weight (Baseline + Scouting): 393.4 oz. or 24.59 lbs. Archery Gear:
  1. Sitka Kelvin Light Hoodie : 1 lb. 1.2 oz.
  2. Sitka Jetstream Jacket: 1 lb. 13.3 oz.
  3. Sitka Traverse Glove : 3.6 oz.
  4. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Jacket) : 14.2 oz.
  5. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Pant): 15.6 oz.
  6. Wool Stocking Socks: 5.4 oz.
  7. Bushnell Elite 1 Mile Range Finder and Badlands case: 13.8 oz.
  8. Motorola Talkabout MT350R Radio – 8.4 oz.
  9. Kill Kit: 2 - Allen Ultra-Light Game Bags, Havalon Piranta Knife/2 blades, 10 ft. Paracord: 9 oz.
  10. Hoyt Charger Bow, 8” Bee Stinger Stabilizer, Montana Black Gold Ascent Verdict Single Pin Site, Trophy Ridge 5 Arrow Quiver, Trophy Ridge Rest, 5 Gold Tip Pro Hunter 400 Spine Arrows, 5 100 grain Trophy Taker Shuttle T-Lock Broadheads, Scott Silverhorn Release – 6 lbs. 9.2 oz
Total Archery Weight (Baseline + Archery): 564.5 oz. or 35.28 lbs. Midseason/Late Season Rifle:
  1. Sitka Kelvin Light Hoodie : 1 lb. 1.2 oz.
  2. Sitka Jetstream Jacket: 1 lb. 9.8 oz.
  3. Sitka Traverse Glove : 3.6 oz.
  4. Sitka Core Heavy Weight Bottoms: 8 oz.
  5. Sitka Core Long Sleeve: 4.6 oz.
  6. Goretex Heavyweight Glove: 4.8 oz.
  7. Kenetrek Gaiter – 9.8 oz.
  8. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Jacket) : 14.2 oz.
  9. Kings XKG Rain Gear (Pant): 15.6 oz.
  10. Bushnell Elite 1 Mile Range Finder and Badlands case: 13.8 oz.
  11. Motorola Talkabout MT350R Radio – 8.4 oz.
  12. Kill Kit: 2 - Allen Ultra-Light Game Bags, Havalon Piranta Knife/2 blades, 10 ft. Paracord: 9 oz.
  13. 10 - 7mm Remington Mag 168 grain Berger VLD Reloaded Rifle Cartridges in Crooked Horn Case: 13.2 oz.
  14. Remington Sendero SF II 7mm Remington Mag Rifle with Vortex Viper HSLR 4-16x50 Scope and Cover, Talley Rings, and Butler Creek Sling: 11 lbs.
  15. (Depending on terrain and style of hunting sometimes I switch to a Winchester Model 70 270 WSM with Vortex Viper HS 4-16x44 Scope and Cover, Talley Rings, and Butler Creek Sling: 9 lbs.

Total Rifle Weight (Baseline + Rifle) : 666.8 oz or 41.68 lbs.

Varying Weight Items:

Water: Platypus Water Carrier 2 L : 5 lbs. (How much water I carry in my pack depends again on terrain and availability of a water source. I usually do pack in 3 L if I haven’t been in the area and have to find a water source)

Food: 1.65 lbs. per day. (I plan on doing another article outlining my food preference and specifics as to what I am using. However, I need to further test and refine various food items with a few more days in the field).

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