Best Deer Hunting Checklist for Rifle Hunters

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You work hard to make time and finances available for every hunting trip you take.

Do not ruin your efforts by forgetting to take a vital piece of equipment with you. Sometimes you have to pack quickly or while you are busy with other distractions (like work).

This 5-page deer hunting checklist free PDF will make the whole process quicker and more effective and help you cover everything you need.

Introducing Youths to Deer Stalking and Hunting

Part of the excitement is prepping for your hunting trip. Personally, I love the whole process of planning what gear I will be taking on my hunting trip.  Putting time into your preparation will get into the right mind frame well before you take your first steps in the woods

Download the deer hunting checklist free pdf before your next trip. Add, subtract or adapt as your particular hunting circumstances require.

This checklist covers rifle and gun equipment. For Bowhunters, you will simply need to add your specialized equipment.

Pre-Hunt Preparation Checklist

Preparing properly for your hunting trip is not only fun it is essential for a safe and successful hunt. Start your preparation the right way with this part of your deer hunting checklist.

  • Hunting License
  • Hunting Tags
  • Check Local Regulations
  • Obtain Any Land Access Permits
  • Cash / Credit Cards
  • Clean Rifle
  • Sight In Rifle
  • Inspect All Equipment & Replace as Needed
  • Sharpen All Knives
  • I.D
  • Wash Clothing Use Scent Blocker
  • Make Copy Of Hunt Details
  • Leave Copy Of Hunt Details With Friend or Family
  • Tell Your Wife / Kids You Love Them

Vehicle / ATV Preparation Checklist

As we often hunt in remote areas miles away from so-called civilization it is very important to make sure your vehicles are in good working condition.

Make sure vehicle and ATV have had a regular service and inspection then use this checklist before you depart.

  •  Service And Inspection
  • Extra Fuel Container
  • Jump Start Cables / Power Pack
  • Spare Tires
  • Jack
  • Oil Check
  • Tire Chains
  • Anti-Freeze
  • Tire Changing Equipment
  • Spare Belts
  • Check Batteries
  • Towing Equipment
  • Coolant
  • Vehicle Tools Kit

Safety Equipment Checklist

The last thing any hunter wants is an accident or major incident when out in the field. The majority of accidents can be avoided by checking you have the right safety equipment.

Unfortunately by the very nature of our chosen past time accidents do happen so having the right safety equipment will also help minimize any adverse impacts that could ruin your or yours buddy life. Be prepared!

  • First Aid Kit
  • Blaze Orange
  • Survival Blanket
  • Two Way Radios
  •  Flares
  • Cell or Satellite Phone
  • Waterproof Matches
  • Pain Relievers
  • Flashlight & Batteries
  • Whistle
  • Safety Harness For Tree Stands
  • Medications Required

Rifle / Gun Equipment Checklist

This deer hunting checklist free pdf is aimed for the rifle hunter so Ensure you have made the necessary preparations and have all your firearms in good working order so when that shot presents itself you have full confidence in your equipment.

  • Firearm/s
  • Ammunition
  • Scope Covers
  • Trigger Locks
  • Scope Cleaning Wipes
  • Rifle Sling
  • Holster
  • Bore Snake
  • Ammo Belt
  • Shooting Sticks
  • Soft Carry Case
  • Hard Carry Case
  • Basic Cleaning Kit
  • Ammo Case

Optics Equipment Checklist

Try to invest in the best optics you can. Binos and spotting scope. After your firearms, and safety equipment this is probably the most important piece of equipment you will carry.

Being able to judge the size and quality of your buck from a distance is critical in helping you decide to close in or pass and move on.

  • Binos
  • Bino Harness
  • Spotting Scope
  • Cleaning Cloth
  • Range Finder
  • Spare Batteries

Navigation Equipment Checklist

Getting lost in the wilderness is no fun and can be very dangerous if you are in new territory. With today’s technology keeping track of where you and your buddies are is simple and it also makes a great reference for future hunts by keeping track of the ground you have covered.

  • GPS
  • Compass
  • Topo Maps

Clothing & Footwear Checklist

Being warm dry and comfortable makes for an enjoyable hunting trip. This part of the deer hunting checklist will obviously vary depending on where and when you are hunting.

The trick is to make sure you are covered any with any type hunting conditions is to use layers of clothing.  Layers of clothing have the benefit of keeping you warmer, drier and allow for more freedom of movement compared to wearing one o2 big bulky garments.

You can also pack for different conditions and then just wear what the climate dictates once you are at the hunting site.

  • Cammo Jacket
  • Cammo Pants
  • Parka With Hood
  • Hunting Vest
  • Rain Jacket / Pants
  • Windbreaker
  • Sweaters
  • Thermal Underwear
  • Thermal Base Layers
  • Gloves & Muffs
  • Cammo Face Mask
  • ​Cammo Cap
  • Wool or Knit Cap
  • Belt/s
  • Hunting Boots
  • Socks Thick & Thin
  • Camp Boots
  • Travel Shoes
  • Gaiotrs
  • Camp Clothes

Other Hunting Equipment Checklist

Do not fall into the trap of carrying every new fang-dangled latest gizmo in your backpack. As you will be carrying your pack often for many miles a day pack only what you need for that particular hunt.

Remember you will hopefully be carrying a lot of fresh game meat after your hunt so you want to leave plenty of room in your pack.

  • Backpack
  • Survival Knife
  • Tree Stand
  • Hunting Seat
  • Calls / Bugles
  • Scent Reduction Spray
  • Wind Checker
  • Day / Fanny Pack
  • Lure Scent
  • Ground Blind
  • Trail Camera
  • Water Bottle

Animal Harvest Equipment Checklist

Now you need to take care of that deer once it is on the ground. This section of the deer hunting checklist is very important because having the right equipment to deal with your kill makes life a whole lot easier.

  • Folding Knife
  • Extra Knife Blades
  • Meat Carry Bags
  • Bone Saws
  • Permanent Marker
  • Salt For Hides
  • Folding Multi-Tool
  • Rubber Latex Gloves
  • Block & Tackle
  • Tag Zip Ties
  • String
  • Plastic Bags
  • Fixed Blade Knife
  • Drag Rope
  • Para Cord
  • Orange Tape Surveyors

Camping Equipment Checklist

If you are out in the woods for a few days or more having a good camp to return back you will make your hunting experience all the better.

Here are a few essential items for any camping trip:

  • Tent
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Air Mattress Sleep Pad
  • Pillow
  • Shovel
  • Lighter Matches
  • Generator
  • Duct Tape
  • Camp Stove and Fuel
  • Cooler
  • Cooking Equipment
  • Cups and Plates
  • Fire Starters
  • Trash Bags
  • Lighting Lantern
  • Rope
  • Camp Chair
  • Tarp
  • Dish Cleaning
  • Knives Spoons Forks
  • Toilet Paper
  • Saws Chain Hand
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Foil

Food Checklist

As Napoleon said an army marches on its stomach!. Being well fed and hydrated properly will allow you to hunt stronger for longer and smarter.

Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to food so this section of the deer hunting checklist can be adapted as you see fit.

Here are some items to get you thinking

  • Water
  • Coffee and Tea
  • Tinned Soup & Opener
  • Chocolate
  • Tinned Beans
  • Rice
  • Fruit and Nuts
  • Jerky Venison
  • Vegetables
  • Energy Bars
  • Seasonings
  • Fresh & Powder Milk
  • Sandwich Bread & Fillings
  • Range of Meats
  • Instant Noodles
  • Pasta

Other Luggage Checklist

Additional items to help you pack I have listed here under other luggage. The simple rule is the less number of separate items the easier it is to load up your vehicle and the less likely you are to leave something sitting on the front porch.

  • Duffel Bag
  • Toiletry Bag
  • Packing Containers

Other Personal Items Checklist

  • Watch
  • Toothbrush & Paste
  • Headlamp
  • Memory Cards
  • Pens and Paper
  • Fishing Gear
  • Waterproof Bags
  • Baking Soda For Chaf & Scent Control
  • Tape Measure
  • Soap & Shower Kit
  • Wipes & Wash Cloth
  • Camera
  • Bug Repellent
  • Glassess
  • Pee Bottle
  • Alarm Clock
  • Sun Block
  • Shaving Gear
  • Towle
  • Lotion
  • Video GoPro
  • Magazines & Books
  • iPod
  • Tripod
  • Ear Plugs
  • Mirror
  • Lip Balm

Final Thoughts On a Deer Hunting Checklist

Take the hassle and stress out of the preparation process by downloading this 5-page deer hunting checklist free pdf.

And most importantly don’t drive several miles down the road and do the old “oh shit I forgot to pack……..”

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