12 Waterfowl Items Not to Leave Home
Bob McNally 11.24.15
* Hand-held flashlight, extra batteries and bulb, because you can’t find your hunting spot, dog, gear, or even your gun in the dark.
* Wader Belt made of leather or heavy nylon and snugged tight around your waist will keep most water out if you fall or step in a hole. In deep water or in a river, the belt can trap air, keep you afloat, and in the extreme, save your life.
* Cooler full of snacks, lunch, drinks, or hot coffee makes a morning in the marsh much more enjoyable.
* Camo netting or cloth covers boat, motor, gear, etc., and helps conceal everything from the ever-watchful eyes of passing ducks.
* Compass, because never believe you can’t get lost in the dark, and GPS isn’t foolproof.
* Binoculars help spot ducks on the horizon and on a distant marsh.
* Paddle and pushpole. Carry both, because one day you’ll be glad you did.
* Waterproof box keeps maps and other important gear dry and easy to locate. A camo-painted cooler, old army ammo box, or plastic dove stool “bucket” are ideal.
* Ear plugs. Nothing destroys hearing faster than shooting lots of high-velocity duck loads or sitting beside a companion who does.
* Spares, including calls, shotshells, gloves, face mask, camo cap, dog whistle, extra sweater or jacket, Gortex rain gear, ear plugs, eyeglasses/sunglasses, and dog lead. Some hunters working muddy areas even tote an extra shotgun in case one jams.
* Three-feet (minimum) of 100-pound test monofilament fishing line should be tied to an attachment screw lug of an outboard motor. In shallow duck grass and mud, a motor’s water-cooling outflow hole can jam, which can overheat the outboard and ruin it. Check the outflow hole periodically, and if it isn’t “spitting” water, “clean” or unjam it with the stiff mono that’s conveniently tied to a motor screw lug.