Top 7 Favorites from 2022 – Essential Gun Gear for Guys and Gals
Eve Flanigan 01.02.23
Do we ever have enough gun stuff? Of course not. There’s always something wonderful to buy that’ll make your life as a hunter, home defender, or range rat just a little better. There’s no time like the onset of the dead of winter to pick up your spirits with new gear. At least that’s my excuse. Here are seven of my fave gun gear picks from 2022.
Upgrade Those Pistol Sights. Glock and Glock-compatible sight users have a new option in the form of tritium night sights. In what this shooter considers to be a necessary, non-gimmicky upgrade for any pistol owned for defensive use, XS Sights and American Tactical each offer good options.
Tritium night sights from American Tactical have black metal housing, thereby overcoming one of the frequent criticisms by those who object to polymer sights. They fit Gen 1-5 double stack Glocks (models 17, 19, 22, 23, 26, and so on). Pick them up for $89.95 by direct order.
Be Your Own Sight-Smith. New from XS Sights is their Inline Sight Pusher for Glock-compatible sights. Their new Sight Pusher is made to be portable and easy to use, whereas many of its predecessors are bulky and not range-friendly. The new rear sight pusher has an aluminum billet body and brass pusher with convenient hash marks so movement is easy to measure. Turning the mechanism is done with the included Allen wrench. XS Sights is also making a new Glock front sight tool. These tools are made so the casual shooter can do a professional job of sight installation and adjustment. The tool can be purchased alone or packaged with XS Sights’ tritium night sights. They’re housed in metal and the front sight appears larger during the day, keeping with the XS “big dot” intuitive front sight acaquisition philosophy. The company offers a helpful instruction video on setting up and using the tools. I used it to replace the Glock sights on my Lone Wolf LTD and it worked without any fuss. XS kindly includes finish protector padding, oil, and thread locker in the sturdy Sight Pusher box to make it a handy one-stop kit.
Fisher Space Pen is the company that famously makes a gravity-impervious ink pen, a concept that’s never lost on people whose writing doesn’t always take place at a desk. Their new Trekker Pen was made with hikers and hunters, or anyone who needs to economize on space and weight, in mind. This plain-case, black ink pen is slim and shorter than normal. It ships with a handy black lanyard, has a sturdy metal ring through the end for hanging, and also comes with a lightweight carabiner. Whether worn around the neck or hanging from a tent loop, this pen provides on-the-go convenience for making notes. I’ve been using it with the carabiner on duty as a security guard, as my uniform shirt has “women’s” pockets that don’t accommodate a standard pen. (Looking at you, Propper). This little pen helps me stay prepared and professional despite the shortcomings of my uniform’s design. Need a gift for that special outdoorsy friend? Fisher will personalize a Trekker with the engraving of your choice. $48
Retten1 Forend TQ Mount is the product of Former high-risk prison corrections officer Jason Kollander and his wife. Kollander is no stranger to tactical gear or the gun industry. In 2022, he released his first self-designed defensive product, the Retten1 WMT Tourniquet Mount. It’s an easy-access caddy for a CAT (Combat Application Tourniquet) or similarly-sized model (though for reasons substantiated by experience and data, I recommend the brand-name, Gen. 7 CAT by North American Rescue). This device keeps a TQ handy on forend of a shotgun or rifle, using M-LOK or keymod, right where it might be needed in a personal defense situation. I got to test a rifle equipped with a Retten One when Rob Pincus handed me his carbine at the Lucid Optics gun writers’ event last year. It does live up to the aim of being lightweight and out of the way until needed. This caddy is made in Alaska and is a great complement to any home or business defense setup. Order direct for $59.95 or more to include a genuine North American Rescue Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT) and/or blue trainer CAT with the WMT.
What follows snow? Slush and mud. There is no convenience quite like a great pair of slip-on muck boots for those short trips outside in wet footing. A new release from Lacrosse is the Alpha Meadow, an over-the-ankle height, slip-on rubber boot perfect for mucky ground. These great little boots have a pull-on loop and a kick-off tab above the heel to save excessive bending when the outdoorswoman is wearing heavy winter wraps or carrying those typical winter armloads, like firewood or a mud-caked dog. There’s a men’s version also. Get the shoes that can dash right out the door and come back inside while leaving the mess in the mudroom. Yes, I’ve written about these before, but I love them so much I thought I’d mention them again. $130.
See varmints in the dark. Florida-based ATN optics company is enjoying rapid expansion in both popularity and in their product lineup, thanks in no part to the wildly popular varmint control-turned-sport of hog hunting. The nomadic and nocturnal nature of wild hogs, not to mention coyotes and foxes, makes night hunting a necessity. With ATN scopes, binoculars, and even recording gear, it’s possible to clearly observe game at night where legal. The company’s use of the latest tech available to civilians in terms of night vision, range-finding, cell phone applications, and digital recording make a veritable perfect storm for hogs and other varmints. I’m most excited about their PS28, a clip-on night vision device that allows an already-mounted scope to double as a night vision magnifier without having to change zero. See it or any of their products at their new Houston store or order direct. Knowledgeable sales associates can help advise the new or experienced night hunter on the most suitable optics and gear.
Discreetly armed travel is smart travel. The sewing geniuses at Skinner Sights, of Montana, have created a dual-purpose asset for those whose travels cross hoplophobic territory. Their HTF Garment Bag is crafted from heavy-duty Cordura and has stronger-than-normal seams and binding to bear the weight of a little steel and lead along with business attire. The integral, heavy-duty hanger and numerous hidden pouches securely contain a long gun up to 40 inches and two handguns in the included holsters. There are also pouches for magazines, flashlights, and other goodies that accompany anyone planning on a truly safe trip. Just plan on being your own valet or having a great story as the “garments” might be sort of heavy! Order direct for $249 or hit the big sale that’s going on as of this writing and grab it for $189.
Do you already own any of these? If so, sound off in the comments about how you use them. And have a happy new year.