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What To Pack In A Hunting Backpack? (Complete Guide for Beginners)

We are here to tell you what you need to pack in a hunting backpack. There are two types of trips, one day trip, and an overnight trip. For both of the trips, you need the following things to pack in the backpack.

  • Water
  • Compass
  • First Aid Kit
  • Hunting Knife
  • Flashlight or Headlamp
  • Rain Gear
  • Food
  • Cooking Equipment (Overnight Trip)
  • Gloves
  • Camo Masks
  • Sleeping Bag and Sleeping Pad (Overnight Trip)
  • Game Calls
  • Trash Bags
  • Game Bags
  • Hunting License

You need to collect these things once and for next time you can just count the items and then fill your bag with the missing ones. Having a spare item is always a good idea and we will also tell you how to pack your bags but first, we need to discuss why you need these things on our list.


Water is one of the most important things that you should pack for a hunting trip. Even if you’ve been to a similar area or you know that you will find a lake or a stream with clean water to drink, you should always have water for backup in case of any emergency or unpredicted events. Hunting backpacks have water bladders that allow you to store your water supply while using only the needed space.

While sorting out what gears to pack for the trip, keep in mind that water will take a lot of place in the backpack. So, you will have to pack other gears accordingly.


One of the most significant items in your backpack is a compass. It’s a little piece of gear that is barely going to take any space in your backpack. However, if you lose it, you may forget the right direction or may get lost because the compass shows us the directions and because of that we can always know in which direction we are or in which direction we should go. Most of the modern GPS units are also a good choice but you need to have your good old compass too. Compasses don’t need any batteries to work and are strong and reliable. You can keep it in your pocket and forget about it till you need it. In any case, add it to the top of your list.

Medical Aid Kit

Another important item for your backpack is the medical aid kit. Mishaps and wounds will surely occur in the forested areas. Therefore, keep an essential medical aid pack in the backpack. There is a chance that you probably won’t need it during the trip. But even if there is a little chance that you will have to use it, you should still pack it because in case of any emergency it will come in handy. it will add no weight to the backpack or occupy a ton of room. It would be a good idea for you to add an emergency treatment unit to the list of what to pack in a hunting backpack.

The emergency medical kit should have some disinfectant lotion or cream, bandages, pain killers, digestion medication, water purification tablets, hand sanitizer, and duct tape. You can extend this according to your necessities. You can easily get a medical aid kit from your nearest pharmacy.

Hunting Knife:

You need a sharp, solid, and sturdy hunting knife. It’s an unquestionable requirement for a hunting trip. A few hunters carry an additional folding knife also. Make sure that the hunting knife you pack has been sharpened and has a solid handle, with a good grasp. You get hunting knives with replaceable handles also, which is a decent alternative for hunting trips.

Electric Lamp or Headlamp

The standard lamp you have at home will not work for a hunting trip. You need an electric lamp that is waterproof. You will need it to find things inside the backpack at night. It will prove to be useful when you need to find your way to the campground or away from the camping area to answer nature’s call. It will likewise be valuable when the climate all of a sudden gets ugly during a day trip and you need to discover your way back to your vehicle.

The main benefit of a headlamp is that both your hands stay free. You can use it as a replacement for the spotlight or you could carry both. Headlamps are especially valuable during overnight hunting trips.

Rain Gear

You probably won’t require it at all during the trip, yet it’s good to carry rain gear. The difference between a raincoat and rain gear is that the raincoat is a single piece of clothing, while the rain gear is made up of a waterproof coat and jeans. Raincoats are successful yet limit movement a little bit.

Rain gear is a very good choice since it allows fast movement. Ideally, the rain gear has to be made of a material that doesn’t get damp. This is because of the fact that you don’t need rainwater to spill in and wet your clothes. Rain gear is particularly important for overnight hunting.

By not carrying rain gear exposes you to possible hypothermia in case it starts raining. Lightweight rain gears are available that can be folded and kept into one corner of the backpack.


Carry protein bars and a Ziploc bag loaded with dry foods for a day trip. That has to be sufficient to get you going as the day passes. You can likewise carry sandwiches but they will occupy more room. For overnight hunting, you should carry some more food.

Cooking Equipment (Overnight Trip)

For overnight hunting trips, it is a good idea to carry useful cooking equipment. Such equipment is not difficult to use and you will have a hot dinner at the day’s end. You can carry this cooking equipment during a day trip also, particularly in case you’re on a hunting trip with a group of companions.

It will be an enjoyable thing to track down a pleasant spot to cook in the early evening. Solo trackers can carry these also, however, it adds a lot of weight.


Gloves are significant for a couple of reasons, keeping your hands safe from climate, protecting your hands from cuts, scratches, and different wounds, keeping your hands hidden, or securing your hands during the process of bandage. We frequently move our hands more than we know.

Unexpected movement of naked hands can get injured. Wearing gloves can save us from all this trouble. In case you’re hunting in a warm climate, a couple of lightweight mesh gloves will be good for that climate. In a colder climate, you will require a couple of good-quality leather gloves. Pack an extra pair of gloves simply in the event that the one you’re wearing gets damaged.

Camo Masks

Actually like uncovered hands can alert the animals, the same goes for an exposed face. You need a camouflage mask or camouflage paint to mix your face with environmental factors to stay hidden.

Sleeping Bag and Sleeping Pad (Overnight Trip)

In the event that you plan to stay in the forest overnight and proceed with the hunt in the early morning, you will require a sleeping bag and a sleeping pad. Very light weighted types of both sleeping bags and sleeping pads are easily available at a reasonable cost.

The sleeping pad may look like a lot to carry for a hunting trip; however, you will be happy you carried it. Since it barely adds any additional weight, there’s no reason to not carry it. You will get a decent night of sleep and feel re-energized and ready for the hunt the following day.

Game Calls

Game calls are basically little instruments that produce a sound to draw various kinds of animals towards the hunter.

Garbage Bag

Pack a bunch of garbage bags to clear any extra food, plastic coverings, or some other type of trash you may possibly leave. Store the garbage bag in one of the pockets in the backpack and discard them when you get back home.

Game Bags

These are needed for the animal you hunt. You need good game bags to pack the required bits of meat. Animals will come to eat that meat which will make it easier for you to hunt them. Standard garbage bags are a lot slimmer than game bags and effectively tear and causing spills. In addition, you can purchase reusable game bags.

Hunting License

Last but not the least, you need to carry your hunting license in your backpack. You do not want to find yourself in a position where you need to show your hunting license and you have forgotten to carry it in your bag.

Choosing the Backpack

Once you have all your items on your list you need to choose the correct backpack. It will carry all of your gears and you need it to be an ideal choice for the trip. Make sure the hunting backpack can be used under any climate conditions. It will get scratched multiple times by sharp bushes as you clear your path through in the forest. It should bear rain and other common environmental factors also.

Another key part of the ideal hunting backpack is comfort. The shoulder lashes and hip ties have to be all-around padded and comfortable over long periods. The hip belt has to reduce the weight factor off your shoulders as much as it can. You should compare a couple of various backpacks before picking one.

It is preferred that you should purchase from a store, so you can wear the backpacks with some weight in them to check the comfort levels. Regardless, you should change the pressure of the backpack by changing the strap positions to get the ideal fit for you. Remember that every individual has a different kind of body and the weight toleration varies too.

Ordinarily, hunting trips keep going for a little while. In this way, you don’t need to bother with one of those 80-liter backpacks that are used for backpacking trips that keep going for quite a long time. The ideal overnight hunting backpack is somewhere in the range of 30 and 45 liters. It’s large enough to hold a great deal of gear, however not so huge that it gets hard to move through the rough ground. A 30-liter backpack with various pockets and is better compared to a 45-liter backpack with only one basic compartment. With respect to backpacks for day trips, a 15-20 liter backpack is good and can be used.

The Most Effective Method to Pack a Hunting Backpack

  • Since you have a list for your backpack and now you have selected your backpack also, you need to know how to pack the backpack in the most effective way. You will pack many things into the backpack in any event, for a day trip, so you need to pack it in a coordinated way.
  • A coordinated way means that you should pack in a way that all of your things are packed easily. Also, those things that you will have to use more often should be packed in a way that they can be accessed easily without going through all of the stuff which can drive your focus off from the animal that you are hunting.
  • Things that you either need after the hunt or at night will go into the backpack first. In this way, the sleeping bag, game, field dressing gear, and so forth will be packed at the lower part of the backpack. At the point when the time arrives for these to be recovered, you will have a lot of time to find them. Furthermore, these things will frame a strong, stable base for the backpack.
  • Your reinforcement and climate-related gear have to be packed where you can reach it easily. This includes your rain gear, spare gloves, and additional coat, and so on. You don’t need to bother with these things quickly, however, if there’s a change in the climate conditions or an unforeseen situation happens, you need to have the option to find them easily without any problem.
  • All hardware needed for the hunt has to be put at the top. These include your optics, compass, GPS unit, rangefinder, additional ammunition, game calls, and so forth. You need a simple and quick reach for these things. Since most of these things are tiny, they will fall through the holes and slide towards the lower part of the backpack, which will cause more time to reach. In such cases, you should pack them in the outer pockets. This is one more reason to test the backpack after you get it.
  • The food has to be kept in Ziploc bags and put away at the top too. Freeze-dried suppers can be packed at the lower part of the backpack since you will not need them till nightfall. Assuming the water is put away in the water bladder, there’s very little you need to do. In case you’re carrying folding jugs, slide them at the edges of the backpack. On the off chance that there are large sufficient outside pockets, the jugs can be put away there also.


The Final Word

With the exception of a couple of big items that get added for an overnight hunting trip, you will pack in the same way. Keep a list while you’re packing to guarantee you don’t miss anything. You also have to make sure to carry a good amount of paper towels. These are better than bathroom tissues and can be used to clear dirt off your face and hands.


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