It’s that time of year when relatives and friends want to treat sportsmen and sportswomen with holiday gifts. These folks are the toughest to buy for as many items are personal be it equipment or clothing. As such, here are a few universal things to consider that should delight these special folks.
FISHING: A 2018 fishing license would be a welcome gift for anyone. Shoppers who don’t wish to visit a local tackle shop to buy one, merely go to GoneFishingPa.com where a one, three, five or 10-year licenses can be purchased online.
HARRISBURG OUTDOOR SHOW: Formally called the Great American Outdoor Show at the Harrisburg Farm Show Complex, has opened its ticket sales for the Feb. 3-11 show where over 1,100 exhibitors will display their new products along with outfitters, entertainment shows and more. Buying an advanced ticket(s) will save time of not having to stand in line to get in. There are also discounted late afternoon tickets being offered. And If you purchase a new NRA Membership online, you’ll get a free show ticket. To purchase, go to etix.com and click on the shows’ logo.
CLOTHING: Be it for hunting, fishing (especially ice fishing), skiing, hiking, even cold weather golfing, ICONX’s Heated Core Vest could solve your cold weather shivers. This 7.4V battery-operated vest features carbon-fiber heating elements that stretch across the midsection in the front, kidney area in the back and base of the neck but the heat is actually distributed throughout the garment so your core stays warm. The vest features three heat levels and when turned on it automatically goes to the highest level heat setting. Once it reaches the highest temp, it drops to the medium setting or you can set the heat setting to whatever you prefer. The battery will last approximately six hours depending upon use and heat settings. For more information check www.pnumaoutdoors.com.
TRAIL CAMERAS: While trail cameras have become popular and more technically advanced, Cuddeback upped the technology to the next level with their CuddeLink system. The new system allows up to 15 cameras, spread out up to 4 miles depending on terrain or ? mile in dense forests, to automatically send photos to a home camera. When one camera clicks a photo, it instantly sends it to a home camera at your location be it at your home or designated location so you don’t have to intrude upon your hunting area. There’s no cell service or Wi-Fi service required. It’s a proprietary wireless mesh network that allows the cameras to daisy chain and communicate with each other allowing you to check the photo card at your central location. A cell connected system is coming in 2018. For more information check www.cuddeback.com.
CROSSBOWS: If there’s one drawback to crossbows, it’s cocking them, especially if they don’t have an integrated cocking device. But the Allen Company headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, has debuted their SLIDEGLIDE crossbow cocking sled that fits a multitude of crossbows. Allen’s device uses the crossbows’ rail groove as a track to guide the cocking sled up and down the length of the rail. It employs, says Allen, a self-aligning guide spring system that runs along the side of the crossbow rails to keep the sled perfectly aligned during movement and cocking easy. For added info go to www.byAllen.com. If your gift receiver has a crossbow, this device would be appreciated.
FUTURE SPORTSMEN: It’s almost certain TV channels will be replaying the traditional “A Christmas Story,” a classic movie set in the late ‘40s and revolves around Ralphie, an eight-year old who schemes to get a Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun for Christmas. And this traditional rifle is still being sold and on sale for $29.95, a pittance considering what some video games cost. It’s a gift that can be handed down to generations upon teaching the fundamentals of gun safety and proficiency through adult supervision and training. There are also programs offered at www.youth.nra.org and www.eddieeagle.nra.org, that are focused on child-centered resources. And don’t forget safety eye-wear because like Ralphie’s parents said, “You’ll shoot your eye out.”
I got my Red Ryder at eight or nine and still have it today. It’s a collectable and will be passed down to my son and his son and hopefully to his offspring. Bass Pro Shops and Tractor Supply are offering the Red Ryder, on sale, in time for Christmas.
Streamlight, based in local Eagleville, Pa, has in time for Christmas gift giving, a dandy LED headlamp that is useful for any outdoor pursuits be it to tie lures onto your fishing line in dim light, field dressing game, camping chores, home improvement and close-up jobs and a myriad of other uses. In fact, our postman has been using a headlamp to see addresses on his mail during late afternoon deliveries.
Streamlights’ Enduro Pro offers three lighting modes including spot LED’s for focused task lighting; flood beams for soft area illumination and red LED’s to preserve night vision. It uses two power LEDs and two Red LEDs for a total of eight output modes, three each for spot and flood and two for night vision.
On high, the spot beam offers 200 lumens and 2,250 candela, the flood beam offers 135 lumens and 210 candela. The night vision features 0.37 and 0.08 lumens on high and low. Run times range fro 6 hours on high to 38 hours on low. It uses three AAA alkaline or lithium batteries that can be easily replaced by opening the lights’ rear cover. The light is rated for water-resistant operation and tested for to two meters for impact resistance. It retails for from $32.00 to $37.50 for the industrial model. Go to www.streamlight.com for more information.
If none of these are suitable, a gift card from Cabela’s, Dicks or local sports shops, will allow them to get what they need to make their outdoors pursuits a more enjoyable experience.
Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.