Trailers are a substantial investment and hence an adequate insurance coverage is a quintessential requirement. You should protect your trailer against theft, damage and other untoward developments. There is no simple or straight answer to how much does travel trailer insurance cost. The annual cost or premium can be a couple hundred dollars or you may have to pay tens of thousands. The type of trailer you own, including its size and shape, the weight and the various components it has, its value at the present point in time and the kind of coverage you want will determine the annual cost of travel trailer insurance.
Travel trailer insurance is not the same as normal auto insurance. This type of policy is specifically for your travel, the exact journey you have planned, where you are heading and for how long, what all you would have with you and the risks you or your trailer would be vulnerable to during the trip. You can embark on an online quest to know more about travel trailer insurance cost, you can speak with an expert or you can call up an insurer you have a policy with to find out if they have relevant policies for your trailer. It is usually easier and also better to check out travel trailer insurance cost online as you can completely customize your search, use all relevant filters and then get a specific quote. Telephonic conversations are often simplified and generalized. You may get a ballpark from an insurer or one of their executives but not the exact amount you would have to pay. You must also prepare to deal with a range of cost unless you get specific with all the details.
The Retail Value of Trailers
The actual value of your trailer will be a decisive factor. Utility trailers are priced anywhere between two hundred and eight thousand dollars right now. Snowmobile trailers cost around five hundred up to a hundred thousand dollars. Personal watercraft or boat trailers can cost seven hundred to five thousand dollars. Motorcycle trailers are priced from eight hundred to fifteen thousand. Horse trailers would cost around five thousand to a hundred thousand. Toy haulers are priced from six thousand to a hundred thousand. Just to give you an idea, the effective cost for a 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S is $24,500 after factoring in the taxes, fees, and title among other expenses.
There are two ways this retail price of your trailer would impact the travel trailer insurance cost. The price is basically the value of your trailer so if you happen to lose it or it is stolen, then you would be compensated accordingly by the insurer. If your trailer is stolen a year or three down the line, then you would be compensated according to the prevailing value. The value of your trailer will depreciate in a year to three years. Some insurers would offer a coverage equivalent to the then value of your trailer. Some insurers would offer you enough money to buy a similar trailer. The exact terms the policy will determine how you get compensated.
Other Influencing Factors
Trailer insurance cost will be determined by the scope of the policy and hence the coverage. Small and light trailers that are not very costly can easily be insured with an add-on in the policy you have as a homeowner or renter. You may also go for this add-on in your auto insurance policy. The most inexpensive trailers can be added on without any extra charge or an increased premium. Expensive trailers must be insured separately, especially if they are large and can increase your liability if they come unhitched and cause damage to property and injury to fellow commuters or pedestrians. You will need a comprehensive insurance policy covering theft, damage, collision, total or wreck and other mishaps. The trailer insurance cost will depend on the size including length, width, and height, the shape and design, the way you use the trailer, the frequency of use and the time it spends on the road or away from your home. These factors effectively influence the risks for the owner and hence the insurer. The insurance cost will be worked out accordingly.
The Range of Travel Trailer Insurance Cost
With over fifteen million light trailers on the roads across the country, you should expect a vast range of travel trailer insurance cost. There are many insurers too and hence there are diverse policies influencing the specific ways of calculating travel trailer insurance cost. The specific type of trailer, its purpose, and frequency of use will cause massive changes in cost. A very small and light utility trailer that is relatively inexpensive would cost nothing to insure in most cases. A costly and heavy trailer, say a toy hauler worth ninety thousand dollars, will easily cost around five hundred per year to insure.
Travel trailer insurance cost is also dependent on various options you choose. For instance, trailer insurance coverage may be applicable only when the trailer is hitched to your vehicle and not otherwise. You need to choose a policy that will provide coverage even when your trailer is stored or parked. There should be comprehensive coverage against theft, whether or not the trailer is hitched to the vehicle. Some policies will assure coverage for the personal items, affects or cargo you carry in the trailer. Some policies will not cover such goods. You need to delve into such details. Do not just be content with the travel trailer insurance cost if it is lower than what you have found in other quotes. There may be a lot of exemptions in the policy and hence the coverage may prove to be futile.
Compare Travel Trailer Insurance Costs
You will need to compare travel trailer insurance costs vis-à-vis the types of coverage. You should also be sure that the insurer is reliable and make it simple for you to file claims. Some insurers are rather rigid and unfavorable with how they go about settling claims. Let us take the aforementioned 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S worth $24,500 as a case study to compare travel trailer insurance cost.
Good Sam’s Insurance quotes an annual premium of $376 with a deductible ranging from $250 to $500. There are replacement plans but it is unclear if the insurer would value the trailer at the time of theft or damage while ascertaining the coverage. Progressive has a policy via USAA. The annual travel trailer insurance cost with Progressive ranges from $179 to $383 depending on the coverage amount. For the 2017 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S worth $24,500, Progressive quotes $289 a year. Anyone who already has a home insurance policy or auto insurance with or via USAA would get a deduction on travel trailer insurance with Progressive or a third party insurer working through the bank.
You can get quotes from both Good Sam’s and Progressive among other insurers online and over the phone. Go online to select every relevant detail so your quote is specific to your needs. A telephonic conversation would focus on the broader aspects and the quote may be completely futile as it would not factor in the specific needs you have given the type of trailer you have, how you operate it and what purpose it serves. All insurers will have exemptions in certain policies and some apparently all-inclusive coverage. You would need to choose the types of coverage you want and the kinds you do not need. You can always exclude the latter and bring the travel trailer insurance cost down.
Always prioritize replacement cost when you choose travel trailer insurance. You need to know if you get the complete replacement cost given the coverage. You should know how this value would be calculated now, a year down the line, two years or three years in the future. You would need sufficient financial coverage if your trailer is wrecked, stolen or damaged due to some reason four years later. The replacement cost may not be much at the time as it is now so choosing a policy that secures your interest.
You should also prioritize bodily injury while choosing travel trailer insurance. You can add bodily injury to the policy for an additional cost. You can go for two hundred and fifty thousand dollars coverage or you may choose half a million. Scaling up from a quarter of a million to half a million often does not cost much but the leap can be a lifesaver in a crisis. Get roadside assistance if you want. It can cost twenty-five bucks or so more every year. It is worthwhile to have some help when you need it the most. You must also get adequate coverage for your personal effects or items.
You may consider travel trailer insurance of Farmers, Progressive, Geico or Good Sam and others. Geico is not very forthcoming with its approach online. You would not get a quote after answering a zillion questions and you would be called by their relentless salespeople. You can always get actual quotes pertaining to your needs and then compare to make an informed decision.
It sometimes feels that summer is over in a heartbeat and before we know it we’re stuck into long cold nights and short cool days. One minute we’re basking in tropical heat and then within a week we’re being battered with freezing rain and gale force winds.
Maybe I’m showing my age, but the summers seem to be getting shorter, and the winters are getting longer. December is just around the corner, the kids are getting excited for Santa and the temperature will probably continue on its downward trend with no chance of warming up anytime soon.
Common sense dictates that most of the shelf RVs are not meant for exploring the Antarctic. If you’d like to take your RV out during colder weather, you’ll probably need to invest in what’s commonly named an arctic package. These will normally upgrade the existing insulation and provide additional heating for the enjoyment of the RVs passengers and driver.
However, there are certain models of RVs that have designed and built with the colder weather in mind. These vehicles are meant to be taken out when the mercury drops, through icy gales and even in some cases, snowy roads. If you stay in an area that experiences harsh winters, or you just want to experience the thrill of being on the road with your RV year-round, then these top cold-weather RVs are made to meet that need.
Windjammer 3008W Travel Trailer
Travel trailers are a great much cheaper alternative to the full-blown RV, they are ideal choices for beginners and those just looking to get a taste of the RV lifestyle. The Windjammer is a fantastic option, it can accommodate a maximum of five beds, so there’s no excuse for not bringing your family along.
Additionally, the trailer does a great job of providing a host of other features such as a wardrobe, linen closet, a kitchen space with microwave, gas cooker hook-up and an awning to keep the sun or snow off. To top it all off, the master suite features a clever table that folds away and a large double bed.
If you’re wondering at this point what exactly makes this trailer a good fit for winter excursions, then read on:
Pros: This trailer features a ton of traits that make it particularly well suited to cold weather. Admittedly, it’s not much to look at, but what it lacks in the looks department it more than makes up for in the functionality department. We’re sure that if you are someone that likes camping trailers and enjoy the winter months outdoors, the Windjammer will definitely become a firm favorite.
Cons: It’s a heavy trailer to haul around, more so than most other camp trailers. Given its size and weight, it might take a while to get used to using it, especially if you’re new to pulling a trailer.
Jayco Redhawk 26XD
The Jayco is a visually stunning RV that all but guarantees a snug and warm environment, doubly so if you’re looking to purchase one of latest 2017 – 2018 models. You’ll be spoilt for choice with five floorplans to pick from, meaning you’ll no doubt find something to meet your specific requirements. All models boast a robust Ford chassis, ample linen closets, a generous refrigerator, an awning, as well as a massive queen sized bed.
Every Redhawk is generously proportioned, so in addition to the above, you should have little trouble fitting in the following:
Obviously, the equipment and space are impressive, how about the purpose of this article, how does it fare during cold weather? The huge fuel tank, powerful auto-igniting furnace and large capacity water heater all ensure you should feel warm and comfortable no matter what the outside weather is doing. If you want to take your family, your friends family, and your dogs with you on your winter excursions, then the eight-person sleeping arrangements should be more than adequate.
Pros: There’s an awful lot to like about the Redhawk, it’s massive and feels like a holiday home, but it’s also easy to maintain a very comfortable temperature no matter what the weather outside is doing.
Cons: To achieve all of these luxury offerings you’ll need to spend a small fortune on the Redhawk, prices are just shy of $100,000. Opting for the previous years model will be cheaper but you may have to sacrifice many of the newer luxury features.
Lance 4 Seasons Travel Trailer
Manufactured specifically for all season driving, including winter and warm weather, the Lance proves that you need not spend a fortune to experience cold weather trips. Here’s a quick breakdown of its features:
Pros: With bags and bags of insulation, worrying about the cold weather will be a distant memory. The added benefit of the soundproofing makes driving it an almost peaceful experience.
Cons: Nothing we can find. The Lance package is available for a range of truck trailers and toy trailers, which provides a ton of adaptability.
Forest River Arctic Wolf
The Arctic Wolf is available with six floorplans to pick from, meaning it’ll meet the requirements of nearly every RV fan. The largest models top out at a huge 10,000 pounds, equating to a hitch load of approximately 1,400 pounds. This weight is down to its generous proportions which max out at 35 feet in length and 11 feet in height.
In addition to its comfortable dimensions, Artic Wolf owners can pick from either an Extreme Weather Package or the Arctic Package for any winter excursions. Let’s take a look at each package:
Extreme Weather Package
Pros: If you purchase the Arctic Wolf with the Extreme weather package, you’ll be comfortable, warm and immune from the outside weather conditions, no matter what it’s doing.
Cons: The size and mass of this RV can pose a hurdle for anyone inexperienced driving with such a large vehicle, turning, and other maneuvers may prove to be challenging.
Jayco 327CKTS Eagle
Jayco makes a second appearance on our list with the Eagle. The new model just released in 2018 includes a range of improvements and upgrades, including a sizeable refrigerator, a comfortable and luxurious queen-sized bed, massive wardrobes and a washer dryer combo.
Additionally, you’ll have a full 19 feet of outdoor warning to utilize, a well-equipped full bathroom which includes a toilet, sink, shower and closet, a kitchen with everything you might need, a large sofa and an extra recliner.
If that’s not enough to suit your needs, you can optionally choose a décor package which will make your RV feel more like a home away from home. Additionally, there are a few optional extras:
Pros: As we’ve already discussed, the Jayco name is well known in the RV industry for providing four seasons options. The upgraded 2018 model of the Eagle provides a range of comfort upgrades that rival those of your home. The capabilities and luxury appointments mean you could feasibly keep going on the trail all year round.
Cons: Only the most recent version of the Eagle feature everything detailed above, older models will cost less but won’t be as well appointed.
Heartland is a giant within the world of RVs and has established a reputation over the years as a firm that is more than capable of producing RVs that can go up against even the toughest of weather conditions. The Bighorn is not an exception and well deserves the hype associated with the brand. This trailer boasts close to a dozen floor plans to choose from, which means regardless of your requirement, budget or niche needs, there’s going to be a Bighorn which will tick all of your boxes.
These trailers are available in a variety of size combinations, with the largest coming in at an impressive 14,000 points, which equates to a hitching load of close to 3,000 lbs. This mass is largely due to the 45 feet in length.
Nearly every single floor plan features the following feet warming features:
Pros: Unfortunately we can’t cover every exciting feature of the RV in this article, best rest assured that the Heartland Bighorn delivers impressive comfort and winter capabilities that will leave you impressed. The large selection of floor plans means you’ll be hard pressed to find a combination that doesn’t meet your requirements.
Cons: We’re hard pressed to find any faults with the Bighorn, it’s a seriously impressive piece of kit.
Another brilliant camper trailer in our list is the Raptor. As you would expect from a brand such a Keystone, you’ll receive a ton of features, including artic packages to choose from. Additionally, you may choose some optional extras.
The Raptor has a range of eight intelligently designed floor plans to pick from. All designs feature the same basic rooms, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms, however, the exact layout and the amount of room dedicated to each room changes based on the chosen floor plan.
Providing a comfortable and warming environment is the MaxFlo air conditioning unit which can pump out an impressive 15k BTUs. This will keep you warm and toasty during even the biggest cold snaps.
Pros: If you’re looking to buy a Keystone trailer, then we think the Raptor is an obvious choice. Once you’ve chosen your ideal floor plan and you’ve cranked up the heating, you’ll have no excuse for not heading out for a winter adventure.
Cons: None that we can find. The sheer popularity of the Raptor is a testament to its capabilities.
Heartland LM Arlington
If you choose to buy Arlington with the Yeti Package equipped, you’re buying on the most capable and beloved arctic packages that are available. The package is, of course, optional, but if you’re serious about taking your RV out in cold weather conditions, it’s an obvious choice.
Coupled with the away from home package, your RV is going to remain in tip-top condition regardless of how many times you choose to take it out. Read on for some of the outstanding innovations that are available as standard:
In order to fit all these features in the Heartland weighs in at 15,170 lbs which equates to a 3,100 lbs hitch weight, and the ability to carry a further 2,780 lbs, this means that this vehicle is far from the smallest vehicle on our roster. The Heartland measures in at eight feet across and slightly larger than 13 feet in height.
Pros: Taking into consideration the Yeti Package, the Arlington is a seriously capable and comfortable cold weather RV. It is continually mentioned when the best four-season RVs are discussed. It’s without a doubt the premier artic packages available to buy.
Cons: Without the optional Yeti Package, the Arlington is not as capable. You’ll need to pay for the package which can make it a pricey purchase.
Northwood Arctic Fox
Very few arctic campers are as popular well know or held in such high regard as the Fox. The reason for this is simple enough, the Arctic Fox accomplishes what it was set out to do and contains a ton of helpful features. Let’s take a closer look:
And that’s not everything! With all the features, it would be easy to mistake the interior for a luxury apartment. If you so choose, you can even add additional features such as generators, solar panels, cameras, thermal windows and much more besides.
Pros: A fantastic offering from an already impressive brand, the Arctic Fox proves that the cold weather doesn’t need to hinder your outdoor adventures. It’s entirely possible that you could be living in the lap of luxury that you’ll not want to go home.
Cons: Like anything that borders the line of luxury, you’re going to have to pay for the privilege of all of these features. The latest models from 2017 onwards will cost upwards of $56,000, and previous models don’t tend to depreciate that much, which in itself is a testament to their quality.
Perhaps the best known cold weather RV, the Montana is a legend in its own right. People have and still do live all year round in this capable vehicle. This model has a 15-year pedigree which has stood the test of time, proving year upon year that it’s at the top of the pile for all weather RVs and well deserving of its excellent reputation.
In developing and testing the Keystone Montana, technicians would use the RV in Indiana for several weeks on end during freezing temperatures to ensure the vehicle was capable of continued exposure to very low temperatures. Additionally, within the Montana testing facility, the Keystone was tested in temperatures as low as zero degrees Fahrenheit, which is far below what you’re likely to come across in the wild. Needless to say that Montana flew through every test with full marks. This is in part due to the equipment included:
Pros: If you’re looking for an RV that will stay warm on the inside no matter what the weather is doing on the outside, then you’d be hard pushed to find a better option than the Montana. The vehicle has been designed from the ground up to deliver outstanding cold weather capabilities, ensuring its occupants remain in the lap of luxury.
Cons: Top of the range options will cost quite a bit of money, which may be too much for someone starting out as an RV enthusiast.
As the saying goes ‘winter is coming’, however, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll need to migrate south with the starlings. If you want to head out into a winter wonderland, then choosing one of the ten cold weather RVs we’ve discussed will all but guarantee a comfortable trip. Some of them are larger, better equipped or costlier than others, but all are capable and will make great choices for anyone looking to spend some time exploring the winter landscape.
It’s probably every angler’s dream to land a huge fish, something that will afford you bragging rights for years to come and is worthy of posting to Facebook. Whether you’d like land a Shark, Marlin, Tuna or something else, there’s something magical about wrestling with a truly monster fish. Even if you don’t land anything, the very fact that you’re on a boat in the middle of the ocean is an experience in itself. I’ve done my fair share of fishing all over the world, from South America and Canada to Australia and Scotland, I’ve been lucky enough to throw my line into nearly every ocean. However, until very recently, I hadn’t had the opportunity to sail into the ocean for several days of intense deep sea fishing.
When the opportunity presented itself, the first thought I had to myself wasn’t that this is going to be a trip of a lifetime, it was is deep sea fishing dangerous? Thankfully, the answer is yes, it’s safe to go deep sea fishing. But, you should verify some things before committing to a trip, and also bear in mind that everyone’s interpretation of safe is different. Anything involving boats, water, hooks, knives, wild animals and unpredictable weather will present some sort of risk.
Some common concerns about deep sea fishing are:
As above, there are a lot of things to potentially be concerned about, however, the biggest dangers are probably the same ones you’ll face when on land. Sunburn and dehydration. Keeping yourself hydrated and topped up with suntan lotion will go a long way to avoiding most of the risk. For everything else, pay attention to what you’re doing and pay attention to what the captain and crew are telling you and you should be absolutely fine. It would be naive of me to say that accidents can’t happen, because they definitely can, but bear in mind that charter boats do this stuff day and day out and should have a plan in place for every eventuality.
Is Deep Sea Fishing Dangerous? | Do your Research!
You must thoroughly research the charter company you’re employing to take you out, in fact, it’s worth doing a comparison off as many companies as you can before you commit any money. It’s definitely a situation where cheap is not always best, spending a little bit more on a charter can mean a more reputable company. However, the most expensive option does not necessarily mean it’s the best. Try and find actual customer reviews online, ideally on third party websites such as trustpilot.com. Bear in mind that customer testimonials and reviews placed on the charter companies own website can be cherry-picked or completely fabricated. Additionally, any online reviews can be manipulated quite easily, so just bear that in mind when you’re reading them.
Get the charter on the phone before making any final decisions and confirm the details published online. The last thing you want to happen is to turn up on the day of the booking and be met with a boat that looks nothing like it did online. Having said that, most charters are truthful, otherwise, they wouldn’t stay in business for long. Most scam companies are taken down pretty quickly by the authorities, but some will always slip through the cracks, it’s these companies that pose a danger and can cause a deep sea fishing trip to become dangerous.
Know the Weather
You shouldn’t rely on someone else to inform you if the weather is not ideal for fishing. Most charter companies will cancel or delay a trip if the weather forecast is bad, however, it’s always a good idea to check the weather leading up to a trip for any unforeseen storms or strong winds. It might be possible to head out into rough seas, but it’s not at all fun, especially if you suffer from seasickness. What might feel like a storm to end all storms to you, might just be a little bit of chop for the captain?
At the end of the day, you’re responsible for saying when you’re uncomfortable and when enough is enough. If you’re going to some of the more popular deep sea fishing locations such as Mexico or Alaska, make sure you know what season you’re going in, and try to avoid hurricane or winter seasons. If you check online, you might see some great deals, just make sure that these deals are only available during hurricane season. Being on a boat in rough weather can be experienced, but it quickly becomes tiresome and is not something I would recommend. A twenty-foot wave is far larger than you might think and trust me when I tell you that they are incredibly scary, even for experienced fishermen.
Take Your Own Supplies
Most charters will provide you with food, including snacks, drinks and main meals, but it’s worthwhile taking your own just in case. You might find the food is not to your taste, or there’s simply not enough, if this happens to you, you’ll be glad you have your stash. It’s incredibly unlikely the ship’s captain will turn around simply because you’re hungry, the fuel costs alone make this uneconomical, so make sure you have enough to keep yourself fed and watered for at least a day. Additionally, I would recommend bringing the following items:
Mishaps Can Occur
The Right Clothes Can Make a Difference
Is There Anything Else I Should Know?
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Coyote, also known as Canis latrans, is a native of North America. The canine is a relative of the gray wolf but smaller. It is also smaller than a red wolf and eastern wolf. Many zoologists call coyotes the American jackal as they thrive in the same ecology as golden jackals in Eurasia. However, coyotes are more predatory and also larger than jackals. For reference, coyotes are half the size of wolves and jackals are half the size of coyotes. The Eurasian jackal and the red fox are around the same size. Read on for the rest of the Coyote hunting guide.
Coyote Hunting: Know the Hunted
Coyotes are one of those few animals that are not in any way endangered. The species is listed as being of least concern according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. This is primarily because of the abundant population of the canine native throughout North America. Coyotes are a versatile species. They are extremely adaptable and hence they can explore environments that are not historically their natural habitat. Coyotes can thrive even in places that have been extensively altered by humans.
There are nineteen subspecies of the coyote. Male coyotes usually weigh eighteen to forty-four pounds while female coyotes weigh fifteen to forty pounds. Coyotes can have varying fur colors, from light gray to red to black and white. This varies across the length and breadth of the continent. Coyotes are also found as far south as the Central Americas. The coyote can live and hunt with its family or form packs without any specific relationships among the individuals. Coyotes predominantly feast on deer, hare, rabbit, rodents, and birds, fish and amphibians, invertebrates and reptiles. Coyotes are also known to like some vegetables and fruits but they are primarily carnivorous.
The greatest threats for a coyote are gray wolves and cougars but their archenemy is humans. This is mainly because coyotes are widely hunted all across the continent. Coyotes have historically mated with gray wolves despite the latter being a threat, thereby leading to distinct subspecies or hybrids. The canines are also known for being stealthy and a trickster. It is unclear if the widespread hunting has anything to do with the coyote being deceptive and unintentionally rebellious. In popular folklore or even pop culture, the coyote is largely disrespected because it is treated as untrustworthy. It is also described as cowardly among canines.
Hunting a Coyote
Coyotes are one of the most hunted species in the United States. Their large population and hence the lack of stringent regulations against hunting coyotes, the fact that coyotes can be a problem as they hunt livestock and pets along with the thrill of seeking out a deceptive smaller variant of the mighty wolf make coyote hunting a satiating adventure. However, it can also be a complete dud. If you do not have enough experience, skills or resources and acclimatization, then you may end up wasting your time and encountering no coyote or missing out on one owing to unpreparedness. You will need to not only endorse some serious coyote hunting tips but also practice them so you can become an ace.
In this comprehensive guide, we shall talk about various types of coyote hunting tips. We will shed light on how to seek out an elusive coyote, how you can pull them in challenging situations depriving them a chance of easy escape, how you can use coyote calling and the right equipment you need to ensure you do not miss shooting one dead when you would have only a few moments to respond. You need to choose the right weapon to hunt coyotes, seek out the right locations, use coyote calling and other techniques, prep before you begin your hunting and then give it all you got. The technicalities make coyote hunting an amazing adventure.
Coyote Hunting Tips
The Perfect Weapon to Hunt a Coyote
The first thing to do is choose the perfect weapon. The truth is that there is no ideal weapon that would suit everyone and every terrain. You have to factor in the local conditions and your skills to make sure you can shoot a coyote with the weapon you have. Usually, hunters prefer a rifle. Most semipro and pro hunters wield a rifle with a caliber range of .220 to 6mm.
Many people in America are familiar with deer hunting and it is not uncommon for such hunters to possess what is known as a deer rifle. There are obviously more than a dozen different brands and types of deer rifle. If you have any of these, then you can use it to hunt a coyote.
You can choose semiautomatics with .223 caliber. You may choose .22LR rifles known for their high-velocity ammunition. The .223 caliber semiautomatics are gaining more fans than others because of their accuracy. They facilitate flat shooting and the follow-up shot can be swift if needed. You may also choose a crossbow or any large compound bow if you are deft at bow hunting.
You should always choose a rifle if you are not skilled with a bow with the only exception being when you are hunting a coyote in a substantially dense terrain. If you in the woods, in the thick of things and a coyote has a chance of getting a little too close to you before you are able to spot it, then using a shotgun is more effective than anything else. A twelve gauge shotgun is much more effective when you are trying to shoot down a coyote twenty or thirty yards from you. Go for a pump gun, set a tight choke and choose magnum loads. This is a weapon of choice for many hunters who like to get close to the hunted.
The Right Location to Hunt a Coyote
It is easy to choose a region or area where you can find plenty of coyotes. The preferred region or area will also depend on where you live and where you are on a hunting trip. More important than which part of the country you are in is the exact location where you will have to base yourself to have the most adventurous hunting experience. At the end of the day, you must be able to spot a coyote and shoot one. Many people fail to spot one after several hours of waiting. Whether or not you lure them in any way, you have to pick the right spot to hunt a coyote.
After you have chosen your preferred weapon, you should work on camouflage. Coyote is a wary animal. It can be the wariest at times because getting spooked comes naturally to the species. This is one of the few reasons why coyotes are considered cowardly. If there is something amiss in a natural setting or anything odd in the eyes of the coyote, it will scoot. You should not expose yourself in any way. You must also conceal your skin. Go for military camouflage with the cream, face veil, and gloves. You can use laser rangefinder or compact binoculars meant specifically for hunting to be abreast of what is happening in the area under surveillance. You need to be aware of the accurate distance to be able to shoot a coyote in one attempt. You may not get another shot unless you hit the first somewhere on target.
Coyote is a learner. It may be treated with disrespect and there may be an astounding negative perception of it among people. Yet, its learning ability has to be acknowledged, especially if you are a hunter. Coyotes can spot movements. You do not need to move around for a coyote to spot you. If you are lying still at one place and you move even just a bit, a coyote in the vicinity will know and you would perhaps not see it again. It is not just movement or motion but also sounds that can launch a coyote on a spree.
Find a nice place where you can spend some time without being restless, impatient or uncomfortable. Use cushions if you want, dress comfortably and do not carry anything that will make you fidget. While you will have telecommunication devices with you, they should be turned off or silent. You cannot have voices screaming out of a walkie-talkie. You must avoid even static, the common nuisance in radio communications. If you are a casual hunter and would want to keep company, you should avoid chatting. Resist smoking, chewing, eating and doing anything that will create a distraction. Coyotes are good spotters and they are also effective at smelling danger. The species is familiar with smells associated with humans as they know who their greatest threat is.
You should try to find a safe place for yourself if you are going to use downwind to your advantage. A coyote is likely to try and circle an animal or a luring call to check things out before it strikes. If you let a coyote to circle you and it gets to a position where downwind helps the animal smell your presence, then you might be in trouble. Use obstacle behind you if you want to be covered and make sure it is enough for a coyote to be discouraged from taking that route. If you are using downwind, make sure it is to your advantage and not for the coyote. Choose a place, settle down and let five to fifteen minutes pass before you initiate calling. You do not want disturbed wildlife to in disarray when you start the call.
Calling Tips and Techniques
Coyote calling is mostly about using an appropriate device or equipment and knowing the right methods. You should know that coyotes can be as heavy as fifty pounds and their bites can be dangerous. Coyotes are natural predators so they will attack or fight back when threatened or cornered. You should be ready to shoot when a coyote is around. Do not hesitate after you have initiated calling. Coyotes may also be carriers of rabies.
You may use a rabbit squealer for the call. Hunters usually have their preference and this is influenced by successes in the past. You can always have different types of calling devices to suit the particular terrain or location. The season may also be considered while choosing a particular type of call. While a rabbit squealer is a must have in your hunting kit, you should also go for calls that mimic other animals. Choose calls of relatively smaller preys as they are easier for a coyote and hence would be more tempting.
Midwinter is the mating season for coyotes. You can hence choose a coyote howler. This is a female coyote calling out a male. You may also use coyote distress calls. Coyotes have a distinct squeal when they are in distress. The species tends to respond to fellows in danger. Coyotes are vocal so it would augur well for you to become familiar with their various calls. This will enable you to alter your calls depending on the situation. Some of the actions and reactions of a hunter will have to be influenced or determined by circumstances.
One of the coyote hunting tips that really work for many hunters is the use of rapid squealing sounds of pups. Female coyotes tend to their pups. They also adopt pups of others. They are particularly compassionate towards pups in distress so the rapid squeals signaling the same can draw out a few female coyotes in your hunting range. This strategy works really well towards the late winter and early spring. The mothers or female coyotes are usually out in search for food and away from their den, where the pups are, so a distress call will draw them back or towards the call.
Choose realistic calls, be pragmatic and try to avoid everything unusual or unnatural before and during hunting a coyote. Use decoys if necessary but do not opt for mimics that are a poor attempt at fooling coyotes. You ought to be patient, alert and precise while hunting coyotes.
Every responsible hunter understands just how important it is to respect their prey, doing everything in their power to make sure that they kill their prey as humanely as possible – ideally dropping their target with no more than a single shot or a single arrow. Key to this is understanding is where to shoot a deer.
Some new hunters are surprised to learn that it’s possible to drop even some of the largest prey animals with just a single shot, chalking it up to miraculous marksmanship or superhuman accuracy. Not true!
Where to Shoot a Deer
In fact, EVERY hunter should be able to achieve one shot kills when using their chosen firearm or bow. If they aren’t comfortable achieving one shot kills just yet, they should be not out in the woods, but should instead be spending time on the practice range until they can reliably put their projectile downrange exactly where they want it to end up.
Of course, another big piece of the puzzle is knowing exactly where you want to aim to achieve that one shot kill. This is especially important when you’re hunting deer (and other large game). A spotting scope can make your life much easier.
Careless shooting inevitably ends up with animals that try and escape, bounding all over the woods in the wilderness while suffering every step of the way. Some hunters never end up finding the animal that they shot but didn’t kill right away, and the animal spends hours – maybe a day or more – bleeding out needlessly.
A perfectly placed shot to a handful of vital spots on the body of a deer will practically guarantee that they drop right where you shot them, or only just a few steps away.
This quick guide is going to show you EXACTLY where you should be placing your shots whenever possible, giving you a couple of different options so that you are always able to take a perfect kill shot regardless of the terrain, the range, or the set up of the deer that you are looking to take.
Let’s dig right in!
One Shot Kills On Deer Are A Lot Easier Than Many People Think
One of the most popular game animals to hunt in America today, almost every hunter has at least a handful of deer hunting stories in their back pocket.
Hunting deer for game or sport is a major part of the conservation effort. Deer populations that skyrocket out of control and are left unchecked inevitably wreak havoc on a local ecosystem.
Sure, it sounds a little bit contradictory but when you talk about conservation and saving deer by sending hunters out to kill them, but unless the population is artificially kept in check the food sources in a local area will become scarcer and scarcer, young deer will die off faster, and those that make it will be underweight or sickly – and the population will be devastated.
A decent sized animal, a lot of people that just get into deer hunting are under the impression that it’s going to take more than a single bullet, a single slug, or a single arrow to drop something off this size.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
A single well-placed projectile can drop your deer almost dead in its tracks, providing them with a humane death and also guaranteeing that you’re able to find your kill so that you can dress and pack it out of the woods.
A misplaced shot will only a deer. Because of their speed and agility – as well as the adrenaline that will be pumping their veins after being shot – they might get miles away for the end up collapsing and dying, or even worse may end up with a festering that doesn’t kill them all for days or weeks while they suffer every step of the way.
By targeting a handful of very specific areas on a deer’s body, you’ll be able to drop it with a single shot from your firearm or your bow without much difficulty. Below we highlight all of the difference you’re going to want to target, choosing the spot that you have the highest probability of hitting depending upon the specific situation of your hunt.
It should go without saying that a shot to the brain will kill your deer instantly, dropping them right in where they stand and ceasing ALL life functions immediately.
A deer that has been shot through the brain won’t feel any pain at all, will lose consciousness immediately, and likely will not have even heard the shot that killed them. It would be as if one second they were there and the next second they were not.
Sometimes called a knockdown shot, it’s not at all uncommon to watch your deer literally drop as if they were hit with a sledgehammer – dead before they hit the ground. They aren’t going to bounce or bound away, you aren’t going to waste or spoil any of the meat, and a follow-up shot is never necessary when you are right on target. But that’s the point.
This is perhaps the most humane way to put down a deer, but it’s also one of the most challenging shots to pull off with any real consistency. Professional hunters go for this shot more often than not (especially when they are using light and frangible bullets), but that’s because most of them shoot hundreds of rounds each week to hone in their accuracy skills and they feel comfortable aiming at a target as small as a deer’s brain.
If you’re not comfortable targeting this ridiculously small spot on a deer, it isn’t the kind of shot you ever want to take. Even if this is the only deer, you see during the season.
Those shooting arrows aren’t going to want to aim for the brain in most circumstances. The skull is super hard, and the antlers inevitably get in the way. You’ll end up wounding the animal or missing your target completely, spooking the only chance you might have had that season to bag your limit.
The back of a deer’s neck is another almost always instant kill kind of shot, especially if you are able to sever the spinal cord with your round.
Deer will lose consciousness nearly immediately (though not as quick as they would with a brain shot), and because their spinal cord has been severed, they won’t be able to run away, either. Little (if any) damage will be done to the meat of a deer, leaving plenty to be dressed and packed out, making it an excellent shot for those looking to haul more than just a set of trophy antlers.
Neck shots can be a little bit tricky, though.
Again, we’re talking about a super small target here. Hitting it with a rifle or a slug is probably no big deal (if you’re accurate, confident and have a quality sight), but hitting this target with an arrow can be tough, too. The neck muscles are always tough and rock hard, and some arrows will glance off or be redirected.
The big problem here is always a miss, no matter what you’re shooting. You miss the spinal cord in the back of the neck, even by just an inch or so, and your deer is going to take off. It probably won’t get very far, but depending on the terrain and the “juice” that deer has in it, you may never see it again – and they’ll suffer until the end.
This is where 99.99% of hunters – with rifles, shotguns, and bows – are going to want to aim to bring down a deer in a hurry (and as humanely as possible).
A shot to the heart is going to be a clean kill all the time, and you’ll have the added bonus of ripping right through the lungs as well. This will punch a deer out in no time flat, causing a whirlwind of damage to critical organs and killing the animal almost as quickly as a shot to the brain.
Best of all, you won’t have to worry about hitting a tiny little target, either. The animal will almost always present a solid heart shot on target that isn’t standing head-on or backside away, giving you ample time to take aim and really zero in on this area. You’ll want to do your best to hit the heart dead center, as this will guarantee that double lung shot that drops them where they stand.
Miss a little bit and you might only get a single lung. This will still kill the deer, though not as quickly, and you might have a little bit of tracking to do. Usually, the massive blood trail from this kind of shot makes tracking easy, but again the terrain, time of day, and spirit of the deer running will make all the difference between finding your kill and losing it forever.
The Double Lung
Bow hunters are going to want to look for a double lung shot at every chance.
This is a quick, painless, and almost always instant kill for bow hunters, just because of the slower speed and “punch” that arrows have over faster projectiles like bullets and slugs. Where bullets can zip right through a deer, an arrow is going to punch in and stay – making it impossible for your deer to keep breathing after you’ve shot them.
Almost as effective as a heart shot, a deer that has been double lung shot is going to drop almost immediately. From time to time they’ll take a couple of steps, but a deer that cannot breathe is a dead deer walking for sure.
You’ll always want to make sure you aim for a spot just a bit higher than the 10 ring on a deer when you’re after a double lung shot. This guarantees you won’t just hit one lung and have a real chase and track on your hands.
This is never a shot that a bow hunter, or even a shotgunner, is going to want to take if they’re serious about respecting the deer and dropping it as quickly and as cleanly as possible – but it does work wonders for those with high powered rifles.
We’re talking about guys and gals running a .308 or stronger, something with a lot of pop, a lot of punch, and a lot of force behind the blow. A .223 just doesn’t have enough gas behind it to get the job done with this kind of shot.
The goal here is to clip a shoulder blade, turning the bullet down into the chest cavity and wreaking as much havoc on the internals of the deer as possible. This results in not only a quick kill, but it also busts up the front legs of a deer on impact. They won’t be able to run and will instead die right where you shot them.
Shoulders always present a significant and obvious target that is tough to miss from a reasonable range, but there is one big downside here. When you hit the shoulder with a round strong enough to blow all of the vitals up, you’re also ripping through a whole lot of top quality meat as well.
It’s a tradeoff you’ll have to be comfortable with, or you’ll need to settle for a little more patience to line up a better shot that doesn’t cause as much damage across the board.
Wrapping Things Up
At the end of the day, a whole bunch of things is going to go into your choice for the right shot to drop your deer as quickly, as painlessly, and as spoil free as possible.
You’ll need to think about your weapon of choice, your confidence pulling off a shot, the terrain, the way your target is set up and what’s behind it, the time of day and daylight you may or may not have left to track, and a myriad of other things that change on a minute by minute basis.
But when you take aim at the areas we’ve highlighted above, your odds of a good clean kill shoot through the roof. Practice, practice, practice on these kinds of shots, and you’ll never again have to worry about clipping a deer but not killing them – or coming home empty handed during the always too short deer season.
Are you looking to buy the best tactical knife available? our in-depth guide has been written to answer all your questions and provide our top recommendations.
As buyers we are presented with so many types of tactical knives on the market, it’s understandably difficult to make an informed choice about the best option. In order to make your buying decision easier, it’s best to consider the following questions.
How much do you want to spend? Do you want a fixed blade or folding knife? What do you want to use the knife for?
If you’ve bought knives in the past, then you might prefer to buy something for a specific brand or manufacturer. You might also want to buy something which is a particular color or looks a particular way. Other buyers prefer to make their buying decisions on the knives specs, blade material, length or the type of handle. These are all legitimate wants, there is no right or wrong way to buy a knife, as long as you’re happy with your purchase and that you feel you’re getting a knife that best meets your requirements, then that’s all that really matters.
Kershaw Blur S30V
Benchmade - Bedlam 860
BladeMate Tactical Folding Knife
Smith & Wesson SWHRT9B
TAC Force TF-723FD
Gerber 06 FAST Knife
Benchmade Mini Griptilian
Zero Tolerance 0350
Boker Boker Plus Subcom F Knife
What is a Tactical Knife?
When we began reviewing and researching tactical knives, we quickly came to the conclusion that the definition of ‘tactical knife’ was quite open to interpretation amongst knife manufacturers. Some so-called ‘tactical knives’ were little more than gimmicks, while another manufacturers ‘survival knife’ would make an ideal tactical knife. To help us better make recommendations, we’ve created some criteria that will help us define what a tactical knife is and isn’t. These aren’t hard and fast rules, more things to bear in minds when choosing your next tac knife.
What’s the Difference Between a Tactical Knife and a Regular Knife?
It’s not at all surprising that most people can’t tell the difference between a pocket knife and a tac knife. The actual differences can be rather subtle and not at all obvious. The main differentiator is the purpose. If the knife has been designed and built to meet a specific need then it can probably be classed as a tactical knife. Special forces, SWAT, EMTs and Police Officers may carry knives that have been made to meet a need, these will be classed as tactical knives. In fact, these professionals may, in fact, carry more than one knife to meet more than one requirements.
The founder of Spyderco has been quoted as saying “a tactical knife is any knife you have with you when you need a knife”. I think this is a fair definition, with one caveat, as long as the knife performs the job what you want it to do. If you’re required to cut some canvas away and the blade snaps on the first attempt, then this is failed tactical knife, it’s not done its job.
A tactical knife may also feature one or more of the following traits:
Full or Partial Tang?
In knife terms, the ‘tang’ refers to the sections of the blade that extends into the handle of the knife. There is more than one type of knife tang, with the various types offering certain advantages or disadvantages. The best is arguably the Full tang, which means the tang extends down the full length of the knife. Half tang and its variations normally extend about halfway into the hande or less. These are weaker than full tang are normally present on cheaper knives. If you can, only consider full tang knives as the extra length equates directly into a safer, stronger and more reliable knife. However, tangs do not apply to folding knives.
Get a Grip
Knife handles can be made from a variety of materials, both man-made and naturally occurring, including horn, bone, wood, rubber, and leather. For a tactical knife, we would always suggest opting for synthetic materials, as these will generally offer the best grip and toughness you’d expect from a tactical knife. Other materials may look nicer, but when it comes down to hard use they might not be up to the job.
Types of Tactical Knives
We can quite roughly divide knives into two categories, fixed blade, and folding knives.
Foldings knives are as the title suggests, knives that fold and can include pocket knives as well as numerous other types of folders. The folding knife market is heavily saturated with many manufacturers and vendors providing a myriad of options. The most common types are multi-bladed, double-bladed, single-blades and Swiss Army style. These can range in size from something the size of your fingertip all the way to something that would only fit in a bag. Most folding knives are made with portability in mind, either designed to fit comfortably in a pocket or a tactical pouch.
Fixed blade knives are as suggested by the name, fixed, unable to fold or reduce in size. They are generally stronger, more durable and thicker than any folder. You can, of course, use a folding knife to butcher a bear, but the right tool for the job is a fixed knife. Common examples of fixed blade knives are camping and hunting knives, survival knives, skinning knives and gut-hook knives. The biggest disadvantage of a fixed blade knife is portability, they are seldom convenient enough to take with you everywhere, and remember the best knife is the knife you have with you.
I’ve always been of the opinion that you get what you pay for, meaning if you want a serious piece of kit, you’ll need to pay a little bit more for the privilege. There are a ton of cheap $5 knives available to buy online, and they can be a bit of cheap fun, but if you intend to use your tactical knife in any practical way, I would suggest spending at least a little more in order to get something that’s not going to fail on you. We have attempted to cover every budget in our recommended knife range, with some dirt cheap options that are reasonably competent, but if your budget stretches to $40 or more, then the quality of knife you’ll receive is much better and you’ll end up with something that will last years or decades of use.
Along with build quality, ergonomics is one of the features of a knife that needs to be well thought out and seamlessly implemented. You need a knife which feels comfortable in the hand even when put under stress or during a long session of use. The knife should feel natural in the hand and no sharp edges or pinching should be felt when the knife is in yes. You ought to feel confident in its use, with no concerns or worries about losing your grip. Experienced designers and manufacturers will ensure a knife meets and exceed these criteria. When you receive your knife, make sure it fits snuggly in your hand and it’s not too small or too large, if it feels uncomfortable and just doesn’t feel right, return it and choose another model.
A big knife does not necessarily mean it’s a better knife. A knife choice should be driven by the purpose you intend to use it for, remember the best knife is the one you have with you when you need it. A machete might be a great choice if you need to hack your way through a Bolivian jungle, but it’s going to useless if you don’t have it with you due to its size. That’s not to say that big knives don’t serve a purpose, they certainly do, but a tactical knife doesn’t need to be big, it needs to be portable and something you can carry with you everywhere you go.
On a tactical knife, there are two areas of interest when it comes to materials used, these are the blade and the handle, Blades can be made from a massive selection of steels, and it’s incredibly difficult to say one particular type is the best. Each type generally offers various advantages and disadvantages, so it becomes a task of picking the steel that best suits your needs. Steel is largely made up of two main components, iron, and carbon, in addition, other elements can be added to change the properties of the resulting steel. Most blade steels contain additional elements such as phosphorus, silicon, manganese or sulfur, this creates an alloy that might make the resulting blade harder, more resistant to corrosion or better at taking an edge. Any decent manufacturer will use quality proven alloys in the construction of the blade, just be wary of knife offerings from China or Pakistan, they might not be made to the standards we expect in the west.
You’ll frequently come across the following materials in knife blades:
Carbon Steel will generally have a carbon content between 0.5% through to 0.95%, the higher the carbon content, the harder the resulting blade will be. However, they can be brittle and they can rust if not cared for correctly.
Stainless steel is available in a huge range of grades, some are better suited to pots and pans rather than knives, be sure to verify the hardness of the stainless steel prior to making a purchase. Just because the steel is resistant to corrosion, it doesn’t mean it won’t rust and it doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for you.
Titanium will usually come alloyed with carbon. It can be great when used to coat another metal type, for example, steel, but it’s often too flexible for a knife to be made purely of titanium. The exception would be if you needed a flexible knife, for example for filleting.
Damascus steel is often nothing more than a marketing gimmick and is rarely found in its true form. It’s often confused with folded steel, which it does share some similarities. I would recommend avoiding anything marked as Damascus steel unless you’re looking for something that’s nice to look at and will only be used as a display piece.
Knife handles can come in a huge range of materials, including Steel, Aluminium, plastic, wood, bone, G-10 and rubber. The perfect handle is comfortable, natural feeling and provides exceptional grip under adverse conditions. Give some thought to the environment you’ll be using the knife in before deciding on a purchase. Wood and bone might look nice and make a great gift, but if they’re subjected to oil, sweat or intense heat, they are likely to crack, break wear loose. From a tactical point of view, I would suggest sticking with synthetic materials.
Steel, G10, Titanium and Aluminium all make good choices. Any handle that feels natural, suits your grip and handshape is going to make a good choice.
Below we’ve listed some of the popular handle options available.
If you’re considering a wooden handle, then hardwood is really the only viable option. I will admit that I love the combination of wood and metal, however, from a tactical point of view, I would suggest another option.
Similar to wood, Horn is another popular option for certain types of knives. Again, aesthetically they look great and would be a great choice for a skinning or hunting knife, but I would choose something else for my tactical tools.
ABS is a common choice at the lower end of the market, it’s incredibly hard wearing, tough and cheap to produce. If exposed to direct sunlight for too long it can become brittle. It’s also not particularly grippy, especially when wet. Choose something else if you can.
Bone is commonly available as a handle material, it can be quite grippy due to its rough nature, it can be dyed to almost any colour you can think off. For a tac knife, I wouldn’t recommend it.
Paracord for a handle presents an interesting option. it can serve the dual purpose of providing a good grip and can additionally provide a length of paracord to be used in case of an emergency. It’s potentially a good choice.
Metals such as titanium, steel or aluminium are very popular for tac knives. It’s hard wearing and can provide an excellent grip if treated correctly, I would recommend.
G10 is probably the best choice for a tac knife. It’s very grippy in all conditions, whether wet, dry or cold, it’s additionally very comfortable to hold and use. Definitely recommended.
At their most basic level, knives are simple designs consisting of a sharp edge and sharp point, that’s all their is to them. As designs became more complicated over the years, the shape and style of the blade began to take on distinct names. These designs were primarily made with a specific purpose in mind, allowing for increased specialisation for the knife in question. If you need to poke something, then theirs a blade design to match, if you need to pry, then theirs another matching design. Many designs exist today, but the two most commonly found are drop point and clip point.
Tac knives are available in a variety of blade styles, from Tanto point to spear tip and everything in between, they all specialise in fulfilling a specific need. The blade edge can be plain, serrated or a combination of the two, half serrated half straight. My own personal preference is a thick blade with a drop point and half serrated edge, this means to knife can be used for a variety of purposes and I won’t feel like I’m carrying around something flimsy. This is, of course, a personal preference, so feel free to pick something that better suits your requirements.
The Types of Blade Tips
On your search for a tac knife, you might come across any of the following blade tips:
A straight-backed blade is perhaps the most common type you’ll come across. Its telltale design includes a flat back and it will normally boast a curved edge. The flat back is often an advantage, allowing the user to exert extra pressure with their other hand. It’s a great option for most knives.
A clip-point blade looks like a normal point that’s been clipped at the back, creating a thinner and pointier tip. It’s ideal for precision cutting or when additional control is needed. The legendary Bowie Knife is an excellent example of a clip-point blade. Clip-points can either be straight or concave.
A trailing-point is easy to spot, featuring a back that curves up which improves the slicing capability. The curve is sometimes called the ‘belly’ and a knife featuring a large belly are especially well suited for skinning. As the blade curves, the blade is often lighter and more manoeuvrable. You’ll often find this style in fillet knives.
A drop point blade is in some respects similar to a clip point, but while a clip point features a concave back, the drop point is convex. This design is not as good at piercing things, but overall it’s a stronger design. Many modern knives feature a drop point as it’s versatile and useful in most applications.
A spear-point blade is common in daggers and other piercing weapons. It features a symmetrical design with a thicker spine running down the centre. These can either be sharpened on one side or on both.
A needle-point blade is somewhat similar to a spear-point, but it’ll taper far more to create a much sharper point. The blade is often very sharp but not very strong. It’s commonly used in daggers.
The needle-point is also symmetrical but tapers much more sharply and therefore is not particularly strong but can be used effectively to pierce or penetrate. Stabbing is the needle-point blade’s strong point and you tend to see this blade mostly on daggers intended for close range combat just like the spear-point.
A tanto tip is shaped like a chisel and took its inspiration from Japanese swords, the advantage of this type of blade is the increased strength. It’s a great option for a tactical knife.
Knife Steel Differences
There are tens if not hundreds of different types of steel available, and not all of them are good for knives. Going through every type of steel is a bit beyond this article, but we can generalise the common types found in knives and give you a rough idea of what to expect.
Stainless steel is probably the most common type of steel used in knives today, it’s durable, resistant to corrosion and can make a decent blade. Within the stainless steel category, there are several grades, many of which create terrible knives, while others are great for knives. Make sure you get a stainless steel that’s good for practical purposes and is not best suited for a kettle.
Carbon steel is a great choice for knife blades, they are strong, hard wearing, can take an edge really well and can last a lifetime. The downside is that they are prone to corrosion if not cared for carefully. Carbon steel blades need to be stored with a thin layer of oil or other protective substance to avoid rusting.
Best Tactical Knife
Kershaw Blur S30V
A Quick Overview
The first among the best tactical knives in this review is Kershaw Blur S30V. You might’ve heard about the Kershaw brand if you’re into tactical gear, as they’re one of the world-class leaders in this field – this particular model is, perhaps, their finest creation in the tactical knife sphere, and we intend to show you why.
Specs & Features
Firstly, this knife features a folding mechanism it’s 4.75 inches long while closed and 8.25 inches long when opened. The half-serrated blade is 3.5 inches tall and features a premium stainless steel. The handle is made of black aluminum material and it’s just as durable as the rest of the construction.
The Kershaw Blur S30V folding pocket knife is great value for money – there are plenty of diverse features that can be used in any number of situations. The blade is decently long and boasts a clean nonserrated edge, making it ideal for both cutting and piercing. The easy-handle grip is also very durable, so it’s safe to conclude that the Kershaw Blur S30V Folding Pocket Knife is incredibly versatile.
This tactical knife looks all but ordinary – it excels in aesthetics like no other. There are several “gaps” in the main graphics and the serrated side makes it look even more dangerous and edgy. When folded, the grip of this tactical knife is enough to make it pass as an “exquisite knife”, to say the least. People who are looking for beautiful tactical knives shouldn’t skip this model.
Ironically, the Kershaw Blur S30V Folding Pocket Knife doesn’t cost a fortune, even though it offers a plethora of benefits and advantages over similar tactical knives. It belongs to the “affordable” price point category and boasts a massive value for the buck.
What We Liked
Firstly, the mechanism of Kershaw pocket knife is impeccable – it locks in easily and neatly. The blade is very sharp and retains its edge well, but what we really liked about this tactical knife is that it comes it feels like it’s up to any job you might throw at it.
What We Didn’t Like
The only problem we had with the Kershaw Blur S30V Folding Pocket Knife is that it doesn’t close as easy as it opens – you’ll need to be a little rough with it until you get accustomed to it.
Kershaw Blur S30V Folding Pocket Knife (1670S30V); 3.4” S30V Blade with Stonewashed Finish and Anodized Aluminum Handle with Trac-Tec Inserts, SpeedSafe Assisted Opening, Reversible Pocketclip; 4 OZ
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Ruger 2-Stage Compact Folding Tanto Veff Serrated Edge Knife
A Quick Overview
Much like our previous pick, the Ruger 2-Stage Compact Folding Tanto Veff Serrated Edge Knife is a beautiful, highly versatile tactical knife. It comes outfitted with a sizeable blade and, even though it doesn’t have the features of other models, it can still prove to be useful in any number of situations.
Specs and Features
The Ruger features the military grade handle – it’s very grippy and comfortable, making this knife extremely easy to use. The spring-assist mechanism will help you lock your knife in our out quickly.
This tactical knife is 9 inches long when opened and 5 inches long while closed, with the blade being four inches long. The half-serrated side works like a charm in situations when you need to cut anything heavy or durable while the tanto point makes Ruger 2-Stage knife is excellent for piercing things. Lastly, the bottom of the grip is reinforced with metal, allowing you to use this tip for breaking glass safely in rescue situations.
The Ruger 2-Stage Compact Knife is decently versatile – it features a glass breaker on the hilt, a serrated edge, and a superbly sharp edge. You could use it for self-defense, for cutting, piercing, and breaking in a nutshell – there are more versatile models in our review, but this one passed the basic versatility checks.
Basically, the Ruger looks incredibly pretty – it’s available in a few color variations, including black, desert tan, and stonewashed. Whichever color you pick, we guarantee that you’ll like this tactical knife in terms of aesthetics.
Even though it’s not the cheapest tac knife in our review, the Ruger comes at a rather affordable price. It belongs to the medium bracket of the “affordable” price point category and boasts quite a value for the cash.
What We Liked
The price of Ruger knife is the first thing you’ll like – it’s a cheap, highly versatile tactical knife that surpasses most similar knives in value. The military handle is the feature we can guarantee you’ll like, but you’ll also find much use of the serrated belt cutter and the window breaker.
What We Didn’t Like
Some people point out that the spring assist mechanism is quite weak. That’s only partially true – namely, the locking (and unlocking) mechanism of Ruger won’t just “spring out” at the exact moment when you use it, but it works just fine.
Ruger 2-Stage Compact Folding Tanto Veff Serrated Edge Knife
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Benchmade Bedlam 860 Scimitar Knife
A Quick Overview
Here we have yet another great option, the Benchmade Bedlam 860 Scimitar Knife – the Spring assist open scimitar rescue pocket knife. This is more of a blade than it is a knife, as it’s very long, remarkably sharp, and outfitted with a razor-tipped point. As Benchmade makes some of the best tactical knife models out there, you should feel free to expect quite a lot from this one.
Specs and Features
First of all, the Spring assists open scimitar pocket knife is made of a special type of steel. It’s as durable as can be, and you can rest assured that you’ll be able to use it put it through several years of hard work with little worry. This knife operates on a spring assisted locking system which is a bit more reliable when compared to our earlier picks. The overall length of Benchmade Bedlam 860 is 9.7 inches while the blade is 4 inches long.
The Scimitar blade is intimidating to behold and is well suited as a tactical knife. The knife comes from the significant heritage which is Benchmade. Not only can the knife be used as a tactical blade, but it’ll work well in a range of scenarios that require a serious knife
This is a rough-looking knife, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not beautiful. People who are looking for elegant looking knives should, perhaps, continue browsing through our selection of the best tactical knives, but this one doesn’t lack in this field of performance, it’s just that it performs better in other spheres.
The knife belongs in the “luxury” price point category but you’ll get a significant amount of money for that price.
What We Liked
Apart from the low price and its tough-looking design, we really liked the material of which Spring assist open sawback bowie rescue pocket knife is made. The stainless steel is very durable, and there are a plethora of other features you’ll grow to love, like the glass breaker and the seatbelt cutter.
What We Didn’t Like
While the majority of this knife’s construction is formed of stainless steel parts, there are several gaps in the design that somewhat impede upon the spring assist mechanism.
Benchmade - Bedlam 860, Plain Scimitar, Satin Finish
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Blade Mate Survival Knives Tactical Folding Rescue Pocket Knife
A Quick Overview
We’re presenting to you Blade Mate’s tactical folding pocket knife – a neat, plain tac knife which is a bit smaller than from what we’ve seen so far. It excels in many fields of performance, but we can safely conclude that it’s usability is only matched by its outward appearance. Let’s take a look at what it can offer you.
Specs and Features
The first notable feature of Blade Mate’s Tactical folding pocket knife is the seatbelt cutter – it will undoubtedly save your life during an emergency. Secondly, there’s the steel tipped glass breaker which, when combined with the seatbelt cutter will be your mean of escape during car collisions. The blade of this knife features stainless steel materials and a serrated edge which is perfect for sawing and slicing. The blade is 3.5 inches long and is fortified with a quality alloy which prevents corrosion.
Although Blade Mate’s Tactical folding pocket knife doesn’t come outfitted with too many features, it’s pretty versatile overall. This knife will prove very valuable to you during emergencies, during camping, or survival exercises.
We’ve already mentioned that Blade Mate’s tactical knife excels in aesthetics, and the sole reason for that is quite obvious – you’ll be able to choose a plethora of color variations, including black, blue, cherry, covert black, pink, yellow, and the yellow box cutter.
Blade Mate’s Tactical folding pocket knife is just a tad more expensive than our previous picks. It does, however, belong to the same price point category as most Tac Force knives in this review – the “affordable” price point category.
What We Liked
Essentially, this is a beautiful looking knife – we’ve liked the diversity of color options that are at your disposal, but apart from that, it’s usability and versatility are pretty high as well.
What We Didn’t Like
Basically, this particular model is a bit cheap feeling.
BladeMate Tactical Folding Knife: Survival Rescue Pocket Knife with 3.5" Stainless Steel Tanto Blade, Seat Belt Cutter, and Glass Breaker (Black)
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Smith & Wesson SWHRT9B Stainless Steel Fixed Blade Knife
A Quick Overview
Smith and Wesson are one of the most famous brands in the arms industry, and it’s of no coincidence that one of our top picks is a model from their assortment. The S&W SWHRT9B steel tactical knife is certainly one of the best tactical knives you’ll find in your search, so let’s delve deeper into details without any further ado.
Specs and Features
An incredibly long blade, the Firstly, the S&W SWHRT9B steel tactical knife will be your ideal weapon of choice out there in the wilderness or emergencies. You can rely on it in your time of need, as it’s made of high carbon stainless steel materials and wrapped with back rubber on the handle. This is a plain knife, which means that it doesn’t feature any spring assist or similar mechanisms.
Firstly, the S&W SWHRT9B steel tactical knife is 9 inches long, with a blade with 4.7 inches – note that the blade of this knife is approximately 1.5 inches longer than what we’ve seen so far. This means that this knife is ideal for self-defense and hunting, and a bit less useful in regard to camping and survival situations. This doesn’t mean it’s not versatile, though, it’s just a bit more straightforward and plain than most models we’ve reviewed.
As far as the story with plain knives goes, S&W SWHRT9B steel tactical knife is a classy, elegant knife. It looks just fine, although it doesn’t particularly excel in aesthetics.
This remarkable knife costs several bucks above your average tactical knife – it belongs to the upper bracket of the “affordable” price point category, and it just might be one of the best tactical knives under $20.
What We Liked
Plain is useful – if you agree with this statement, you’ll understand what we liked about S&W SWHRT9B steel tactical knife. It features a very long blade and it’s one of the most ideal steel weapons you could rely on.
What We Didn’t Like
Most tactical knives are foldable, which is perhaps the only thing that we didn’t like about the SWHRT9B.
Smith & Wesson SWHRT9B 9in Stainless Steel Fixed Blade Knife with 4.7in Dagger Point Blade and TPE Handle for Outdoor Tactical Survival and Everyday Carry
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Tac Force TF-723FD Assisted Opening Tactical Folding Knife
A Quick Overview
Here we’re at a Tac Force tactical knife – the Tac Force TF 723FD assisted opening knife. It’s one of the cheapest knives we’ve come across in the Tac Force catalog, so if you’re looking for a budget option, this model might be perfect for you.
Specs and Features
Tac Force TF 723FD assisted opening knife is a spring-assist knife which is easy to fold, allowing for rapid deployment. It locks securely in place if you use the liner lock, and you can rest assured that you’ll be able to use it for years due to premium-quality stainless steel materials it’s made of.
This knife features a half serrated edge, an aluminum handle, and a convenient pocket clip that allows safe & easy carry. It comes outfitted with a glass breaker, as well as the seatbelt cutter on the end, so it’s safe to say that it’s pretty versatile.
Some people would say that Tac Force TF 723FD assisted opening knife looks more like a cork opener rather than a tactical knife, but that depends on how you look at it. When folded, it doesn’t really look that appealing, although the story is drastically different once you unfold it.
This outstanding tactical knife comes at a shamefully low price – it’s one of the cheapest tactical knives in our review.
What We Liked
Firstly, we liked the price at which Tac Force TF 723FD assisted opening knife comes at. Though cheap, it’s also very durable and decently versatile due to convenient features it comes supplied with.
What We Didn’t Like
Actually, if we take into consideration that Tac Force TF 723FD assisted opening knife comes at such a low price, there’s not a thing we didn’t like about it.
TAC Force TF-723FD Assisted Opening Tactical Folding Knife, Black Half-Serrated Blade, Red Black Handle, 4-1/2-Inch Closed
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Gerber 06 FAST Knife
A Quick Overview
By now it must be clear that Gerber makes tactical knives of exceptional quality, and if you’re really into this brand but are low on cash, we suggest that you give the Gerber 06 FAST Knife a shot. Let’s see what this quality knife has in store for you.
Specs and Features
Gerber 06 FAST Knife features a spring-assist mechanism which allows easy one-hand deployment. It’s outfitted with a liner lock which will keep it steady securely and surely. The 3.75-inch blade features a serrated side and a razor sharp edge and it’s made of 7Cr17MoV stainless steel. The handle is made of top-shelf textured G10, which is incredibly grippy.
Nearly all Gerber tactical knives are exceptionally versatile, and this one is not an exception. It will be your ideal camping partner and it won’t fail you in heated situations where you’ll come to rely on it for self-defense.
The Gerber 06 FAST Knife is available in an anti-reflective black coating. Simply put, this is one of the most beautiful knives you could possibly have.
This tactical knife is one of the best value options in our review – Gerber 06 FAST Knife is not the cheapest knife available, but it it does offer incredible value for money. We warmly suggest that you try it out if you’re looking for a good quality tac-knife.
What We Liked
Amongst the plethora of likable things about the Gerber assisted opening folding knife, we liked it the most for its sleek looks and spring assisted opening mechanism. It’s a beautiful-looking, reasonably priced, and very versatile knife which certainly deserves more attention than it’s already getting.
What We Didn’t Like
Being cheap, it’s only normal that not everything is perfect regarding this knife. Namely, the hilt is pretty uncomfortable, although it’s very grippy.
Gerber 06 FAST Knife, Serrated Edge, Tanto [30-000118]
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Benchmade Mini Griptilian Knife
A Quick Overview
Benchmade makes some of the best regarded and well-loved knives ever made. This brand offers exceptional tactical knives, and the Mini Griptilian Knife is one of their finest works.
Specs and Features
This exquisite tactical knife features a custom drop point – it’s somewhat curved and performs better than most standard tactical knives in regards to self-defense and hunting. This knife is made of outstandingly durable stainless steel materials and comes outfitted with a G10 military handle which provides a massively superior grip. You’ll also get an adjustable belt clip.
In essence, the Mini Griptilian Knife isn’t jam-packed full of (unnecessary?) features – it’s meant to cut and pierce things. There are no glass breaker or the seat belt cutter, which means that this knife doesn’t particularly excel in the field of versatility. However, it is a true everyday carry knife in a very handy compact package. It’s easy to open one-handed, meaning you can use it in a pinch. If you could only have one knife, this would be a strong contender for the best choice, given that you can easily take it with you everywhere.
If you want to look tough, this knife is probably not the one to choose, it excels at functionality over the aggressive factor. It looks cool, works well and does everything you’d want a tactical knife to do.
The Mini Griptilian Knife is one of the more expensive models in our review. In fact, it firmly belongs in the luxury price point category. It’s well worth the expense, though. I cannot recommend it enough.
What We Liked
The looks, the attitude, the sturdiness of this knife – these are all qualities you’ll come to love about Mini Griptilian Knife. It’s incredibly durable, cuts through virtually everything as if things were butter, and even though it’s not the most versatile knife you’ll use, it’s an outstanding knife.
What We Didn’t Like
Even if we were to look past the not-so-affordable price, the Mini Griptilian Knife lacks the versatility of its less-expensive counterparts. This is the only field of performance where this tactical knife is lacking in the end.
Benchmade - Mini Griptilian 556 Knife, Plain Drop-Point, Satin Finish, Black Handle
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Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife
A Quick Overview
Here comes a fine tactical knife from Zero Tolerance – the Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife with SpeedSafe assisted opening. It’s an extremely robust knife that will take a significant amount of punishment, from batoning, prying, camping, cutting and anything else you can throw at it, it’ll come through relatively unscathed.
Specs and Features
The Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife is outfitted with a spring-assist mechanism and a liner lock – folding and unfolding it is as easy as pie, and you’ll be able to pull it from its sheath in a matter of seconds. It also features black G10 scale handles, a pocket clip, and it’s made of S350V stainless steel which boasts impeccable levels of durability and sharpness. Coating the 3.25 inch blade is a Non-reflective black Tungsten DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) coating.
The only feature which contributes to the Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife versatility is the pocket clip – it allows for safe & easy carry, which is perfectly fine, considering that this is, after all, is a significant practical tactical knife.
As much as the Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife lacks in terms of versatility, it more than makes up for with its beautiful outward appearance. It’s sleek, intimidating and looks the part.
This tactical knife is absolutely perfect for people who need a quality knife that will last more than several lifetimes. It’s expensive, but we’re confident it’ll work out cheaper than most models given that it’s built to last.
What We Liked
There is one thing we liked about the Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife above all else – it’s incredibly sturdy build quality. As for the other spheres of performance, it is not lacking, but there are cheaper models that are nearly as capable.
What We Didn’t Like
When compared to other tactical knives, the Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife lacks versatility. It doesn’t feature the seatbelt cutter, glass breaker, or light, but it does what it’s supposed to, which to perform as a capable knife.
Zero Tolerance 0350 Folding Pocket Knife; 3.25” S30V Stainless Steel Blade with Black Tungsten DLC Finish; Textured G-10 Handle Scales, SpeedSafe Assisted Opening, Liner Lock, Quad-Mount Clip; 6.2 OZ.
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Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife
A Quick Overview
This is the last tactical knife model in our review – Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife is perfect for people who are new to tac knives, as it’s very easy to use and doesn’t cost too much. Let’s see how it earned its place among the best tactical knives.
Specs and Features
The Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife is, in essence, a plain fixed blade knife which comes outfitted with a small number of features, which include a half-serrated edge, an incredibly compact package and a reversible pocket clip.
The level of versatility of the Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife is rather low – it’s perfect for people who are yet to get familiar with tactical gear, but it doesn’t do anything special in particular, apart from the fact that it will let you cut or slice your way through most things.
This is, basically, a great-looking knife which offers and unique looks and feel. It looks pretty basic, and people who value minimalist knives will certainly like it – those looking for more flamboyant models should try something else.
The Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife is very, very affordable – it belongs in the middle ground between cheap and luxury, but that’s not to say it’s not any good. It most certainly is a very capable knife.
What We Liked
The price and beginner-friendly orientation of the Boker Plus Subcom Pocket Knife is what we absolutely adore about it. If you’re packing up for a camping trip or have found yourself in need of a new every day carry knife, make sure to consider this model.
What We Didn’t Like
The blade of this knife is rather short, and there are absolutely no convenient features onboard – no glass breakers, no seatbelt cutters, so don’t expect a versatile knife. Truth be told, almost always these features are unnecessary, so don’t consider it as a fatal flaw.
If you’ve ever trolled with an electric motor, you’ll know how much fun that can be. But, trust me when I tell you that fishing with a Kayak is so much better. Kayaking has seriously increased in popularity over the last couple of years. There’s more than one reason for this rise in popularity, but the number one cause is that the hobby is far cheaper than opting for a boat. You can buy and kit out a kayak with all the latest gadgets for a fraction of the cost of a second-hand aluminum boat. Additionally, you’ll be able to maneuver a kayak into places that boats couldn’t even dream about. Not only are they cheaper and easier to navigate into difficult areas, but you’ll feel much closer to nature and it’s good for your health, requiring a little bit of exercise.
Kayak Fishing Tips
So, now that you’ve bought your kayak, how can you become an expert in no time at all?
Keep Close To The Shore
If there’s a current present that you need to paddle against, then you’ll want to be as energy efficient as possible. It can be very disheartening fighting against a current only to realize you’re making very little headway. One way to overcome this is to stay close to the shoreline where the current is less, this means you’ll expend less energy in getting to your destination and you’ll get there faster. You’ll also arrive at your fishing hole without your arms and shoulders screaming at you, meaning you can jump straight into the fishing without the need for a break. If you want to make your life even easier, you can even buy a kayak with pedal operated flippers built in. Your legs are some of the biggest muscles in your body and are ideal for moving you along, so operating these kayaks is very efficient and not at all tiring.
Use an Anchor
You, your kayak and all of your gear are only a fraction of the weight of a boat and outboard motor combined. So, it’s not at all surprising that when the wind begins to pick up, you’ll find you drift much faster than you would be if in a boat. It’s on these days that you’ll find an anchor is an invaluable piece of kit. Even a relatively cheap two-pound claw anchor can make a big difference and will keep you stationary on even the windiest of days. Please bear in mind that anchoring in a current requires a bit of forethought and planning. How to do this safely is a beyond the scope of this article, but an incorrectly placed anchor in a current can easily flip your kayak, so do some research before making any anchoring attempts.
If you’ve fished in flowing water before, then you might already know about this tip. Fishing from a Kayak in a current is possible, but it does present its own set of unique challenges. The size of your Kayak can actually work to your advantage when working in flowing water, due to the compact size and small footprint, you can position your kayak in such a way that you take advantage of any eddy’s in the water. The best way to think about this is if you want to fish in a particular area, go upstream passed the fishing point and tuck your Kayak into an eddy. If you get the positioning right you’ll be able to stay in this spot without too much difficulty with only the periodic need to reposition your vessel.
Using Casts to Position the Kayak
This is a neat little trick you can perform. If you’re using baits that provide resistance in the water, for example, a spinner, then you can use the cast and reel into move around. As kayaks are generally lightweight, it doesn’t take much to move them around. Simple physics comes into play, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Which basically means that the force you employ to move your spinnerbait towards your kayak will also move your kayak slightly towards your spinnerbait. If you employ this method in a slowly moving river, casting upstream on every cast, you might just find that you’ll stay fairly stationary, with very little drift.
Use your Feet
Use your head and your feet. What I mean is think about how you use your feet to help maneuver your Kayak. Your feet can quite easily be used as little rudders to help steer your kayak to the right location. You can also use them to anchor yourself to a single location when the water’s depth allows you to get a foothold. You can often quite easily use your foot to push the Kayak against something solid such as a boulder, tree stump, submerged shopping trolly… you get the idea. Bonus tip, if your hands are full with other things, a simple push of with your feet is often enough to get you well on your way to another location where interesting fishing things are happening.
One-Handed Skills Part One
If you want to be a master Kayaker, you need to learn how to paddle with one hand only, this will help you avoid many potentially sticky situations. If you’re enjoying a leisurely snack, holding onto a beer, juggling some tackle or taking a selfie of your face with your brand new Kayak, then being able to maneuver with your other hand is an invaluable skill. That’s not to mention the times when you actually catch a fish and things are getting exciting as you slowly drift towards an aggressive Goose. Putting in the effort to learn this skill will prove your kayaking experience no end.
One-Handed Skills Part Two
Here’s another skill you’re going to need to master in order to be a competent kayak angler, one-handed casting. When you don’t have the stability of a boat or the height advantage offered by a pier working in your favor, then casting can be somewhat tricky. When you consider how low you are when compared to the level of the water, there isn’t much room for error. Learning the one-handed cast can help with this, allowing for greater control and balance, even if it does feel a bit awkward, to begin with. Given enough time and practice, the skill will become second nature and help you transition into a Kayaking pro.
Safety is Smart
I completely understand the temptation of packing up your Kayak and heading out to an unknown body of water where it’s just you, the fish and the water. However, I would urge some caution. Make sure you know what the weather is supposed to do that day, but also learn to read the tell-tale signs that the weather is changing. What I’m saying is be aware of your surroundings, weather can change very quickly, and you don’t want to be battling against the elements in the middle of nowhere. You might think it looks daft, but wearsafety gear, more than a few lives have been saved by being dressed for the environment. If you can, fish with a friend, or at least let someone know where you’re going and what time you should be home. Fishing safely should be your priority.
Learn From Others
Take a look at what other Kayakers are doing and learn from them. If you can get involved with a group of kayak fishers that regularly head out together, then you’re going to naturally soak up their knowledge without even realizing it. Plus it’s a whole lot more fun to share these experiences with other people and not to mention it’s much safer. There’s nothing better than heading out for a fishing and camping weekend with some friends, just make sure you take something to eat with you as no fishing trips are guaranteed to land you a catch. Consider a top rated kayak for safety and a great experience.
The post 9 Kayak Fishing Tips That Will Turn You Into an Expert appeared first on Crow Survival.
Every bass fisherman has asked themselves or someone else, “What do Bass Eat?”. We ask this question for an obvious reason, if we know what they eat, we can more easily catch them. Even if we enjoy being outdoors and appreciate the time spent with nature, we would still rather not waste our time with little chance of catching a Bass. It’s important to have a basic understanding of the feeding habits of the fish we’re looking to catch, this will save us time and money in the long run and increase the fun factor as we’ll get more bites in return. We don’t have to be an expert on fish feeding habits, nor do we need to know what every fish likes to eat, but having a basic understanding will put us ahead of the pack and could dramatically increase our chances of success.
Largemouth bass are known as predator fish, which means they hunt and eat other fish, bugs, insects and pretty much anything else they can wrap their mouth around. Given enough time, food and a suitable environment, Largemouth bass can grow to a significant size. They are best suited to warmer waters with plenty of hiding places where they can ambush their prey. They will naturally eat smaller fish such as minnows and shad, but given the opportunity, they will quite happily take on larger fish such as trout. They don’t only eat fish and will eat mice, rats, frogs, insects and even small birds. I have personally seen a very large 14 pound or more Bass attack a duck!
Bass will prefer to hunt and eat things that seem to be hurt or struggling in the water, as these are generally easier kills with less energy expended to secure a meal. It’s due the varied diet of bass that we have so many bait options and they all play in different ways when in the water. Despite how they look, bass are pretty smart, so going out with the same bait every single day is likely to result in diminishing returns. The fish will learn to avoid what you’re offering them in very little time. When you’re out fishing you might find that a plastic minnow works wonders, however, the very next day you’ll only get a bite if you’re using a 9″ worm. At a basic level, this means if you’re having no luck with one method after an hour, try something different and see if that produces the results you’re looking for. Bass in popular fishing spots are less likely to perform well to common fishing methods, this is when you should try and mix things up a bit.
When do Bass Eat?
If you want to maximize your chances of catching a bass, then you need to understand the time of day they like to eat. To better understand the answer to this question it’s a good idea to take a look at how bass eyes are designed. A bass is characterized by very large eyes that protrude slightly from the side of their heads, they have a single large lens that allows for a lot of light to be captured from a wide viewing angle. Coating the back of their eyes is melanin which helps them see better both in bright conditions and when little light is available. During the day Bass have what is classed as photopic vision and at night they have scotopic, which basically means that during daylight hours they will see better colors and depth perception, and at night their eyes will adjust to take in more light at the expense of depth and color. Most experienced anglers will fish at either dusk or dawn, this is when Bass are actively hunting prey due to their visual advantage they have over prey. If you go out often enough you’ll come across plenty of occasions where shad are being pushed to the service at dusk by hunting bass.
Can Bass See in the Dark?
There’s something magical about fishing at night, it’s an experience that’s completely different to fishing during daylight hours. We’ve already established that bass has a distinct advantage over their prey when it comes to low light conditions due to their unique eye biology. But does that directly translate into anglers being able to fish at night for bass?
The short answer is yes. Bass are frequently more active at night where conditions suit their hunting style, this means that night anglers are going to have an increased amount of success if they are well prepared and have the right bait. In addition to increased activity, you’re probably going to find less competition from fellow anglers at night, so you should be able more easily position yourself in a prime spot. In my experience and contrary to intuition, a darker bait is better suited to night time fishing. if you’re not having any luck with darker baits, feel free to switch to another color and see what the response from the fish is lke. It’s worth bearing in mind that fish are not the only thing that prefers nighttime, you’ll probably find a significant increase in insects, so top up on repellant or invest in a face net.
Quietly Does It
We now know that bass has exceptional eyesight and are able to see well both in light and dark conditions, but what about their hearing? If you manage to catch a bass, you’ll probably find that there aren’t any obvious signs of ears, at least not the same as mammals ears. But, if you have any experience at all, you’ve probably had experience of bass being drawn to bait hitting the water, so what does this mean? Bass actually locate and attack prey based on both sound and sight. Bass ears are located inside their head without any obvious outward signs that they have any at all, but the upside of this is that their whole body can act as a sort of sounding board, helping them locate prey in a 360-degree radius. This allows Bass to locate a frog plopping into the water, small fish jumping, and they will also hear your lure as it moves through to water or when it breaks the surface. This also has a downside, if they can hear things hitting the water, then they can probably hear you moving around or talking. Even these small sounds can be enough the scar fish away. This is doubly important if you’re on a boat as everything is amplified slightly due to the boat hull, motors, gear and moving around can easily spook wary fish, causing them to swim for cover.
Can Bass Smell Bait?
We’ve all come across the various sprays and gels that can be added to lures in order to entice the fish to bite, or maybe you’ve seen the plastic worms that smell like decomposing cat food. The question is, can bass really smell and detect these things? Bass have a sense of smell, however, the area of their brain that’s responsible for smell is not as large as the areas responsible for site and sound. This basically means that a bass will primarily rely on sight and sound to detect prey, with smell being a secondary method. In certain situations smelly bait is likely an advantage, for example, if the water is murky, then bass may rely upon smells to locate a potential food source. It’s likely that bass can smell better underwater than humans can above water, which is largely due to how smell permeates water. A smell will linger far longer underwater than it will in the air, it won’t dissipate as easily and in still bodies of water the smells are likely to stay around for quite some time.
Once a year bass will come up from the depths to spawn, creating a whole new generation of mini bass that will hopefully grow into monster fish for us to catch. But, can you catch Bass when they’re in the middle of the act and are they actively feeding during this period? The answer is not a straightforward one, unfortunately. When spring finally comes around and the waters start to warm up, Bass will move into shallower waters and begin eating as much food as they can in order to prepare themselves for egg production. High protein food such as craw-fish are going to be the preferred prey, so you’ll probably have a decent amount of luck using a lure that looks like a salamander or brush hog. When they being to nest the male will first move into an area to clear it out for the female, the female will then move in to lay her eggs. During this time bass will be very aggressive towards anything they think might threaten their eggs and nest, which you can use to your advantage. Casting your bait into a nesting area multiple times may be enough to provoke bass to attack your lure.
Why do Bass Eat my Bait
So, why are baits and lure effective at catching fish? Baits and lures work primarily for three reasons, anger, hunger and curiosity. When trying to catch any sort of fish, using a lure or bait that looks and acts like something that is part of their staple diet is a decent method of securing a bite. For bass, this might consist of salamander, shad, insects, worms or crawfish. When using these types of bait it’ important to try and make the bait look natural or injured. Twitching the rod as you retrieve your lure and can give the bait the characteristics of something injured, but experiment with a variety of methods to see what works best for the fish you’re trying to catch. When bass are in spawning season you might have to be more persistent in a particular area, this is due to the bass more likely to attack lures based on protecting a nest rather than out of anger. If you can act as a persistent threat then you’re more likely to cause the bass to strike.
Do Miracle Baits Work?
We’ve all seen the adverts for miracle baits, and it’s difficult not the be drawn in by the amazing claims they make. If it helps me land a huge bass, then $19.95 is a very reasonable amount of money to pay, right? We really need to ask ourselves, do miracle baits actually work as described? In my experience with miracle baits, they work as much as any other bait will work. The real key to using miracle baits or any other baits is making sure it’s what the Bass are looking for. I’ve used a miracle bait that was advertised late at night, the bait itself looked the part, it was a pretty convincing shad and it was made of three movable parts, this means when it moved through the water it looked like a shad swimming.
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Despite the lure looking the part, I had no luck using it over a period of two weeks. Then one evening I saw shad near the surface of the water being chased by something, I threw my lure out and I had a strike on the first cast. The lesson here is that the lure didn’t work because the Bass weren’t hunting shad during most of my fishing trips, as soon as they were, my lure worked. I would suggest considering miracle baits, but just bear in mind that you need to be aware of the basses behavior and try to mimic the prey they’re looking for. Any bait can work if you think about how you’re using it and spend more on lure won’t necessarily provide any more catches.
Season Changes Affect What Bass Eat
You’ve probably noticed yourself that the food available to us tend to change with the seasons, summer, fall, winter and spring. This is part of the natural cycle of growing things and it might be more pronounced in colder climates where there are significant temperature changes between winter and summer. Spring and summer might be filled with outdoor foods, picnics and barbecues with more fruit, salads and lighter food types. We may also eat later at night due to the longer daylight hours. In the winter we might be inclined to eat earlier as it gets dark earlier, we might also eat foods that are more filling and warmer. Just like humans, bass eating habits change with changes of the seasons. Like all fish, bass are cold-blooded, so temperature has a big influence on how they behave and what they eat. When it’s spring, bass are more likely to be found in shallower water, but when it get’s too hot they will retreat into the depths. When the surrounding water begins to chill the metabolism of bass will begin to slow, meaning they don’t need to eat as much and they are generally more sluggish. Knowing how the temperature effects fish will allow you to better judge where they’re located and how ferocious their appetite is likely to be.
Bass will try to eat almost anything that is smaller than they are, including mice, rats, insects, craw-fish, birds, other fish, and salamanders. They have fantastic eyesight, sense of hearing and can smell things pretty well. All of these make bass an accomplished hunter and should influence how you go about catching them. As the seasons and weather changes, your tactics and baits should change to meet the bass needs at that time. Mimic the behavior of their favorite foodstuff and you might find the fish you catch increase by a significant amount, just bear in mind that there isn’t one ‘best bait’, instead think about what you’re doing and you should have no problems catching monster fish.
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