This season usually punctuates the end of the hunting year for most folks. As for me, it’s right in the middle of our southern hunts in TX, AZ and MX, our hunting show season and next year’s hunt planning. In case I wasn’t busy enough, I decided to go to the SHOT SHOW. Seeing all five floors was really amazing. There were companies exhibiting that my grandfather probably grew up longing to see their newest wares; it’s nice to see them continuing to be innovative. The rich history of guns and the outdoors in our country is alive and well. Most of the midcentury gun companies have evolved from high-quality guns of the ’50s to cheap to make and outsource packages of the ’60-’80s to actually slipping a bit of quality in the ’90s. Today, those same names are bringing quality back in a big affordable way. Most makers have a highly accurate version that doesn’t break the bank…..ahhh free market economies!
I have to say, though, that one of my favorite sections was the new product/vendors section. There I was able to see some of the latest greatest items in the industry. I’m not much of a black gun guy but I found a cool stock setup that I can drop my old 700 Remington barreled action into and poof I have a hand-guarded, railed, collapsing stock bit of fun-ness for my next coyote encounter. I could also collaborate with a special hand guard company that can cut in my company logo into the design.
Another epiphany was when I stumbled on a company that is trying to do away with the hassle of ice on your hunt. This company has a gadget that drops in your cooler and keeps it chilly as a result of the process of gas transfer of co2. Not a bad deal since one of our hunts last summer hit 118 degrees. I can carry a lot of co2 in my Duramax. Another great idea I saw was an ultra-lightweight sort of tripod. This foam cutout pushes on the front of the stock to stabilize the fore end in the field. Great for on a rock or over a log application.
Leaving the SHOW I was left with what a great country we’re blessed to live in where we can experience all of this. Our industry is immense and we, as outdoors people, support this ever-growing and changing lifestyle.