Best of the Best Hunting Clothing

We sell a lot of hunting gear and we use a lot of hunting gear. This allows us to gather a lot of product field knowledge not only from ourselves but also from customers. There are a few items from a variety of manufactures that seem to standout and perform better than others. I’ll try and uncover a few of these little gems and hopefully help those who are just looking for “THE ONE” item.

Best Hunting Pants

Sitka_Outerwear_AscentPant-Open-CountrySitka Ascent Pant: Probably the best early season, warm weather pant out there. This lightweight, softshell pant is extremely comfortable during the warm early season days. It features a perfect articulated cut, fully gusseted, keeping excess fabric (no baggy crotch) to a minimum. The Ascent pant is also available in Regular (32″) or Tall (34″) inseams. Overall one of the best warm-weather pants on the market.

Sitka Mountain Pant: My favorite all-purpose pant. The Mountain Pant features a high count stretch polyester weave build, DWR water repellent finish, gusseted crotch, articulated leg cut and thermo-molded removable knee protection. The Mountain pant is extremely comfortable and leg binding is never an issue when hiking up steep mountains. This pant is breathable enough to wear early season chasing elk or you can add a baselayer underneath and chase chukar in below freezing temps with ease.

First Lite Merino Wool Kanab Pant: This is my go-to pant for any backcountry adventure where I will be spending multiple days in a single pair of pants. Merino wool is no joke and the odor control is unsurpassed. I sweat hard when hiking in the backcountry and it doesn’t take long for my poly pants to catch some odor. First Lite’s Kanab pants are the only way to go if you are heading into the backcountry on a multi-day trip and you are worried about odor. The merino wool is comfortable against your skin and the cut of the pants is very roomy. The pants tend to run a little long, which I love, staying over the top of your boots all day long. Note* the Kanab pant sells out every year so it is not an item you want to wait to get.

Best Hunting Shirts

first_lite_llano_long_sleeve_crew_shirt_1299283_1_ogSitka Core Shirt: This is the staple of the Sitka baselayers. A simple, perfectly cut, high-quality polyester shirt. Highly breath-ability allows for wearing all day long even on the warmest days. *NOTE, Sitka is set to release their Merino Wool Quarter Zip shirt in Open Country camo this September. Keep an eye out for this! Merino wool is the best hunting shirt material you can get right now.

First Lite Merino Wool Llano “Yano” Shirt: This is my favorite shirt. Merino wool is replacing a lot of my polyester hunting clothing. The Llano is a very lightweight, extremely odor resistant hunting shirt, that breaths very well and dry’s very fast. I can wear this shirt for multiple days on end, soaking it with sweat every day, then dry it out and still have no odor after 3-4 days of hunting. If you are looking for something a little heavier check out the First Lite Chama.

Sitka Traverse (Mid-weight Pull Over): This is probably our most popular 2nd layer piece we sell. It features a super soft, comfortable design. Full range of motion stretch does not hinder any movements with this mid-weight shirt. This shirt fits and feels like its a second layer of thicker skin on your body. The Traverse also has a longer cut so it doesn’t creep up under jackets or backpack waist belts. If you are looking for the merino wool equivalent of this piece in First Lite, then check out this First Lite Wool LLano QZ.


Best Hunting Jacket

oc_jetstream_jacket Sitka Jetstream Jacket: Probably one of the best soft shell jackets on the market. This jacket is very similar to the very popular Sitka 90% jacket but takes it to the perfect level by adding the WindStopper layer. This jacket features an unrestricted full range of motion. Its also very quiet and has a perfect fit minimizing annoying bulk you find in other softshell jackets. The Jetstream jacket runs fairly true to size to a touch small, so we usually recommend sizing up a size for layering. This is a great jacket for bowhunting. You can also stretch this jacket into the late season by layering a Sitka Kelvin Lite Primaloft insulated jacket underneath. Note* the Sitka Jetstream jacket sells out every year so it’s not an item you want to wait to get.

Best Undergarments

RedDesert_DryEarthFirst Lite Merino Wool Red Desert Boxer: This is the best hunting underwear I have ever worn. This merino wool constructed boxer brief is comfortable and extremely odor resistant. If you are hunting the backcountry the Red Desert Boxer is one of the best pieces of gear you can own. Soak it with sweat and it drys quickly. It features a comfortable athletic fit. Note* make sure you buy your correct size, do not try to size one size down for a compression style fit. Also, this item tends to sell out in Large and XL every year so don’t wait too long.

Sitka Silk Weight Core Boxer: This is a great warm weather underwear. It’s durable, thin, full stretch fabric is extremely breathable and quick drying. It features a very comfortable athletic fit. Note* Sitka will be releasing a Merino Boxer fall of 2013, so keep an eye out for that!

Best Day Packs

(we will go into further detail on these packs in another article soon)

X2HP_lgEberlestock X2, Badlands Diablo Dos, Badlands Sacrifice,

(we will go into further detail on these packs in another article soon)

Eberlestock J34, Eberlestock Blue Widow, Blacks Creek Alternative, Blacks Creek Solution, Tenzing TZ5000

Best Selling Boots

(note* everyone’s foot is different and therefore not every boot will work for every person)

Lowa Tibet Pro GTXLOWA Tibet Pro GTX: This is one of our best sellers. It’s a great all-around boot, from flatlander walking to climbing steep hills. It has great ankle support as well as a perfect medium stiffness sole minimizing foot strain during extensive hiking. The toe box is next to perfect as well as a great heel lock minimizing hot spots on long hikes. The boot is built extremely well. We have next to no warranty issues with this boot ever. This boot comes in Medium and Wide Widths for a wider range of foot sizes.

Other popular boots: Kenetrek Mountain Extreme NI, Lowa Tibet Superwarm GTXLowa Bighorn Hunter GTX Insulated

I hope you guys found some great information in this brief article. We tried to keep it short and informative. If you have any question don’t hesitate to give us a call 208.867.6710.

Linton Outdoors

Who, What and Why – First Lite Clothing

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First Lite is a company born in the Rocky Mountains of Idaho in 2007. They made their name by being the first company to imprint merino wool with camo patterns. By 2010 the buzz around this company exploded, but we still get customers asking about First Lite on a daily basis. We happen to be extremely fond of our First Lite gear so we’ll take a few minutes to let you know about this merino wool hunting clothing.


Merino wool is nothing new, in fact, is been around for many years. Unlike standard wool, First Lite’s merino wool features a very fine fiber allowing it to be worn comfortably next to your skin without an itchy feeling. The composition of wool makes it warm, water-repellent, odor-resistant, flame-retardant, durable, anti-static, and a UV protector.

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So why should you spend $95 dollars on a merino wool hunting shirt? The number one reason is ODOR CONTROL. Here is information right from First Lite’s website.

While sweat itself has no odor if it remains on the skin in time bacteria develop and create unpleasant body odors. Merino reduces the opportunity for odors to generate because it is more efficient than other textiles at absorbing sweat and evaporating it into the air.

The rate of diffusion of small and large molecules into the fiber increases and it is able to absorb odors faster. When the temperature drops and the fiber once again falls below the glass transition, the odors are trapped within the structure even if the moisture evaporates. Later, during laundering, the garment again passes through the glass transition point and the odors are carried out of the structure by the water. Synthetics are not able to benefit from this same effect because they do not pass through glass transition during normal wear.

The odor control of First Lite’s Merino Wool is no joke and works extremely well. I tend to sweat heavily so odor is always a big problem by the time day 2 rolls around in the backcountry. I am able to wear a single set of First Lite gear + 1 extra shirt (so I don’t have to sleep in a sweaty shirt) for 3 straight nights in the backcountry!

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Besides odor control, First Lite’s Merino Wool is an extremely efficient fabric. It breathes well and transfers moisture away from your skin. Yet unlike synthetics, it retains warmth even when wet. So you can start warm on those windy ridges, you sweated like crazy to get up to so you could glass.

Essential Items for your First Lite System: Llano LS Shirt, Obsidian Merino Pant, Red Desert Boxer

First Lite Merino Wool Llano Hunting Shirt

The First Lite Merino Wool Llano (pronounced like “Yano”) is another Linton Outdoors Favorite. It’s a great fitting lightweight shirt. The Llano is available in a long sleeve or short sleeve. We have been using a pretty successful system of using the short sleeve llano for hiking in during warmer weather and then switching to the long sleeve llano when we drop base camp. It feels great to the skin and breaths/dry’s quickly and without odor. The odor control is what is impressive about this shirt. We have worn this shirt 3 days straight in the backcountry and had no problems with odor. The only thing we have noticed is that when you get it sopping wet it tends to smell like a wet dog. Luckily it drys out quick! The days of polyester hunting shirts are over for us here at Linton Outdoors. Unless you are one of those magical hunting guys who don’t sweat or smell ever (I have one of those hunting buddies) you need to add a First Lite merino hunting shirt to your system, it’s a purchase you won’t regret!