Ryan Lampers' early season backcountry gear list

Photo credit: Brady Miller

If you're like me watching the days quickly getting crossed out on the ol’ calendar, then you, too, are seeing those early season fall hunts fast approaching. August brings some great opportunities to get out and start chasing antelope as well as deer and elk in a few western states. Heck, for bear hunting nuts like myself there are even opportunities in August to chase big old berry eating bears in the high country during this time. Then, of course, the month of September comes along, offering more archery mule deer opportunities as well as the oh-so-coveted archery elk season.

It just so happens that my early season calendar this year will have me up in some high alpine areas chasing both bears as well as some high country mule deer. Typically, these late summer trips bring about much warmer conditions than the often fickle weather month of October. I use October as the month when my early season gear kit will start to see a makeover; usually the shelter and clothing systems see the lion’s share of the changes. 

When it comes to the gear I use, weight is definitely a consideration. Relative comfort and safety is also of huge importance when choosing what gear will be taking up that precious space in my backpack. Durability, reliability and functionality are things I also weigh carefully when it comes to deciding on the gear I take. Compromises are made not just with weight, but with comfort as well. My approach is to shave weight where possible, but still maintain a system that’ll get me through almost every possible weather scenario Mother Nature might throw at me.

Here’s my personal gear list, which covers everything I'll be taking along during my upcoming early season trips. 

My early season gear list

Clothes Packed In Backpack (Extra layers)

Item Model
Rain Jacket Stone Glacier M5 Rain Jacket
Rain Pant Stone Glacier M5 Rain Pant
Mid Layer Stone Glacier Helio Hoody
Insulation Top Stone Glacier Grumman Goose Down Jacket
Gloves Outdoor Research Versaliner
Beanie Lightweight Merino Wool Beanie

Clothes Worn (Items I always wear daily)

Item Model
Top (Wicking) Stone Glacier Chinook Merino Crew LS
Pants (Outer) Stone Glacier De Havilland LITE
Base Layer Stone Glacier Chinook Merino Hoody
Underwear Stone Glacier Chinook Merino Boxer
Socks (Hiking) Stone Glacier Ram Wool Sock


Item Model
Boots Crispi Lapponia 2.0
Insoles SheepFeet Full Length Orthotic


Item Model
Backpack Stone Glacier Sky Guide 7900


Item Model
Spotting Scope Vortex Razor HD 22-48-65mm
Binoculars Vortex Razor UHD 12x50
Harness Stone Glacier Skyline Binocular Harness
Rangefinder Vortex Razor HD 4000 Laser Rangefinder
Rangefinder Case Stone Glacier Skyline Rangefinder Pocket
Tripod Slik 624
Pan Head Outdoorsmans Micro Pan Head
Digiscope Setup Phone Skope

Sleep System

Item Model
Shelter Seek Outside Eolus Dyneema
Stakes 6 Hyperlite Ultralight Stakes
Compression Sack Sea To Summit Ultra Sil (Small)
Sleeping Bag Stone Glacier Chilkoot 15 Degree Sleeping Bag
Ground Cloth Seek Outside Fearlessly Floorless Ground Sheet
Sleeping Pad Therm-A-Rest-NeoAir Xlite Sleeping Pad (Large)


Item Model
Trekking Poles PEAX Sissy Stix Backcountry Elite
Gaiters Peax Storm Castle Gaiters
Glassing Pad Sthealthy Hunter Glassing Pad
Solar Panel Anker 21 W/3 Panel Solar Charger
Battery Pack Dark Energy Poseidon
Backup Rangefinder
Extra Rangefinder Battery
Satellite Messenger Garmin inReach Mini
Charge Cord Micro USB
Charge Cord iPhone Charger Cord
Headlamp PEAX Backcountry Duo
Mapping GOHUNT Explorer Maps
Bear Protection Smith & Wesson M&P 10 mm
Pistol Load Outdoorsman Buffalo Bore Hard Cast 220 grain
Pistol Chest Rig Razco Gear Kydex Holster
Ear Protection Radians Custom Molded Ear Plugs
Food Storage Stone Glacier Load Cell Dry Bag
Tape Leuko Tape And Electrical Tap Wrapped On Trekking Poles

Fire Starting Kit

Item Model
Lighter 1 Bic Lighter
Lighter Pyro Putty Elite Rechargeable Dual Arc Lighter 
Fire Starter Esbit Fire Starting Tablets
Fire Starter Black Beard Fire Starting Rope

Kill Kit

Item Model
Carrying Case Sthealthy Hunter Kit Sack
Cord 50' Z Packs Z Line Slick Cord 
Knife Goat Knives Ibex Mini Replaceable Blade Knife
Extra Blades Two 60A Replaceable Blades And Two 70A Blades
Knife Goat Knives Nitro TUR Fixed Blade
Game Bags Grakksaw Game Bags
License License And Tags
Sharpener Benchmade EDC Edge

Medical Kit

Item Model
First Aid Sthealthy Hunter Backcountry Medical Kit

Weapon (Bow & Rifle)

Item Model
Bow PSE EVO XF 33" 80 lb
Release Carter Wise Choice Thumb
Arrows Day Six Gear 540 grain
Fletching AAE Max Stealth Fletching
Broadhead Day Six Gear 125 grain
Rifle Weatherby Backcountry Ti 6.5 RPM
Muzzlebrake Ti Pro Self Timed 4 Port
Bipod Spartan Precision Equipment Javelin Pro Long
Riflescope Vortex Razor HD LHT 4.5-22x 50 MOA Riflescope
Scope Cover Sthealthy Hunter Optics and Crown Cover

Cook Kit

Item Model
Cooking Pot TOAKS Cook Set
Stove System JetBoil MightyMo
Spoon PEAX Backcountry Ti Spoon
Fuel JetBoil Jetpower Fuel Canister x 1
Coffee Mug GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug


Item Model
Water Purification Backup Aquatab Purification Tablets
Water Bottle GSI Microlite
Water Filter SteriPen Ultralight UV Water Purifier
Water Container HydraPak 3 Liter

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