Hunting season is just around the corner. It is time to give your gear a dust down and be ready for the outdoor action ahead.
However, there is one vital piece of equipment that can very often be overlooked – your trusty truck. As the hunting trips begin, your vehicle needs to be up to the task in hand. Preparation is key.
These top 10 tips will help ensure that your 4 x 4 is ready for what the wilderness brings.
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1. Get Clean & organised
The first port of call is to make sure the inside of your vehicle is clean and organised. You may be thinking what’s the point; any cleaning will last all of 5 minutes as soon as me and my buddies are in there with muddy boots and bloody game.
However, there are ways around this. To start with a clean and organised truck will help ensure you have everything you need before you begin.
Clean out everything that has nothing to do with your hunting trip. All the loose crap under the seat or in the trunk should be removed. This will allow more space for the important stuff, as well as enable you to easily take stock so that you pack everything you need.
2. Install a Tonneau Cover
A tonneau cover is a very useful addition to any hunting truck set up. They are the best way of keeping the truck bed from being exposed in extreme weather. They keep your hunting gear and accessories safe from the rain, bad road conditions and theft.
There are plenty of choices available including retractable, folding, or quick roll up covers. Flexible covers are a fast and affordable way of installing a system that will to shield your hunting supplies.
Hard tonneau covers on the other hand are more expensive but are clearly more durable and secure.
3. Front End Grille Guards
Grille guards are another great way of preparing your truck for hunting season. Designed to protect the front end of your truck from tough brush, debris, and potential impact, grille guards are an affordable way of giving your truck an extra level of robustness when driving out in the wild.
You can pick up guards with varying levels of strength; from light guards to full ranch grille coverage. Your choice will come down to the type of game you are after and the environment in which you hunt.
4. Headache Racks
Headache racks are another option for those wanting to reinforce their vehicles. Once installed they do a great job of protecting the back screen and the bed of your truck from airborne equipment.
If you’re outdoors during harsh sunlight, the back rack will also help glare from entering into the cab.
5. Truck Utility Winches
The truck winch is one of those vehicle accessories that you could go dozens of hunting trips without using. However, when the time comes and you have a winch in place it can be a real life saver.
The money you can spend on a winch varies greatly. There is of course a wide range of pulling capacities available, as well as electronic or waterproof options.
The great thing is the majority of utility winches can easily fit into your cab or toolbox. If you haven’t got one already, the truck winch is one piece of gear you may want to invest in for this season.
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6. Off Road Work Lights
Off road lights are another great vehicle addition that can really help with the hunt in tough conditions. Whether you’re out at night or during poor weather these additional lights will assist in keeping you on track.
Whether you go for halogen spot lights, energy saving LED work lights or bar light systems really is down to personal choice and requirements. Either way there are a ton of options available and every good hunting truck should really have a set.
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7. Truck Rack
A truck rack attached to your vehicle is exactly what you need to harness the undoubted high level of catch you will achieve this season.
To make sure everything is secure for the trip home, you can strap your prized game to the rack. This way you will prevent things sliding about in the back and causing unnecessary mess.
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8. Winter Tyres & Chains
Tire chains or specific winter tires are an important consideration if you plan to hunt in snow and ice conditions.
Packing chains in winter weather is always good idea. However, you will want to make sure you know exactly how to put them on. Bungee cords and a chain tensioner will also be needed to keep your chains safe and tight.
Gloves and a shovel should also form part of the accessories kit if you are hunting in snowy weather. You never know where and when you might get caught out.
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9. General Maintenance
We have delved into this with our top 5 winter driving tops. The same basic principles apply here. Fluid levels of your truck need to be checked before you head out. Ensure there are no leaks and tahat you have sufficient engine oil, coolant, brake fluid.
Tread levels should also be checked as well as your spare, (along with the tools required to change a flat).
Common sense should prevail here. You want your vehicle to reliably get you to and from the hunting site in one piece, without a pit stop on the side of the road as you wait to be towed.
10. The Emergency Kit
Any truck heading out on a hunting trip should have an emergency kit stored inside.
You can see more on what we recommend you bring here. However, essentials such as medical kit, road flares an emergency blanket, water and some non-perishable snacks should be there somewhere.
You never know just how long you might be stranded for. A mobile phone with sufficiently charged battery is also a must.
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And there you have it. Follow these tips to a better prepared hunting truck and we assure you, you’ll feel the benefits this season. Safe and happy hunting to one and all.
Image Credits: Pixabay