Lifetime bronze benefactor
I thought I would pass along my thoughts on my favorite gear from my four safaris in the last two years. I am not going to discuss what didn't work or what I don't personally like but just hit the high points and hope that it will benefit some folks as they head out on their adventures.
1. Pelican Gun Case & Pelican 1170 ammo case: Many of you know that I love all things Pelican so this is where I'll logically start. The Pelican 2 Gun case has worked well for me for something like 8 international trips. I pack all my hunting stuff in there plus a few gift items to reduce the weight of my suitcase and usually just one gun. The small 1170 ammo box I really like because it will snugly hold four boxes of big bore ammo with just the top foam. I've had good luck with the Masterlock TSA lock with the cable pictured here. The other standard TSA locks always get broken but not these.
2. Bose QC Noise Cancelling Headphones: If you fly internationally these are a must. These top quality headphones actually make travel less tiring because it removes the "air noise" from the plane. I won't travel without them. Now I do have Bose noise cancelling earbuds now and I am apt to use those on domestic flights.
3. Chargers and Adaptors: Spending lots of time by myself in airports around the world I like to shop (although I rarely buy anything) the electronics stores and yes luggage stores etc just to see what they have. Sometimes it pays off like this SkyRoss universal adapter with 2 USB ports I found a while back in JNB. In a few places you still need the big ugly "Africa" plug so have one of those as well. I have the Goal Zero solar panel and battery for charging all my devices and it has come in handy in the many places I've been with no electricity.
4. Swarovski CL 10x30 Binos with Rick Young Bino Harness: These handy little binos have served me very well with their great glass and light weight. I would not use another bino harness except Rick Young Outdoors because it is so versatile and light weight. They are so inexpensive everyone should try one out! He always has a booth at DSC.
5. Iridium Extreme: Having a satellite phone is not always warranted but I must admit it makes you feel like James Bond! Seriously both in Zimbabwe and Kyrgyzstan this satellite phone was a lifesaver (nearly literally!). Being able to place a call anywhere is really amazing technology. They can be rented as well as purchased so anyone can feel like 007!
6. Kuiu Belt Pouch: Being a minimalist I am always looking for a better way to carry just a few things without weighing myself down. My hunting pants have lots of pockets but too much stuff weighs me down and I don't like having my pants loaded with too much gear. This little Kuiu belt pouch was on sale and has really fit the bill for me.
7. Surefire or Streamlight Flashlight: What ever brand you like always have a powerful light or two while on Safari. NO ONE in African has a good flashlight! Your PH will not have a good flashlight in my experience and plus they can't easily get the batteries for these anyway.
8. Murray Leather 6 Round Carrier: I have two of these and on DG hunts I have softs on my right and solids on my left. These are easy to use and I've never lost a shell accidentally out of them. I can not say enough about Murray Leather and invite you to meet them at the shows.
9. Leatherman: I have the Wingman but any multitool that you like is invaluable on safari. You never know when you will need more than just a pocket knife. Tools are hard to come by in Africa and my leatherman has done lots of work there. I even keep a Micra Leatherman in with my toiletries because it has a great set of tweezers for getting out African thorns!
10. Princeton Tec BYTE Headlamp: This is absolutely one of my favorite things on safari. This little headlamp is extremely lightweight and has red, low beam white, and high beam white light settings that work extremely well for me. It uses 2 AAA batteries and if you use Energizer Lithium you will not have to change them for a hunt or two. The red setting is great to tend to natures call at night and also in a blind if you need to see something but do not want to risk turning a light on. I am not sure where I got mine but REI has them for sale. Again I have shopped what is available in most stores and I've not found a better one. If I do ill let you know!
11. FoxPro Fire Eye Spotlight: This revolutionary spotlight is unlike any other. It has white, red, green, and amber light settings. You can adjust the beam down to a small rectangle and thus not shine light on anything unintended. It is more expensive than any light I know of however.
12. FLIR Scout III: Thermal is a great tool when hunting at night. This FLIR is one of the best in its price range and I have enjoyed using it. It is small and holds a charge for a long time. The legality of using this in some countries is questionable so always find out where it can be used.
Some of you experienced guys may want to chime in on some of this gear or mention something that you particularly like and has worked well for you. These are just a few of my go to items.