3 Expert Packing Tips For Your Next Hunt

By Sam Jacobs
Writer | 2A Advocate | Outdoorsman


Generally, I’ve been blessed to hunt close to home, but I’m always down to explore a new area, which is why I love to travel and hunt. 


However, one thing I found frustrating when I first began traveling was packing for hunting trips. I lost something on every trip or had trouble making everything fit in the truck.


Over the years, I’ve developed a simple yet effective system for packing my gear that anyone can put into practice. 


Tip #1


I’m a bit of a gear junkie, and before the hunt ever starts, I think of every possible scenario and want to pack all the gear I MIGHT need for the hunt. Then, once I arrive, I rarely use half of it, so I’ve begun packing only what I know I’ll need. 


Packing light makes it easier to be organized, leaves more room in my truck, and I don’t have to unpack as much gear when I get home! I hate unpacking!


I highly encourage you to pack only the essentials for your trip. 


  • Weapon and ammo
  • Knives
  • Clothes
  • Food & water
  • Toiletries
  • Sleeping gear (tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, etc.)
  • Hunting Backpack

 mtm mule hunting storage crate at deer camp

Tip #2


Growing up, I worked on my grandpa’s farm in the summer, mowing and fixing fences, amongst other things. One thing I learned while working for him was always to put back the tools where I got them. 


Every tool has a place. 


When I began packing with this in mind, instead of randomly stuffing things into my bags, it helped me remember where I put which piece of gear, so I lost fewer items, and packing went much smoother.


My gun or bow goes in its case; arrows or ammo are in a tote; sleeping gear is in another; my clothes are all in one or two bags (depending on how long the trip lasts), and my food is packed together. 


Tip #3


I saved the best for last. 


I bought a small cargo trailer to store and haul my hunting gear but had problems keeping things organized. 


When I drove down the road, some of my gear would bounce around and get mixed up, leaving me frustrated as I sorted through it when I reached my destination. 


So, I purchased totes to put most of my stuff in, and they’ve been such a game-changer that I now use them while packing for a hunting trip. 


I love using totes because they give all my gear a place to go and make packing/unpacking a breeze. Did I mention I hate unpacking?


Packing a tote is simple because it keeps everything together that should go together. And you make fewer trips back and forth from the truck loading and unloading. 


You can get the “cheap” (they’re rarely cheap anymore) totes from a department store, and they work, but I often have trouble keeping the lids secured, and they crush easily when you stack something heavy on them. 


However, that’s not true with MTM Case-Gard products like the Mule or an Ammo Crate Utility Box.

 mtm mule storage crate for hunting

Bonus Tip #1


Since you made it this far, you deserve one more tip concerning the packing process.


Much like my initial packing process of cramming gear wherever it would fit, in a random order and promising myself, I would remember where I put that item, I also began loading the totes in a random order.


However, after getting frustrated because I had to unload everything just to reach my sleeping bag, I now pack my totes in order of how I plan on using them and keeping them in their place. So if I know, I’ll use my sleeping tote. First, I pack it toward the back of my truck or SUV, then my food, hunting gear, and so on.


Once again, this keeps everything organized and allows easy access to my gear.


Bonus Tip #2


Okay, last one, I promise!


I stole this one from my dad after stepping into his cargo trailer and noticing that all his camping and hunting totes were labeled by what’s inside.


Labeling my totes is a huge time saver while on the hunt and packing because I can quickly glance at the tote to see what is inside, so I don’t have to open it to see the contents.

 mtm caliber labels


I simply put general labels on my totes, such as “Cooking,” “Food,” “Sleeping,” or “Hunting Clothes,” because I have an idea of where the item I’m looking for should be located. This is why Tip #2 is essential to follow. Otherwise, you’ll be scrambling to find your gear like me the first few times I traveled to hunt.


Parting Shots


I just came home from an out-of-state goose hunt, where I used these packing tips to keep me organized, so I know you’ll be able to implement some of them to help you on your next trip.


I hope you make some memories that last a lifetime, and one of them isn’t how frustrating packing was!


By Sam Jacobs
Writer | 2A Advocate | Outdoorsman

Ammo crates

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