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Liberty Safe by Scott Reekers Dec 2014/Jan 2015 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Liberty Safe

Scott Reekers

Let’s be honest here, not many of us are going to put a gun safe through the rigors of what we usually consider a Hardcore Field Test. It is impossible for me to haul one past the 10K elevation mark and put it through the paces that would tell me if it is a winner or not like I would with a pack or boots. In my mind, the true test of a safe wouldn’t be how much I can torture test it but it would be the attention to detail that goes into the construction of every safe.

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Kryptek Technical Clothing by Brandon Mason Apr/May 2013 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Kryptek Technical Clothing

Brandon Mason

Since the explosion of modern hunting apparel in recent years, many new brands and manufacturers have popped up — some really good and some not so good. A couple of years ago, we were hearing rumblings of a new company called Kryptek. With a tagline of "Battlefield to Backcountry,” they were definitely catching people’s attention. Founded by two special forces military servicemen with a passion for the outdoors, they set out to make their clothing as "bullet-proof ” as possible.

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Easton Kilo 3P by Brandon Mason Dec 2012/Jan 2013 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Easton Kilo 3P

Brandon Mason

Have you ever been in search of that perfect product, but after a few years of searching you begin to think that it doesn’t exist? I’ve been in that scenario many times with all types of hunting equipment… tents, sleeping bags, rifles, backpacks, boots, camouflage, etc. Thankfully, many of these categories now have companies that have heard of the plight of sportsmen and decided to do something about it.

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S4 Gear Lockdown X by Adam Bender Aug/Sep 2012 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

S4 Gear Lockdown X

Adam Bender

It seems like good customer service is becoming more and more rare these days. Very seldom do I find myself thinking about how great of service I had when I leave a restaurant or store. However, while at the Archery Trade Association (ATA) show this year in Columbus, OH, I experienced great customer service…albeit in another form.

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Easton Injection With Deep Six Components by Darin Cooper July/Aug 2012 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Easton Injection With Deep Six Components

Darin Cooper

Easton has improved upon two of the biggest performance factors facing bowhunters out West with its new Injexion series of arrows. They found a way to make a micro diameter hunting arrow to reduce wind drift and increase penetration. That might not sound like big news, but it’s bigger than it seems. 

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Primos Bullet Bugle by Ike Eastman Jun/Jul 2012 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Primos Bullet Bugle

Ike Eastman

Spring. The time of year when we here at Eastmans’ have a chance to catch our breath from show season, get caught up on e-mails and phone calls, and start to work on new projects. One of my projects each spring is to come up with the plans for the new Primos call giveaway.

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Crispi USA Summit GTX by Adam Bender May/Jun 2012 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Crispi USA Summit GTX

Adam Bender

One of the most important things to take care of on any hunt is your feet. Regardless if your day hunting for antelope or packing in several miles into the backcountry for elk, the fact remains that once you’re feet are ruined, so is your hunt.

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Mathews Helim by Zach Bowhay Mar/Apr 2012 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Mathews Helim

Zach Bowhay

After hunting season, most hardcore bowhunters get ready for winter leagues to keep their skills sharp. While I fall into that group, I also patiently wait for all the new bow manufacturers to release their 2012 line. Year in and year out, it seems that the top manufacturers leave us asking, "Can they really out do what they did this past year?” 

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Game Bags by Guy Eastman Feb/Mar 2012 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Game Bags

Guy Eastman

Game bags are one of those items that often get overlooked when it comes to top-ofthe- line hunting gear. If guys are willing to spend hundreds of dollars to shave ounces off of clothing, packs and other gear, shouldn’t game bags be selected with as much care? For those who are serious about strapping a pack to their back and tackling the West, quality game bags are of the utmost importance. We owe nothing less to the critters that we pursue. 

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Brunton Restore by Brandon Mason Jan/Feb 2012 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Brunton Restore

Brandon Mason

The modern western hunter has an unbelievable list of tools at his or her disposal. Some of us have become almost obsessed with the various gadgets and pieces of equipment that are available, while others prefer to self-limit the ‘technology side’ of hunting.

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Minox BL 10x44 by Brandon Mason Dec 2011/Jan 2012 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Minox BL 10x44

Brandon Mason

One of the challenges that the Western hunter faces when dealing with equipment is to find the right pieces of the puzzle without breaking the bank. Many hunters, like myself, are very price conscious, but won’t sacrifice quality - herein lies the challenge. Speaking from a personal standpoint, the family budget is almost always tight – especially with a lovely wife who is a stay-at-home mom, and four young children that think they need to eat every day (the audacity!). To put it bluntly, a $2,000 pair of optics will probably never be in my budget, only in my dreams.

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G5 T3 Broadhead by Adam Bender Nov/Dec 2011 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

G5 T3 Broadhead

Adam Bender

Broadheads are one of the most debated pieces of equipment in the archery industry and rightly so. Everyone has their "pitch” as to why theirs is the best and hunters have their favorites – it’s almost like a Ford vs. Chevy vs. Dodge debate. They all work, some better than others, but G5 has always remained steadfast in the broadhead community because let’s face it, their products work. With that said, the new T3 ushers in a new wave of technological development and confidence for in the field.

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SKB Rifle/Bow Case by Adam Bender Oct/Nov 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

SKB Rifle/Bow Case

Adam Bender

Prior to leaving for the first hunt of the year, we found ourselves in quite a quandary. We had ordered a new rifle/ bow case several weeks before our trip, but alas, it never showed up in time. So, there we were, mere hours before leaving and we had no way to get all of our rifles and bows to Quebec. This was a problem.

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Bowtech Invasion CPX by Adam Bender Sep/Oct 2011 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Bowtech Invasion CPX

Adam Bender

A good bow is one of those pieces of hunting equipment that doesn’t need changed or upgraded on an annual basis. However, in order to stay ahead of the curve, bow manufacturers are constantly pushing the boundaries to stay on top of their game, and new bows are born every year. As such, it’s always a dilemma whether to stick with what you’ve got or go chasing the next new bow.

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S4 Gear Lockdown by Adam Bender Aug/Sep 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

S4 Gear Lockdown

Adam Bender

When the first binocular harnesses hit the market, I rushed out and bought one. Finally, gone were the days of those uncomfortable, cheap factory straps that never felt like they were quite right for hunting. After just a few months, it seemed as though everyone had or wanted one.

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Spot Hogg Hogg-It by Adam Bender Jul/Aug 2011 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Spot Hogg Hogg-It

Adam Bender

As a habitual ruffian on equipment, I’m not always looking for the coolest or most technologically advanced…I just want it to work. From sights to arrows and releases to string material, I need to know that it’s going to work at crunch time.

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Vortex Razor HD Binoculars by Adam Bender Jun/Jul 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Vortex Razor HD Binoculars

Adam Bender

Few people would argue with the fact that your binoculars are one of the most-used pieces of equipment you own. From scanning a basin to sizing up the last few inches on that trophy, quality glass is a must. However, the gap in pricing between binoculars has become so severe that at times it’s hard to determine low-end, mid-range and high-quality optics. What used to be thought of as “expensive” is now mid-range and what used to be mid-range is now low-end.

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Hoyt Carbon Element & Matrix by Darin Cooper May/Jun 2011 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Hoyt Carbon Element & Matrix

Darin Cooper

Over the past 18 months, I’ve had the pleasure of abusing both of Hoyt’s flagship Carbon bows - the Carbon Matrix and the Carbon Element. Both are lightweight, rock-solid performers. From its unveiling, the Carbon Matrix was a showstopper – a bow unlike anything ever produced before. The radically different appearance invoked a polarity of reactions, but the overwhelming majority thought it was just flat-out cool! Walking into a pro shop with one is a bit like walking through the door with a supermodel - you quickly are the envy of nearly every guy around.

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Carbon Express Maxima Hunter KV by Adam Bender Mar/Apr 2011 Eastmans’ Bowhunting Journal

Carbon Express Maxima Hunter KV

Adam Bender

As dedicated bowhunters, leaving as little to chance as possible is part of our mantra. It’s an absolute must when you’re hitting the trailhead with a bow in your hand and a tag in your pocket. You have to be able to trust your gear and know it will work at crunch time, because simply put, you’ve got too much time and effort into the hunt for any other result.

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Hanwag Alaska GTX by Ryan Hatfield Apr/May 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Hanwag Alaska GTX

Ryan Hatfield

Nearly 16 miles into our hike, my friend, Derek, and I stopped in a saddle to survey a high mountain basin. We were thankful for the opportunity to get away, see God’s country, and temporarily live the dream. We were scouting for my upcoming mountain goat hunt in Idaho and the hike had been a real test on both me and my equipment. Hot August days brought little sign of mountain goats but plenty of breathtaking views. 

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Skull Hooker: Mythbusters the Eastman Way by Adam Bender Dec/Jan 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

Skull Hooker: Mythbusters the Eastman Way

Adam Bender

At face value, the name “Skull Hooker” might make you snicker, but once you actually look at what it’s capable of and does, the jokes are quickly turned into, “I wish I would’ve thought of that.”

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SureFire St. Minimus LED Headlamp by Ryan Hatfield Dec/Jan 2011 Eastmans’ Hunting Journal

SureFire St. Minimus LED Headlamp

Ryan Hatfield

 If there’s one thing hardcore western hunters can appreciate, it’s the mantra of “do it once and do it right.” Nothing can be more frustrating than having to re-buy something because it didn’t last or perform up to expectations. That’s why it’s easy to appreciate something built intelligently and ruggedly. Cue the Surefire St. Minimus headlamp.

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