Outdoors Christmas: local vendors selling wide array of items for hunters

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 19, 2010

NATCHEZ — With less than a week to go before Christmas, wives around the Miss-Lou will be looking for the best kinds of last-minute hunting gifts for their outdoorsmen husbands.

Hunters themselves might also feel like getting a gift for themselves, and this list offers some excellent gift ideas for both kinds of shoppers.

The top 10 best gifts in reverse order are:

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10. Woodwick candle — this gift is an excellent tag-along item for hunters shopping for themselves. Woodwick candles can be found at Bowie’s Outfitters, and Bowie’s employee Chris Perea said they’re a perfect compromise gift for the wife.

“The easiest way to explain why you spent $1,000 on a gun is to buy a candle for her,” Perea said. “We actually had a customer say that to us.”

9. Gift cards — the easiest way to make sure you don’t buy the wrong thing for your husband who hunts is to simply go with the gift card. That way, he can go pick out what he wants himself. Bowie’s and Sports Center both sell gift cards.

8. Wool socks — sold at both Bowie’s and Sports Center, these are a necessity to any outdoorsman during the cold months.Polypropylene liners are also recommended.

7. “The Buck Bomb” deer attractant — sold at Sports Center, this liquid must be refrigerated while not being used. The label claims the Buck Bomb is “great for early and late-season hunts.”

6. Truth Cam X — this game camera can be found at Sports Center, and its use is not limited to just taking pictures of potential targets.

“People are putting them out in front of their house to catch crooks,” Sports Center employee Vernon Smith said. “They’re infrared and don’t make a flash, so the crooks don’t know they’re getting their picture taken.”

5. Decoys — Both stores have a wide variety of game decoys. As for what makes them great gifts, Smith said it’s really simple.

“It’s like a turkey decoy — they work,” Smith said. “I’m sure the deer feels like the world when it thinks it sees another one.”

4. Rifles — both Bowie’s and Sports Center are littered with rifles, and Smith said there’s been no shortage of requests for them.

“We’ve been selling the heck out of rifles,” Smith said. “Most are for the kids; there’s been a run on youth guns. It’s always like that around Christmas, the problem is finding enough.”

3. Drake green jackets — Sports Center strongly recommends this item, and the green jacket is much thicker than it appears, and has a liner. It can be worn during hunts and casually.

2. Nikon Prostaff rifle scope — on sale at Bowie’s, the scope is great for hunting game at any distance greater than 200 yards away, Perea said.

1. Camouflage — An obvious pick, both stores contain a variety of camouflage, and the gear is useful in and out of the woods.

“If it’s a well-made, insulated camo, it’s going to keep you warm,” Perea said. “My wife wears it, and she doesn’t even hunt. She just likes the style.”