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Is Camouflage Face Paint Necessary?

Dressing head to toe in the best camouflage is pointless unless your face and neck are covered, too, which is why camouflage face paint is essential. 

The slightest movement of a bare face and neck can be a dead giveaway as your skin catches the light. How does one combat this problem, you might ask? By wearing the proper face paint.
Learn more about this type of face paint below.


The Basics of Camouflage for Your Face


To completely blend into your surroundings, you may want to consider wearing a camo mask or using face paint. 

 

CAMOUFLAGE FACE MASK — Masks are good options for a couple of reasons: they are incredibly convenient, as they can easily be taken on or off. The other is that they keep your face warm in colder hunting temps. However, masks can be a bit of a burden. Make sure the mask you use doesn’t block your peripheral vision, that it is comfortable for all-day wear, and that, if you’re bow hunting, it won’t snag your bowstring.

 

CAMOUFLAGE FACE PAINT — Camo face paint requires a lot more effort to put on and take off; though, you don’t have to stress or fuss over the fit. Hunters enjoy using face paint because they can experiment with the patterns, colors, and techniques. The combinations hunters come up with can lean towards the practical side, while others like to blur the line between fashion and function.

 

Practical Face Paint — Practical face paint is used to cover up shine, break up harsh outlines, and blend into the surrounding scenery. You can easily achieve this by using face painting random patterns on your face in several different colors. By applying blotches of brown, tan, black, and green paint to your cheeks and forehead, you’ll disappear into the background.

 

Another method with practical face paint to consider is a technique inspired by nature called countershading. Think about when a light is held over an object; its top or higher points appear lighter, and its bottom looks darker. This gives the object an obvious silhouette. Countershading, however, reverses this effect. When you countershade your face, by applying darker colors to the high points of your face, such as your nose, chin, cheekbones, and forehead, and color your lower points in lighter colors, like the hollows of your eyes and cheeks.

 

Fashion Face Paint — For the creative and experimental hunters or someone who wants a more photogenic look, fashionable face paint might be more your speed. Your creativity is your only limit when it comes to fashion face paint, but to get you started, here are a couple of ideas:

 

Rock and Roll: Similar to rock band makeup, use black camo paint to paint a wide bar across your face, over your nose, and below each eye, and smear your fingers down your cheeks.

 

Striped Tiger: Draw diagonal strips down your face from the top of your forehead to your jawline in whatever camo color you’d like.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Blend into your surroundings with camouflage face paint as you hunt with a stand out hunting guide! The professionals at R & K Hunting Company have years of experience and offer several guided hunts in various locations throughout the beautiful terrain in Utah and Wyoming. Book your next exciting Rocky Mountain hunting adventure with our experts by calling us today!

How to Choose Your Next Hunting Dog

When the time comes to choose your new hunting dog, there are a few things to keep in mind, so it’s important to do your research beforehand. 

Selecting an ideal hunting pup is not so much about choosing the perfect puppy, but selecting the perfect parents. In fact, choosing the best hunting pal starts well before the puppies are conceived, let alone born! Once you have found a good mama and dad, you can pick out your puppy based on its gender, size, and color. Each pup in the litter will have similar genetics, and between six and eight weeks, these puppies will start showing glimpses of their demeanor and unique personality. 


But what do you want to look for in choosing the pooch parents? Read more to find out below.

Health Clearance

Looking at the parents’ health clearances is the first thing you want to do when selecting a new hunting puppy. It’s important that neither parent has had a problem with hip dysplasia. If your pup ends up with hip dysplasia, you’ll only get three or four hunting years out of him. You should also make sure their vision is checked and that they are screened for muscular dystrophy. Additionally, it’s a good idea to run genetic testing for Exercise Induced Collapse (EIC), a disorder that can be passed down to pups. A hunting companion with EIC will get heat exhaustion when it’s overworked or becomes excited, leading to muscle weakness and may collapse. 

To sum up, make sure you select a puppy from parents who have been genetically tested. Otherwise, it may come back to bite you — figuratively speaking.

 

Look for the Desire

A good and useful hunting dog has an embedded desire to hunt. This desire is deeply rooted in their DNA, and training can only go so far. The best hunting dogs are born from field-bred parents that hunt a decent amount or are seasoned in hunt and field tests and trials. It’s important to remember that the most playful one in the bunch is not necessarily the best pick. A napping puppy could have been running around for hours before you got there.


Ask the Breeder

A knowledgeable breeder of hunting pups will have spent a fair amount of time with them, know their personalities well, and have an idea on how to match an owner with a pup. Let the breeder know what your desires and expectations are, as well as what your hunting lifestyle is like. The breeder may be able to help you select a dog that is best suited to your wants and needs.

 

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Finding the best hunting dog for your adventures is a fun and important part of the experience. To enhance your hunting experiences even further, contact the knowledgeable guides at R & K Hunting Company. We’re committed to sustaining prime wildlife habitat, producing healthy and abundant game, and offering an exciting fair chase hunt. Let our skilled staff relieve the burden of obtaining tags and give you an unparalleled Rocky Mountain hunting adventure in Utah and Wyoming. Call to book your hunt today.

3 Tips to Dress and Layer for Your Hunt

Making sure you dress and layer appropriately for your hunt is essential to have the most comfortable, efficient outing.

Depending on the time of day and year (even the difference of a couple of weeks), you’ll experience a variety of different temperatures. Being prepared by properly dressing and layering can make all the difference and is key to your comfort in the wilderness. But did you know that layering does not mean throwing on four or five different shirts and calling it good? There is actually a method to this madness and an ideal and organized way to do it.

Scroll on for more about layering for your hunting adventure.

How to Dress and Layer for Your Hunt

Each layer you add should work together to build a system that wicks away moisture, keeps in the warmth, and fights against the elements. There are three essential layers to work with:

  1. YOUR BASE LAYERYour base layer should fit snuggly, right up against your body, and is essentially your second skin. Your base layer should work to remove moisture from your body, helping you stay warm and dry. There are many options for fabric and materials, such as polyester, merino wool, silk, and polypropylene.Lightweight Base Layer — If you plan to be in milder conditions where you’ll be active, a lightweight base layer should be good. It will wick away sweat from your body while providing a thin layer of insulation to keep you warm.Mid-weight Base Layer — Colder conditions will require a mid-weight base layer. You’ll get the drying-function without overheating.

    Heavyweight Base Layer — A heavyweight base layer is a must-have for harsher, more extreme conditions. An excellent heavyweight base layer will give you the warmth you need (and want!) while still being breathable and well-ventilated.

  2. YOUR MID-LAYERYour mid-layer works with your base layer to help wick away moisture from your body while trapping in heat to keep you warm. It is your most flexible layer and can be doubled or tripled up if you’re cold, or can be entirely removed if you’re too warm. Like your base layer, mid-layers come in a variety of different fabrics. Polyester and merino wool work well for mid-layers; however, nylon is best.If you’re dressing for your hunt, closer to the beginning of the hunting season, you can use the mid-layer for your outer layer when the weather is milder. Should you choose this, make sure your mid-layer provides some level of waterproof protection.
  3. YOUR OUTER LAYERYour outer layer should shield you from the wind, rain, snow, and any other element Mother Nature throws your way. It is your first line of defense and should hold up against the terrain’s difficulties, such as branches and thorns. When selecting this layer, keep in might its weight and how easily you can pack it; depending on the weather, you may opt to put it in your bag.

PRO TIP: No matter the weather or your location, steer clear of cotton selections. Cotton clothing will retain moisture and draw heat from your body.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Discover more hunting tips and tricks, like how to dress and layer for your hunt, from the knowledgeable guides at R & K Hunting Company. Our guides have years of experience that bring hunters back, season after season, for more Rocky Mountain hunting adventures in Utah and Wyoming. Book your next hunt with us today.

Deer Hunting: 6 Methods To Determine Wind Direction

Hunters can use the wind to their advantage and evade a deer’s keen sense of smell, but before you can do that, you must determine wind direction.

Hunting the wind is an essential part of hunting that can make or break the success of your trip. To make this task easier, we’ve gathered a few methods to better track the wind’s direction.

Continue reading for six easy to follow methods for determining which way the wind is blowing.

How to Determine Wind Direction

Commercial Wind Detectors — Available online and at most outdoor retailers, commercial wind detectors are a fan favorite for checking which way the wind is blowing. These helpful tools are made up of a small, pliable plastic bottles with a hole near the top filled with fine, scent-free powder. When you give the bottle a squeeze, a little puff of powder comes out for the wind to pick up, allowing you to get a good read.

Milkweeds or Other Weeds — If you want to keep things natural, look around for weeds with seeds that can be carried in the wind, such as dried milkweed pods or dandelions. These almost-lighter-than-air seeds will soar in the slightest of breezes helping you determine the wind’s direction. Many hunters prefer this method to a commercial wind indicator tool because it gives a longer read, and it shows slight changes in direction.

Smoke Bombs — Smoke bombs are a great way to get a good reading on the wind. However, smoke bombs should only be used during the offseason. Hunters love using these because they cover a large area and stick around long enough to get a good read.

Lighters — A tool you likely already have in your pack is a lighter. Did you know it can double as a wind detector? It won’t give you the best reading ever, but it gives you an idea of the wind that immediately surrounds you. Simply light it and watch which way the flame blows out. Just make sure to use it cautiously as not to start any fires.

Check a Weather App — Every good hunter needs a weather app on their smartphone. Many weather apps have features like sunrise and sunset times, temperature, and the all-important wind direction. Open up your app whenever you need to know which way the wind is blowing.

Wet Finger — This method doesn’t require any tools or gadgets. All you’ll need is your finger and some spit. Remove your glove, lick your finger of choice, and put it to the wind. The cold side tells you which direction the wind is coming from.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Mastering wind direction can be tricky, but it can be the difference between coming home empty-handed or with a trophy buck. Be sure to try out these effective methods for determining wind direction on your next hunt with the professional hunting guides at R & K Hunting Company. Our knowledgeable guides have years of experience that bring hunters back season after season. Contact our hunting experts and book your next Rocky Mountain hunting adventure in Utah or Wyoming today.

Tips for Telling the Age of an Elk

Hunting big game like elk is an exciting and challenging sport, but even professionals struggle to determine the age of an elk.  

Bagging these glorious animals is especially thrilling, considering the notoriously low success rate. You can find elk all across the United States, though they are mostly found in the western part of our nation. Between September and the middle of October, elk hunting is at its peak, and mature bulls are out making their mark, fighting each other to prove their superiority to mates and claim territory. 

Knowing how to determine the age of one of these creatures is useful to hunters since harvesting a trophy bull requires finding one between ages 6-10. So, today, we’re talking all about how to determine the age of one.

Continue scrolling for tips on how to tell the age of one of these mystical animals.

How to Determine the Age of an Elk

Antler Size — When trying to determine the age of one of these creatures, look at the size and shape of his antlers. Keep in mind, many factors play into this creature’s antlers, including their diet and growth rate. However, generally speaking, their antlers become more prominent and wider as they age. Rather than branching racks, younger bulls tend to have single, straight-edged spikes — no branches or tines coming off the sides. An older bull can develop six or seven divisions from his antlers.

Head Position — Another way to tell how old an elk is is to look at how they are holding their head. Generally, older elk hang their head lower than younger elk.

Teeth Size — One of the best ways to age an elk is to get a good look at their teeth before taking your shot. You can distinguish younger bucks from trophy bulls by looking at the wear of their molars. Most elk eight and over will have smaller, flatter teeth behind their prominent front teeth.

Hump Size — While effectively examining elk teeth can be tricky, inspecting the size of their hump is much easier. Their hump is the rounded and curved section of their shoulders, just above their front legs. Generally speaking, the larger the hump, the older they are.

Neck Shape — Bulls in their prime have a pronounced swayback in their lower neck — just before the hump. Keep your eye out for this obvious curvature near their neck’s base to help you age them.

Their Bugle — While this method is not always accurate, listening to their call can be somewhat indicative of their age. Just remember that bulls close to 400 pounds can sound like a spike, and puny rag horns can sound like massive trophies.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Learning how to properly identify the age of an elk might be the difference between a successful harvest or not. Of course, you can always rely on the knowledge and expertise of the hunting guides at R & K Hunting Company. Our expert team has years of hunting and outfitting experience and are Utah and Wyoming’s trusted guides. We want to relieve your burden and stress of planning your hunting trip and handle the permitting and application processes for you. Experience your next hunting adventure in the Rocky Mountains with us by contacting us today.

Methods for Packing Out Big Game Animals

Harvesting a trophy buck is an exciting moment in your hunting expedition. But do you know about packing out big game animals?

The adventure doesn’t stop when you successfully pull the trigger. No, in fact, the work is just beginning! Rarely are the best hunting locations close to trails, roads, parking lots, most civilizations, or any convenient spot. While less convenient, these special hunting areas allow you to enjoy the quiet open-air and the opportunity to harvest big game animals. So, packing out your harvest is more than likely required.

Learn more about this process below.

Methods for Packing Out After Hunting

There are several methods you can use to pack out your harvest after a successful hunt:

Horses or Mules — When you picture a hunter tending to deer or elk, you likely imagine some sort of pack animal carrying the load. Pack animals, such as horses or mules, are efficient beasts, as they can carry close to 20% of their body weight. While these animals can be helpful, they can also be intimidating creatures that require skill to handle. Both hunters and animals will need proper training before taking care of your harvest.

Off-Road Vehicles — Off-road vehicles, such as UTVs or ATVs, are great options when hauling your harvest off the mountain. They do the heavy lifting and work for you, carry a large amount of meat, and many hunters already have one. While a popular choice among hunters, they do come with some drawbacks. UTV and other off-road vehicles are noisy and take away your ability to surprise or sneak up on your prey. Moreover, some hunting areas do not allow these vehicles on the land.

Man Power — The most common and least expensive method to pack out meat is on foot. This method requires physical strength and ability. Because of this, year-round fitness training may be necessary. Thankfully, today’s market offers many backpack options specifically designed for packing out meat. In addition to the financial savings, many hunters today prefer to pack out on foot because of the sense of accomplishment it gives. Just make sure to invest in a comfortable pair of boots.

Other Methods — Some remote locations like Canada or Alaska will require you to pack out your harvest in another method, such as a plane or boat because they lack nearby roads or highways. Boats, planes, and any other unconventional method allows you to hunt in otherwise un-huntable areas. Of course, these methods require additional funds and accommodations.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Packing out your harvest is a small price to pay for months and months of tasty, healthy, and organic meat in your freezer. As your season comes to a close and you’ve packed out your harvest this season, it’s time to think about next year! Book an exciting Rocky Mountain hunting adventure with the experts at R & K Hunting Company. Let us take the headaches and hassles of planning and prepping so that you can focus on landing your next harvest. Contact us today!

Tips For Setting Up A Trail Camera

Thanks to modern-day technology, like the trail camera, scouting wild animals from afar is possible. Not only is it possible, but it is also fun!

One of the best ways to prepare for your hunt is to go scouting. While scouting is a great hunting tactic, it is not always possible because of everyday responsibilities and obligations.

Learn more about setting up trail cameras below.

What is a Trail Camera?

If you are new to hunting, you may not be familiar with trail cameras. A trail cam is a modern hunting tool that uses motion sensors to take photos when animals walk by. They boast excellent battery life and, depending on the storage capabilities of your SD card, can store thousands of pictures. You can easily upload the images to your computer or, if your camera can, send photos via cellular network.

Where to Set up a Camera

Location, location, location. Like real estate, location is everything. A camera is best set up near a food source or mineral site. A well-placed cam will allow you to survey animals from afar while giving you a decent idea on the herd’s size, age class, and surrounding area.

PRO TIP: An exceptionally ideal place to set up your trail cam is at an intersection of several trails. Setting up here will allow you to obtain valuable information regarding animal movement patterns as they move from bedding to feeding areas and back.

Camera Placement and Settings

Most trail cams have different settings or “modes.” Find a setting that best suits your needs and select that mode. A common choice among hunters is a single shot with 10-15 seconds between each picture. However, if you find a place to set up your camera next to a food source, you may want to extend the time between photos to avoid filling your memory card with duplicate images.

Mount your camera at about waist height. This puts the sensor at just the right height for deer and will give you the best pictures. However, if you are on public land, you may want to place your camera well above eye level, pointing downwards to avoid unwanted attention from other hunters.

PRO TIP: For better images, make sure you do not set up your cam directly facing the rising or setting sun. You will get higher quality images with a north-facing camera since your pictures will not be as overexposed.

Checking Your Camera

Checking the images on your camera is nearly as exciting as Christmas morning for outdoorsmen. However, it is essential to practice self-control. The more you check it, the more disruption you will cause. Too much disturbance and human activity can cause deer to change their habits and travel patterns.

PRO TIP: The best time to check your camera is midday since deer are most active during the morning and evening. Even better, check it on a rainy day so your scent washes away sooner.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Using a trail camera is a great way to scout from afar and is a great hunting tactic that all hunters should use. Another useful tactic is to book your next hunt with a professional guide from R & K Hunting Company. Our knowledgeable and skilled guides have years of experience in Utah and Wyoming and are trusted by hunters everywhere. Book your next hunt with us today and learn why hunters come back season after season.

How to Prep Your Deer for Taxidermy

As the hunting season approaches, it’s important to refresh yourself on how to prep your deer for taxidermy.

The goal is to end your season with an exciting trophy animal, and proper field care is necessary so that you can admire your harvest for years to come. What you do in the field just after your harvest is crucial when preserving your trophy for mounting.

Scroll on for more information on prepping your animal for this process.

How to Prep Your Deer for Taxidermy

Every season, taxidermists are given capes that are unusable. Whether they are cut too short, or the harvested animal has been left above freezing for too long and the hair begins to slip, the cape is unusable. It’s essential not to make mistakes in the field that will ruin your mount. Here are a few pro tips for prepping your deer for this process:

Field Dress ASAP

— It’s important to field dress your trophy as soon as it’s down. As you finish the belly incision, make sure you don’t cut into the chest or brisket area. You’ll need to reach into the chest cavity to retrieve the heart, but it’s crucial to stop as soon as you reach the rib cage. Do your best to keep blood, dirt, and debris off of your animal’s fur.

Carefully Pack Out Your Animal

— Make sure to pack out your trophy carefully. Deer fur can easily become damaged and is prone to breakage because it’s hollow. While this is ideal for insulating the animal, it’s not ideal when removing it from the woods or mountainside. Use a tarp to wrap up the deer to keep from damaging the fur with dirt, rocks, and brush. Cautiously removing the deer will protect the hide and keep it in mounting-worthy shape.

Quickly Cool Your Harvest

— The sooner you can cool your deer, the better. Rapidly cooling your harvest will prevent the meat from spoiling and the fur from slipping. Drop off your deer to your meat processor promptly and let them know you have caped it for taxidermy. If you plan to do it yourself, remove the hide and cape it as soon as possible to avoid trapping heat.

Freeze the Cape

— Once you remove the cape, get it in a freezer or cooler, but don’t let it get damp. Wet fur can grow bacteria and is then susceptible to slippage. Try double bagging the cape with trash bags to ensure it stays dry.

Hire Help if Necessary

— There are many videos and diagrams available online on how to remove hide and capes. However, if you’re unsure or don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, call your taxidermist. They can talk you through the process or can be hired to do it for you.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

The best looking mounts and taxidermy start with the best-looking animals. Find your trophy animal with the expert guides at R & K Hunting Company. Our professionals have years of experience and are Utah and Wyoming’s trusted guide experts. Book your Rocky Mountain hunting adventure today!

5 Helpful Hunting Apps Every Avid Hunter Needs

Avid hunters can benefit from our high-tech world and the helpful hunting apps within it. You don’t have to be a tech-enthusiast to take advantage. 

Technology at your fingertips has made getting important hunting-related information easier than ever. Next time you head out on an outdoor excursion, make sure your phone is equipped with the following must-have hunting apps.

OnX Hunt

OnX might be the most popular hunting app on the web. More and more hunters choose to use OnX Hunt because it turns your smartphone into a full-fledged GPS. For less than $30 each year, hunters can select one state and gain access to features like layers, points of interest, recording trails, property boundaries, dropping pins, and more! A favorite feature for public land hunters is the app’s ability to locate land boundaries, which helps you know whose land you are on at all times — the last thing you’ll want during your hunt is to run into trouble for trespassing. Additionally, OnX Hunt has an offline feature that allows you to access saved maps when you’re out of service.

Huntstand

Huntstand is every hunter’s dream app that has many helpful functions and tools. It’s a mapping app that allows you to measure any distance or area; browse land or parcels for sale; log sightings and kills; calculate flight directions and landing sites for waterfowl; and watch your scent spread for deer and other big game animals—all of these benefits for less than $25 per year.

Any Weather App

There are many weather apps available on the market, and they should be one of the first apps a hunter downloads. It does not matter which one you download, as long as it has features like wind directions, temperature, sunrise and sunset times, and extended weather forecasts. You’ll use this app when packing for your trip and while you are on your hunt.

Powderhook

One of the most helpful hunting apps that both beginner and advanced hunters should have is Powderhook. Powderhook is the social media app that connects hunters together. Find friends, mentors, new locations, and places to hunt, tips and tricks, and more. Join the Powderhook community for free and gain a wealth of knowledge!

SAS Survival Guide

Whether you are a hunter or not, everyone needs the SAS Survival Guide app. You never know when you will run into trouble, and the SAS Survival Guide can help! It has videos covering several important topics, including illustrated guides on animal tracks, knot tying, edible vs. poisonous plants, and first aid guides. Additionally, you can find a survival checklist, morse code, and a search function to quickly find whatever you need.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Technology comes with plenty of drawbacks; however, these helpful hunting apps and the information they supply are not one of them. Be sure to have these apps downloaded before your next hunt with R & K Hunting Company. Enjoy these useful tools on your Rocky Mountain adventure with our expert guides. Contact us today to book your next hunt.

5 Tips For Hunting The Wind

Every seasoned hunter knows that hunting the wind is the key to success. However, hunting the wind isn’t as easy as it sounds. Don’t take this the wrong way, but you stink. Not to us — but to the deer, you are hunting!

Deer heavily rely on their keen sense of smell to sniff out predators and, if the conditions are just right, they can detect you up to 300 yards away. But a deer can’t smell your stink if the wind can’t carry your scent to their nose. Meaning, a deer can’t blow your cover if you are downwind of them. Paying close attention to the wind and knowing which way the wind is blowing throughout your hunt will get you closer to tagging a deer.

Learn more about hunting the wind and using it to your advantage below.

TIP #1 — Hills vs. Plateaus

Generally speaking, hilly areas are much more challenging to hunt than plateaus. The wind is fickle in the hills, whereas the wind in flat areas is much more predictable. Not to say you shouldn’t hunt the hills, but given a choice, flatter areas prove to be more successful.

TIP #2 — Know Your Thermals

In addition to hunting the wind, you need to hunt thermals while in hilly areas. As you know, warm air rises and cold air falls. A thermal is a column of warm air rising. It’s crucial to keep thermals in mind as you hunt because if a buck is above you and the sun hits the hill you’re on, the air that rises will carry your scent, blowing your cover.

TIP #3 — Use an App

Always know which way the wind is blowing with a weather app. Type in your location and get hourly updates and forecasts right to your phone, including which way the wind is blowing. Remember, a “west wind” begins in the west and blows to the east. What about a “south wind?” It starts in the south and blows to the north. Bonus tip: bring a compass to ensure you know your directions (it can get confusing in a wooded area!).

TIP #4 — Conduct a Crosscheck

Apps are great and undoubtedly convenient; however, they are not always 100% correct. Trees, hills, valleys, and many other natural factors can play into the direction of the wind. Because of this variable, it’s not bad to double-check which way the wind is blowing.

TIP #5 — Don’t Rely on Scent Eliminators

It’s hard to say how effective scent eliminators actually are. Products containing pine or acorn scents seem to be better at hiding your scent. However, don’t count on them completely covering up your smell. Use scent eliminators as a safety net and always hunt the wind.

Contact R & K Hunting Company

Once you master hunting the wind, your chances of harvesting that trophy buck significantly improve. To increase your chances of a successful season even further, book your hunt with the professionals at R & K Hunting Company. Our team of skilled and knowledgeable guides have decades of experience and are eager to share their insider tips with you. Contact R & K Hunting Company today!