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spectr17
12-16-2002, 12:36 AM
Hunting, fishing gifts abound

December 7, 2002

By Robert Pavey, Augusta Chronicle

Shopping for the angler or hunter in your life? Maybe I can help.
Forget the neckties and golf shirts, and remember the No. 1 rule: You can never have too much ammo - or too many fishing lures. They don't expire and never go out of style.

Beyond that - and on a more serious note - there are some awesome gifts out this season - ranging from gadgets and hardware to the downright wacky.

After canvassing local stores, I'll share my hands-down favorite: it quacks, hoots, bugles, growls and gobbles - and will even ring if that's all you want it to do. It's Motorola's Wildlife Phone ($99.95), programmable for the "call" you desire.

Ironically, my favorite gift last season came from one of my misguided anti-hunting friends - a woman who once threatened to hang my whitetail mounts in the woods, with a sign proclaiming "This could happen to you!"

The item: a Nissan steel thermos ($22.95) with carry strap and camo cover. It kept lemonade ice-cold during a Labor Day dove shoot - and kept me from getting the crosshairs on a wandering buck in November because he showed up during a coffee break in the stand. So use it with care!

For fishermen who don't always practice catch-and-release, Anglers Best markets an electric fillet knife ($59.95) with its own case and charger. This item works particularly well on heavy-skinned fish such as hybrid bass.

Fly-fishing is experiencing a resurgence in popularity, which opens a realm of gift options. It tempts anglers in the same way bowhunting offers a challenge to rifle hunters who want something more basic and difficult.

Fly-tying kits from Orvis ($145) offer plenty of entertainment, even for the rainy days and in the off-season, when fly-casters can become fly-tiers - and keep in touch with their sport.

The kits include a vise, feathers, fur, glue - and all those little tools with cool names: the hair-stacker, bobbin-threader, dubbing loop and other paraphernalia. Anyone who has ever caught a fish on a fly they created can attest to the thrill.

If there is a single common thread that binds the hearts and souls of people who hunt and fish, it's probably food. Cooking gadgets for fish and game are endless: smokers, dehydrators, jerky makers, you name it.

One nice gadget that makes a great stocking stuffer is the Monster Marinade Injector ($8.95), which can fill a goose or venison quarter with the marinade of your choice. Turkey fryers and giant stock pots also make fine gifts.

Other warmly appreciated stocking stuffers include rubber tie-down straps ($14.99 for good ones; don't buy the cheap ones); small flashlights and extra warm, fuzzy socks. All three items are useful - and all tend to vanish over time into the same purgatory as our pens and sunglasses.


If the sportsman in your life has everything already, taxidermists - and even deer processors - are usually delighted to authorize a gift certificate. You can even add stipulations like, "Good Only for Largemouths Weighing 10 pounds or more" or "for mounts that will hang in basement only."

Happy shopping!

Reach Robert Pavey at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 119, or rpavey@augustachronicle.com.