Let’s face it, many well meaning hunters make the investment in scent control clothing and gear to stay scent free, but do little to protect and preserve it. The hardworking hunter scrimps and saves, gets extra hours at work, picks up side jobs and, eventually, come August, he’s saved enough to invest in the newest, top of the line scent control clothing. The hunter wants to get his hard earned money’s worth, and wears his new gear constantly – at the convenience store, gas station, restaurant, kid’s sporting events – anywhere this excited hunter can be proudly seen throughout town sporting his new gear.
Often these same hunters somehow contaminate their gear, get winded by an animal, and give up on scent control altogether. This scenario is sadly often repeated again and again each fall. Our state of the art Trinity synthetic scent control technology is the industry’s finest, but even it has a maximum carrying capacity. Trinity will try to adsorb any odor it comes in contact with – at the store, gas station, football game, or truck. But eventually it will be “full”.
Later that fall, the long awaited cold snap happens in early November. One morning that giant buck the hunter has been after is ‘bird dogging’ a nearby bedding area. The hunter grabs his bow, confident in the shot that’s about to happen. But then, as if on cue, the buck freezes! Nose in the air, he is slightly downwind of the shaking hunter and smells something suspicious. The buck bolts, out of sight and out of the hunter’s life forever. Scratching his head, the hunter has to lay blame somewhere.
Here’s how we recommend scent free hunters store and transport their precious ScentBlocker gear. An entire topic in itself is the proper washing of apparel and accessories. In a nutshell, we recommend you follow these steps. First, clean out the washer and dryer! Yes, run a ‘dummy’ load through each with nothing but scent free detergent in the washer and scent free dryer sheets in the dryer along with a clean towel. Then, wash all your hunting clothes, scent control or otherwise, in our Trinity laundry detergent. This detergent is specially formulated to keep the pores of Trinity and Carbon alike from getting clogged and maintain top performance. Now… be careful to read labels. We recommend that all Trinity scent control gear be line dried, and THEN placed in the dryer to recharge. All other clothes such as socks, jeans, t-shirts, underwear, towels, wash cloths, etc. can be placed in the dryer directly after washing, but we like to see everyone air dry their Trinity gear first.
Now after everything is properly washed, it’s time to discuss storage until you are in the field. For a variety of reasons, we recommend that everything be placed in our patented Compression Bags. Sold in kits with three different sizes, I place everything in these throughout the year, not just during the season. There are a couple key advantages to compression bags. First, they compress loads of gear down into a very small size, which saves space for travel and storage. Secondly, it keeps product from adsorbing odor from duffle bags, vehicles and during transport. In the smallest bag I place all of my laundry gear like scent free towels and washcloths. The medium sized bag holds clothing items like socks, underwear, rolled up jeans, sweatshirts, t-shirts, baselayers, etc…. The biggest bag holds my outer gear, such as my hats, gloves, whatever jacket and Spider Web I’m wearing at the time, boots, etc. The way my system works is the smaller the bag, the more often I wash, or replace. For instance, with my laundry gear, I may only use them a handful of times, if that much. So the smaller compression bag gets swapped out the most often. I keep several on hand so I’m not constantly doing laundry. (I don’t want my wife to get any crazy ideas!) The medium bag gets swapped maybe once a week, depending on how often I’m hunting and how warm it is. In the early season when I’m sweating a lot, these under clothes get contaminated quickly and get swapped out often. Also, I keep a few of these medium bags full of clothes on hand. Lastly if all goes well, I maybe wash my actual hunting gear from the biggest bag only a couple times each season. Usually I’m only swapping out the large bags when the weather changes, whereas by the time my early season gear needs washing, it’s cold enough to switch to mid season gear anyway.
I pack the compression bags to the suggested maximum line with clothes, and then seal the bag almost completely closed. Then, I kneel on them to push all of the air out. With a little zip of the bag lock to complete the seal, I’ve got a compact and airtight bag of scent free clothes ready to go at a moments notice.
I also store a lot in my ScentBlocker Dry Bag. This giant yellow cylinder-like bag can hold just about everything and leave you confident that it will be dry when you get there. Made out of waterproof Ripstop fabric, mine’s always full of something. I honestly use this bag more than anything. Usually I’m using it for turkey hunting clothes and calls, mushroom hunting attire to change into after work, or goose hunting gear. That being said, it’s too valuable to let sit during deer season. The bag itself is air tight, so any scent free clothing can safely go inside. I place an Odor dry disk in the bottom to pick up any rogue smells. During deer season I just leave this in the back of my car full of ‘extras’. When I say extras, I mean all of the possible extra clothes I could need; like more gloves or hats, baselayers, sweatshirts, jeans, t-shirts, etc… Anything that I might want to wear if the weather changes is in there. I also leave my ScentBlocker Rain Blocker gear in that bag 365 days a year, because regardless of what I’m hunting or fishing, it could always rain.
As far as transporting, I’m hooked on the new Trinity Duffle bag. We recommend that every hardcore ScentBlocker user make the investment in this tool for several reasons. To understand how we recommend using the Trinity Duffle bag, I first need to describe it. First and foremost, it’s huge and lined with a removable Trinity synthetic scent adsorbing panel. Also, as in true ScentBlocker fashion, there are all sorts of different sized pockets, inside and out. It comes with a large, heavy duty carrying strap, or individual handles and so far has never been too small or weak to carry what I need. Even this past winter I was carrying my Northern Extreme gear and cold weather boots in it!
Starting from day one of the season, I’m using this bag to store all of my gear, and my outer clothes. I place everything rubber or metal that will not hold scent in the outside pockets like such as binoculars, knives, folding saw, etc. Anything that I want to 1) remain scent free, or 2) become scent free, is placed inside because not only will this bag hold gear, the Trinity panel on the inside will adsorb renegade odors!
So, to continue on the plan I follow, anything I’m currently using to hunt gets placed into the Trinity Duffle bag. Basically whatever was in my large compression bag plus my tools. I’m still storing clothes in the medium bag, and placing laundry items in the small bag, but I want my outer layer of gear exposed to as much scent absorbing Trinity as possible.
And that’s it! Our simple guide to storing and transporting ScentBlocker gear. As cool as ScentBlocker gear is, we recommend never wearing it out in public, and really only using it when hunting.
Now, for those of you who DO WANT to wear the shield in public, you’re not alone! Welcome to the ScentBlocker family. If you’re anything like us, you’re proud to be associated with our sport and want to wear the shield like a badge. If the field isn’t enough, then check out all of our logo gear! And best yet, we won’t lecture you about where to wear it. There’s stuff for kids, men, and lots of fashionable choices for women too. In fact, our entire SOLA line of hunting gear is completely dedicated to the ladies, but we have plenty of ladies logo gear as well.
So from all of us at ScentBlocker, good luck this year! Be safe, shoot straight, and take good care of your gear. And of course, when you do have success, send us pictures.
By Jason Herbert