Featured Monday Morning Carry: Orange is the New Black Kel Whelan December 26, 2016 Join the Conversation Monday Morning Carry: Orange is the New Black We always seem to start with the star of the show – the pistol, the roscoe, that centerpiece boomstick. Not today, though. Today we're taking the long way around the barn. Orange Chews Today is Monday, and what’s the most important meal of the day? That's right – breakfast. So let’s begin with beginnings and as we explore what’s in this backwoods hunter’s pocket dump of champions. Since it’s early a.m. and there’s no time for a proper, cardiologist-defying breakfast (like chicken fried steak and eggs with 2 sides of bacon), we’ve stuffed a healthy snack into a jacket pocket to munch on: Bounce energy “balls” are delicious, mushed up wads of cacao nibs, sunflower seeds, whey, and citrus. They’ve got 9 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, are GMO free, and have all that good stuff you want on the trail. Most importantly, anything with “balls” in the name opens a host of innuendo opportunities when writing articles or proffering to your friends. We haven’t had so much fun writing headlines since that Rocky Mountain Oyster feed. Eating this, however, doesn’t require a dare. As balls go, these are pretty tasty. Seriously. You should give your mouth a chance to experience these balls. The vacuum flask waterbottle (don’t call it a Thermos®!) is from Tempercraft. It seems like the gun-and-outdoors community went all at once from those Nalgene wide-mouth bottles that everyone and their sister in the tactical world seemed to have a few years ago – you know the ones, screenprinted with overwrought Molon Labe Spartan-themed logos – to suddenly discovering they had a gripping need to keep one’s drink cold (or hot). Because operators can’t operate operationally with lukewarm swigs of hydration. No sir, you need that go-juice stuff icy, and Tempercraft delivers. Stainless Steel construction means no embarrassing sweat stains on the table from condensation, and it can keep up with the knocks of life out there in the suck. The lid is a handy take on the usual sportsbottle cap: the whole lid unscrews to load in large ice cubes or do fast fills, but also has a smaller drinking opening, ensuring that the whole contents of the bottle don’t come sliding out and raining down your shirt when you swig out of it. A built-in carabiner -friendly finger loop hinges flat as well. All told, a really nicely thought out bottle. And< because you wanted to know what we’re drinking* – not that it’s any business of yours – inside is some Coco Libre, naturally refreshing coconut water, which has a sweet, nutty taste and not a ton of calories. It’s got the easily digested carbohydrates and electrolytes like sports drinks, but without the big sugars and chemical-lab processing. (Not to be confused with high-fat coconut milks, coconut water is a clear liquid in the drupe’s center that is tapped from those brown orbs when they are still young and green. It’s not too sweet, and supposedly good for you, Gilligan.) *You might not have cared, but the editor says we have to tell you. I'm pushing things enough by not showing off a coffee cup. Speaking of sweet – since there’s hiking involved with hunting, many people need an energy boost halfway uphill. Generally, you’d find folks packing along those little squeeze containers of trail glop from Powerbar, GU Energy, CLIF Shots, and the like. But if you’re looking for nature’s original and purest go-goo, a boost of pure, runny, sticky honey is the bee’s knees for quick energy. Accordingly, along for the ride is a teeny package of Nature Nate’s Raw Unfiltered Honey. It comes straight from the hive, uncooked, and without the pollens filtered out. Each batch is tested for high pollen count and is free of corn syrup, pesticides, herbicides, and antibiotics. These clever folks decided to take that pure sweet ooze that’s been zapping the thalamus since the dawn of man, and package it in hiker-friendly little orange envelopes. Citrus-sy Skeletool The tool / knife is the Leatherman Skeletool RX, hard to beat for size and usefulness in everyday situations. Now, there are “normal” colored variants of the Skeletool, but the orange version of this Leatherman has the sheepsfoot profile serrated rescue blade in 154CM steel, and a carbide punch for poking holes in auto glass and the like; it's also easy to find in a pile of tactically tactical black/FDE/OD/camo stuff. A nice pliers, plenty of modular Philips and flathead screwdrivers, and a good blade is all that’s needed for pocketknife basics. Orange you glad we provide links to these EDC items? Naturally, you can’t take those awesome “I’m out hunting while the rest of you guys are in a cubicle at work” selfies unless you’ve got your phone with you. But, if you’re going to be scrambling up loose shale and bouldering up to that vista that will look oh-so-good on your 2″x2” Instagram feed, you need to protect that delicate smartphone. There’s really been no more trusty, economonomonical (go ahead, sound that out), and cool phone case than MAGPUL’s simple Bump and Field cases: In this particular instance, an iPhone 6S+ field case – in orange of course — sits atop a Grey Ghost Gear lightweight hunting pack in ATACS camouflage. ParaOrangenance There. It took a while, but eventually we got around to the gun in the photo. This .45ACP, aka “God’s Caliber” handgun is loaded with Winchester PDX1 Defender Ammunition 230 Grain Bonded Jacketed Hollow Points. That is a really long name for a product, but it’s worth mentioning because of its impressive expansion (up to 1-1/2 times the size of the original bullet diameter) because of Winchester's proprietary bonding process. The lead core and copper jacket are welded together, and notching along the exterior of the bullet creates six equal segments that give controlled expansion and a high weight retention. It’s pushing around 920 feet per second, with 432 foot pounds of muzzle energy. This particular Colonel is a product of the “old” ParaOrd, a Canadian company. It was around before Remington and Freedom Group came along and conglomerated the company into the ParaUSA we know today. It is a Commander-sized pistol with a 4.8 inch factory-threaded barrel and a magazine capacity of 14+1. (If you don’t speak 1911, generally a “Government” model 1911 is the full-size frame with a 5″ barrel and single-stack 7 round capacity; a “Commander” is a Government-size frame but topped with a shortened slide and 4.25″ barrel, and 7 round capacity; whereas an “Officer” is a compact framed model with a shorter-yet slide and barrel, having a 6 round capacity.) The selling point on the ParaOrd pistol was that it is a high-capacity double stack magazine’d 1911, yet midsized overall, and with their LDA “Light Double Action” trigger system instead of the traditional 1911 single-action trigger. It gives a light 3.5 pound pull on every shot, tugging back a very lightweight hammer – a very unique system. So unique, in fact, that this model was discontinued. But, if there’s a bear coming after that honey you were sucking down earlier, you can’t be faulted for wanting 15 rounds of .45acp on your hip. Concentrate Lastly, if you’re going to go out hiking in the wild backwoods, your chances of dying go up exponentially, compared to, say, mall-walking. It is infinitely more rewarding, but it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared. Tucking a pack of “DON’T DIE OUT THERE” cards in the knapsack is a fun and educational way to prepare for lots of horrible situations you could find yourself in. This deck of cards contains survival tips and practical information taken from Mountaineers Books’ Emergency Survival and First Aid pocket guides. Not only is it a deck of water-resistant durable playing cards, each card has instructions written by an outdoorsman and physician, on everything from building a survival shelter to splinting a broken leg. Topics are organized by card suit — Diamonds have survival essentials, signals, locating your position, and shelters; Spades contains tips on assessing the situation, water, fire, food, and evacuation techniques; Hearts list basic first aid, hypothermia, frostbite, heat illness, and sprains and dislocations; Clubs instruct on CPR, head and spine injuries, fractures, bites and stings, and evacuating the injured. Because while you can bluff your way to a nice poker pot, you can’t fake a tourniquet. You can get a set of your very own right here. And, that's it for this installment of Monday Morning Carry. What do you carry, and when, and why? Have a loadout you'd like to share with the world? E-mail a synopsis in to [email protected]. Remember, at a minimum you'll need: → Pictures of all of it from a couple of different angles (the larger, higher the resolution, the better) in landscape format. → Pictures of each individual piece, with a brief explanation of that item and a link to product on the manufacturer's page (or retailer where you bought it). → A coffee cup or mug has to be in there! → A written (well, typed) acknowledgement that you understand our terms of service, and that you're giving us the rights to use your pictures and text. → Your contact info (name, cell number, e-mail address, physical mailing address). Who knows? 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