I happened to be shopping for Andy and I in Dick’s Sporting Goods, checking out what was already coming into the stores for the upcoming season (the treestand display was put up this week). As I was leaving, I noticed a stack of free Dick’s published magazines at each counter. One in particular caught my eye, the “Lodge Big Game Hunting Gear Guide 2011”. I grabbed this and perused it when I got home to find that it was a comprehensive guide of guns, bows, optics, electronics, treestands, apparel, boots, and supplies that was new and available for the 2011 season either in-store or online. This led me to think, are there other resources in familiar places?
The answer is…yes, it seems as if retailers are starting to take a new approach to customer service and advertising. Not only are some of our favorite sports retailers more than willing to sell us anything that could possibly make our hunt successful, but they are now creating a “friendship” vibe by offering extra resources to help make all of our hunting endeavors a success and build a community feel to their websites. I have mentioned the very nice Gear Guide that Dick’s Sporting Goods offers, but they also offer a Hunting Bragging Board online for you to share your trophies.
Cabelas, Gander Mountain, and Bass Pro are not far behind with sections of their websites devoted specifically to hunting and the subcategories of what you are hunting. Bass Pro Shops offer an OutdoorSite Library that has hunting information, a Braggin’ Board, and other information (including a fishing knots library, fishing calculators, and online lake maps for those of us that fish in the hunting off season). Gander Mountain offers you with preparedness articles and checklists for each type of hunting adventure. Cabelas offers articles and information, talk forums, game and fish info, TrophyRoom, and Pro Staff information. These topics can be found at the bottom of their homepage under “Outdoor Information”.
I am sharing this information because I want everyone to have as much information and time to explore new 2011 products as they would like. However, the old Latin proverb holds true “caveat emptor”…Let the Buyer Beware. All of these magazines and websites are products of retail stores and as such will have an advertising slant that is beneficial to each store. So take the resources for what they are and perhaps you will find a new product that you want to try for the 2011 season. Remember, most retailers have sales and push “back to hunting” sales the first few weeks of August. Therefore, if you are looking to make any hunting related purchase, this would be a great time to do so for the best deals.
Dick’s Sporting Goods Link:
Bass Pro Shops OutdoorSite Library Link: