Sheep hunts guarantee long days, long distan...

Sheep hunts guarantee long days, long distances, steep climbs and very challenging technical terrain. Your kit must perform in a wide range of condition and has made me pack more than I need many times when every ounce is critical. Over the years I have refined my kit and have become fanatical about weight, beyond just cutting my tooth brush in half.

My kit for Arctic Red was 24.72 pounds before adding my tripod and Zeiss 85mm Diascope, weapon & ammo.  This included my tent and 5 days of food. There was nothing more I needed and the only item I did not use was my spare batteries and spare headlamp.

Encloses is my gear list many of you have asked for. I hope this is helpful.


 Arctic Red Gear List
Item Product Quantity  Ounces      Total  
Socks Patagonia 1 3 3
Boxer Shorts Exofficio 1 5.28 5.28
Next to Skin Top Merino 185 1 8.75 8.75
Expedition Weight Top Merino 250 1 12 12
Vest Guide Vest 1 12.5 12.5
Insulation Spin Drift 1 12 12
Soft Shell Jacket Guide Jacket 1 21 21
Rain Shell Chugach Jacket 1 17 17
Rain Shell Chugach Pant 1 13.5 13.5
Neck Gator Merino 185 1 1.25 1.25
Head Wear Merino 185 1 0.75 0.75
Head Wear Guide Beanie 1 1.25 1.25
Camera Cannon 1 9.75 9.75

Hydration Platypus 1 1.25 1.25
Tool Micro Tool 1 1.5 1.5
Deodorant Unscented 1 0.2 0.2
Toothbrush Travel 1 0.75 0.75
Tooth Paste Crest 1 1 1
Towel MSR 1 1 1
TP Wet Wipes 1 2.5 2.5
Soap Scent free 1 0.5 0.5
Anti-inflammatory Motrin 3 0.5 1.5
Back Pack Icon 6000 1 85 85
Rope Parachute Cord 1 1 1
Knife Kestrel 1 1 1
Sharpener Readi Edge 1 1 1
Head Lamp Petzl 1 2 2
Lighter Colibri Torch 1 1.5 1.5
First Aid Kit First Aid Kit 1 1 1
Surveyors Tape 1/4 Roll 1 1 1
Fire Starter Fire Paste 1 1 1
Lip Balm Carmex 1 0.25 0.25
Pack Cover Sea to Summit 1 4 4
Headlamp Mamuut 1 4.75 4.75
Sleeping Bag Marmont Plasma 1 22 22
Air Mattress Neo-air 1 11 11
Tent MSR 1 34 34
Dinners Mountain House 5 4 20
Grab Bag Cliff, Pro-bars & Stinger Products 5 17 85
Ounces 395.45
Pounds 24.72

This article has 29 comment(s)

  1. Chris

    What about gloves, leg gaiters, and walking staff/ice axe? I also don’t see anything for communications. Not exactly necessary when guided too. What about game bags? Your already into ultra technical fabrics, why not market skookum lightweight Kuiu game bags?

    • Jason Hairston

      Hey Chris,

      This was a guided hunt so the guide has the game bags and sat phone. This is an in pack list, I wear my gaiters, gloves and carry my ice axe.


  2. Ken Anderson

    I didn’t see any kind of stove, pot, or utensils on our list. How did you heat water for your Mtn House meals and what did you eat with? Your fingers? Otherwise a pretty good, basic list!

    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Ken,

      This was a guided hunt which allows you to leave many of these items at home and save weight.


  3. Steve Kremp

    Love that photo. I spent quite a bit of time in that postion last week in Alaska.

  4. Kevin


    Thank you for the list, it’s very helpful! Couple questions – Did you hunt in the Chugach pant the entire time? Didn’t see any other pant on there. And I was curious about the titanium knife you used as you had mentioned this was a prototype Kuiu product. How did the blade hold up? Is it difficult to sharpen? When might this be available? Thanks and congrats again.


    • Jason Hairston

      Hey Kevin,

      This list is just what is in my pack and not what I am wearing. I wore the Attack Pant for the hunt unless it was raining. The Knife prototype was amazing. It sharpens really easily and holds an edge. I boned out the entire Caribou Bull and never put it on the sharpener. At 1/2 ounce it is an amazing product.


  5. Darryn

    That photo tells a story of the mental endurance necessary for this type of hunting indeed. Thanks for sharing your gear selection. No binoculars, GPS, stove or pot?

    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Darryn, Thanks for the comment and question. This list was what I had in my pack and the weighty which does not include what I was wearing or carrying. The Guide brings a stove and cooking kit so I am able to save additional weight there as well.


  6. Curt Cabrera

    Hey Jason, Just a quick question about a couple items on your list bud.
    Can you tell a little more about your “micro tool”? And, what exactly does one keep in a minimalist first aid kit?

    Thanx, Curt } >>—–>

    • Jason Hairston

      Hey Curt thank you for the questions and comments. My micro tool is made by SOG and is a very small and light version of a leatherman. My first Aid kit includes band aids, super glue (for large wounds) & antibotic cream. I used to carry much more but I after 20 years of carrying it around and never using any of it I have paired it down to these items.


      • Curt Cabrera

        Thanx bud, I figured you meant a tiny “leatherman type” tool, just wanted to see if I was thinking along the same lines. With those 4 items in your first aid kit, you cover about all but the worst type injuries. I luv super glue to close up wounds quick, and antibiotic ointment is my best friend. Especially during deer season with minor cuts from activities such as trimming shooting lanes, climbing trees, working in my taxidermy shop, etc…
        It’s so easy to carry “too much”, even here in a daypack just deer hunting. I could only image how every ounce counts for a trip such as yours.

        Curt } >>—->

  7. Shane Close

    Which neoair mattress did you use? I was looking at some because I need one and none of the ones I looked at were only 11oz. Is the kestrel knife coming out with the next lineup of stuff? And I noticed for the hydration pack you added up the pack weight of that empty so starting out your pack was probably 7lbs heavier or so?

    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Shane,

      I have the small Neoair, which they advertise at 9 ounces, my scale weighed it at 11 ounces. The small is narrow and is just long enough for your hips and shoulders. I put my feet and lower legs on my Icon, lengthwise and this works great. We are going to release 50 of the Kestrel knives this fall and will be taking preorders starting next week. I will have a blog post explaining the knives, Kestrel and KUIU’s exclusive product line from them. On a sheep hunt up north there is a lot of water everywhere you hunt. So you do not have to carry water with you or just a carry a little.


      • Shane Close

        Awesome, thanks! So do you purify the water? If so, I’m guessing the guide carried that bit of gear? Last year I ran out of water on my hunt so I just drank from one of the mountain streams and got super sick the next day. After that I bought one of those SteriPens and that’s worked pretty well and it’s super light. I definitely want to get on that preorder list for the Kestrel knife! I guess I’ll need to keep an eye out for that blog post!

  8. Ricardo Laborin

    Hi Jason, just out of curiosity, what boots did you wear?


  9. Cameron

    How did your Crispi boots work out Jason?

  10. tom harwell

    Jason, just got back from a stone sheep hunt in northwest BC(100 air miles east of Juneau) and a backpack dall hunt in northeast Yukon and just wanted to tell you that the Kuiu gear is awesome! I wore the attack pants, guide jacket, wool base layers, spin drift and especially the Chugach suit and they performed even better that I could of hoped for. Great job and looking forward to whatever comes next!! Everyone I ran into wondered if this was the “new Kuiu gear” and what i thought about it. Needless to say, you got a great recommendation. Count me as a very satisfied customer and Kuiu advocate!!! Tom

  11. Larry Schwartz


    Could you explain how you loaded stuff into your 6000, what went in each pocket and in the main bag? You’ve probably got the most time in the field with it and I’m sure lots of us would like to know what organization of gear works best from your perspective.



    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Larry,

      We are working on a video series that will cover all of these questions. Much easier than I could try and lay it out with a blog post or comment. Some of them are up on KUIU’s facebook page and we will begin to post them up on the site soon as well as a blog post. Thank you for your comment as always.


  12. Shane Close

    Hey Jason,
    Sorry to keep bugging you on this list, but another quick question: What made you go with the MSR tent and not the Big Agnes Fly Creek? Just from doing my own research on buying a new tent the BA looks lighter and bigger. Just wondering what made you go with the MSR.

    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Shane,

      Great question! I prefer a side entrance tent over a front entrance tent like the Fly Creek. It is much easier to get in and out of, store gear and access. I am willing to give up a few ounces for this design.


  13. Brad

    I don’t think that I have ever been that tired as to rest my head on the barrel of my gun. That pic made me do a double take. Congrats on a great Ram.

  14. Cameron

    How did the icon do on the pack out? Looks like you had quite a load.

  15. Chris

    The real question… heavy was that pack on the way out? Were you satisfied with the load hauling capabilities of the pack? Ever thought of making a custom shaped dry bag for the icon (meat)? I’m also a very satisfied user of the chugach rain wear. The belt just needs to stay tight (fit and finish).

    • Jason Hairston

      Hi Chris,

      I am working up a review on the pack in the NWT. It performed incredibly well. Packing out the Ram and camp to the runway we were hauling 80 pound loads. The Mountain Caribou was over 100lbs. The Caribou load really tested the Icon, 6 1/2 hours with an awkward load of Caribou meat and antlers on a vertical side hill of shale slides and boulder fields. No sore spots or hot spots that I would normally get under this much weight for that much time. The frame and bag held up perfectly. This frame amazes me, it positions a heavy load so well and distributes weight like no other pack I have ever worn. Not only is it light it is incredibly comfortable.


  16. Rob

    Help a guy out from Florida…I have little cold weather references and have not actually seen or handled your clothing…I am planning caribou hunt out of Kotzebue next September and want to buy some of your gear. Using your arctic red gear list to plan around can you tell me what range of temperatures you experienced on the hunt and was the amount of clothing about right for the conditions?

    Also since your out of stock in everything in my size, when can I expect some more inventory? And are there any plans for another camo pattern? (Not that I want something different than the Vias. (But if I’m going to drop a grand on new gear I want to pick from all available options)

  17. Cameron Meier


    I am curious what was in your first aid kit? I am in the process of throwing one together and am looking into what to put in it.

    • Cameron Meier

      Never mind Jason. I see above where you posted it.