Local gear & apparel that make great gifts for the men in your life.
Guys aren’t celebrated very often. It may be that we don’t often deserve to be celebrated. So when a day comes along celebrating me, I embrace it. And when asked what I’d like for Father’s Day (or any gift-giving time), I usually respond with something available from a local store, and ideally from a company based right here in southwest Montana. Here’s a short list of some of my favorites.
JeltX Adustable Belt—Jelt
Made from recycled water bottles, the JeltX Adjustable Belt is equally apt for everyday use and outdoor adventure. JeltX sports a low-profile magnetic buckle and some grippy gel on the inside, so it holds up your breeches with or without belt loops. The JeltX is one-size-fits-all, up to a 50-inch waist. The hardest part will be deciding what color to pick, navy or black; but at only $35, you might as well get both. Buy it online or find a local retailer here.
Men’s Arete Low—Oboz
Help your feet feel great on the trail this summer in the Men’s Arete low from Oboz ($125). These low hikers are what happens when a running shoe and hiking boot come together— lightweight, breathable upper on a foundation of a grippy multidirectional lugs. With the proprietary O FIT insole, these shoes cradle the feet, providing trail comfort right out of the box.
Arete Low Waterproof
Catch & Release—Blue Ribbon Nets
The first time you see the Catch & Release net from Blue Ribbon Nets, you’ll think you’re looking at a piece of art. But don’t let the beauty of this handcrafted net fool you; it’s also a great tool for fishing the rivers and lakes of Montana. With its BRN AquaFade net bag, you’re less likely to get your hook snagged while releasing your catch, plus the material is gentle on the fish. Lightweight, with a short handle, the Catch & Release works great for wade fishing. Price ranges between $85 and $125, depending on the size and finish. Check out these authorized dealers for this and other Blue Ribbon models.
XBC Series Mitten Scissor Clamp—Dr. Slick
There are few fishing accessories that have simplified my life as much as the XBC Series Mitten Scissor Clamp from Dr. Slick ($25). It eliminates the need for several tools, combining a straight jaw for removing hooks, scissors for trimming line, and an eye-cleaning pin into a single tool. It has a lanyard to keep it from falling in the water, though with the bright-color option, you’ll be able to spot it even if it does fall in. A squeeze of the clamp opens the jaws and then another squeeze closes it—easy to operate with numb fingers or when you need to make a quick release. Find a local dealer here.
Flyweight Wet Wading Shoe—Simms
Once the high waters of spring recede and the temperatures increase, I like to fish sans waders. While jumping in a mountain stream or river is invigorating, wading can still be a challenge. Traditional wading boots are bulky, while regular sandals or water shoes are slick. The Flyweight Wet Wading Shoe ($170) from Simms meld the boot and the water shoe together, forming a lightweight, low-top, river-crossing shoe. Choose between a 12mm felt or Vibram Idrogrip rubber bottom. Available locally at the River’s Edge and Fins & Feathers.