There are two blunt realities of SHOT Show. One, you could walk the show for all 4 days and probably only see about 50-75% of the floor. And two, you’ll spend a good portion of your time lost. We scoured Range Day and SHOT Show while trying to avoid #2, here’s a list of some of our favorite hunting gear from the 2023 SHOT Show.
2023 SHOT Show Day 1
Caldwell Shooting’s focus heading into next year was versatility, lightweight, and convenience. Caldwell impressed on all fronts with three products that caught our eye – the Stable Table Lite with the Hydrosled, as well as their impressive new Claymore Target Thrower. The Stable Table Lite weighs less than 30 pounds, has an adjustable rotating ambidextrous seat for shooting comfort and versatility, and comes fully collapsible for easy transportation and storage. The tabletop is not only weatherproof but has a rail perimeter to keep your ammo from falling.
Featured on the Stable Table Lite was the Hydrosled, also boasting adjustable and ambidextrous features alongside wind and elevation adjustments and recoil reduction up to 95%. You can fill the reservoir with whatever media you prefer, whether it be water, sand, pebbles, or whatever else you have handy. These two are perfect for shooters looking for versatility and convenience without having to compromise durability.
Not to be outdone, the Claymore Target Thrower also boasted convenient and versatile features. One of its major perks, you don’t need a battery… or even a partner. It operates by foot pedal and without the need for a battery; it weighs only 35 pounds. The Claymore Target Thrower holds 50 clays in the magazine and will launch them up to 70 yards. It has a couple different launch options so you can choose if you want to launch in standard mode or a faster more continuous mode.
CVA brought the heat with their lightest and most versatile muzzleloading rifle to date, the Paramount Pro V2. The Paramount Pro V2 is 8 ounces lighter than their previous .45 caliber, and 2 ounces lighter than the .50 caliber. The new Grayboe stock has an adjustable riser can be set for high for powerful optics, or low for use with the Williams Peep Sight. The Paramount Pro V2 was designed with the long ball in mind with increased velocities giving you killing abilities at 300 yards and up with reduced recoil thanks to their Limbsaver recoil pad. The CVA Paramount Pro V2 retails for around $1,920 and comes in a sleek hand painted camo design.
Next up was Plano Molding and their rundown of their Rustrictor, Stealth, and all-weather Ultimate series. The Rustrictor Long Gun Cases boast a VCI (Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor) infused foam emitter, which is vented foam for increased circulation reducing corrosion exposure (hence the name Rustrictor). The pressure release valve combats issues typically caused by altitude and temperature changes.
52” Rifle/Shotgun • PLA11852R • $229.99
42” Rifle/Shotgun • PLA11842R • $179.99
36” Rifle/Shotgun • PLA11836R • $149.99
Defender Pistol • PLA7180R • $44.99
XL Pistol • PLA118XLR • $119.99
Large Pistol • PLA118LGR • $99.99
Medium Pistol • PLA118MDR • $69.99
The Bowmax Stealth series comes in both Compound and Crossbow models. They specialize in effortless loading and unloading due to the top access design. They are extremely light weight and store your bow with or without the quiver attached and have additional space in their pockets for your accessories. Although light weight and speed was their focus, they don’t sacrifice security due to well executed tie-down straps.
The Plano Molding All Weather Ultimate Bow series was the strongest that they showcased during our time with them. It is both rugged and strong, but it doesn’t lack convenience, given its size and strength. It’s both TSA approved and easy to travel with as the wheels rolled smoothly and the case has a heavy duty carry handle.
Lastly for Day 1, was perhaps our favorite product of the day – the GoSafe Mobile Safe and Mag. Both of these function with your firearm to prevent unauthorized use everywhere you carry and store. Simply put, this product puts the safe inside the gun instead of the gun inside the safe.
2023 SHOT Show Day 2
We started day 2 at GSM Outdoors Brands, and they did not disappoint. Although we looked at several products (see our YouTube page), what stood out the most were the Walker’s Disrupter Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Earbuds, the new Cold Steel knives, some new optics from Hawke Optics, Rise Armament triggers
The Disrupter by Walker Hearing protects your hearing at the range or on a hunt but at the same time doubles as a headphone the same way as Airpods/Bose/Beats. They have forward faced technology which places an emphasis on the noise in front of the user helping to reduce peripheral noise – great for conversations while at the range. With two microphones per earbud, you know exactly where the noise is coming from with full directional sound. With better noise cancelling technology than their non-outdoor competitors, they are not just great for the range, but they are great for the plane as well. There are several more features than the ones mentioned, and all can be customized using their Walker Link 4.0 App to deliver a truly unique user experience. These earbuds bring the noise when you want and cancel it when you don’t. The price is not yet known, and we were told these will be released late summer or early fall ’23.
We were then shown the Cold Steel Mayhem, Viking Seax, Swift 3, and Templar. The Mayhem was just that – mayhem. Although it technically isn’t their largest knife on the market, it demands respect. It is accompanied with an ambidextrous mechanism and an Atlas Lock (patent pending) that can be used as a safe or used to increase stability for when the knife is open and increased strength is required. At 13 oz, it feels strong to hold but not so heavy that it’s an annoyance. The look is impressive, it has a prominent belly, a dipped spine, and a harpoon edge that moves out towards its acute pointed tip.
More geared towards everyday carry, was the Cold Steel Swift 3 with D2 Steel and a G10 Handle. It also has the Atlas Lock system. A little more unique for everyday carry, was the Viking Seax – also with D2 Steel. It had a more unique and unconventional look but had a great tip for everyday carry designed to cut boxes and all the other day to day functions a carry knife requires.
The Cold Steel Templar was just a fun throwing knife and made with the beginner in mind. It is inexpensive, and easy to use. Made out of one solid piece of tempered carbon steel, it thunks and sticks just like a ninja star.
Next on the list was Hawke Optics. They had a great lineup of new products with the Turkey hunter, Crossbow user, and all-around outdoorsman in mind. The Vantage IR 1-4x Turkey Dot Scope is great for turkey hunting and has a 4-inch eye relief with a magnified turkey optics and favorable reticle (best seen on their website). Their Frontier Laser Range Finding Binoculars (8×42, 10×42) stood out for multiple reasons but mainly because for the price point, it seemed to be the highest valued binocular we had yet seen on the show floor. It had 6 levels of brightness to accommodate ranging from 1,968 yards (8x model) to 2,515 yards (10x model). Waterproof and fog proof, it is a no brainer for any outdoorsman in search of a new pair of range finding binos. Lastly was the Crossbow Scope; the XB30 2-7×30 wide angle, compact zoom with illuminated reticle with a locking speed adjuster ring to ensure that the FPS is not changed once zeroed. At just $249, this proves to be the perfect fit for almost any crossbow optic upgrade. As with all Hawke Optics products, the buyer can enjoy the Hawke No-Fault Lifetime Warranty.
The last visit of the day was with Rise Armament to discuss their Iconic 2-stage trigger. We had the opportunity to shoot an AR10 rifle equipped with the Iconic trigger system at Range Day earlier in the week. Regardless of the 1000 yard still ringing from 4 out of 5 shots from our shooters, the trigger was quickly touted as the cleanest pull we had handled the entire day. The Iconic 2-Stage trigger offers the shooter both a lighter weight and an extremely crisp-break; the best of both worlds in trigger feel and performance.