I've pared it down considerably in recent years. The pack I carry now is a camo shoulder bag suitable for a small video camera. It is padded and it is rain resistant.
[ul][*]Compass, matches, a piece of writing paper, pen
[*]License and tags
[*]Flashlight and change of batteries
[*]T-screw-- left over from my days with a strap on stand, but it does a great job of starting a hole in the side of the tree for. . .
[*]Screw-in treestand step. I'm too big to trust it anymore, but it does a great job for holding gear. Between the T-Screw and the step I have a couple of nice gear hooks
[*]Walkie-talkie or cellphone.
[*]A 25' foot piece of cord and a snag hook with the barbs ground off. If I drop something, this will retrieve it.
[*]A multi-purpose adjustable deer call that will do a bleat to a grunt and all things in between.
[*]A snort call hanging on the same lanyard as the other deer call
[*]A small book. I keep something in there to fight boredom. I start the season with the Farmers Almanac. Sometimes it's the Bible. Sometimes it's poetry or philosophy. I want something that will keep me sitting still if I get the urge to move. In a pinch it becomes tinder
[*]Enough snack food to keep me warm
[*]Small chemical heat packs in case I get very cold. I open one up and throw it down my coat.[/ul]
But shaman, where's the knife? That's on me where I could cut myself out of my harness if need be.
It's a small kit, but I'm less than a half mile from the house. If I was away from home, I'd have a much larger pack with much more gear.
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