Top-Flight Upland Gear

Here's what to buy from the top down for comfort.

Outdoor Life Online Editor

1) Cabela's Shooting Glasses
Cabela's shooting glasses, with interchangeable clear, yellow and orange polycarbonate lenses, aid color discrimination and protect your eyes from injury. They're also a great value. ($30; 800-237-4444; cabelas.com)

2)Upland Ammo >> Loads for everything from doves to pheasants
Most upland birds, from doves to ruffed grouse, can be cleanly killed with light-kicking target loads. My favorites are Remington's Gun Club (left) and Premier STS series in sizes 8 and 7½. They are affordable, pattern beautifully, kill like lightning and leave little residue in your barrel. (From $5 per box; 800-243-9700; remington.com)

Pheasants are another matter, especially late in the season. For late-season roosters, I reach for my secret weapon: Polywad's Polymag 60X Pheasant Loads . Polymag uses a heavy payload of nickel-plated shot at a modest muzzle velocity to get downrange killing power while keeping recoil relatively moderate_. ($6 per box of 10; 800-998-0669; polywad.com)_

** 3) Beretta AL391 Teknys**
Now entering its second year of production, Beretta's AL391 Teknys is a perfect autoloader for upland hunting. Its alloy receiver and innovative Xtra Wood stock make it light, lovely and highly pointable. The stock is also adjustable and is equipped with a gel recoil pad. Pick a 12-gauge if you hunt late-season pheasants; otherwise, a 20-gauge will handle your upland chores with aplomb. ($1,295; 800-636-3420; berettausa.com)

4) Pella Bird 'n Lite Upland Vest
The folks at Pella have made tough outdoor clothes for 98 years. On warm days, leave your jacket at home and don the new Pella Bird 'n Lite Upland Vest. It has a padded waist belt and lumbar support._ ($100; 800-832-6225; pella products.com)_

5) Browning Kangaroo Featherweights
Browning's 10-inch kangaroo Featherweights have a waterproof Gore-Tex lining, sure-footed Vibram soles and oiled sharkskin toes for abrasion resistance-all for a remarkably good price. In my judgment, they set the standard for upland footwear. _(From $250; 800-438-7026; browningfootwear.com) _

6) Weather Weave Shirt, Pants, Gloves

The new Weather Weave series from Boyt Harness Company provides lightweight water resistance and brush protection. For 2005, Boyt has expanded the Weather Weave line to include pants and a shirt. This is the lightest treated-canvas upland garment series I've ever worn. Not cheap, but worth it. Boyt's sister company, Bob Allen Sportswear, also makes a dandy pair of shooting gloves. (Shirt, $100; pants, $140; gloves, from $17; 800-550-2698; boytharness.com)

** 7) Pendleton Package Getaway Hat**

On warm days afield I don't wear a hat at all. But when there's a chill in the air I reach for my Pendleton Packable Getaway Hat. Made in Oregon, this classic, 100 percent pure virgin wool hat almost makes me wish for cold weather just so I can have an excuse to wear it._ ($44; 800-760-4844; pendleton-usa.com) _

** 8) SmartWool Socks**

Upland hunting means mileage afoot, so don't underestimate the importance of good socks. My sock drawer is full of SmartWool. This Colorado company makes durable, form-fitting socks that keep your feet warm and dry. (From $16; 800-550-9665; smartwool.com)

** 9)Cabela's Gore-Tex Upland Coat**

In cold or wet weather, nothing beats Cabela's Gore-Tex Upland Coat for the money. This coat is completely waterproof yet breathable and comfortable. ($150; 800-237-4444; cabelas.com)