Top 5 ATVs for Hunting

hunting atv

Hunting for the Ultimate Hunting Companion
by Jason Giacchino

We use the word “specialization” a lot when describing the ATV market of late, and with good reason. There was a time in the recent past when manufacturers offered up maybe half a dozen models to cover the entire spectrum of ATV riders’ needs. Yet these days, it isn’t uncommon to find that many trim packages offered for a single model! In short, these are good days to be involved in the sport, but we can understand how having so many viable options to select from could become overwhelming to a prospective rider.

As always, your ATV Connection editors are here to help. Today’s buyer guide will concentrate on those ATV’s specialized for hunting. And while it’s tough to even begin to narrow down the plethora of models available to just 5, we will do our best to steer hunters into the right direction when selecting an ATV.

Before we just start rattling off names and models, it’s important to realize that these days the first decision to be made will be to determine whether an ATV or UTV (side-by-side) would be adequate for your needs. UTVs are generally graced with additional storage capacity not to mention the ability to transport passenger(s). The downside is that they are heavier, larger and certainly more expensive then their ATV counterparts. For the sake of this article we will assume you have weighed your options and decided that the ATV is the choice for you. (Be on the lookout for the UTV options soon!)

That said, the question then becomes what makes an ATV a good hunting companion in the first place? Hunting ATVs should provide easy access to locations that are hard to get to by foot and impassable for a truck. Hunting ATVs should be capable of hauling materials and supplies, such as tree stands, into isolated areas. Finally, having the power to transport harvested game back to your vehicle after a hunt is an important consideration.

So where would we start our search for a machine capable of meeting such criteria? Without further ado:

polaris sportsman

#5) Polaris Sportsman 850 H.O. EPS

A liquid cooled 4-stroke single-overhead-cam twin cylinder 850 provides the juice for the big Sportsman while a large 5.25 gallon gas tank assures passage to the most isolated areas and back again.

Features like all-wheel-drive (and 2wd select-ability), electronic power steering, electronic fuel injection, cast aluminum wheels, rear storage box and a standard passenger seat sweeten the pot. As if all of that weren’t enough, driver hand and thumb warmers mean hunting on cold mornings a lot less miserable.

The 850 starts at ,999. More information can be had at the following URL: http://www.polarisindustries.com/en-us/ATV-RANGER/Full-Size-ATV/Sportsman-XP-850-HO-EPS/pages/Specifications.aspx

kawasaki brute force

#4) Kawasaki Brute Force 750 EPS

A liquid-cooled, 90-degree, 4-stroke SOHC (four valves per cylinder) V-twin powers the Brute Force, while an upgraded fully automatic, dual-range continuously variable transmission (CVT) is mated to the V-Twin. Electronic power steering and fuel injection and easy-access storage round out the goodies.

A new high gear ratio and a thicker belt made of stronger material are designed to contribute to longer CVT belt life and reduced maintenance requirements. Kawasaki boasts revised converter weight and drive spring tuning which offer improved acceleration characteristics and increased control during low-speed operation. Also, a new layout and revised placement of the CVT air duct is designed to be more effective at helping keep out water and mud.

We’re partial to the Realtree APG HD edition, which is covered in Realtree APG HD camouflage for hunters and outdoorsmen who require more stealth in the woods.

The Kawasaki Brute Force 750 EPS Realtree APG HD retails for ,349. More information can be found at the following URL: http://www.kawasaki.com/Products/product-specifications.aspx?id=516

Arctic Cat 700

#3) Arctic Cat 700 Super Duty Diesel

A 686cc liquid cooled I-Twin SOHC 4-stroke 2-valve diesel engine powers the Artic Cat 700 Super Duty. Such interesting features as front and rear speedracks, on-the-fly 2wd/4wd w/diff lock, and a 2″ receiver round out the goods.

The unique engine is made for Arctic Cat by Lombardini, an Italian company with an 80-year tradition of building some of the best medium-size engines in the world. Here’s the kicker, this ATV runs on six kinds of fuel: DF1, DF2, DF Arctic, JP5, JP8 and ti B20 Biodiesel. Diesel is 50% more fuel-efficient than comparably powered gas units.
The Artic Cat 700 Super Duty Diesel goes for ,299. More information can be found at the following URL: http://www.arcticcat.com/atv/model/view/700SUPERDUTY

Yamaha Grizzly 700

#2) Yamaha Grizzly 700 FI 4×4 EPS

A fuel injected 686cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled single, SOHC, 4 valve Raptor-based combustion chamber design produces a potent combination of low-rev torque, instant throttle response and high horsepower. The compact engine design features a 35-degree cylinder angle for ground clearance and lower seat height for quick steering and maneuverability.

Industry-exclusive, fully automatic Ultramatic transmission is the most advanced drive system in ATVing. An automatic centrifugal clutch maintains constant belt tension for reduced belt wear and uses a sprag clutch for all-wheel downhill engine braking in 4WD mode and a three-position On-Command In/Out 4WD feature lets you switch between 2WD, limited-slip 4WD and fully locked differential 4WD, all with the simple push of a button.

Fuel injection, electronic power steering, and the best power-to-weight ratio of any Yamaha utility ATV make the biggest Griz a bear to consider.

The Grizzly 700 FI retails for ,499. More information can be found at the following URL: http://www.yamaha-motor.com/outdoor/products/modelhome/534/0/home.aspx

Can-Am Outlander

#1) Can-Am Outlander 1000

An 82-hp Rotax 1000, V-Twin, liquid-cooled, SOHC, 8-valve (4-valves per cylinder) powers the massive Can-Am. Additional features include a new SST G2 frame, Torsional Trailing arm Independent rear suspension (TTI), a new high-strength multi-function rack design with exclusive LinQ quick-attach accessory system and a 5.7 US gal (21.4L) water-resistant rear storage box.

A 2-inch receiver hitch, large 5.4 gallon fuel tank, and a factory digitally encoded security system (DESS) round out the goodies that separate the Outlander from the competition.

The Can-Am Outlander 1000 starts at ,449. More information can be found at the following URL: http://www.canamoffroad.com/atv/outlander-1000-800r/outlander-1000-800r/1000/details.aspx

Did we hit the mark or what? Let us know in the forums:
http://forums.atvconnection.com/hunting-trapping-game-management/340691-top-5-atvs-hunting.html#post3072653

1 Comment
  1. This was a really cool article… Thanks for posting it!

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