Some Thoughts on Camo

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    • #62395
      DiznNC
      Participant

        We were discussing this on another thread but I wanted to expand on it some more. The question was asked, what’s the most effective camo in my AO? Specifically woodland terrain in the Carolinas.

        First of all, I wanted to say that it’s not just a question of what’s the most effective camo. There are some other considerations. Is it readily available? At what cost? You have to understand that we’re talking about stocking up for hard times, where you can’t just order another set from the internet. It has to be readily available at a local level, and it has to be affordable. For those of you that have never done this for a living, you go through about 1-2 pairs of cammies a year. That’s daily use, either in garrison or out in the field. So for an initial load-out, I would want at least 5-6 full sets.

        Now, not to be a camo Nazi here, but it would be nice to have most of your kit in the same camo pattern. It certainly is the most effective way to run it. Look at pics of guys in one camo, with a few different pouches thrown on. Sometimes they stick out like a sore thumb. Ideally you want all your kit in the same pattern, although camo spray painting to match will work.

        With this in mind, you want a pattern that is also available on various load bearing equipment, such as your belt kit, chest rig, and rucksack.

        Finally, you need a “basha” or overhead cover and some kind of sleep system, like a “ranger taco”.

        Now, this is just one load out, guys, nothing for caches, remote sites. What is the cost on all this? Well, with old school woodland camo, you’re looking at about $500.00 for good, used surplus kit. With a commercial pattern, you would be looking at probably double that, IF you could find everything.

        Guys, this stuff can’t be looked at in a vacuum. That perfect pattern is not a realistic choice if you can’t obtain, and sustain it.

        So with all this in mind, what’s “the most effective” camo for Carolinas woodlands? There are many good patterns that are effective depending on seasons, light, etc. The most effective, overall, is actually DPM woodland. US woodland is a close second. These patterns not only work visually but in NIR. But they are still just 2D patterns. When combined with a good head and shoulders ghillie, you have the best overall system.

        Now I realize this is the internet. You don’t know me or what my qualifications to say all this are. That’s fair. I’m a former Marine who wore this stuff for a living, at various locations, including Camp Lejeune. Since then I have stayed active in the tactical community and have tested out many camo patterns. These are my conclusions.

      • #62396
        Corvette
        Participant

          Diz,

          thank you for the contribution. It is thoughtful as usual.
          Still working on my loadout as well. I do have that mix of stuff mostly ACU and would like more woodland for VA.

        • #62397
          Max
          Keymaster

            (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

            found this youtube channels series felt it was useful: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3khfSiedNsg0jWLjaxxU0beGSCzZJbAa

          • #62398
            Former Sapper
            Participant

              Interesting read, Diz. What are your thoughts then on MARPAT/Digital woodland VS DPM/US woodland?

            • #62399
              D Close
              Moderator

                Thanks Diz. I liked JC’s take on ghillie. How did USMC do ghillie stuff? I’ve seen the Israelis do some interesting things to break up helmet outline, using a larger, soft cover over the helmet. I haven’t seen too much footage of US forces doing this on patrol in AfPak or Iraq for some reason.

              • #62400
                DuaneH
                Participant

                  I am sure everyone here knows that camouflage is dependent upon your AO.

                  Just remember that sometimes the best camo is no camo at all.

                • #62401
                  DiznNC
                  Participant

                    Here’s how I would rate them, for deep woodlands in the US of A:

                    (1: US Woodlands. This would be my first choice overall. It probably ranks 2d or 3d in effectiveness, but because it’s available and cheap it gets my first place. I’m not sure what all the fuss was from school house snipers and the like who were so quick to shit-can this pattern. But their loss is our gain. This stuff is so cheap and plentiful right now you can’t beat it. Although I think the smaller ERDL pattern is more effective, the BDU still works well, in day and night, viz, and NIR.

                    (2: Brit DPM. Although this is probably the most effective pattern, IMHO, it gets 2d place only because of availability and sometimes price. Again, why the Brits ever got rid of this pattern for MTP I’ll never know. But again, their loss is our gain. Works very well in day and night, viz and NIR (probably the best under NV, IMHO).

                    (3: Marpat woodland: Another good choice, I would rate this one 2d or 3d, kinda tied with BDU woodland. I like the pattern maybe a little more than BDU, but availability and pricing is slightly behind it. If you have the budget, this is a good choice. Very effective in day and night, viz and NIR (although I think the BDU black segments contrast slightly better). Note: commercial woodland digi is NOT NIR compliant, which means you get zero contrast under NIR.

                    (4: ATACS FG: Good pattern if you can afford to go commercial. Very effective visually, during the day, but suffers from a lack of contrast at night, under NIR. OK availability across the board but again will cost more on a complete load out.

                    (5: Multicam (OCP)and MTP: So-so pattern for woodland ops. Works sometimes, kinda light at others. Might be OK for early spring, winter, late fall, but is gonna really stand out in full summer, IMHO. Works well for day, OK at night (has no real contrasting dark segments for NIR). I include it here because it is available, and the price has gone down quite a bit.

                    None of the others make the cut simply because of logistics. If you can’t afford them, or obtain them, or sustain them, they’re a NO-GO in my book.

                    Here is another consideration I’m going to throw out there. I have a good buddy who did 3 tours overseas recently and he had some interesting comments to make about camo. Here’s what applies to us. Let’s say the shit hits the fan. You have secured your family in a safe retreat, and have decided to join the resistance. I would bet that the vast majority of guys will show up in woodland camo, to one degree or another. Just my guess. So let’s say there’s 8 guys in woodland, 3 in woodland digi, and you’re sporting that nifty multicam pattern you thought was so kuhl. Now when you run into opfor, they see this dude in different camo. Hmmm. Might be someone important or some kind of high speed advisor. Looks dangerous. Shoot him first. This is what my buddy’s team decided, and always made sure they looked like whoever they were working with. In fact, he was one of the guys to really turn me (back) onto woodland camo, along with Hawkeye and some others. Just food for thought.

                  • #62402
                    DiznNC
                    Participant

                      As far as 3D camo goes, there’s full school house ghillies, then there are operational ghillies. In the school house, you cram as much of that shit on there as you can. In the field, you just put on enough to carry the day. In fact, lots of guys just used and head and shoulders style ghillie, that might go down mid-back. They used terrain masking to cover the rest. In really hot arid locales, even this stuff was sometimes shit-canned in favor of lighter stuff, like snow whites dyed tan, sprayed with adhesive, and sprinkled with crushed foam rubber. They whole thing was then spray paint camo’d to taste. The snow over whites hood is more billowy, just like the Israeli example.

                      In really dense terrain, like the Manzanita scrub brush at Pendelton, the drag bag was lightly ghillied and drug on a sling sitting on the crack of your ass. So between the head ghillie and the drag bag, you had pretty good coverage. (Note: the drag bag was a simple rifle scabbard, with a top flap.)

                      When required, the head and shoulders ghillie could be expanded to a “tuxedo” style, with two tails coming off to cover the lower body. As an option, you could also throw this stuff on top of your overhead cover when in the hide site.

                    • #62403
                      Max
                      Keymaster

                        Regarding ghillies: They have such a limited role. They are bulky to pack and take up way too much space. They really only shine in static roles. The leafy-wear type of suites are going to be the future of 3D camo and are better suited for light infantry/unconventional warfare operations. Yes, currently they can snag on things and are not good for belly crawling – but they will evolve. However, they are vastly more packable and they allow the wearer to cover larger areas of ground on foot without overheating and providing better interface with other equipment.

                        Something interesting on camo: Some years back (over 12 years ago for sure so some current military and commercial patterns were not yet invented), a unnamed group did their own extensive testing on different patterns of camo. The testers had a singular goal of finding the most effective pattern. They tested it in a variety of areas CONUS. It included a wide variety of US and foreign military patterns. Also included were a few commercial patterns. They found that the commercial pattern “Realtree” was vastly superior to any other pattern tested. When they submitted their results the hate and pushback was overwhelming. It was squashed in short order and other choices were made. (This is not referring to the more recent big Army testing)

                        Seasoned professionals just could not wrap their heads around using a pattern from Walmart that some chesse-eating countrytime fatty wore to hunt hogs. Tactical snobbery for sure even amongst those who poke fun at the “tacticool” and only use “tools that work”. A few of the smarter people just sat back, laughed and shook their heads.

                        Such is the hatred of ideas like that, I fully expect my very mentioning of it to unleash a torrent of disbelief, self-righteous anger and fury – even from those who consider themselves to be results oriented free thinkers.

                        Bring the hate….all I ask is that you don’t forget to bring the logic with it.

                      • #62404
                        CW
                        Participant

                          Good food for thought, Diz.

                          Here in central Florida, where I am, the predominant tree is live oak, with few pines around. Palmettos are common, but not overwhelmingly so. Looking around at various times and lighting conditions, and studying photos of various patterns in this environment (airsoft forums are good for this), here’s what I’ve seen (this is just observations on visible light spectrum, not NIR or IR):
                          DPM- Too dark. There’s too much black in the pattern to match the environment.
                          Woodland/MARPAT woodland- Looks like they’d work pretty well here in central Florida, though there’s a bit too much black in the Woodland pattern for my liking.
                          Multicam- Too light. There isn’t enough green in the pattern to match the environment. A notable exception would be Multicam Tropic, though the only place I’ve seen it is the Multicam website. No retailers I’ve seen sell it.
                          ACU- Too grey. Not nearly enough green in it. Might work well in rocky, grey-brown areas, where there’s little green vegetation.
                          Flecktarn- Too reddish-brown. There aren’t nearly enough Pine trees in this area to warrant it, though I haven’t seen it at work in this AO during the fall season. It might work at that time. Would probably work very well in southern pine forests.
                          A-TACS FG- Looks like it would work amazingly well in this AO. The bright green matches much of the vegetation, and the brownish-grey looks like it’s pretty good all-around. Price is a factor with this one, however. I just priced one outfit in this camo (shirt, pants, boots, plate carrier, pack, and combat harness), and it came up to just over $400.
                          DK Flatwoods- Great pattern, but too bright a green for these oak forests. Would work well in south Florida palmetto-dominant scrub country.
                          OD Green- The color matches this AO pretty well.

                          That being said, this AO is roughly one-third suburbia, one-third undeveloped forest, and one-third strip malls/urban. To me, leaving the house in fully-matching camo would draw unwanted attention in a SHTF scenario. I’m thinking that simple khaki/tan cargo pants and OD or Forest green shirt would be inconspicuous enough to avoid attention, yet would blend fairly well in the undeveloped areas (especially once you get some dirt on it).

                          Again, just some observations based on photos of various patterns in this environment and what I’ve noticed on daily walks with my son.

                          Anyone else from Central Florida care to chime in?

                        • #62405
                          JustARandomGuy
                          Participant

                            Diz- what’s your opinion on desert patterns (DCU/DPM/Digi) in wooded environments?
                            How about for our guys in such environments (southwest and such)- what’s your opinion on what a good pattern is?

                            What’s your opinion of basic solid earthtones (OD/Ranger green, Khaki/FDE/Coyote browns) both in wood and desert environments?

                            Personally, I like the solids- in my opinion, mainly because they can transfer into “civilian tactical” mode easier, and are often more available and cheaper than patterned gear/clothing. Plus it often seems the folks in solids are often less visible than guys in the latest digi or MC….

                            But currently my (shooting) gear is 50/50 Coyote and OD/Ranger (CB base w/ green pouches) due to availability/cost issues, and it seems like it may end up more diverse, especially where clothing is concerned. So I’d love an opinion on how that would work out- it doesn’t seem to bad as far as overall visibility, but I’m no camo expert…
                            Yes, I could krylon it, but it’s still a work in progress, and besides, I’m curious to get a second opinion… :rose:

                          • #62406
                            Former Sapper
                            Participant

                              Thanks for the feedback Diz. Have you ever used or laid eyes on flecktarn? Opinions on that? Sorry to bombard you but better a person who makes tactical kit for a living! Oh and in as much as outdoors neutral cloths, I have a South African “Nutria” smock that I wear and some generic dark brown cargo trousers, no problems so far.

                            • #62407
                              RRS
                              Participant

                                Looking at the pics of the recent class it shows one where the ALICE is sitting besides a man and to me it looks like it needs some camo work. So I was wondering what kind of burlap ghilly material would work with it and how it could be attached. Is there any kind of ghilly burlap that wont weigh a ton dry or wet? And is it strong enough to be sewn and stay tight?

                              • #62408
                                Joe (G.W.N.S.)
                                Moderator

                                  Burlap is great for garnish, but heavy when wet and extremely flammable.

                                  Some of the fire retardants that reduce flammability also reduce permeability (less water retention), however this can increase signature of IR making it appear almost reflective.

                                  The water soluble fire retardants are better IR wise, but do nothing for permeability and require repeat applications to maintain retardant capabilities.

                                  Some of the synthetic Camo Netting is effective, but can develop a shine that increases IR detection.

                                  There is much to consider and there are no free lunches!

                                  Made my first Ghillie Suit when I was 14 under the surpervision of a USMC Sniper(RET). Been making and using them ever since. Ghillies can aid greatly at night and with countering thermal detection.

                                • #62409
                                  DiznNC
                                  Participant

                                    The mission drives the gear train. In full blown resistance mode, which is the main thrust of Max’s site here, we are looking at dense overhead cover as defense against hi-tech surveillance and target acquisition. With that in mind, the woodland camo makes the most sense.

                                    Now some of you guys are mentioning transisiton periods, where things have gone to shit, but you’re still at home, or you’re ready to leave but haven’t initiated the E&E plan yet. Now we are talking some different mission considerations. The low profile, gray man tactics are still in effect, so that’s what drive your gear train. Here is where your solid earth tone stuff really shines. The woodland camo stays packed until you reach your retreat site.

                                    Arid terrain patterns in deep woodlands. Yes they can be effective under certain circumstances. At night they might make a better pattern or maybe during fall/winter, but then again, they may also be TOO bright. I like Multicam/OCP and Marpat desert, along with ATACS AU on the commercial side. And if you can find it, DPM desert.

                                    Another technique I have used which works well in semi-arid or transition areas is mixing and matching. Using arid camo trou with woodland camo jackets. This in very effective in areas with predominately brown landscapes but scattered scrub brush and isolated forested areas as well.

                                  • #62410
                                    Max
                                    Keymaster

                                      (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                      Thanks for the info Diz. Availability was definitely one of my concerns.

                                      Awhile back someone gave me some coyote chest rigs, so I got coyote pouches, coyote battle belt, etc. I figured it would be a good in-between color, especially since I didn’t know where we were going to settle down. Plus I could always find coyote stuff. Then we moved here and I started re-thinking it before making anymore gear purchases. One thing I was thinking was ranger green. I think it’s more likely I’ll be working in the garden, going on errands and walking around the property when things get bad. Just every day shit. Again, thanks for the food for thought.

                                    • #62411
                                      Justin
                                      Participant

                                        I would say get the best Camouflage you can afford, avoid over generalization. If you try to get a pattern to blend in every where you will find yourself not blending in anywhere instead. If you live in an AO with multiple environments, plan accordingly. Here in Montana I could find myself in tan and brown scrub land one day and then green lush mountain terrain the next. I approached this problem by setting my kit up in coyote Brown and then my uniform in kryptek highlander and mandrake patterns. Remember when your in the prone most of the time you are in dirt and dirt is brown. Just as important as proper pattern selection is maintaining your situational awareness by avoiding stopping in a spot that natural variances in the terrain make you stand out.

                                      • #62412
                                        Max
                                        Keymaster

                                          (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                          Just a point to note. Guys, don’t trust what you THINK will work or wont work in your area. Get some different patterns and get a video camera and/or a friend, and go try it out yourself. If you really do it objectively, and not in a manner to try and justify (even subconsciously) what you “like”, you may be VERY surprised, at what you find.

                                          Diz and I have been toying with this stuff for, um….a while. Below are some links to some threads (on our forum) with pictures and video for your perusal. There’s just too much to try and repost here, hence the links.

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/40/bdus-camo-lots-pics-etc

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/409/old-school-woodland

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/274/sneak-peak-cool-comes

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/319/pencott-badlands

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/241/spec-terrain-tiger-stripe-bdus

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/152/propper-tacs-acus-bdus

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/195/arid-camo-good-desert-right

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/126/coyote-camo-when-wear

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/385/patrolling-trying-out-camo

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/546/tiger-stripe

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/466/dpm-woodland-limeys-anymore

                                          http://uwgear.proboards.com/thread/506/camo-choices

                                          I think I may have even missed a few…lol. Yeah, we’ve messed with this stuff a bit. And this doesn’t even include what we’ve played around with under NV.

                                        • #62413
                                          DiznNC
                                          Participant

                                            On solids, I find they are very effective, especially after a couple of weeks in the bush! But up close, say within 25m, the camo patterns really shine.

                                            On Flecktarn, good stuff, right up there with Marpat, and Cadpat. Just availability.

                                            On ghillies, as I said, there are school house ghillies and there are operational ghillies. I would not discount burlap just yet. The synthetic “3D” scallop garments aren’t THAT effective.

                                            On “duck hunter” camo. Again, if it’s available, and affordable why not. But remember, if you join the resistance, and you’re the only guy in it, you’ll stick out like a sore thumb! I’m having a hard time thinking that stuff would be NIR treated though.

                                          • #62414
                                            John Langdon
                                            Participant

                                              @CW – I’m in NE Florida so it is similar. I find that coyote tan works really well for woods. Deer, when bedded down are virtually invisible. I like the woodland pattern because it’s cheap but I think it’s really too dark for daily use. A pair of coyote pants and a olive top would probably do well for blending in the woods and in the city.

                                            • #62415
                                              Pericles
                                              Participant

                                                I think DiznNC got it. Look at the number of countries that use some variation of the woodland pattern.

                                              • #62416
                                                Joe (G.W.N.S.)
                                                Moderator

                                                  There are many areas of Prairie here in Florida, much of it the wet variety, some dry.


                                                  View of Paynes Prairie from the top of the observation tower.

                                                  Here is a couple of videos pulled off Youtube.

                                                  On ghillies, as I said, there are school house ghillies and there are operational ghillies. I would not discount burlap just yet. The synthetic “3D” scallop garments aren’t THAT effective.

                                                  Although I don’t make the distinction between Ghillies Diz does (for me a ghillie is a ghillie: Full, Cape, Patrol, etc…), he is right about burlap.

                                                  The three attached pictures show one of my Ghillies (prone) at about 20′ front, side, and back. There is no attached natural foliage (there are attachment points) to demonstrate just burlap effectiveness.

                                                • #62417
                                                  RRS
                                                  Participant

                                                    My concern with “ghillies” is the snag factor, I figure that we cannot always move at the pace of Carlos Hathcock across an open field on his way to shwack an NVA general.

                                                    I do like the jute string look that they are selling but it looks like it has to go onto some mesh and therefor snaggable material.

                                                    From the looks of it an ALICE pack could have its shape and shine broken up at the top of the frame, then the waterproof lid and then the pouch covers, but getting the attachment points on the lids without compromising water resistance is a factor to account for.

                                                  • #62418
                                                    CW
                                                    Participant

                                                      GWNS, I used to live in Gainesville for quite a while, and loved hiking the Prairie, even though it’s alligator heaven…

                                                      RRS, I built a ghillie suit years ago, and I don’t recall it snagging too much. As long as your netting is tight against your coveralls or what have you, it shouldn’t be a problem. In any case, you could always just add patches of ghillie materials to your hat, shoulder areas, etc. to help break up your outline more.

                                                    • #62419
                                                      Joe (G.W.N.S.)
                                                      Moderator

                                                        My concern with “ghillies” is the snag factor, I figure that we cannot always move at the pace of Carlos Hathcock across an open field on his way to shwack an NVA general.

                                                        I do like the jute string look that they are selling but it looks like it has to go onto some mesh and therefor snaggable material.

                                                        In my experience Ghillies don’t snag any worse than anything else one wears. There are many ways to make one, use of netting is only one of many. I don’t use netting.

                                                        Like Diz suggests, most will never need a full suit. A quick search online shows a couple of examples below.

                                                        Above is for a quick example, for me I make ghillies from scratch. The only bought ones I’ve seen that were worth having were more than I can afford.

                                                        Remember Ghillies are but one of many Camo options only you can decide what is best for your environment and mission.

                                                      • #62420
                                                        RRS
                                                        Participant

                                                          Issue I have about the ghillie options above is that without the full coverage to the feet a man would have a pattern concerning his legs and feet. I’m a decent hunter who has trained himself to see deer, in a tac situation I would imagine a fighter would train himself to see men and their shapes. I would bet many a soldier has perished because the soles of his boots gave him away, (we see soles, we know what they look like and hence we spot them).

                                                          Because my BOL is in the Great Plains its quite possible I might be layed flat out in the grass digging a hole with my navel some day and quite concerned with how my shape and shine is showing.

                                                        • #62421
                                                          Joe (G.W.N.S.)
                                                          Moderator

                                                            The following factors will allow detection: Movement, Shine, Shape, Silhouette, Color/texture, Shadow, and Spacing.

                                                            Issue I have about the ghillie options above is that without the full coverage to the feet a man would have a pattern concerning his legs and feet.

                                                            No more than any other form of concealment, not to mention conducting a “stop, look, listen” one would probably take a knee or go prone.

                                                            There aren’t any invisibility cloaks yet!

                                                            Closest I’ve seen though is GhostBlind (Invisible Mirror Hunting Ground Blind).

                                                          • #62422
                                                            Corvette
                                                            Participant

                                                              Hawk and Diz,

                                                              the links on your site rock! :yahoo:

                                                            • #62423
                                                              Max
                                                              Keymaster

                                                                (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                                                Thanks. Hope they are useful to folks.

                                                              • #62424
                                                                Max
                                                                Keymaster

                                                                  (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                                                  thanks for the advice in this thread the links to UWG helped me make a decision on camo patterns to use, it seems for my AO I”ve settled on the ATACS-FG with coyote brow style equipment it tends to blend in rather well along the coastal Texas region.

                                                                • #62425
                                                                  Max
                                                                  Keymaster

                                                                    (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                                                    I’m a coyote brown and OD fella, heavy on the brown. For my money, that’s the best all around. Don’t believe me; ask a deer. Bastards can be damned near invisible, in all manner of terrain. Look to nature. I like the Brown/OD stuff because it is very adaptable. You can tweak it with local flora, if need be. Makes a great base, and isn’t LOOK AT ME camo, so it’s low key on the urban side.

                                                                    Having said that, I have to agree that Good ole Woodland/DPM is tits for the south, too. And, yessir, Real Tree is fantastic stuff (look to nature). Pick up some on the cheap and throw a Coyote or OD plate over it for giggles. Go play. You’ll see what I mean.

                                                                    It’s not just silhouette/movement that’s the enemy. It’s how the eye sees. You can only focus on one thing at a time. Usually, the foreground is brighter, and the background is darker. Even if the background is bright, it’s washed out in your vision if you’re looking in the foreground. Ever had a deer scare the living shit out of you by leaping up and hauling ass? He’s in the background, and washed out in it. e.g. darker/obtuse. Humans have a nasty, nasty habit of scanning their foreground and not looking DEEP into the background. The old saying you can’t see the forest for the trees.

                                                                    It’s all shadows and light. Do some photography brain-i-fyin’ into the behavior of light, and how your eye/brain processes it. Fascinating jazz. There is no color. Only reflected light of varying wavelengths. Think of it like that. Thus, shadows are your friends.

                                                                    Or, your enemy.

                                                                    Insightful bit on being the stand out camo guy in a group, too. All solid advice and info (as always) in here. One more thing to keep in mind, as with most things, is what you want from it. Chances are, if you’re within 40-50 meters you’re going to notice that I’m probably trying to shoot you. Which means as long as my camo is effective a couple hundred feet away or so, no matter what it is, I’m happy. Think of the guys with the awesome camo jobs on the rifles…up close. But, at 100 feet all that shit blends together and now it looks like a dark green gun, instead of a black one. e.g. it’s still got the dark silhouette at distance.

                                                                    No matter you choose, DO NOT FORGET TO CAMO YOUR SKIN. All of it. Down to inside the ears.

                                                                    Or…just hang a Hustler centerfold on a tree four feet to your left. You’ll be invisible.

                                                                  • #62426
                                                                    DiznNC
                                                                    Participant

                                                                      Good comments here. I have to agree with you on the shadow and silhouette thing. In the woods where I hang out, past 25-30m or so you’re just seeing dark outline, so movement is what draws the eye, along with the distinctive head and shoulders silhouette. And the rifle if you’re waving it around. When at all possible, keep some terrain feature higher, behind you, to mask your silhouette.

                                                                      Up close, for example in ambush position, is where the camo really shines. Look at that pic from Max’s combined ops class, where the guys are all proned out in hasty ambush. The guys in camo melt in much better than just the solid colors. Yes that pic is extreme close range, but think of day/night optics.

                                                                      On the boot sole thing. Snipers and other guys that prone out and try to spot you are big into tan boot soles, as well as 3D camo. They usually have high-power optics and know what they can spot with them. This is a concern if you are working in an area with sparse ground cover and/or really flat hard pan. If your opfor is capable of this, plan accordingly. However, if most of your ops are at night, then it’s how things appear in NIR that count. And, in this day and age, I think FLIR will probably spot you before they see your boot sole (or other piece of you) with day/night optics.

                                                                      This brings up a really good point (again). Regardless of camo, your movement technique, and the use of TERRAIN MASKING is you best defense against day/night optics, and FLIR. So ultimately, the best camo for your AO is the terrain itself.

                                                                    • #62427
                                                                      Max
                                                                      Keymaster

                                                                        (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                                                        Going back to the OP.

                                                                        Like you I am in the Carolinas, and my AO stretches from the temperate rainforest to the dry, scrubby low country.

                                                                        As has been pointed out already, terrain and season are everything. I would encourage everyone to diversify, at the least seasonally. I only believe one thing strongly about camo, and that is that Woodland SUCKS in the wintertime, and over any kind of open terrain. I agree it is more than adequate 5 or 6 months of the year, depending on how long your summer lasts (and summer seems to be getting shorter, the last couple years). Diversify if possible. If you only buy one, buy Multicam. However as Hawkeye pointed out there is really no reason not to have at least one set of Woodland BDU’s especially since they can be had at fire sale prices.

                                                                        I also want to echo the point about putting Ranger Makeup on your face. No point in spending a hundred bucks on a set of high speed camo only to leave a big white orb poking out the top of your cammmies.

                                                                      • #62428
                                                                        CW
                                                                        Participant

                                                                          Good suggestion on diversifying camo clothing, Polemides. And I second your suggestion of camo cream or what have you, but want to add this: cover face, hands (if no gloves), ears, back of neck, etc. I hate seeing people all cammied up with ears or neck shining bright white…

                                                                        • #62429
                                                                          Dark Knight
                                                                          Participant

                                                                            Good deal on Woodland Pants!

                                                                            http://www.lapolicegear.com/co-truspec-basicbdu-pant.html?_ctids=0243|Qverpg/Sebz Rznvy|0026|032593|940718&_ctdigest=U0rDKEuq2LUaZTqKuhoeag

                                                                          • #62430
                                                                            Baldrick
                                                                            Participant

                                                                              I would echo Polemides. Multicam is without question the best all round camo for my AO (low country). Lots of dry woods, high brown grass, and open areas where woodland would make you stick out like a sore thumb. I also am looking at a different pattern as SC is a varied state, and multicam, as Polemides says, isn’t the best in high summer in the mountains (although it is great in fall and winter). I can get a set of MARPAT woodland for 50 bucks. It seems to have less black in it than the woodland, and its the black that kills you in the open areas. I need a second set anyways, and I’m thinking MARPAT may be a good fit for me. Also it will be available for the foreseeable future.

                                                                              Multicam is unquestionably the best all round camo for the lowcountry SC. I just want some options.

                                                                            • #62431
                                                                              Baldrick
                                                                              Participant

                                                                                Also, something that has been brought up here with good reason is the grey man concept. Some of us have awesome remote retreats, but many do not (I don’t). So being able to not attract attention near more populous areas is great. Browns, tans, and ODs can not attract much attention and still be useful for hiding. Being able to look like an arcteryx or columbia clad yuppie hiker in appropriate colorations isn’t a bad thing. Options, options, options…

                                                                              • #62432
                                                                                Brian from Georgia
                                                                                Participant

                                                                                  Future events may cause us to mobilize outside our AO. Didn’t some fellas form FL ride out to NV recently? Having a few extra seats of different camo might be a good idea.

                                                                                • #62433
                                                                                  Suspect1
                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                    I know it is $$$$big money, but do the various different kryptek color schemes preform in the field, I have only seen it in magazine ads where models in kryptek bikini tops and jeans with a kryptek painted rifle getting in kryptek wrapped extreme BOV’s, being guarded by her equally modelesque “operator” savior from the zombie hordes, wrapped head to toe in…you guessed it kryptek camo.
                                                                                    Me I have some BDU regular woodland, BDU cut digital woodland, and a mix of solid grean, brown, tan pants (5.11,carhart,dungarees) that could be worn with either solid or pattern tops, plus my load bearing kit is a mix mash of OD, Coyote, digi woodland, black. I’ll repeat it, its good to have options and its easy on the pocket book to buy what’s on sale. But I do fantasize about having 100% matching, super stealth tech, kit that helps me be “tacticool” and rescue the ladies from evil commie, ivan zombies.

                                                                                  • #62434
                                                                                    Justin
                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                      I was just gonna ask, I’m very impressed with both kryptek and a-tacs fg, only down side is kryptek is not as available as a-tac fg what does everyone else think?

                                                                                    • #62435
                                                                                      CW
                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                        Justin, I haven’t looked at Kryptek, pricewise, but I assume it’s going to be just as or more expensive than A-TACS FG. Just for shits and giggles, I priced an outfit in FG the other day. Came out to roughly $400 for shirt, pants, boots, hat, gloves, plate carrier, and pack. I went cheap where I could ($30-40 combat shirt vs. more expensive BDU blouse, etc). That’s just one set, not including cold/wet weather gear, pouches, or anything else.
                                                                                        The FG looks great, but unless you’ve got plenty of cash to spend, I’d avoid the custom camos, like most of the guys have been saying.

                                                                                      • #62436
                                                                                        Justin
                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                          Kryptek sure ain’t cheap either! I hear you on it not being cheap at all!

                                                                                        • #62437
                                                                                          Max
                                                                                          Keymaster

                                                                                            (This is not Max’s response/content. Just a glitch from the transition to subscription.)

                                                                                            The biggest (but not only) problem with Kryptek right now, is primarily cost. It would be astronomically expensive at current prices to try and properly outfit yourself in Kryptek.

                                                                                          • #62438
                                                                                            DiznNC
                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                              Again back to the OP. The context here is fighting in an insurgency, in the deep woodlands. You guys keep coming back to other contexts, such as home or retreat defense, or E & E plan. That’s fine within those contingencies. You need to plan for that as well. But the discussion here is about MOVING to a deeply wooded area where the technical superiority of opfor is largely negated. If your terrain doesn’t resemble this, then within the context of what we’re talking about, you need to re-consider whether it would be viable to stay there. Therefor, if woodland camo “sucks” in your area, you need to really think about your survivability there, again, within the context of what Max’s training and website are all about, namely retreating to a WOODLAND area.

                                                                                              Granted, near-term, you can talk about any camo that suits your particular area RIGHT NOW. You can also talk about anti-camo, per se, aka, the “gray man” concept. Whatever is viable for your home/retreat defense, AND your E & E plan. (But please, no more talk of fantasizing about killing zombies in your matching kyptek cammies, while your bikini-clad girlfriend looks on. Really dude?) But once again, the whole thrust of Max’s training he offers, and the forum here, is to practice, and discuss light infantry tactics, within the context of armed citizens resisting a statist regime. In order to do that, you need suitable terrain that evens things up a bit in your favor. To do that you need deep woodlands. And that calls for, wait for it, woodland cammies.

                                                                                              So everything I discuss or comment on here at Max’s website, is within this context. After all, it is his website. Not that we can’t discuss other scenarios, but that is the main thrust here.

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