Home Forums Campfire Forum wool or camo?

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    • shaneharley
      Post count: 118

      I’m sure if I read back far enough in the archives that someone has brought this up but what do you prefer wool or camo? I’ve always been a camo person, it’s my favorite color, but the wool has a certain appeal to it. so my questions might be: How hot is it in the summer? How is it for concealment? I hunt almost exclusively from the ground. This is my first year trad bow hunting. I’ve taken many deer with a compound but have always wanted to trad bow hunt. I was planning on some new hunting wear this year, either predator camo or wool. How does the wool hold up? Any recommendations who to buy it from? I live in Oregon and my target animals are just about anything and everything as long as there’s a tag in my hand. Turkey, rabbit, elk, squirrel, deer, etc… Thank You

    • mhay
      Post count: 264

      Like many hunters I got into the camo ,especially for turkey hunting. But in all honesty camo is NOT a necessity for success . In 2009 I weaned myself from using it ,,,well ,,,most of the time . I still have a couple shirts and some bibs that I’ll use simply to add a layer for warmth.

      For warmer weather I use cotton plaid shirts and solid drab pants . This past fall I made a sweater from an old wool fire blanket . Also a pair of leggings from another wool blanket . The two wool items eliminate the necessity for bulky and heavy coveralls.

      I still use a facenet which is camo . I haven’t found a solid colored net to replace the camo at this time .

      It is rather amusing to run into a turkey hunter out in the woods and not be wearing camo . I get some realy strange looks .

      So far , since going plaid and drab , it hasn’t effected my hunting success. Turkeys ,deer , coyotes , squirrels and those sharp eyed crows have perished without camo on my person .

      What brought me to this change is the fact that many years ago the old turkey hunters didn’t have camo and they were very successful . The ability to sit still is better than any camo .

    • Alexandre Bugnon
      Member
      Post count: 681

      Wool or fleece is best concealment because it absorbs the sunlight, just like fur does. I have solid dark gray, plaid ( large squares), and camo wool. They all work equally good in my experience. I also hunt from the ground. This year, I was on my knees, in the open, and I had a nice buck walking towards me, alerted, all the way to about 12 yards. I had my gray pants and my perfect color/pattern plaid jacket. I didn’t spook. I wasn’t moving though! πŸ˜€

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Why not both?

      Combo of First Lite and KUIU wool (mostly):

    • Stumpkiller
      Member
      Post count: 193

      I like wool. I like camo. I like wool camo.

      When it’s 65Β° in early bow season I don’t wear much wool. In later season or in January and February a nice wool outfit keeps the chill off. The pattern is less important if it is in the closet because it’s too warm or too cold. Be flexible.

    • Etter1
      Post count: 831

      Aside from hunting birds (ducks, turkeys, etc), I don’t think camo needs to have any place in a hunter’s closet. I still wear it sometimes as most of my nicer hunting coats are camo, but I mostly bowhunt now in blue jeans and whatever shirt I feel like wearing that day. Haven’t had any deer or bears pick me out lately.

    • Col MikeCol Mike
      Member
      Post count: 910

      I wore camo for 32 years–when your hunting critters that don’t smell, hear, or see very well (two legged) it works great–but move and your seen. Wool is great–quite in the woods, warm when it’s wet and usually not made in china. Now that I’m no longer in the business of hunting our species–no camo for me. Besides–who wants to look like a Marine or soldier when we are out having FUN. A little camo paint on the face works great for covering that sign post and a face mask–if you have a white beard like some of us:).

      The best camo is being still-no movement and silence.

      Although I now see that our Navy submariners are wearing camo–haven’t figured that one out yet so I may be missing something.:shock:

      Semper Fi

      Mike

    • Bunyan Morris
      Member
      Post count: 135

      When I first hunted in the 1970s I had NO camo. My Dad thought it was an extravagance. He was correct. In my early adult hunting days, I thought I had to be in camo. Now, I just wear combinations of camo or plaid. Here in SE Georgia, our climate is mild most of hunting season, so I like wearing thin layers. I definitely like the new moisture wicking material that is out now.

    • Goraidh
      Post count: 101

      Camo for turkeys and jeans and checked flannel shirt for other critters. Wool when the cold sets in.

    • shaneharley
      Post count: 118

      Thanks everyone for your input

    • wideangle
      Member
      Post count: 35

      I usually wear wool plaids that I often buy at the resale shops. Early season I do have some short and L/S camo Tshirts.

    • Ripforce
      Post count: 225

      Asbell plaids all the way for me! I have a Evening Stand Brown Vest that I layer and a zip Cedar Swamp green plaid jacket! I love the way wool looks in the woods, plus its very quiet!

    • LimbLover
      Post count: 299

      I’m a wool man.

    • Frank H V
      Post count: 129

      I like Wool later in the year when it’s cold.

      During much of Archery season it’s fairly warm. I use a Ghillie suit with the proper layers of clothing under it for Bow hunting.

    • Greg RaganGreg Ragan
      Member
      Post count: 201
    • wahoo
      Member
      Post count: 413

      they make so many wool products that you can’t go wrong and remember wool is camo . When it’s hot and it has been I even wear some of my favorite Dead shirts

    • Tony n
      Post count: 13

      Wool, wool and wool!

      Tony

    • Doc Nock
      Post count: 1150

      Interesting thread and reading.

      Most of the comments remained non-specific on “camo”. That surprised me.

      Most camo today just “blobs” for my taste. By that I mean, step back 25 yards and squint at it— it all blends together and forms a blob.

      All the colors really do look nice and subtle tones, but critters don’t see in color, least from what research has been done…mostly rods for night vision (prey animals) and movement.

      I have some high contrast old stuff called “Tru-Woods” with strong positive and negative bold vertical lines. When it wears out, I won’t buy the stuff being marketed today…

      As was mentioned, movement is the big give-away and the best camo in a tree stand or ground blind that MOVES when there is no breeze, will have every critter in sight high tailing it into the next county!

      I sweat just thinking about moving…so I’d never wear summer weight wool in our bow season… till it really cools off. Then I have some wool plaid that i really like!

      Like fishing lures, most camo is made to “catch” the buyer!

    • Terry Lightle
      Post count: 24

      Teresa Asbell wool for me with green or brown pants

    • jason samkowiak
      Post count: 141

      over the years I have gone thru phases with what clothing I like best at any given time. There was the early days where all I wore was camo. then the wool phase where all I wore was wool. For the last 10 or 12 years I can count on one hand how many times I have actually worn full camo pants and shirt in at the same time. And I still love wool in the winter or rain.

      Like everyone above has stated im very happy with good plaids and non camo clothing. my warm weather attire is green or khaki cargo pants (love the walmart ones…lol) and a plaid green and white button down shirt. When it gets colder but not freezing yet I wear the same outfit wut use layers of thermals under the above. Once it gets freezing I wear all wool. If its raining I usually wear all wool.

      The things I personally like about wool is that it keeps you warm when its wet. its very quiet. and its very warm and its not bulky.

      things I don’t like about wool is that its heavy when its wet and it takes a long time to dry. and its not very wind proof.

      Lots of great options out there for whatever style you choose or combination you go with.

    • SteveMcD
      Member
      Post count: 870

      I use both depending on the time of season and the weather. Early season, I will be in camo. I like Advantage camo the best, no particular reason other than preference, although I hunt in a lot of pine and mountain laurel so it tends to blend in well. When the weather gets colder, hands down wool all the way. I prefer earth tones and plaids. Earth tone plaids will conceal you probably just as well if not better than some camo patterns. But, let’s face it.. when it comes to shooting an animal it’s all about timing and movement. I always cover my hands and my face.

    • Col MikeCol Mike
      Member
      Post count: 910

      Check out 3 Rivers new catalog–First lite wool pant. Brown or if you like camo. Bit pricey–but I bit the arrow and got a pair of the brown ones. Out today for a test run–started at +60 down to 40 later, wind and some rain. As advertised they were perfect–after years of searching for a lite weight wool paint for warm conditions that with a layer of fleece under will likely serve through the coldest. Backed up with one of Teresa Asbell’s zip hood jackets I’m ready for the weather. I’m almost tempted to buy another of each to run dogs with this season.

      Good hunting to all πŸ˜€

      Semper Fi

      Mike

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      My first concern, rather than camo, is fabric performance when I’m in the field. I can be a long way from the truck, and given where I live that means I need to be prepared for everything from 85F to snow on an “early season” September hunt.

      Wool can work great…for some things, and depending on the type of wool. Anything made of ‘recycled’ wool is worthless in my opinion (since the recycling process strips wool of much of its benefits). On the other hand, good thick virgin wool is awesome in cold weather, but like Jason points out – wool can get very heavy when wet, and takes a long time to dry. If I’m on a multi-day backcountry trip, I can’t afford to have layers that are still soggy in the morning. Thick wool can also be bulky to pack, if you are doing long days or multi-day trips.

      And while I love my old Pendleton wool plaid shirt, hiking up the mountain on a hot September afternoon while wearing it seems like a painful excercise, just to look “traditional.” Later in the season when the weather is much cooler? Sure.

      Good merino wool, on the other hand, is the best baselayer (and midlayer) I have ever used. Far superior to any synthetic base/mid layers I’ve come across. The temperature range that it remains comfortable in is truly impressive. While I wouldn’t want my old Pendleton on a hot uphill hike, I’ve done so daily in a lightweight merino layer and been perfectly comfortable. And it deals with body odors far better than any gimmicky “scent-block” garments I’ve seen. I can wear it all day, hang it outside overnight (as I do all my hunting clothing), and it’s good to go in the morning.

      And then there are a lot of applications that I think more modern, synthetic layers really do excel at, particularly for backcountry hunts in places with highly variable weather. For early season, warm hunts, a lightweight pair of synthetic pants wins hands-down, imo. Soft-shell layers are great in snow, and don’t absorb moisture like wool does if things warm up and start melting. Rain layers? No choice but some sort of synthetic shell, really.

      So, as others have said, choices depend on time of year, anticipated weather, etc. Wool has its virtues, but it isn’t my only choice, and is often mixed in with synthetics as well. While I don’t need all the latest “cutting edge” hunting clothing, I also feel no need to dress “retro” just for the sake of feeling traditional either. I”m guessing that a lot of our trad icons, if they were alive today, would be adopting some of the better synthetic materials available now as well.

      To the original question – I’m not opposed to camo (neither was Fred Bear…), though I fully agree that it has been way over-hyped, and that many patterns being sold now are just silly. But simple patterns like ASAT, Vias, etc. work just fine for just about any environment. If I can have good performing clothing for the backcountry, and it happens to come in a decent (non-digi, non-gimmicky) camo pattern, then why not?

    • James HarveyJames Harvey
      Member
      Post count: 1130

      I don’t get to wear wool, it’s way too hot, even in winter and I wear cam all day at work so like to get out of it at home. It’s lose/lose for me πŸ˜‰

      Smithhammer wrote: non-digi, non-gimmicky

      The US military digicam is easily one of the worst performing cam patterns I have ever seen, how it got selected is beyond me (Australia’s old Desert Pattern Disruptive Uniform or DPDU is on par in the field of ineffective excellence). Multicam however is the ducks nuts and performs well across a wide variety of terrain.

    • Troy Warner
      Post count: 239

      Every thing I have to wear for hunting was purchased on sale, used, or borrowed(permanently as long as I don’t wear it around them) from my brothers, so I use what ever is in my box for the weather conditions, cool/cold damp/wet weather wool (some of the wool I have is camo’d), warm/cool weather first lite wool, hot/warm weather cotton/wool blend. Camo or not camo doesn’t matter to me, what matters is comfort and function for the elements.

      I’ve been told that I look like a homeless guy that has been thruogh the out door store dumpster with the mix and match of hunting clothes I wear.

      Fashion never was my long suit, although…. I’ve never worn socks with sandals. πŸ˜€

    • Troy Warner
      Post count: 239

      ausjim wrote: Multicam however is the ducks nuts and performs well across a wide variety of terrain.

      HAAAAaaawww I love that one Jim! πŸ˜†

      Being a water fowler since I was big enough to tag along with my brothers and dad, all those years I have never actually seen a ducks nuts…. Soooo I’m assuming Multicam makes you as invisible as ducks nuts, if that’s true I think I’m gonna look into finding some, or talking my brother into getting some so I can borrow them. πŸ˜‰

    • Col MikeCol Mike
      Member
      Post count: 910

      Troy–right on, except for that new pair I just bought–you and I could be homeless together8).

      Bruce–as usual brings us all back to what is important–terrain, weather, and your local. We have to adjust to that and our pocket books. I think though that Mr Fred started the camo thing because it became available as war surplus–and it looked neat. Don’t forget that we won WW11, Korea, and fought most of Vietnam without camo–except for the “elite” units.

      And Jim–trying to figure out why the U.S. services select their camo patterns is a discussion we should have on the other e-mail–it ain’t trad but it is money.

      Again–it boils down to your location and circumstances. But it does get a lot of great discussion going and we all learn from that–I trust.:D

      Good Hunting

      Mike

    • Troy Warner
      Post count: 239

      Mike,

      I love my first light kabob pants, I was lucky enough to find one clearance priced almost half off, anther one sized incorrectly so I saved even more on that one. One is tan and one is camo. I highly recommend their base layers also. They performed amazingly well on my elk hunt last year in very warm temps at peak of the day and very cool temps in the evening and early morning. I used a cotton red, blue and white plaid shirt for my “camo” outer layer. Worked well enough to get within 15 yards… of course all I could see was the south end of a north bound cow elk, since she wasn’t hoofen it for all she was worth, I’ll take 15 yards as counting coup. πŸ˜€

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Agreed on First Lite. I have a couple of their merino layers and they are awesome and well made. And it’s an Idaho company, so even better in my book.

      Oh, and “the duck’s nuts” has officially been entered into my lexicon. 8)

    • Doc Nock
      Post count: 1150

      I’m intrigued by the comments on Merino base layers. I have what used to be called “Ulfrote” which I thought was merino and something mixed.

      All I can say is that even with their lightest weight (they only had 2 weights), you guys must be “cool customers” cause I can sweat like a banshee if it turns even close to 65* 😯

    • Troy Warner
      Post count: 239

      Doc,

      I start to sweat even with minimal clothing in 30 degree temps just walking to the store a 1/2 mile away. The merino base layer wicks the moisture away and doesn’t seem to “stink” anymore than when I started. In warmer weather I did notice that if the base layer became wet/damp from my sweat that with the slightest breeze helped to cool me down. If I got cooled down enough I just put my outer shirt back on and the damp base layer still retained enough heat to warm me back up even when I was just sitting and glassing.

      Wonderful stuff!!

    • David CoulterDavid Coulter
      Member
      Post count: 2261

      I’ll put my two cents in for merino base layers and hat. I’ve had great luck with the Columbia Gallatin Range pants and jacket. It’s wool and camo. The camo if large block stuff and it seems to work just fine. Who said it? Being still is the best camo. dwc

    • skinner biscuitskinner biscuit
      Member
      Post count: 250

      The best camo is a Velcro strap on your bow quiver with a fir bough.(or whatever tree or shrub).It will help conceal your draw.A old Larry Jones trick I seen in a book;minus the Velcro.

    • wahoo
      Member
      Post count: 413

      doc yes and it is know as wool power – good stuff

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