Josh is Australian; they spell things like color and armor, colour and armour. Yeah, it’s odd, but it’s not the weirdest thing to come up from Down Under…including Josh. And though this post talks about the wilds of the Australian outback, no doubt you may find similar results in your next of the woods. Mad Duo
This post was made possible by JTF Awesome member, 88 Tactical.
A while ago I decided to take a bunch of my camo gear into the bush and do a compare/contrast of several colour and pattern schemes.
I also wanted to showcase the kinds of terrain I encounter in my local region. In my meager collection, I have 3 Colour Desert, Arid AUSCAM DCPU, AUSCAM DCPU (classic hearts and bunnies), British woodland DMP, US woodland, ATACS-Au, and MultiCam.
All laid out, they make a pretty discordant pile …
A couple of camo “sets” are just a jacket, or in the case of the AUSCAM, just my big Raven backpack and a hat. But I wanted to get as much variety as I could, and even though I don’t have much of it, I thought I should represent with some national pride. I set up in two places; on a bush covered hillside, and in a bracken and grass-covered scrubland. I took my position around 20-25m from my camera-person, the able and patient Omega, and just stood out in the open near some scenery but not behind anything. I did one with me standing, and the other squatting, but made no other effort to conceal myself.
We tried to catch similar lighting conditions, but there was light cloud cover and patchy sunlight.
The Woodland DPU sleeves of my Platatac CUTS special projects shirt worked nicely in this setting, although the back panels lit up in the dappled sunlight. If I had been wearing a camo vest, that wouldn’t have been an issue.
The M81 woodland was dark when silhouetted but vanished into the scrub; it was very hard to pick me out when crouched.
Multicam and the ATACS-AU blended really well in this setting, although my Multicam gear seemed to catch the sunlight and “shine”. Which may just mean that it’s too clean!
The AUSCAM DCPU pack concealed me really well, but only on the covered parts. My regular browns stood out where exposed.
Both desert camos did unsurprisingly poorly, as did my coyote brown gear.
I trotted up to the bush side spot and found that it was more or less in direct sun, but I figured that this would be a good acid test for the various camo sets, for the worst case in the Australian bush setting.
The results were much the same, with the three pale light brown palettes of the 3-Colour Desert, arid AUSCAM and tan-coyote brown standing out both standing and crouched, especially in the direct light, although the arid AUSCAM was a little more broken up.
The woodland DPU fared better than in the scrub setting, but the broad green of the torso area still lit up. Definitely needs a vest over the top.
The regular AUSCAM was totally in its element, and if I had had a full suit of it, i’m sure it would have worked really well. Again, my non-cam limbs messed up the effect, but when crouched, it worked well. Australian bush, Australian cam …
The M81 Woodland also worked amazingly well, and I seemed to blend right in. ATACS-AU and Multicam matched the colours well, and were certainly disruptive. But as in the scrub setting, it looked like the fabric itself was lighting up. More dirt would probably help!
All in all, there were no surprises in the spread. The desert/arid cams didn’t do well in bush setting, and the mis-matched or incomplete sets stood out where there was a “gap”. To my mind, it goes to show that if you’re going to wear camo it needs to be complementary, or at the very least, offer adequate coverage.
Again, bear in mind that I picked two fairly open spots, and didn’t attempt any more concealment than crouching.
Picking the right camouflage to suit your surroundings and conditions can be all the difference between bagging that game animal, not being found by unfriendly eyes, or just being able to sit in peace whilst catching up on The Unit on your iPad. It’s well worth paying attention and doing right.
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