As I was rooting through my camouflaged clothing the other day in the Wagner basement/outdoor cave looking for a particular garment, some questions came to mind.
Does all of this camouflaged clothing really matter? I am using each of these? What purposes does camouflaged clothing really serve? Why do I end up wearing it much of the time yet I’m not entirely outside?
Whether for function or fashion, whether heading to the ground blind or golf course, I do not truly believe that camouflage is ever off-trend or out of style. I compare it to wearing your favorite sports jersey, band t-shirt, or any other clothes that point your image towards a certain culture or thing you enjoy.
I’ll always have camouflaged apparel in my wardrobe, mainly because it’s the color of my warmest, most comfortable, weatherproof, field-friendly outerwear, plus I love the way it masks stains, dirt and mud.
Okay, I realize that a huge segment of the hunting industry is deeply committed to the necessity of camouflage. Yes, it’s big business, however, camouflaged clothing does give the hunter or wildlife photographer advantages.
It helps in close-quarter scenarios, like wild turkey hunting.
Camouflage has also enabled me to get near and photograph many wildlife species. Could there be a Canada goose hiding in the hunting decoys?
Camo breaks ups our human outlines and lets us blend into those natural surroundings better.
I use specific camouflaged clothing patterns in different environments, at different times, and for pursuing different wildlife species.
Nebraska’s ever-changing seasons, weather and foliage conditions, as well as the state’s vast array of landscapes and habitats, dictate that usage, not to mention the need to hide my lighter complexion.
So you see, an outdoor enthusiast cannot have too much camo, right? My wife would argue that point.
Hey, for fun, can you guess how many different camo patterns of mine are shown in the photo below?
Answer: 34. And, that’s not my entire collection! I own over 60 different patterns of camouflage clothing! Pretty amazing, huh? Collecting, wearing and using the mix of camouflaged patterns I possess is a source of enjoyment.
Wearing camouflaged clothing though actually goes far beyond the clothing.
Nearly everywhere I go during the course of my daily travels, part of my attire will most likely be camo. Why? I don on it it to defeat the negative stereotypes and implied biases it evokes, and to promote the hands-on conservation lifestyle that I relish.
Wearing camouflaged clothing allows for the initiation of some very interesting conversations about hunting.
Wearing camouflaged clothing allows me, as a hunter, an opportunity to relate my connection to the land and nature.
Wearing camouflaged clothing allows me to explain why hunting is critical as a wildlife management tool and the role it plays in biodiversity.
Wearing camouflage clothing allows me to enthusiastically convey my deep appreciation and knowledge of wildlife, for both game and nongame species.
Wearing camouflage clothing allows me to share information about the many contributions that hunters make toward wildlife conservation, protection, research and habitat enhancement, in addition to firearm safety and the economy.
Wearing camouflage clothing allows me to tell tasteful stories and show respectful photos of hunting adventures and tie in the wonderful memories made while outdoors with friends and family members.
Wearing camouflage clothing allows me to rave about the purest, healthiest main meal course available to the American public: Wild game!
One of my objectives in wearing camo is to make hunting accessible to non-hunters and those curious about the lifestyle. I want to make hunting something that is inviting and pleasant for non-hunters to discuss in any given setting.
Wearing camo causes me to reflect on how I can best further a positive perspective of our hunting culture throughout the community.