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Purposes of Camo

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.

Photo by Janelle Ford.

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.

Photo by Greg Wagner.

Camouflage has also enabled me to get near and photograph many wildlife species. Could there be a Canada goose hiding in the hunting decoys?

Photo by Mark Davis.

Camo breaks ups our human outlines and lets us blend into those natural surroundings better.

Photo by Mark Davis.

I use specific camouflaged clothing patterns in different environments, at different times, and for pursuing different wildlife species.

Photo by Jo Momsen.

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.

Photo by Andre Shousha.

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?

Photo by Greg Wagner.

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.

Photo by Greg Wagner.

Wearing camouflage clothing allows me to rave about the purest, healthiest main meal course available to the American public: Wild game!

Photo by Greg Wagner.

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.

Photo by J.J. Herkenrath.

About greg wagner

A native of Gretna, NE, a graduate of Gretna High School and Bellevue University, Greg Wagner currently serves as the Communications and Marketing Specialist and Manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission's Service Center in Omaha. On a weekly basis, Wagner can be heard on a number of radio stations, seen on local television in Omaha, and on social media channels, creatively conveying natural resource conservation messages as well as promoting outdoor activities and destinations in Nebraska. Wagner, whose career at Game and Parks began in 1979, walks, talks, lives, breathes and blogs about Nebraska’s outdoors. He grew up in rural Gretna, building forts in the woods, hunting, fishing, collecting leaves, and generally thriving on constant outdoor activity. One of the primary goals of his blog is to get people, especially young ones, to have fun and spend time outside!

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