Tuesday, October 19, 2010

MultiCam Camouflage Clothing

MultiCam looked so spectacularly effective on my computer screen I decided I had to have a set of my own – purely for evaluation purposes you understand. Since I have such problems with fit in military clothing I determined that a vacation from my retirement in the form of a road trip was in order.

A few hundred miles into the trip I'd tried REI (sporting goods store) and Bass Pro looking for MultiCam without success. The Bass Pro's camouflage "expert" (a young lady in her early twenties) told me the camouflage pattern "has been discontinued" and seemed confused when informed the pattern was so new it was just starting to hit the market and was current issue to our troops in Afghanistan.

I'd done business before at a surplus store in Ft. Collins, Colorado called Jax Outdoor Gear so I thought I'd revisit them and check for MultiCam.

VICTORY! Jax, now three times larger than I remembered it, has MultiCam! Well, kind'a sort'a. They had a Tru-Spec brand jacket (shirt) by Atlanco in my size but no pants in my size at that time. Nor did they have any MultiCam boonie hats in my size left on the shelves when I came through. I was assured a new shipment was expected soon. I decided to check back with Jax on my way home.

I could hardly believe this stuff! Seeing pictures of it blending into a variety of backgrounds on the web is one thing, but seeing the pattern in person is something else. It almost seemed to be trying to blend in with the walls in my motel room as I wrote my notes on the purchase.

The merchandising guys at MultiCam have dubbed this camo pattern the "One perfect camo pattern for all environments and for all seasons."

Perfect? Er... what about snow? Hey, pobody's nerfect and since I don't plan to invade Antarctica anytime soon I'll give the advertising guys a pass on that one.

But I do have to agree with "... with MultiCam you can actually become one with the background whether it's an eastern hardwood forest, a western prairie or a duck blind on a southeastern waterway." And I'll add it works pretty darn well in southwestern deserts too. This camo pattern is truly awesome!

I stopped by Jax again on the way back home and picked up another set of real Tru-Spec MultiCams since I was having so much trouble finding them.

I'm now the proud possessor of two (2) Atlanco (Tru-Spec brand name) MultiCam shirts (cotton twill & ripstop) and MultiCam pants. I've learned to look for the "MultiCam" label since there are some knockoffs out there. You have to look for the Tru-Spec or Propper brand label and/or the little two-tone tab that says "MultiCam" peeking out from a seam. I still need to find a genuine Tru-Spec or Propper boonie hat to complete my MultiCam camouflage ensemble.

It seems the Army & Navy stores have beat out the big sporting goods stores on this one. Every big name (REI, Bass Pro and another one I can't recall right now) sporting goods store I've gone to hasn't even heard of MultiCam but two out of three surplus stores I visited were carrying MultiCam or a cheap off brand imitation of a slightly different color scheme. Problem is it's flying off the shelves of the surplus stores so fast it's hard to find the real stuff in my size.

The Cabela's store I visited didn't have MultiCam in stock; however Cabela's does list MultiCam on their website.

Success! I picked up (at last) a genuine Tru-Spec MultiCam boonie hat in Albuquerque. My MultiCam "outfit" was at last complete. As far as I've been able to discover the only MultiCam boots on the market are more brown leather than Multicam pattern so I'll pass on those for now. When I compare the real MultiCam camouflage pattern by Atlanco (Tru-Spec brand name) or Propper (Public Safety brand name) to BDU's from some imitator I can see the difference. I expect that difference will show in the field too.

My goals at the start of the Road Trip were to:
A. Collect a full set of the new MultiCam BDU's that fit me which would mean trying them on and checking the labels to insure I was getting the real Tru-Spec MultiCam camouflage pattern. Fallback Position/ Plan B: Order from the Internet and hope.

B. Not miss a single episode of Tom Selleck in Blue Bloods on CBS Friday nights. Fallback Position/ Plan B: Hope for reruns.

Thanks to Jax and in room hotel TV's I succeeded in accomplishing both goals.

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