Snow Camo: 12 Budget-Friendly Survival Essentials for the Cold Outdoors
I wanted to touch a little on winter camo and how to go about doing some things on both a budgetary and a practical side. Firstly, it would not seem that winter camo would be all that important, and after all, I just did a piece recently on the Army issue winter camo top
I also emphasized something that I wish to reiterate: you need synthetics on your exteriors, and cotton on your interiors. You also need for the gear to be as close to white as possible. This may necessitate cleaning it and bleaching it really well if that is possible. It is worth it in the long run, especially if you’re in the role of a shooter.
12 Budget-Friendly Survival Essentials for Mock Winter Camo
Here’s some basics for you to pick up, if you’re not ready to go out and spend more than a grand as in the movie “Shooter” with Mark Wahlberg. All whites, remember:
- Thick sweat-top, preferably with a hood
- Baseball-type hat with a brim (not a meshed one, mind you, but solid cloth
- Winter pullover cap
- White scarf or wraparound for the face
- Gloves (go to Murdoch’s for the leather gloves at about $15, extra -large, and then the packages of cotton inserts (3) pairs for about $4.00). On this you want the leather and not synthetic, because if you are changing a mag, messing with a bolt carrier or a charging handle, or touching a hot barrel, they won’t melt and dissolve.)
- Already mentioned the Army white camo overtop in a previous article
- Army white camo bottoms run about $20 to $30 in the surplus stores, or you can pick up either extra large scrubs or karate pants at the thrift stores
- Synthetic “veil” for overtop of you, your weapon…shower curtains (the mesh thin kind work best), or drapes are good for this
- Unless you can find “Mickey Mouse” Army issue white Vib (inflatable) boots? Pick yourself up a pair of Army Issue rubber overshoes (they’re green, with 3 loops per boot) and spray paint them…make sure it’s with white paint that takes to rubber and plastic
- A mat to lay on…and you can wrap a sheet (synthetic, mind you) around it to whiten it
- A white gym bag/backpack-type bag
- Long Johns – make sure these are white
There’s a set of duds for you. All of your stuff such as tops and pants should fit overtop of whatever you’re wearing. On pieces of equipment to throw in that bag, you need the following: a rangefinder, a good set of binoculars or a scope, and a method to measure temperature, humidity, wind speed, and elevation, like this. Now I have an old West German (yeah, it’s that old!) barometer, and a really good thermometer that is also old, made out of glass, and as durable as rhinoceros hide. I have an anemometer with the cups that actually checks the wind speed.
Remember: your low-tech stuff was made much better (more durable) than your high-tech stuff today. Bring that wrist-compass/barometer/thermometer/toaster oven with you, but be advised: one EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) either from a weapon, or a solar flare will turn it into a non-working “fashion” bracelet in the blink of an eye. Also, remember your issue Tritium compass, as you won’t have problems with the cold temperatures and it doesn’t require batteries.
Snowshoes are important and should be light and durable, like these. They should be able to hold your weight and at least another 50 lbs. (including a pack, water, and a weapon). Don’t forget your protective eyewear! I prefer UV protective goggles, as these guys don’t fog up and they cling to your face better than regular sunglasses. The eyes can’t be protected enough in the winter snow, as a lot of UV comes off of the snow in the form of reflected light. Also, make sure you have enough veil to cover up your backpack, as you don’t want to appear to be a snowdrift with legs carrying around a green rucksack.
I’m sure there will be all kinds of suggestions. Let us know what you have found that works as a suggestion for your fellow readers and for all of us. We always value your productive comments and advice. Stay frosty, and keep up that good fight in the winter wonderland! JJ out.
Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.
Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.
Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.
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