Cold Weather Concealment

The other day I left Boston where the temperatures were low 20° in the early morning, got home to Austin where it was 80° and was thinking this is great as I strip down to a T-shirt. The very next day we got hit by a cold front and temperatures have been down in the mid-30°, which makes concealing a challenge.

Most folks typically have one method for concealment, it works for the majority of occasions. You’ve all seen them, it’s a uniform of sorts, not a real uniform, but you can spot them in a crowd. Hell, I have my own uniform except it is jeans and flip-flops, but it’s a different story when it get’s down right cold.

You have to think how different social settings, locations and weather will affect your ability to be armed. We have a saying, “everyone wants to be a Frogman on a sunny day.” That means, everything works until things get nasty and then what. We get a lot of questions about the equipment requirements in our Concealed Carry Tactics class. In the class you go through a variety of concealment modes; holsters and garments so you can get the answers that no one is asking.

So, here is a scenario it’s rainy and cold, with a wind chill factor making it even more miserable. You cannot just hang out in your bed all day long, you will eventually have to get on with your day. How will you conceal your firearm? Some might comment on sticking a pocket gun in their jacket pocket, that’s a great idea. If you haven’t done it and are carrying that way you need to go down to Goodwill. Buy a couple of cheap jackets to practice drawing from and shooting through the pocket. Remember, this is just a way, not the way and not my preferred way.

I prefer to remain as close to my normal weapon load-out as possible despite the circumstances. One of my favorites is a base layer coupled with an insulator and then my outer shell on top. Hoodie’s have definitely gotten a bad wrap, but they are comfortable, warm and great at concealing. So, that or a good sweater constitute my insulator most days. They are not windproof or waterproof so they still require an outer shell for those really bad days like the one described and ironically the kind we are having today in Central Texas.

You can always freeze your ass off running to the car, waiting for it to warm up so you can skimp on your clothing, but just remember there is no such thing as bad weather only poor choices in clothing. Then, if you do bundle up what to do when you finally get to your office or wherever you were going. If you cannot peel off layers, you will turn into a human sauna and that is not cool. As you peel off, the next layer still has to conceal your load-out.

Your cold weather concealment options need to be well thought out and practiced. Now, comes the fun part…the trifecta draw stroke. Will your sissy summer time draw stroke work now?

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