How to choose the right camouflage pattern

At Big Sky, we are proud to provide Sitka hunting apparel, which is one of the most recognized and trustworthy hunting brands out there. If you're new to hunting, you may be asking yourself: how do I pick the correct camo color and pattern for my upcoming hunt? There are a lot of options out there, and this article is designed to point you in the right direction to finding the perfect pattern for your upcoming hunt. 

First, what will you be hunting? One thing to keep in mind is that ungulates (elk, deer, sheep, hogs, and others) are color blind. When hunting these animals, it's more about the camo pattern blending in to the environment, scent control, and keeping quiet rather than picking the best color. If you're hunting birds, they have much better eyesight and you should choose a pattern that's more tailored to a sharper eye.

The next big question you need to ask is where you will be hunting. Take into account the environment you are blending into - is it snowy, wooded or marsh like? Will you be hunting at ground level or shooting from above or below? Camo patterns are created both vertically and horizontally to take into account vantage points, so keep this in mind as well. 

The main reason we carry Sitka gear is because their patterns use GORE™ OPTIFADE™ technology. Basically, they have create their own pattern of camouflage that combines micro and macro patterns, which help fool an animal's sight making you less visible to them. The combination of these patterns mimic what it looks like when an animal is peering through brush or vegetation. Rest assured that wearing optifade pattern will hide you much better than a run-of-the-mill pattern. 

Big Sky is proud to offer the following camo patterns, all of which are manufactured by Sitka:

Blaze Orange is recommended for upland or when blaze orange restrictions apply, make sure to check your state's guidelines for minimum orange requirements to hunt.

Subalpine is recommended for big game hunts. There are great layering options for staying warm or peeling down for early, middle, and late season hunts. The subalpine pattern is designed for stalking and ambushing ungulates from ground level in vegetated terrain. It's made specifically for short range hunting of 50 years or less.  

Open Country is a pattern built more for western desert hunts, like what you would find in New Mexico. It's also perfect for layering depending on temperature changes. The open country pattern is great for backcountry hunters of elk, mule deer, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, and other ungulates. This pattern is great while hunting from longer ranges (more than 50 yards). The pattern uses larger shapes and neutral areas which mimics vegetation an animal would see from afar.

Waterfowl Marsh is great if you are hunting waterfowl in a marsh-like environment. Most birds are known for having great eyesight, and this pattern does a wonderful job of concealing hunters on shores, fields and in blinds. The waterfowl pattern is very detailed, which was done intentionally to create a sense of depth when birds are looking your way. The colors used actually help confuse birds, giving you more advantage before pulling the trigger. 

Waterfowl Timber is perfect for waterfowl hunts in more wooded environments and is designed to imitate the pattern of tree tops reflecting off water. Instead of a pattern that makes the hunter look like a specific object, this pattern actually makes you look like nothing at all when a bird sees you. It's perfect if you will be hunting birds while they are in flight. Since birds will be viewing you from above, the pattern is more vertical than it is compared to other patterns designed for ground prey. 

Elevated II It is designed to keep whitetail deer hunters hidden at heights from above and afar. If you'll be hunting deer from a tree stand, this pattern is for you; it will keep you hidden from distances of 80 yards away and about 15 feet high. Similarly to the Waterfowl Timber pattern, the Elevated II pattern will keep you hidden while you sit at a different vantage point. This pattern is also great to use during several hunting seasons. 

White patterns are great for for blending with the snow. If you'll be hunting in open areas devoid of vegetation in the snow, this pattern is for you. This one is pretty straight forward and is designed to hide you in the snow.

Now that we've touched on the patterns, it's also important to point out that the quality of the gear you rent is just as important as the camo pattern. Sitka has a phenomenal reputation for being one of the top quality hunting apparel brands out there, so rest assured that you will be choosing both a high quality pattern and product. Whether it's waterproofing, breathability or insulation, Sitka will keep you comfortable on your next hunt.

Renting your gear through Big Sky allows you to use top quality, expensive gear at a fraction of the price - and if you end up falling in love with a piece of camo you have the option to purchase the item after your rental at a deep discount. You can even apply a portion of the rental towards purchasing the item, meaning you could end up paying less than retail for top quality gear!

Still have questions about choosing the right gear for your next hunt? We send us an email, direct message or comment on our social media accounts - we provide free, expert advise for all outdoor adventures and love hearing form people who have questions. 


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