We are living in the good old days of hunting. I once read this statement by one of the hunters I most respect, Dwight Schuh. After thinking about it I realized he was right. Hunters today have the ability to hunt sizable game populations from coast to coast in a variety of habitats. One problem you’ll face if you choose to chase animals across this great land is choosing the correct camo. Camo patterns can either make you blend in like intended, or stick out like a sore thumb. One company that seeks to accommodate hunters who want to hunt multiple habitats, without breaking the bank with different camo suits, is ASAT Camo.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Camouflage
Before buying any camo setup it’s good to ask yourself a few key questions. The biggest question to consider is where do you plan to hunt? Having the correct camo to match your surroundings is your biggest concern when on the hunt. Personally, I hunt a lot in the open prairies of The West and need camo with light colors. If I bought standard camo suited for whitetail country of the east I’d certainly be the center of attention for all animals in the country.
Once you’ve figured out the correct camo pattern the next choice is determining the seasons you generally hunt. In some states for certain seasons are relatively short, perhaps less than 10 days. On the other hand, some states allow extended seasons for primitive methods of take. In my home state, for example, you can hunt with a bow from August 15 to January 15. That certainly exposes a hunter to numerous hunting conditions. Your camo should be able to keep up with the changing landscape. If it doesn’t you’ll once again be working against yourself.
Lastly, you’ll probably need to take cost into consideration. Camo isn’t getting any cheaper these days and companies are advertising more and more specialty clothing. The average Joe could never expect to buy a special set of camo for a one-time elk hunt in the mountains, or a one-time Coues deer hunt in the Arizona canyons. Even though you may not hunt those habitats every day you may want to someday. The question remains; how do you get correct camo for hunting a variety of game species on a budget? The answer may be to take a look at the lineup of ASAT camo.
ASAT Camo Features
All season all terrain (ASAT) camo was designed with one purpose in mind; to help all hunters blend in and get close. They seek to achieve this with a revolutionary new camo design, and by thinking about camo differently. When the designers of this unique camo product observed the world, what they didn’t see was evidence to continue down the traditional path of green camouflage. Instead, they saw “the good Lord” had made animals shades of brown. This led them to the conclusion not to try and conceal hunters with just the vegetation, but try and incorporate the colors that help keep animals themselves hidden.
In order to achieve this goal of keeping hunters hidden the folks who designed ASAT camo spend quite a bit of time, 10,000 man hours, researching and developing different camo patterns. What they came up with was a pattern that included colors you will see in virtually every scene in nature; black, brown, and tan. Not only did they see these colors in the animals they observed, but also in the vegetation as well. They call these three colors, the “colors of nature itself.” ASAT put out a very well-articulated and to the point video explaining their camo system:
All Season All Terrain
The first major feature of ASAT camo is the basic concept of the brand. This camo was designed to be worn in any season of the year in any terrain you may encounter. For me, in a typical year, this would be pretty handy. I like to start off the year bowhunting antelope in wide open prairies under a burning August sun. By the end of the year, I’m chasing whitetails in frozen river bottoms. In that time period, I can hunt antelope, mule deer, whitetail deer, and turkey in their preferred habitats. Given the wide variety of habitat they populate, ASAT camo might work well for a hunter like me.
Not only that, but on my out of state hunts I wouldn’t have to fret about the vegetation I’ll be surrounded by. Simply toss in the ASAT camo and I’d be good to go. If you are lucky enough to hunt several different species in an array of habitats ASAT might be a good option. On the other hand, even if you hunt the same 40 all year this setup could potentially allow you the flexibility to blend in throughout the seasons without having to buy new camo. That’s versatile. Here is a great video showcasing the ability of this camouflage to blend you in with all sorts of surroundings.
Another benefit of the ASAT camo line is their wide variety of gear to choose from. One thing to recognize is that although the ASAT pattern is designed to span all seasons, our bodies still need the proper dress for the conditions. Depending on where you hunt this could mean a t-shirt and pants. It might mean a good set of warm clothes as well. It all depends on your situation. Not only does ASAT offer all of the basic clothing options, but they can outfit you from near head to toe if you’d like. With hats, gloves, base layers, hoodies, and neck gaiters all available, you can deck yourself out as much as you’d like. The nice thing to remember is that once you buy some gear, it should be functional wherever you may go.
If you’re on board with the ASAT camo idea another positive is the ability to benefit from their design in other aspects of gear as well. Not only does their product lineup offer clothing enough to meet your needs, but they also offer ground blinds and ghillie suits.Their ground blinds have the same camo pattern and set up in just a few seconds. If you hunt a lot of public land like myself, having a good ground blind to adapt to changing circumstances is a great addition to your hunting equipment. If their camo patterns blend in so well, it stands to reason their blinds would blend in as well.
Another interesting product the company offers for full concealment is the ASAT ghillie suit. Ghillie suits have become popular after their effective use by military snipers. Ghillie suits are appealing to a certain group of hunters out there who typically like to move while they hunt. The right ghillie suit, with a bit of care and customization, can literally make you disappear. Although they don’t seem to be mainstream, these suits may be just what you’re looking for. The ASAT lineup can either provide the whole ghillie system, of just serve as the base for you to add natural material to.
The final benefit of the ASAT line of camo is the cost-effectiveness of their product. To be honest, no camo out there seems to be real cheap these days but ASAT may give you the most bang for your buck. For around $125 you can outfit yourself with a pair of pants, long sleeve shirt, hat, and hoodie. A suit like this would cover a good deal of hunting situations you are likely to face. If you replaced the hoodie with a nice heavy jacket you would run a bill closer to $280. Coughing up that much hard earned cash for a set of camouflage clothing might seem a little difficult. On the other hand, if you only have to buy one set of camo to hunt in virtually every situation you’ll ever encounter, it might actually save you money in the long run. If you decide to buy systems based on the vegetation of an area you may have to buy several different getups in order to blend in if you hunt out of your normal area. As mentioned earlier, finding an exact fit for each and every terrain and season you will hunt can be difficult, and the ASAT line seems to do a nice job in a variety of situations.
After looking at reviews around the web, many ASAT customers seem genuinely satisfied with their purchase. One content customer touts this pattern as “one of the best hunting patterns out there” in one review. Another hunter reports they have “had more encounters with game since wearing ASAT than ever before.” To support that claim, a fellow hunter claimed on a different ASAT product to have had an elk “look right through me!” These claims may or may not convince you of the pattern’s effectiveness, but they certainly show the conviction of the customer.
If you’ve checked out the buzz on ASAT camo and still aren’t sold there are a number of other products out there you might find appealing. One brand that has generated a lot of hype over the past few years is the Sitka lineup of camouflage clothing. This much-publicized lineup of clothing was designed with the intent to create the best outdoor clothing on the market. By blending clothing concepts from many different outdoor pursuits, and the highest clothing technology out there, the folks at Sitka believe they make the best high-performance hunting gear on the market.
One advantage Sitka may have over ASAT camo is the quality of the actual clothing. Several of the reviews on the web stated the ASAT clothing was poorly sized. With Sitka, you are getting clothing some folks tout as extremely comfortable and top of the line. On the downside, the Sitka gear is extremely expensive. In an earlier scenario, I suggested you could put together an ASAT clothing lineup for around $280 if you bought the high-end jacket. That kind of cash wouldn’t even get you into a single Sitka jacket. The stuff is pricey, but if you have the money and like the extra comfort it might be worth it.
Another company that makes a popular brand of camouflage is Under Armour (UA). Although this company got its start in producing football apparel, they eventually began to pick up big time hunters like Cameron Hanes. Now they offer a full lineup of camo clothing to get you geared up for about any situation you will encounter. Most folks who buy this brand go on and on about its comfort and performance. As the folks at Under Armour make a living producing clothing, you can bet they know what they are doing.
On the downside, the UA camo lineup puts you back at square one in terms of patterns. When you buy this brand of camouflage you will have to think about what habitat you are hunting, what season you will be hunting, and try to match your clothing to the conditions. If those conditions change your camo duds may be doing more harm than good. In terms of price the UA camo gear appears to retail for roughly comparable costs of the ASAT brand.
Old School Camo
If you’ve checked out the different modern camo brands and can’t seem to find anything that fits your fancy, you might consider going old school. Back in the days prior to the wide usage of camo clothing, woodsman donned their everyday flannel which proved effective enough to almost eradicate numerous North American big game species (page 14). Flannel works on the same principle camouflage does as it helps to break up your silhouette and if you choose the right color patterns deer shouldn’t be able to pick you off. The big plus to buying a flannel shirt is you can generally obtain one on the cheap side and, if the flannel principle holds true, they would also be an all season all terrain camouflage.
The downside of buying flannel would have to be the lack of blending it actually does. One respected organization, the Quality Deer Management Association, concludes that while camouflage is not necessary, it still offers more concealment than flannel. Depending on the type of hunting you do this might be a deal breaker. As an avid bowhunter, I just don’t know if I could trust flannel to get me within bow range while spot and stalking. On the other hand, if I’m meat hunting with a rifle I’d likely be able to get within gun range while wearing a plain old flannel shirt.
In the end, each hunter needs camo that best suits them and their individual hunting needs. If you hunt a variety of terrain, in a variety of seasons, and you like the benefits of camouflage you might consider ASAT camo. Dollar for dollar it is some of the most versatile camo on the market.