Tips to Perfect Winter Concealment
As the temperatures drop, it’s time to think about your strategy to carry in the cold weather. Although many of the concealed carry concepts are the same year-round, winter weather has its own set of obstacles. With increased layers and bulky clothing, every day carriers must adjust their set up and approach to carrying to accommodate the winter months.
Don’t worry though, 2Aactivewear spoke with more than a dozen of our subscribers to develop this list of the top tips to alleviate the worries that winter brings when owning a winter beach house is not an option.
2A Activewear's 5 Tips to Winter Concealment
1. Be Mindful of the Clothes You Wear
Don’t forget that clothes often make or break the concealed carry experience. Leave the trendy longer coats in the closet. These will only make drawing more difficult than shorter coats. If a peacoat or trench coat is in your future, you might want to leave it unbuttoned so that you can still grab that gun if needed or maybe just ditch the trench coat entirely…
If you’re sporting multiple layers to avoid frostbite, be mindful of how that can impact your draw. Test out your winter wear before heading out on the streets to ensure you have a good grasp on any limitations.
2. Grab the Right Accessories
As temperatures drop and snow begins to fall, you’ll most likely find yourself reaching for some gloves to keep your fingers warm. Before putting on your gloves, be sure to test them out with your preferred firearm to ensure you can still operate the gun. Sorry, but mittens are probably not going to work…
As for holsters, you might want to even consider using an outside-the-waistband holster for the winter months. An OWB holster sits outside of the pants and is more easily accessible when wearing multiple heavy layers on the go. Be mindful that you’ll need a cover garment – a vest or longer sweatshirt – to prevent keeping your coat on 24/7.
3. Handle the Hand Cannon
Okay, don’t go overboard but the winter months are the time to carry your full-size gun. Unlike in the summer when lighter, shorter clothes dictate the need for smaller guns, cool temperatures afford concealed carriers the ability to opt for larger firearms. If you’re usual carry is a Glock 43 in June, step up to the Glock 19 or even the G17 come January. This will allow you to carry more rounds but more importantly offers a larger footprint to grab under all those layers.
4. Break Out That Concealed Carry Jacket
A good concealed carry jacket will give you freedom of movement and an easy path to your firearm. The best concealed carry jackets include the following features:
Lightweight construction that doesn’t bunch up or puff out.
Cuffs that won’t let your sleeves get in your way when you need to draw.
Tough fabrics and construction that won’t wear down over your gun or holster.
The secure system for hidden and quick access to your sidearm.
The right fit is just as important as the features you look for in a concealed carry jacket. If your outerwear is too big, it’s going to get in your way when you draw. If it’s too small, it’ll get caught on your holster and prevent you from drawing quickly.
2A Activewear’s EDCarry ™ Jacket will fulfill your winter concealment needs from the streets to the office and when its time to roll up your sleeves and get to work, the EDCarry ™ Canvas Work Coat will do the job. Think of if North Face or Carhartt cared about your 2nd Amendment rights.... These jackets would be it!
EDCarry Canvas Work Coat
5. Practice - Put Those Reps In!
You should be practicing year-round if you intend to carry but, especially, put in those reps in the winter months. If you’re changing carry position, you need time to re-train your brain to draw as 2nd nature and that’s only accomplished through practice. If you’re adding more layers or a coat to your ensemble, understanding how this impacts your draw is essential to carrying safely. We suggest setting aside time each day to dry fire as well as a quick dry fire session before leaving the house – especially if you’re in a new outfit. This can be accomplished in the mirror to ensure that the motion is fluid and is not hindered by excess layers. A little bit of preparation goes a long way towards preventing catastrophe and keep you and your loved ones safe.
The correct way to conceal carry during winter really hinges on what works best for you and your comfort level. You should experiment with some of these tips above and make sure you practice for Winter Carry to be effective and prepared year-round.