Yes, Shooting in Cold Weather Can Be Fun

No, you don’t really have to gear up this much for Oklahoma
like our David McElyea did a few years ago for a trip to France.

The ten day prediction for Tecumseh which puts us one week from our Pheasant Shoot show continuing cold weather with high of 40 and low of 31 which is not too bad if you dress right.  Four years ago I shot there in the snow and it wasn’t bad because there was not much wind and if we are lucky it won’t be bad this year either however, here is my suggestion, dress in layers for the worst and adjust for improved weather.

The key is layers and it is time to get your long under-wonders out and make sure they are usable and won’t constrict your blood flow to important regions.  The base layer for skiing is alway a nice way to start but nice cheap working man long johns from Wal-mart will work too, just make sure they fit.  Next I like to wear a nice heavy shirt, either flannel or wool with pants that are heavy enough to stop some of the heat loss to wind, a good heavy pair of jeans are all right.

Next I like an oversize sweater that allows for a lot of arm movement and then a shell type jacket over that which can be removed if the sun comes out and warms us up a bit.  A decent stocking cap, felt hat or cap will help hold the heat in and for bald head guys like me it pays to have a back up heavy stocking cap in your shooting bag.  Foot wear should be a good broken in pair of med. weight boots that are large enough to allow heavy socks to be worn without killing all of your circulation to you toes.

Speaking of circulation, one of the useful skills I picked up in the Army was how to live outside on snow and ice for ten days and not die.  They taught us that when the various pulse points on our bodies, neck, wrists and ankles are well covered we don’t lose as much body heat and we feel warmer.  That is why I like a decent pair of gloves with knit cuffs, good socks on the ankles and a wool wrap around muffler thingy for the neck.  Sounds kind of dumb but this stuff works.

Now if you put all of this stuff on and pick up your gun and practice a few swings you will know at once if your gear makes sense and if some of it does not allow for a good range of motion with your shotgun.  Right now you time to find a better jacket or other piece of clothing that will work.   The other thing that might be workable is to be outside so much that the 30 to 40 range weather is not cold to you so you can blow off the suggestions and not worry.


About the Author

Joe McElyea
I am an original member and founder of the esteemed High Plains Shooting and Dining Society which is dedicated to fellowship of bird hunters and shooters who also enjoy finding great local places to eat large, unhealthy portions of breaded and fried meats and gravies washed down with the appropriate libations. I am also a retired old man who enjoys fishing, shooting and my wonderful family.