3 (Semi) Traditional Camo Alternatives for Hunters

Hunters can actually be gearheads. It’s interesting to ponder how a sport that arose from necessity has come to be dominated by high-tech optics, performance clothing, and cutting-edge camo patterns.

To that point, Realtree Xtra, Realtree Timber, Kryptek, and Mossy Oak Obsession dominate the fall woods.

These are highly effective camouflage patterns in their respective rights, and we’re not knocking them, but high-end cam gear can become quite expensive.

This fall, get back to basics with these 3 proven camo patterns that have been around a while and have shown their worth time and time again.

U.S. Woodland

In many ways, U.S. Woodland is the be-all, end-all camo pattern for outdoorsmen. It has proven highly effective and it has been in use for a long time.

Adopted by the Army in 1981 and the Marine Corps in 1977, U.S. Woodland was developed at a time when military focus was on Europe. The military needed a pattern that would prove effective in dense woods.

That’s precisely what U.S. Woodland offers. Its deep green and black macros, interspersed with a bit of tan are perfect for the deep shade and dappled shadows of lush deciduous forests. Both the macro and micro patterns of U.S. Woodland are highly effective at breaking up an outline, too, whether in dense forests or fairly open scrub.

Which, incidentally, makes this an excellent pattern for eastern hunters, especially those that chase deer, turkeys, and small game in the forests east of the Mississippi.

The one drawback is its predominantly green hue, which creates a stark contrast in sparser, browner landscapes – western hunters won’t get as much from this pattern as those in the eastern forests.

Tiger Stripe Camo

Tiger stripe camo is another pattern with a fairly long service history, albeit unofficial. Although it was never formally adopted, United States Military Advisors and Special Forces Operators appreciated its ability to conceal an object effectively in dense undergrowth – such as the jungles of Vietnam.

For many, tiger stripe camo is indelibly associated with that period of time, but whatever the case, tiger stripe that’s heavy on blacks, dark browns and dark greens can be just as effective at concealment in dense brush.

Like a tiger’s stripes (no surprise there) the macro pattern of this camouflage consists of long stripes of light and dark shades. This effectively helps to break up the outline of a target.

It also makes tiger stripe effective in particularly dense woods and grasses, which is especially suitable for hunters in the eastern woods. Whether your quarry is deer, bears, or woodchuck, tiger stripe camo may serve you well.


MultiCam is considered one of the most effective camo patterns of all time due to its ability to conceal an object in a wide range of environments.

This one’s a newer one, and it was developed for the military in 2002 by Crye Precision in conjunction with the United States Army Soldier Systems Center. It was developed not only to limit the visual signature but also the IR-signature of a target at close range.

The MultiCam pattern was also specifically developed to be effective at limiting visual signature in as wide a range of environments as possible, and by adjusting the predominant color scheme of the macro and micro patterns, MultiCam can be adapted to an impressive range of environments.

To that point, dark green and brown MultiCam patterns can be highly effective for hunters in dense eastern woodlands, whereas lighter tan-predominant MultiCam patterns with light brown micro patterns can be suitable in the sparser scrub of the west.

So, it may be new, but it isn’t Realtree or Mossy Oak, and it can still be a very effective tool in a hunter’s arsenal.

Top-Quality Camo Gear, Low Prices

Ready to go old school and swap the Kryptek for some U.S. Woodland gear this fall?

Get it at Fatigues Army Navy, online at the previous link. They carry a huge range of camo gear, military surplus, and hunting supplies, everything you need for a successful season.

Plus, they offer competitive prices. Check out their website or get in touch with them at 877-612-1253 if you have any questions.

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