If you’re venturing out to hunt on a game shoot this winter, a careful consideration of what clothes and equipment to take with you is essential to ensure your day isn’t a complete wash-out. As the recent Cumbrian floods have shown, bad weather can come from nowhere - leaving you in a potentially hazardous situation.
In the UK, game shooting etiquette can all be a bit overwhelming, and that includes the dress code, so it’s always worth checking with your host what’s allowed and what’s not. Usual form restricts clothing colours to green and brown but that doesn’t mean you can’t be comfortable in the cold too.
Here are a few essential clothing and equipment tips for winter game shooting:
Earplugs are an absolute must but it’s worth thinking about something that will keep your ears warm too so think about wearing earphones rather than disposable ear plugs or digital headphones.
A tweed flat cap is always the traditional choice and will keep you warm too.
Jacket or coat
In cold or wet weather always wear a warm waterproof coat but make sure it fits well and allows you to swing your gun. Deep pockets are a good idea so you can store plenty of cartridges.
Boots / wellies
Shooting boots with a good ankle support will help you on uneven ground but if it’s wet, wellies should be fine.
Always wear long socks or stockings with the addition of garters which will stop them slipping. In the winter it’s a good idea to keep your feet warm by wearing two pairs of socks.
Thermal base layer
A thermal base layer will help keep you warm throughout the shoot whether it’s cold or wet.
Cardigan or jumper
Remembering that the traditional colours are green and brown, it’s well worth wearing a wool jumper or cardigan over your shirt and thermals.
Gloves and scarf
The big issue with wearing gloves on a shoot is making sure you can actually pull the trigger. For that reason, it is probably a better idea to invest in some fingerless gloves which are waterproof and non-slip. Make sure to add a scarf to your ensemble, remembering the dress code at all times. A football scarf is probably not the right look!
If the weather really is terrible, then you should consider taking some waterproof trousers and a lightweight waterproof jacket with a hood. Waterproof should slip easily over any clothes you’re already wearing and can then be folded up and stored easily.
There's one thing to consider taking on any shoot, no matter what time of year, and that's shooting insurance. With £10m Personal Liability insurance from just £25 a year, you can get an instant online quote here.