You can probably guess what I’m going to say.
It’s DEERE season again and you should wear blaze orange if you plan to hike in areas where hunters (or heavy equipment operators guarding their backhoes) are likely to be present.
Blaze Orange Clothing for Hikers
It’s surprisingly difficult to find good (not cotton) blaze orange hiking clothing and gear. Don’t forget to protect your dog too.
Finding ‘non cotton’ good blaze orange …..
Have you tried searching for Orange Hi Viz (high visibility) garments on places like UK eBay ? I suggest this as I work in the UK Rail Industry and Blaze Orange HV is standard PPE (personal protective equipment) requirements for anyone working lineside. The choice is endless from bibs to full suits including waterproof, goretex, etc….
Just a thought :)
Good idea from Tony there. I think i am right that the US Railway workers vests are also Orange and a cheap option.
During muzzleloader and archery seasons, I usually just wear an orange hat or beanie while hiking. Once rifle season opens for buck (the Monday after thanksgiving in PA), I up the ante and hang a blaze orange “flag” on my pack. The hat is enough to be “legal” in most areas of Pennsylvania, but there are so many hunters in the woods during the first week of buck… Better safe than sorry.
As for the dog, I used to drape an orange vest over him and his pack. I simplified this year and bought him a new pack from Groundbird Gear. Both saddle bags are 100% blaze orange.
Thanks for the info on Groundbird Gear. My dogs have always used Ruffwear packs, but the packs don’t come in blaze orange. I do have blaze orange vests for them, but I’ve struggled on getting the vests to nicely attach to the harness, as they aren’t designed to do so.
I think it’s the Approach Pack that we use on our dog, & it’s blaze orange. Now if only I’d get something a bit brighter to wear as well.
Groundbird Gear is pretty new. They’re a cottage industry company, and they make everything custom. They have about a 3-week lead time for pack building right now. You have to take a set of measurements and then they build the harness specifically to fit your dog (Mine fits like a glove. The adjustments are dead in the middle. As perfect as it gets) You can choose from Roll-top or zippered pack compartments, and you can mix-and-match from a variety of colors to make the pack one of a kind (blaze orange was one of the pre-selected combinations). I got a roll-top pack and I think I’m going to like it a lot. It looks like it will be way easier to access thing on the trail and will be super easy to compress. The pack is removable from the harness, so that’s nice, too.
I haven’t had a chance to field test it completely, so I can’t really comment on durability or anything like that.
Cabela’s has everything in blaze orange or camo or blaze orange camo. I was fortunate enough that a discount store had blaze orange polypropylene tee shirts for $3 a few years ago.
I had a tough time finding blaze orange pack covers. I looked at the Cabela’s pack cover, but it is huge – far too big for a daypack. I found that Etowah Outfitters makes them in silnylon in four sizes. Delivery was quick and quality is top notch. (https://www.shop.backpackingadventuregear.com/Orange-Sil-nylon-Packcovers-Starting-at-orangepc.htm)
To save a little money, you can get orange safety vests for about $7 on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Neiko-Visibility-Orange-Zipper-Reflective/dp/B0030AART6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1411722302&sr=8-1&keywords=orange+safety+vest) Is the quality as good at UA? Probably not, but a $50 list price for the UA logo is a bit much, Remember to size up to allow for outerwear.
Great reminder though – it surprises me how many people are out on the local trails with no orange clothing in bow hunting season.
The CountyComm beanie comes in orange:
I’ve got several black and grey and its one of the best caps I’ve ever had. Highly recommended and great for spring, fall, and high aerobic winter activities. Awesome value and one of my favorite pieces of clothing.
I tend to pick up a cheap blaze orange knit cap at one of those big box stores when it’s time, and the other one has bit the dust. I find this to be a good solution, since it keeps my head warm, and provides 360-degrees of visibility.
I laughed out loud when I read the title of this post. I do need a bit more orange in my life! I ended up with a bunch of neon orange moisture-wicking tees from races that I’ve run, but none of them are warm enough for fall hiking! I’ll probably pick up a couple orange caps, as Patrick suggested. Thanks for keeping us safe out there.
At a 10k I volunteered at, I was lucky enough to score a LS polypro shirt in that year’s color (blaze orange). Its a great addition to my hi-viz running kit, and the fall hiking kit.
Oh, and I have a Flyers beanie to use too!
A cheap knit hat fits nicely over whatever ball cap you might pick up. I have a vest/cape from LL Bean that fits nicely over my jacket. I picked up a blaze gore-tex ball cap a couple years back at a country store for about $10 or $15. Take care of it and it will see you through every hunting season from now until you can’t hike any longer.
I just read an article describing how a 71 year old man in New York was shot by a hunter who mistook him for a squirrel !! And no I’m not kidding.
As far as blaze orange goes I’m fortunate in that my home hiking area is a national park where hunting is not allowed.
funny, orange clothing for backpacking is always on sale. just picked up a montbell shirt for $14 at a box store that i wouldn’t expect to have outdoor clothing. my fleece is orange but last year, or the year before had a warm spell so a shirt will do well too. and also picked up the blaze orange cover from etowah last year. I always had orange blaze with me in the past but mistakenly was on the AT on opening day in PA and just felt like i didn’t have enough, thanks for the heads up
I bought some blaze orange hunting vests, fleece jacket, a baseball cap, and a knit hat at Walmart pretty cheaply. When I get to that season, I swap out some gear. Sometimes, I hang a knit blaze orange vest over my backpack. I just hope Bubba doesn’t get under the influence of the product of his still in the woods and become convinced that the deer are coming in orange this year and that he needs to bag the latest model…
My rain jacket is a burnt orange and my down puffy is cayenne, which is also pretty bright orange. I ain’t hiding from anybody at that time of year!
I know should wear orange, but a few years ago, the researchers in Alberta and British Columbia were left stumped unable to explain why people wearing orange were more likely to get shot than those who wore earth-tones; especially when other provinces and states saw a decrease in accidents after introducing laws mandating blaze orange or red.
So, the choice of colour for me is dependent on the regulations. If the laws require orange, then I assume hunters are attuned to the colour. If it doesn’t, then I assume there are going to be a few idiots who are twitchy on the trigger, and just wear normal clothes.
One of my most “favorite” colors in the wild! UGH! But at this time of year with so many city bred yahoo’s with little if any outdoor experience other than watching TV and creating food plots or baited areas with Deer Corn to hunt over while sitting in a sometimes very expensive and well appointed stand and drinking ounces and bottles of courage inducers, you have to be triplely careful. Depending on the region I would wear Orange from head to toe. Here in my local NF, not only is it mandatory that you wear Orange You also have to sign in as well for the length of the entire trail not just the area that passes through the Legal hunting Zone due to Poachers who avoid the Rules and actually damage the Managed Deer Herd, so keep your Fish & Game Department on Speed dial when Hiking and if you see a Poacher do not approach them or say anything other than have a good day and be a good mile away before you call the Poachers Tip LIne..In some States you can claim a Reward for turning in Poachers and you will remain anyonmous (sp?)…and never take their picture unless it is with a telephoto lens from far far far away. Also at this time of year be esepcially careful with campfires IF it is legal in you area to have one. Clear at least a 15 foot space around your fire and avoid using Resionous wood that produces a lot of sparks..Years ago I was hustled out of the Cleveland National Forest in the Laguana’s by a Sheriff’s heliocopter because of some Yahoo from Los Angeles who was Deer Hunting who got lost and started a “Signal Fire” that burned nearly 100,000 acres and destoryed over a dozen homes and a State Park and National Forest both of which were a managed forest that had not seen a fire this destructive in over 300 years,,destroying so many ancient huge Oaks and Pinyon Pines, Sugar Pines and other ancient trees with 6 ft. wide trunks.. It brought tears to my eyes to see all those trees destoryed…..then the damage to the Streams, they no longer held wild trout that had been there for so long nobody remembers a time when they weren’t there…The Deer Herd disappeared as did just about every living thing and it took years for just the Chipmunks to return..
Nylon mesh blaze orange vest, extra large, worn over other clothing (looks just fab on my purple rain shell). Reversible camo/blaze orange fleece tube scarf. Items readily available at Cabela’s or Bass Pro or rural MO Walmart.