When temperatures cool the ability to conceal may seem easier. It may actually improve the printing more common in summer months, but it also creates accessibility challenges.
Avoid This Mistake
In every Concealed Carry class I teach there is a student who fails to grasp the idea behind concealing. Instead, they often wear a “range appropriate” uniform. You are in a concealed carry class, dress accordingly. Take the time to test not what you always wear. Instead, work on cover garments that are more realistic to your daily clothing requirements. The problem with their range uniform is the characteristics are typically different than what the average person wear on a regular basis. I hear from several students comment how they are comfortable in the uniform they are wearing. I am all for comfort, you need to be comfortable when carrying concealed, but not at the sacrifice of poorly concealing.
The range uniform usually goes out the window when the cold weather arrives. I love the fall time, such a wonderful time of year. Many will be comfortable wearing heavier shirts or even a light sweater or hoodie. Typically this is great for not so low temperatures or short exposure intervals. The moment it gets to low temperatures or your exposure is increasing you may need to rethink your cover garments. The takeaway should be more about staying warm. Should you be exposed to the environment you become slightly hyperthermic you will not do yourself any favors. Your reaction time will be slower, movements less precise and even your attention will wander.
More Than One
There is no reason you cannot comfortably carry while wearing multiple layers. In fact, this should be an essential skill for the serious practitioner. How many is multiple, well at least more than one. In our classes we get to two and sometime three layers of cover garments. Working your defeat methodology to manage the multiple layers should go without saying, yet so many choose the easy road. They choose the simplest method for carrying concealed, almost the bear minimum. In this condition, defeating your cover garment really doesn’t create much of a challenge. You almost want to push the envelope to the point failures are occurring. Then work your contingencies to manage those failures.
Your skill sets are not truly prepared until you have worked through multiple layers of cover garments. Finding yourself in multiple layers because it is cold is not the time to learn. The key is making your everyday technique work across the seasons. The technique should be the same whether you are defeating one layer or multiple. This is where I see so many methods fail. They rely almost exclusively on defeating the one cover garment. Add a couple and now it is more about luck.
Don’t fall into this trap. Use a defeat technique that transcends not just multiple layers, but just about any type of cover garment.