If you are thinking of taking on the challenge of shooting pheasant, this brief guide will provide tips* from what to wear to when to shoot.
Does the date, 1st of October ring any bells? It should for keen pheasant guns. This date lets us know that the pheasant shooting season has just begun. This seasons lasts until the 1st of February, with the main action really kicking off towards the later stages of October. Before then, have your shooting jacket, trousers, baselayers and wellies ready. It’s going to be a wet and cold season again this year, so getting the right kit is essential to having an enjoyable and successful shooting trip.
Selecting clothing for shooting pheasants is not the same as selecting stalking clothing. You won’t need to become completely invisible or become one with your scenery, but you will need a functional jacket that keeps you warm and dry, has plenty of carrying capacity and a high degree of freedom of movement.
The days when one was expected to stand in tweed suits with no other protection have long gone now. Most guns will wear tweed breeks as they are very warm and comfortable for walking or standing. For the top half, a lot will go for a matching tweed waistcoat with tweed jacket or blazer to wear on arrival and for lunch on the basis they then take that off and put on a more modern technical jacket. This could be a plain green jacket or have a tweed outer material, depending on your personal style.
The prime concern is to pick something that is functional and comfortable with major emphasis being placed on keeping dry so make sure that whichever jacket you go for has a suitable waterproof membrane. At the same time, shooting can be a strenuous activity, so make sure the membrane is breathable.
Make sure you layer up depending on the forecast. Pick a sensible microfleece or thermal baselayer if it’s going to be cold, under a shirt and tie, a suitable shooting waistcoat and trousers or breeks and jacket to suit your preference. Shooting accessories such as hats and gloves are essential for many hardened shooters. Don’t forget a hat or cap to keep sun and rain out of your face and eyes and gloves to keep your fingers warm on a cold day and to protect your hands from hot barrels if you find yourself in the hot seat.
Here is a brief breakdown of how to pick your clothing for a day’s pheasant shooting:
Jacket & Trousers & Breeks – Choose functional pieces; the design doesn’t have to be camouflage. Pick something natural in colour that suits your shooting environment. Think about the style - is it waterproof, windproof, breathable and does it offer a variety of storage pockets for cartridges and game?
Footwear – Don’t go hunting in your sports trainers. You will often be trekking through rough, muddy terrain; it’s advisable that you look out some wellington boots for your trip. Seeland Wellies are among the most popular shooting wellies on the market! If it’s a walked up day then a pair of Harkila Boots might be a better bet – try and find out from your host the sort of terrain you will be in.
Baselayer and Accessories – Remember to keep warm and keep it layered so that when you are hot you can comfortably remove a few layers. Accessories play an important part for the enjoyment of your shooting day out.
*N.B. ArdMoor provides these tips and recommendations based on experience and general knowledge. We accept no liability or responsilibity to any person or organisation as a consequence of any reliance upon the information contained in this site.