This is a discussion on Winter Carry Issues within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Within the last week, the temperature has plummeted (for Western Washington anyways) and we got our first snow of the year (not that we'll get ...
Within the last week, the temperature has plummeted (for Western Washington anyways) and we got our first snow of the year (not that we'll get much). It got me thinking about things to consider when carrying in wintertime. This is my first year carrying so I have a lot more questions than suggestions.
Items and questions I came up with are:
-Making sure you can draw and fire with your gloves on (if you wear them). So far I don't wear any gloves. Does anyone have any recommendations for some nice driving or other thin gloves that work well for shooting with (preferably ones that can be worn unobtrusively in urban settings).
-Making sure you can draw and fire in a reasonable amount of time with your jacket on and with it zipped up? One of my jackets has a second zipper that unzips from the bottom up. It seems that unzipping this a ways makes it much easier to access my gun. However, I haven't practiced with the jacket on yet. It also seems that the jacket zipped this way would scream gun (or dork). Does anyone else use this method? Are there special jackets out there that are designed for quick and easy access to a gun? I carry IWB, but any jacket info would be useful.
-How effective are SD hollowpoint rounds against heavy jackets and winter clothes? Is there enough of a problem that adding some FMJs to the mag would be necessary?
-What about gun and ammo operation? Will the cold effect operation of the gun or ammo? Are there any specific oils or etc to avoid or use to prevent cold weather related issues?
You know....the subject of carrying some FMJ ammo has been brought up before here. It got me to thinking this might be a viable alternative to carrying all JHP's or whatever. It's definitely not a far fetched idea. Gloves? Well, I have tried my pistols out with gloves, and the kind of gloves I wear are mainly for working around the house/small farm....they are the cotton jersey gloves, and I can operate all of my Glocks and my SIG safely and effectively while wearing my gloves as long as they fit well, but a day on the town, and I'll generally wear no gloves at all. I've even carried and practiced with my coveralls on around the farm. My wintertime/cold weather cover garments are zippered jackets or sweatshirt hoodies pull-over or zip up. My sweatshirt types or pull-overs, I'll practice drawing by simply lifting them up much as I would my t-shirt in warm weather with IWB.....both inner and outer garment as one...grab and pull. My zippered (heavier jackets) I will leave unzipped for the 'tear-away' or sweep draw. This winter, I'm experimenting with IWB carry, with my shirt tucked in behind my IWB holster under a jacket. This will serve two purposes for me as I've had issues in the past on making my daily carry choice before I leave the house, and living in my neck of the woods, a temperature sweep from 78° to 28° can happen in the matter of a few hours and vice verse. I want to be able to carry sort of semi-OWB with my IWB holster while in the cold, and if I and the better half want to go to a restaurant where the inside temp is 80°, I want to be able to make a quick transition and remove my jacket or cover garment, where by I would simply pull my inner garment (shirt) out of tucked and still cover my carry nicely. This winter I'm going to be modular for sure. For those deep cold winter days that last for a week on end, I'll make my decision before walking amongst the sheep, and it would likely be OWB and good for the whole day no matter where I might go.
Cold won't affect the mechanical operation of your firearms unless you're using some sort of grease on them IMO. There should be no issues there.
The trick as I see it is to be aware of potential danger before the attack and avoid it if possible. You don’t want to be in a situation that requires you to fast draw to protect yourself winter or summer but especially in winter.. Quite often in winter I remove my gun from its holster and put it in my jacket pocket if I sense a potential bad situation. I also head in the opposite direction as fast as possible. I wear some nice shooting gloves I got at Cabela’s which keep my hands fairly warm and I can still shoot the gun. Hollow points might be an issue if you have a very small caliber gun trying to shoot through multiple layers of clothing but I have heard of no problems with any caliber from .380 up.
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Utah Permit Certified Instructor
Try sports gloves....... NFL receiver gloves, soccer goalie gloves....I usually wear my old ATV riding gloves....
Most of them are not great for warmth, but they are warmer than a bare hand and will allow you to draw and shoot pretty easily.....
Good question about gloves and coats. For me I prefer to lose the strong hand glove before I handle the weapon. Being out side often I wear loose fitting insulated buck skin work gloves. With a sharp flick of the wrist I can fling the glove off. Like RamRod I also wear a hoodie, double lined under a Carhartt denim coat. Just lift the garments to un-holster, usually from a speed paddle in the winter time.
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In the winter (coat weather), I usually carry @9:30 (2:30 to you rightys!)OWB. This allows me good weapon retention,and a good fast draw with minimal movement. It works for me with a heavy winter coat, or a flannel shirt worn tail out. If I'm wearing my insulated bibs, I carry crossdraw OWB with the zipper half way down, very easy to access my weapon and neither is noticeable.
Cold hands make stiff hands; just plan on pulling the glove off.
In MI, there were times to wear gloves, and times to keep my hands ready to draw. Such as getting gas, walking in a parking lot, or around the house...the gloves came off and my head was on a swivel.
I kept my jacket open, and always thought about being able to pull my weapon.
Using a .45...bullet type is not a concern for me.
I think it all boils down to remaining alert and knowing your surroundings...OMO.
Stay armed...stay safe!
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NRA Life Member
for me cross draw @ 9:30 works best, I just have to unzip my heavy coat a little if I see the need. I might try a shoulder holster later.
I cant operate mine with gloves. just pull them and ditch them if necessary, or dont use them when appropriate.
like people have said, never depend in a fast draw to save you.
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Here in Chicago we need good gloves so when it's time to draw... oh wait... never mind, that was a dream. I forgot we are slaves with no rights.
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Carrying FMJ is a no-no, except for maybe a .45. You can switch to DXP's. They are supposed to have the most resistance to getting clogged up with clothing.
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I use Hatch or similar police leather gloves that work well for shooting and have thinsulate lining (and spectra ). Typically I wear my coat open unless outside for extended periods.
HP's should work fine, the worst that will happen is teh HP clogs up and you have a less expansive round similar to a FMJ. It may or may not clog the HP .
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I use Bob Allen's shooting gloves all the time. They are thin, but insulating, and I have no trouble with any of my pistols. Also, I have a Sig Sauer insulated jacket which is quite warm, and has two inside concealed carry pockets with a built-in "holster" to hold you gun. This is available at Cabelas, CheaperThanDirt, etc.
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