As a result of a professional partnership between Brigade Quartermaster and 5.11 Tactical, the TACPATT uniform line was created. Specifically designed for urban--that's NOT country or rural--but urban use, the camouflage is everything you'd expect from two leaders in today's military and law enforcement industry. The side benefit--and good news for those who enjoy the outdoors--is that few camo patterns have only one application. In this case, the TACPATT pattern is a mix of black, gray and two shades of green; but if you don't look carefully you might mistake if for simply three shades of gray and add in black. Since our woods and fields have plenty of black and gray spaces during the early morning and dusk hours, when game is either up and moving about or getting ready to bed down, the TACPATT pattern may well prove to be a very effective camouflage for hunting. Obviously, because of the design of the pants and shirts themselves, the apparel is valuable for outdoor use.

If you are familiar with the typical design features of the 5.11 Tactical pants and shirts, then you already know the ins and outs of these clothing items. The design and camouflage pattern was the result of a professional partnership between Brigade Quartermaster and 5.11 Tactical. In addition to the pants and shirt, the TACPATT pattern is also available on an equipment vest, boonie-style hat and a baseball cap.

Many urban camouflage patterns today are composed of shades of white, gray and black. Some have green in them. Few have shades of tan or brown. The digital pattern--although it appears as little squares up close--provides a clean break up at distance and does blend in well with natural vegetation.

One of the reasons I consider this apparel recreational is because the 5.11 Tactical pants, made so famous as "Royal Robbins," were originally designed for rock climbing. It doesn't get much more outdoors than that.

Just like all 5.11 Tactical uniform shirts, there are two roomy chest pockets that have Velcro closures and two "hidden" chest pockets for holding those other items you don't want to be obvious with. For outdoor recreation, I like to use those pockets for snack foods and my digital camera. It keeps them near at hand without having to put a pack on or off and without having them bang around my legs. The sleeves roll up and have tabs inside to hold them in place once rolled. At the top of the left shoulder there are two pen pockets sewn in. This is my ONLY issue with the 5.11 Tactical shirts: most agencies (if we were discussing them as uniforms) put a patch on their left shoulder. So those pen pockets would do no good and would be in the way.

The pants are fantastic for outdoor wear. With plenty of pocket space, the pants sport deep front pockets along with two overlarge rear pockets. The rear pockets each have a Velcro tab at the top to keep them shut and help prevent you from losing things like your wallet. The cargo pockets on the thigh are generous and are also held shut with Velcro. My favorite two features of these pants are:

  1. The utility pocket on the left side that is perfect size to fit...
  • My cell phone
  • A spare magazine for my Glock 19
  • My Night-Ops Gladius (with the flap tucked in
  • My SureFire G2 Nitrolon flashlight, and
  • My Buck-Strider SMBF folding lock blade
  • The hidden pockets for knee pads. Now, after everyone gets finished giggling...I was outside just today putting up my Christmas lights (Editor's Note: Frank usually writes these well in advance of publication on Officer.com)and some of our decorations include rope lights along our driveway. I did a lot of work on my knees installing the mounts. I was quite thankful for the kneepad pockets in these pants because I put the pads in before I went out to work and never had to slow down worrying about the comfort of my knees.
  • Even though the camouflage pattern was designed for urban use, I found it disappeared well in the woods. And, except for the fact that it shines like every other fabric when wet, the dark pattern blended in well with the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. For hunting utility I think the TACPATT apparel line would do well. For general outdoor use they will perform as well as every other 5.11 Tactical product.

    BE SAFE!