Well, it’s that time of year again, when we have to bundle up in our warm gear. Bulky clothes and coats can put a real damper on our concealed carry and personal protection methods. However, there are options to help keep you safe during the long, cold winter months. These top winter carry methods for 2021 will give you a head start in your personal carry considerations.
Top 2021 Winter Carry Methods
Obviously, warmth has to be a top priority when old man winter hits. Not only is there the risk of hypothermia but you also want to be able to manipulate your CCW in an emergency. For this reason, any cold weather carry consideration needs to take both firearm accessibility and staying warm, into account.
5.11 3-in-1 Parka 2.0
Keeping your body’s core temperature up is not only important to prevent hypothermia but it also aids in dexterity. However, not all coats are alike, and most will conceal your firearm from you, as much as everyone else. Which his why it is important to take your concealed carry into account when selecting the right coat.
The 3-in-1 Parka 2.0 from 5.11 has everything you need to stay warm and functional. The 10K/10K waterproof shell ensures that not only you stay dry, but your firearm does as well. In addition, the removeable fleece liner helps you stay warm in lower temps. 6 pockets on the outer shell and 5 on the removable fleece inner jacket provide ample room for accessories. However, where the Parka shines as a CCW option is in the Quixip side zip system, on both the outer and inner jacket. As a result, you have quick access to your firearm.
The MSRP of 5.11 3-in-1 Parka is $249.99. For more information, visit 511Tactical.com.
Versacarry Compound OWB Holster – Arc Angel Edition
Even in the winter waistline carry is still a viable option, especially with a firearm accessible coat, like the 5.11 Parka. However, since you will already have multiple layers of clothing and under garments, I do not recommend IWB carry. During the colder months, OWB carry is the more accessible method of the two options.
With this in mind, the Versacarry Compound OWB holster, Arc Angel Edition, is a solid consideration. Specifically, the non-collapsible design will help keep it open for re-holstering, even under heavy clothes and coats. Likewise, a raised double-ply protective backing will help keep a potentially cold firearm further away from the body.
The MSRP on the Versacarry Compound OWB holster, Arc Angel Edition is $84.99. For more information, visit Versacarry.com.
Galco VHS 4.0 Shoulder Holster
If you are not in the market for a new coat and your current coat isn’t designed for concealed carry, there are other options. Once such option for concealed carry in the winter, is a shoulder holster. Shoulder holsters are easy to conceal under a coat or jacket and remain easily accessible. However, one drawback with a shoulder holster is that you cannot take your coat off in most places. Although, a light zippered fleece under jacket provides continued concealment when you remove your outer coat.
The VHS 4.0 (Vertical Holster System) from Galco provides comfortable all-day wear and quick accessibility to your firearm. As the name implies, the VHS carries your handgun vertically, preventing any forward or rear printing. The wide 2.75-inch harness with swiveling Flexalon ensures a comfortable and secure fit. Additionally, opposite the holster side is a double magazine carrier (double speedloader carrier for revolvers). Both the holster and ammo carrier sides include tie-downs to keep it securely in place.
The MSRP on the Galgo VHS 4.0 Shoulder Holster is $264.00. For more information, visit GalcoGunLeather.com.
Sticky Holsters Optics Ready Pocket Holsters
In the winter is not unusual to keep your hands in your pockets for warmth. With that said, a good pocket holster allows you to keep your hand on your pistol as well. Additionally, a pocket holster is easy to access, even with layers of clothing and a coat. Not to mention, when you take your coat off, you don’t have to worry about what to do with your pistol.
The entire Optics Ready line from Sticky Holsters provide a great option for your pocket-sized pistol. And you don’t have to remove your optics while carrying with this method. The lightweight holsters also ensure very little print in the pocket and add almost no additional weight. Sticky offers multiple sizes and fitments, so check the website for the best option for you.
The MSRP on the Sticky Holsters Optics Ready Pocket Holsters is $39.95. For more information, visit StickyHolsters.com.
Magpul Patrol Glove 2.0
Finally, warm hands are essential if you find yourself in a situation requiring you to access your pistol. Manipulating your firearm with cold and/or wet hands is much harder when your fine motor skills are slowed from the cold. However, when it comes to shooting there is an expected trade off. Big, warm winter gloves will not provide the necessary articulation or fit within the trigger guard. So, a middle ground is typically the best bet.
The Patrol Glove 2.0 from Magpul offers a nice in between option for both articulation and moderate warmth. With flexible knuckle pattern on the back of the fingers, your fingers can move freely and unimpeded. Also, the closed cell foam padded knuckles and corded nylon provide back-of-the-hand protection, which is important in colder weather. Although they are not a true winter glove, if you get them slightly larger, you can add a liner for additional warmth.
The MSRP on the Magpul Patrol Glove 2.0 is $49.95. For more information, visit Magpul.com.
Don’t let the cold weather compromise your safety. These top winter carry methods for 2021 will help ensure your and your family’s safety, in even the worst conditions.