Highland Outdoors Ridgline Camo Clothing
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- Last updated: 26/01/2017
Ridgeline are the largest and most popular of hunting clothing manufacturers in New Zealand and Australia. Hardly surprising then that a company such as Highland Outdoors who market Nikko Stirling optics (whose country of origin is New Zealand) are now importing a large selection of their garments made for the hunting sector.
The camo pattern is known as ‘Hide & Seek Buffalo Camo’, quite a mouthful but one that’ll be effective in the UK as it is in its native homeland. The pattern is best described as having a likeness to Realtree Hardwoods Green, but certainly not a copy as it uses a light buff colour background upon which dark brown, black and green colours are overlaid in a branch and leaf design.
Highland sent me a good selection of items. Of the cotton wear I was assuming I’d be trying on a pair of traditional combat style trousers, but to my surprise they’re actually jeans! Like the other ‘lighter wear’ featured they’re manufactured from 100% cotton and called the Eland Jean.
After the initial ‘shock’ as to a lack of Cargo pockets, the straight leg cut did make them surprisingly comfortable to wear. As much at home in the field as down the pub! Seriously though, the fact they’re more substantial in build I feel makes up for the loss of stowage and drawstring bottoms as some lighter wear can be too light. At least these trousers with button and zip fly fastening, belt loops, and standard 5-pocket layout are going to withstand more field use than a pair of light combats.
Long and Short of It
The long and short sleeve T-shirts are light and cool, just as garments such as this should be and the traditional style Kudu Long Sleeve Shirt with left chest pocket, button down collar, dual button two position wrist fastening facility and full button front offers more by way of protection from the elements.
I don’t usually like camo shirts but such is the design I’d have no problem hunting in it. It was while wearing either T-shirt under the Kudu I noticed how cool the combination was (not only in looks!) but in the fact that even during arduous stalks I still didn’t feel clammy or sweaty. Obviously this material allows the body to breathe and the perfect accessories are the stretch fit palm dot grip gloves and brimmed hat with integral dropdown faceveil.
These are named accordingly and it’s worth noting the gloves are well fitting and tactile whilst the ‘brimmed hat’ offers as much eye-shade as a standard peak cap with the bonus of extra protection for the back of the neck from rain and the integral ‘veil’ doesn’t overly hinder your vision.
Now I never thought I’d be hunting in what you could term as a pair of ‘jeans and a shirt’ but for the ‘warmer’ days this set up has proved ideal. However, on talking with importers of my concerns if caught out in the rain they quickly dispatched the garment they recommend you wear over this set up for added protection from a shower or if waiting into those chilly evenings.
This was the Flood Bush Shirt, a pullover fleece that is surprisingly light, windproof yet with the bonus of having a bonded inner waterproof membrane. The Flood also has a generous front zip neck, comfort collar and a handy big zipped chest pocket to the left. Sleeves fasten at the cuffs by rust resistant press studs.
The Ridgeline Hunter Pack is a clever idea, consisting of a box that contains a complete camo set. Inside are a fleece-based system of over trousers, base layer micro top, jacket and even a beanie-style hat.
These garments, like the Flood Bush Shirt are part of the company’s DWR (Durable Water Resistant) range and manufactured from 100% Polyester. The build specifications follow their own SouthernStar Fleece fibre. This is made up of what are termed as tiny fleece fibres that create multiple air cells that trap warmth inside and give excellent protection against the most extreme outdoor conditions.
Some claim but the material did as it should by not retaining moisture and the double cropped Anti Pill velour finish, with soft inner surface wicks moisture away. The surprising feature of these garments was their ability to retain warmth without adding undue further weight by way of extra padding.
The STAYDRY Trousers have elasticated waistband and ankles, two zipped and deep-lined hand warmer pockets are included in the design. The base garment is the Micro Long Sleeve Shirt and rated as having a ‘220g Micro Fibre’ build and offers the properties of the trousers with a zip neck high collar and elasticated cuffs. Should the weather dictate then you can put on the much more substantial Windproof DWR Fleece which is a Laminated Breathable Polar Fleece again with DWR.
Get a Hat
Stowage is minimal with just two zip fastening handwarmer pockets, comfort collar, elasticated cuffs, draw cord bottom and full front zip fastener. The Double Layer Fleece Beanie is standard design and manufactured from the same outer Anti-Pill fleece.
The camo detail is more defined on the cotton wear due to the ‘hard flat surface’ of this material while on the fleece clothing in the Hunter Pack the garments tend to become less branch-defined but still as useful for concealment. During testing I’d no cause to complain as to the clothing’s weather protection or comfort and for the prices they are of a very high quality manufacture. Expect to see heavier duty Ridgline brand clothing soon for the even worse weather conditions to come.
Overall some versatile and effective hunting gear in both camo pattern, build and materials in an excellent pricing structure.
All garments are available in S-3XL apart from the Hat which is a one-size fits all and the gloves which are available in Medium & Large
Eland Jean £44.99
Long) and short sleeve T-shirts £19.99 & £16.99
Kudu Long Sleeve Shirt £39.99
Palm dot gloves £14.95
Brimmed ‘bush’ hat £17.99
Flood Bush Shirt £54.99
The Hunter Pack £99.99