The word ‘ghillie’ is an old Scottish term for a special kind of game warden. Back in the day, Ghillies were made to protect the Lords land from poachers, and adopted the use of camouflage suits to help with this. They would also hide in the long grass and wait for unsuspecting game to wander by, then jump out and grab them with bare hands. They would then take their catches back to the castle so the Lord could shoot it in the castle courtyard in a “mock hunt.”
These olden day Ghillies, using their keen tracking and stalking skills combined with their incredible camouflage paved the way to the evolution of Ghille Suits. These suits completely change the odds out in the forest and make it a lot easier to hunt successfully. More recently Ghillies have been introduced into the game of paintball, giving a whole new sniper element to the game.
The base of the Ghillie is laden with heavy canvas to help pad the snipers torso during the long hours of the day while he lay on his stomach. Ghillie suits are made specifically to act as camouflage in certain environments, whether it be desert, woodland, moss or all seasons. The Ghillie suit is covered with numerous strips and strands of burlap/jute and cloth along with other natural material attached primarily to the garment. There are a range of different Ghillie suit variations for each environment, and often local elements including vines, twigs and branches are entwined into the suit. The most common are the Bow Hunter, the Bush Rag, the Stalker and the Chameleon. The strips and strands that make up the camouflage vary in length from 6-18 inches. A complete Ghillie suit may have up to 1,000 strips and strands attached to it. These attachments are what make the Ghillie suit so effective in breaking up the human form and blending with the area surroundings. Ghille suits normally come in 3-4 parts, often including Ghillie gloves, a Ghillie hat and a rifle wrap, which compliments your Ghillie suit by concealing your rifle also.
Making the right decision on what Ghillie suit to use is also very important. When hunting from a blind where only your torso is exposed a Ghillie Jacket is best to use. When hunting in thick low growing vegetation, the Ghillie Poncho will give you greater mobility and still offer all the camouflage you need. When in hunting in sparse cover its pretty hard to camouflage yourself, even with a Ghillie, you can use the base of a large tree or rock as a good way to breakup your profile, standing next to anything will improve the effectiveness of your camouflage.
These days, the top Ghillie suits have seamless, synthetic material on the inside which is comfortable and light weight. Material would also be water-proof , rot-proof , mildew resistant , fire-retardant , washable , odor-less and non-allergenic. An ultimate Ghille suit is one where one can stalk effectively but still stay very mobile, it also pays to look for breathable Ghillie suits as they tend to overheat very easily.
To purchase a DIY Ghillie Suit Kit and other Ghillie Suit Materials visit GhillieGear.com