New Jack – Obōz Bridger Bdry Mids Review

New Jack – Obōz Bridger Bdry Mids Review

Introduction – These Boots Are Made for Walking

Whilst even though I’m on a temporary hiatus I thought I’d dust off the blog and run up a review on my new boots, the Obōz Bridger Bdry Mids in Maple.

I recall as far back as my formative years, when attending high school I’d clock up considerable mileage on foot walking the three miles there and back again.

As such, I actually consider walking not only enjoyable, but a past time too.

It was then, I started to take a keen interest in footwear and enabled by fathers time in the Marines, and ever intrigued by his latest and greatest boot he’d purchased for duty as a PoliceOfficer I heeded and absorbed no end of solid advice on what makes a good boot, and there subsequent maintenance and care.

Now, whilst in more recent years, due to my own career, I’ve not only been issued a slew of high end boots for duty – such Lowa, Alt-Berg and Meindl, I’ve traditionally worn, in all weathers a high boot not only for ‘PlasticDeth’ (Airsoft, MilSim – whatever your preferred nomenclature is) but, walking to and from work, and out and about in everyday life.

Why? well, despite living in leafy suburbia and my daily commute into the city, you’d be amazed the amount of mud, gravel, sand there is to traverse and not forgetting snow, ice and frost and of course the United Kingdom’s ever abundant precipitation.

In my teens I was very much taken by high end skate wear, however, I was alway crestfallen when they picked up dirt and grime or worse, not cope with the inclement weather or withstand the daily tread of urban environments.

I must confess, my like my daughters beloved Peppa and George, I too have a propensity to walking through muddy puddles. I take no end of pleasure, and affirmation putting the latest and greatest boots through a little bit of ‘water torture’ too …

Obōz Bridger Bdry Mids ‘Maple’ Boots

I discovered Obōz whilst seeking to replace my much loved and subsequently third pair of Salomon Quest 4D GTX’s in the ubiquitous ‘Absolute Brown’ – a truly superb boot, and as they where becoming harder to find in that color way, I turned elsewhere.

Initially looked long and hard at Crispi’s ‘Nevada’ boots, but being unable to settle upon an agreeable price, let alone find my size I was dissuaded by conflicting size conversion. However, it was here Obōz popped up on amongst my searches and with additional recommendation from GearWhores Anonymous I was compelled to take the plunge and jump all in …

Here, disaster struck, and the fledgling Obōz had no distribution outside of the States, nor could I find any in stock or at reasonable price without exorbitantly priced shipping costs.

Fortunately, my new boot dilemma was solved in the form of AKU’sPilgrimGTX’s and whilst they are just about serviceable, they’ve been retired after over a years very heavy use and abuse, I’m sure I’ll pick up another pair of those too, in the future.

So, again in need of new footwear, I found a UK based company stocking not only a wide selection of Obōz footwear, but my ‘grail’ the Bridger Bdry Mid – in the Maple color way too, with 40% off, I doubled down without a moments hesitation.

About Obōz

Outside + Bozeman = Obōz.

Based in Bozeman, Montana. Revolutionary footwear in groovy designs. Technical does not have to be dull! Obōz has just what you need when it comes to trail shoes, hiking shoes, hiking boots and mountaineering boots. Oh, and casual wear of course.

FACT: Being the good guys that they are, they plant a tree for every shoe sold.

FEATURES

Waterproof Nubuck Leather

• BDry Membrane: Keep dry when the trail isn’t. Our proprietary BDry membrane blocks water from wet trails while wicking sweat away.

Moulded Rubber Toe Cap

• Moulded Heel Counter: Snug heel hold that’s built to last. We mould this heel counter, making it extra durable against collapse.

Construction: Board Lasted

• BFit Deluxe Insole: A supremely supportive insole, engineered specifically for our shoes. The BFit Deluxe Insole stabilizes arches, protects high-impact zones, and costs nothing extra.

• Midsole: Dual Density EVA

• TPU Chassis – Lightweight, powerful armoring and stability. Our TPU Chassis provides featherweight, effective armour underfoot, reducing stone bruising and torsional twist.

• Nylon Shank

Outsole: Granite Peak

• Weight (approx.): 539 g

Review – A First Impression

Without a doubt it’s a great looking boot, well – in my opinion, and I’d wager as many of the aesthetics seen here are carried across the range of Obōz’ boots, it’s certainly proved popular with the ever growing legion of Obōz .

I’m a huge fan of the Maple Nubuck Leathers colorway, it offsets nicely against the orange and black furniture surrounding the boot, and it’s washed grey green Pantone suitably subtle and reserved for any setting.

More in importantly, the Nubuck is proofed offering the boots it’s initial first defense against precipitation and standing water.

I take no end of pleasure seeing water bead of any apparel and these boots are no exception.

Already trialed out in heavy rain and slick mud, the Bridger Bdry’s seem almost hungry for more abuse, the wetter the better.

It was here too, traversing through rain filled and slick muddy pathways the ‘Granite Peak’ outsole and TPU Chassis combined with the boots midsole’s dual density EVA really shined and performed solidly – offering real grip and traction, switching seamlessly from inch this mud to gravel within a beat and no impact on positive tread.

The outer soles patented ‘GranitePeak’ is aggressively cut and toothed elevating the foot and the rest of the boot, giving a generous elevation off and away from whatever terrain you are traversing.

Whilst it wore quickly, when worn on concrete, the outer sole does have a beveled texture and this gives the grip a nice tacky tread, especially when the deck is wet or slick from either rain or frost.

That said, other than the fine texture the soles have shown zero fatigue, damage or otherwise – they’re as tough as they are aggressive looking.

The boots rubberized toe cap pushes debris, dirt and dust and moisture away from the boot with ease, and here I’m happy to report its generously oversized so as you’d expect, offering not only protection from unwanted bumps and scrapes but admirably over performs.

Likewise the rear of the boot nylon shank offers protection and assists with a solid posture of the foot when laced securely against the ankle, despite being a lower cut mid boot, particular with the rear of the boots mouth being scalloped to allow great movement I nonetheless felt assured by the boots support.

So, essentially the two part sole forms a base, or rather platform within which the boots Nubuck outer and proprietary GoreTex lining sits, which is further protected by the rubberized cap and nylon shank.

However, Obōz haven’t stopped there, and put in the own in house designed Bfit Deluxe Insole, superior support, stabilizes arches, protects high-impact zones – it’s perhaps here thar truly the Bdry’s quality and innovative design is best represented.

All of the above is finished off with generously thick laces, which naturally secure the boot and lock off the tongue and mouth of the boot.

They fit true to size, and when properly opened and released utilizing the lace system they are very easy to don abs doff, and of course as easy to securely cinch too.

It’d be remiss of me to not mention the boots weight, at only 539g these are barely noticeable when worn, when you can tear your eyes away from how good they look that is …

I’m already an immediate fan, and as it stands today highly impressed, and as such looking at the slightly higher cut variant in black for work, particularly when duties call upon us to explore some unforgiving and muddy terrain.

I’d argue, despite the competitive price point, Obōz have very generously over engineered a very high end boot. The Bridger Bdry gives many of its high end competitors a serious run for their money. I’d best describe these as ‘foot armor’ – with its two part component outer sole offering abrasive traction and protection, the midsole giving substantial shock absorption too. Leaving the inner sole to cushion, support and assist the foots natural articulation and tread, rubber toe cap and nylon shank covering the front and rear – Obōz has your back.

Don’t just take my word for it, Rich over at the Reptile House, lauded them as the boot communities best kept secret and warmly welcomed me into the ‘secret cabal’ of Obōz faithful.

I’d encourage any outdoors enthusiast, experienced or casual walker or explorer – or even for that matter die hard exponent of ‘Plastic Deth’ to duly consider Obōz when looking to purchase a new boot. A truly welcome, and warmly received entry to the ‘gear locker’ – S23

*Bonus Section – Danish Endurance Merino Wool Socks

For years, I’ve eschewed perhaps the most vital part for truly enjoying and optimizing any boot I’ve owned, socks !!!

Whilst I’ve used either good quality cotton or wool socks, or generic thicker twill boot socks – I’ve missed out on what some of the hiking and trekking ‘boot communities’ have been enjoying for decades.

I’ve a few other brands to try, but initially opted for Danish Endurance’ Merino Wool Hiking Socks in Forest Green no less.

Danish Endurance Merino Wool Hiking Socks are the perfect hiking partner to help you perform at your best.

These socks are designed to keep your feet dry, warm and comfortable.

The cushioning will prevent your feet from getting blisters, aching and optimize ventilation.

1) Premium craftsmanship for durability

2) Perfect Anatomical fit

3) Optimum padding to prevent blisters and wick away perspiration

Constructed from 33% Merino Wool, 33% Acrylic and 33% Polyamide plus 1% Elastane – these are an ingenious hybrid of Boot, Sports and Support sock all rolled into one.

The thick Merino Wool panels offer warmth to the toes, heel and lower ankle. Acrylic calf and upper foot stretches to promote correct articulation and Polyamide stretch panels proffer support.

These compliment the boots no end and will be surely stocking up on more imminently – S23

S23 FAMILIA Mk 1.5 ‘Beer Mat’ 2018 Anniversary Edtn.

Qty Remaining: 77

http://s23familia.bigcartel.com/product/s23-familia-mk-1-5-beer-mat-2018-anniversary-edtn

**LIMITED TO A MAXIUM TWO PATCHES PER ORDER – THIS IS A PRE ORDER PLEASE ALLOW 2-3 WEEKS FOR DELIVERY**

Pre Order the classic ‘Beer Mat’ Cloth Patch – now, new, improved, and rejuvenated for 2018 we are proud to offer the limited Mk 1.5 ‘Beer Mat’ classic edition for 2018. Strictly Limited run to only 100 pieces, only a maximum of two patches per order – never to be repeated.

This is a redesigned variant of the original Mk I ‘Beer Mat’ originally produced by ToySoldier for us, which was subsequently put out as a ‘give away’ – the original patches went as far as Finland, Norway, Japan, Australia, United States, Canada, Germany, France, Belgium, Denmark, Poland, Sweden and of course all over the United Kingdom – S23

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Keepin’ It Real – Spotlight and Review on Scott Country’s Cannae Pro Gear Pt I ‘The Phalanx Two Day Pack’

Keepin’ It Real – Spotlight and Review on Scott Country’s Cannae Pro Gear Pt I ‘The Phalanx Two Day Pack’

The good people over at Scott Country reached out to us and spoke to us about having a good look at some of their Cannae Pro Gear Range.

Naturally, an exciting prospect, and a venture we were only too happy to undertake – as in fact we’d been already following their product range with no end of considerable insterest.

Cannae Pro Gear has an interesting and  cool history, and whilst I’ll save their modesty and blushes as I understand it, this is born from a renowned and since much longed for and lamented industry leader in gear manufacturing, who back in the early days where one of the leading innovators in modern gear and equipment.
Subsequently reborn, under the auspices of Scott Country, Cannae Pro Gear has been subsequently unleashed upon the discerning tactical gear world. That should perhaps, despite being somewhat vague give you, the reader a baseline from which to approach this review and the pedigree from which Scott Country’s Cannae Pro Gear is originates from.

Scott Country sent several pieces they thought would interest us the most, and more importantly you the reader. So much so, I’ve decided to give each one it’s own individual review.

This review, is the first of three and we’ll endeavor to give each one a detailed inspective insight into what each product is capable of.
The first piece of Cannae Pro Gear will look at is the Phalanx Full Size Two Day Pack w/ Helmet Carry



The Phalanx Features and Details

It’s significant to note, each bag comes with a label, this is well worth keeping as it gives you the end user not only a brief but succinct over of the bags features and details but includes the code for registering your product under their life time warranty policy.
Further more the card supplied gives a brief overview – ‘detail’ of the bags capabilities and functions.

• Comfortable Yoke Strap

• MOLLE Webbing along both shoulder straps

• Sternum Buckle (which also features an emergency whistle function)

• EVA Foam Air Circulated Back

• Removable Waist Belt

• Concealed Hydration Compartment

• Eye Protection Hard Pouch

• Patch Field

• Helmet Carry

• Quick Access Open Pocket

• Bottom Compression Straps

• 9 x 6″ Zipper Mag Pouch

• MOLLE throughout
All of this is supported by Duraflex Buckles, Hard Wear and Furniture including D-Rings and Clips, as well as YKK zippers with super grip pull tabs, and as you’d expect 500D Invista Cordura throughout.

… in Cordura we trust …
It dimensions are as follows:
• Capacity: 21 Litres

• Dimensions: 19.5″ in height x 11.5″

in width and a depth of 6″ (59.5 (H) x 29.2 (W) x 15.2 (D) cm)

• Weight: 2.9 Ibs/1.3 Kgs

Phalanx Review 
Literally, straight out of the packet or proverbial box if you will, The Phalanx screams function over form. That’s by no means to describe it as ugly or unbecoming in appearance, but perhaps in deference to other ‘prettier’ packs – The Phalanx is quite clearly here to do work and has some very specific tasks in mind.
It’s that no thrills honesty, that immediately draws an element of ‘old school’ admiration and respect.
Initial inspection clearly evidenced that this in the first instance has been ‘built’ with hard use – and abuse in mind.
Don’t let it’s broadly ambiguous appearance fool you or dissuade you against more aesthetically appealing products which may well lack some of the operability of Cannae’s Phalanx.

Phalanx Full Size Two Day Pack w/ Helmet Carry

The stitching is solid and consistent throughout, with many of the external pockets and the packs main ‘bucket’ being reinforced with additional ‘Cordura‘ panels, to protect not only contents, but the actual exterior from abrasive wear and tear and ensure longevity and prevent dreaded failure ‘in the field’ …

… hydration bladder is housed in the concealed pocket behind the EVA backer and has pocket to feed the bladders drinking tube through. Look closely and you’ll the emergency whistle on the chest straps clasp …
I was personally thrilled to see all retention straps are looped and stitched at the end, and feature a double side male and female Velcro ‘tidy’. This is ideal for cinching off the straps to size and not only storing them safely out of the way from snagging on branches or doors of vehicles or cargo holds but assists with keeping them locked at their desired setting. As you’d expect some of these straps are for assisting with expanding or compressing the pack, ultimately preventing contents needless rolling around and either interfering with ‘noise discipline’ or becoming unnecessarily jumbled about.

… fully loaded with primary, secondary, clothing and even a HSP D3 CR …

My initial overview and review here, was essentially an attempt to play with the bag and see just how much I’d could fill up its interior, what applications could I use it’s interior pockets and compartments for, and could I carry most if not all  of the equipment, gear and clothing I take out for longer extended events.

The answer to that quite simply is yes, but perhaps understanding the limitations of the bags volume, which is generous – but you the end user need to understand and decide on priority of packing, more critically what you intended to to immediately use, and what can be carried and drawn from the Phalanx as required.

… spare gear and clothing for inclement weather …

I’ll explain further. The Phalanx is broadly quite capable in the first instance of carrying my blaster when both the receiver and lower are disassembled, my secondary blaster, a jacket, such as soft shel shirt or light weight PCU and even at push, a spare set of pants and shirt. Additionally spare magazines, perhaps your primary load for both your rifle and secondary as seen here. As well your helmet utilizing the the exterior ‘kangaroo’ pouch as I’ve aptly nicknamed it.

… easily secures this Ops Core Maritime when on patrol …

The helmet storage –  functionality at it finest, however – and by no means fault of the Phalanx, but in my attempt to ‘pressure test’ just how exhaustive the pack could be carrying all of my immediate gear it proved to be a tight fit. However, as I mentioned earlier, it’s about managing your, or in this case my expectations. Here in this instance, once some of the equipment  has been deployed, such blasters, there’s a little more give and depth given back to the pack. As such using the retention straps and bungee paracord fasteners the ‘kangaroo pouch’ can be adjusted to accommodate your head PPE. Simply then drawing the straps tight your helmet is now secure, of course not forgetting to tidy those straps away with the supplied Velcro closures.


I’ve also here dropped in one of my Source hydration bladders, which sits inside the quilted and micro fleeced pocket, which zippered behind the back, which unlike many other packs has ‘concealed channel for feeding out onto the left shoulder strap, a nice touch often overlooked on other packs I’ve owned, and is perhaps indicative of the packs design and innovative thought that’s been applied throughout.


Sticking with my brief of seeing just how much I could get inside the Phalanx opening the main primary cargo pocket shows Cannae have used every inch of space to offering functionality. The main pockets opening aperture forms a zippered and pocketed tray. This has allowed me to store batteries, pens and markers, Cymalume’s, torch, watch cap and face wrap.

… main cargo tray features two mesh pockets for contents visibility and two partitioned lower pockets with a singular master zippered closure …

Inside the main cargo pocket you can see, I’ve got clothing, weaponry, magazines, gloves, headwear and much more. All of the interior is padded and quilted and alongside the walls of the main cargo area are again covered with micro fleeced lining to prevent wear and tear against the interiors contents when being moved around in vehicles, storage or during use. There’s two adjustable elasticated straps, my initial thoughts were to use these to retain my rifle when stored, but alternative they too can be used to compress larger items of clothing.

… secure …

The main cargo pocket also has an additional sleeve, with Velcro retention flap, again I intend to store in the first instance, shirt and pants here, but concur it’s of comparable size for either armor plates or even a laptop.


More importantly, the pack when fully loaded is an easy wear. Holding here, just short of 30 Ilbs it’s comfortable and the EVA padded back, in conjunction with the generously padded shoulders makes easy work of heavy loads.


This channels heat away from the body, using the meshed interiors of the straps to allow air to ventilate and EVA pads keep the pack off the back as much as possible again to promote good gear management.

Cannae Pro haven’t stopped there, it’s with good examination you’ll find lots of details and additional features such the external admin pocket.


The Padded Eye Pro pocket and patch field, which with its merrowed border which decreases wear and fatigue of the Velcro. Are just some of the many additional features that really make this pack a true contender for your attention.

Or the packs external right side pocket ideal for additional magazines – the possibilities are endless, limited only by your imagination.

I’m proud to welcome this to the gear locker, and keen to put it through its paces at Airsoft International’s Ai500 at the end of September.

It is The Phalanx’s shining strength, its versatility to switch between load bearing carriage option and quickly changing gears to be used as mission specific pack. Alternatively, using the compression straps it would easily be at home used as an every day carry pack be on outdoor adventures, to work or to and from training – S23

You can check out more from Scott Country and view all their products including Cannae Pro Gear at the links below:


Scott Country Web: https://www.scottcountry.co.uk/

Scott Country Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ScottCountry/

Scott Country Instagram: http://instagram.com/scott_country


Cannae Pro Gear Web: https://cannaeprogear.com/

Cannae Pro Gear Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CannaeProGearUK/

Cannae Pro Gear Instagram: http://instagram.com/cannaeprogear

**STICKERZ, PATCHES & GEAR** Head on over to and gear up at http://s23familia.bigcartel.com/ (link is also in my IG bio) and show your #ogpunkrockhardcoreplasticdeth #s23familia pride …

S23 is proud to collaborate with Project Delta Whiskey: http://projectdeltawhiskey.co.uk/
S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/
Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/
s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/
**Project Delta Whiskey & S23FAMILIA PTW Collaboration T-Shirt ‘Fortune Favors The Brave’ Now Availble** Available now in S, M, L, XL, and 2XL in Black or Grey: https://projectdeltawhiskey.co.uk/shop/pdw-s23-beer-mat-tailored-fit-tee

Spotlight review on WarCry’s HexCam Face Wraps

Spotlight review on WarCry’s HexCam Face Wraps

Lets start at the beginning. HexCam is a veteran owned and designed revolutionary honeycomb camouflage based on naturally occurring patterns found in several animal species. It’s versatile design has already been proven to perform well in a multitude of environments against some of leading designs in the industry.
We received two patterns, in the form of War Cry Apparel’s Face Wraps, from our good friends over at Allied Risk Equipment. Selecting two patterns that we felt best suited environments and topography that we most commonly found ourselves in.

… options – Allied’s Arid vs HexCam’s Spectre and Wasteland. All three are going in the kit bag, ‘one is none’ …
Before we discuss these further, War Cry CEO Gerry Searfoss had this to say, and puts this suite of camouflage into perspective – ‘Hexcam USA is a camouflage line under WarCry Apparel. As an American disabled veteran company it was our goal to bring a quality and functional pattern to the hunting, tactical and recreational community. The Hex is nature’s strongest shape, when combined with other hexagons it forms solid shapes within the pattern. With our patented shading and color techniques we have been able to create an illusion of three dimensional depth.’


Camouflage 
It’s that very quote which for me is pivotal to this review, and whilst I’m no authoritative expert on camouflage other than what I’ve used for perhaps the best part of decade –  a multitude of patterns with a varying degrees of success.
This success or effectiveness has in part been based on utilizing the right camouflage for the right environments. 
More often than not, most modern camouflage, ideally is perhaps employed in low light, and as I’ve often found using the wrong camouflage whilst operating in the pursuit of ‘fun’ can result in hilarious consequences – I can only imagine that in the real world, the consequences are dangerous and quite possibly fatal.
However, something the really intrigued me with HexCam, and it has been attempted both successfully and unsuccessfully by individual patterns and other suites of patterns is to create the illusion or the appearance of depth, shadow and ultimately disrupting form and shape which the human eye and brain instinctively and unconsciously pick up on.
Whilst almost virtually essay worthy in itself, most modern infantry, particularly those who are employed as snipers are trained to further utilize this concept and natural instinctive behavior to not only further conceal themselves but to spot and identify targets too.

HexCam

As stated above in the reviews opening introduction, HexCam have sought to provide a suite of patterns which emulate naturally occurring shapes and patterns amongst animals, plants, fauna and environments and use a series of naturally based algorithms to generate a series of shaded hexagonal patterns – which, in layman’s terms disrupt the perception of depth as perceived by the human eye.

Spectre vs Wasteland – just two of six patterns available, giving the option to choose a pattern best suited to the environment and specific light and topographical conditions …

I’d further describe this, as I can best example, it’s not entirely dissimilar to gazing into a heavily leafed tree. It’s almost three dimensional appearance creates an illusion of depth and distance, which is arguably counters, going some way, to preventing the human eye from naturally detecting shapes and form instinctively otherwise recognized.

… camouflage to suit your AO …
More over, HexCam have identified that perhaps no one pattern truly works in anyone AO. These variants include patterns such as Wasteland, Spectre (the two I selected to review) and additionally Makalu, Attica, Adirondack and 5-Echo.
These patterns obviously have some specific applications, however I chose Spectre and Wasteland specifically for several reasons. Both tonally used a series of color ways which I felt really best reflected the UK’s foliage and forestry and really resonated with my perception of colors, shape and form as seen and observed in low light, such as dusk or very early dawn. 

Specifically as we enter a time of year when the colors and shades of the UK really start to mix and change, these seemed ideal options as we enter Autumn.


HexCam Review

… blend in …


So, as supplied from Allied Risk Equipment, the Spectre and Wasteland patterns – where chosen by us. It’s certainly a visually challenging pattern, and whilst I really, really find it aesthetically appealing. It certainly could be argued, it won’t win any fashion accolades for being ‘pretty’.


It’s that very principle, that it clearly adopts the muted tones and shapes of environments at particular times of the year, specifically the Autumn – those muted washed grey greens and pale limes, combined with the dark browns, coppers and oranges which made me snap up Spectre and Wasteland variants.

Some of the tones are certainly evocative of palettes used by famous artists and illustrators in their landscapes – who using a select palette of tones, particularly to capture visually a particular time of day, or season for that matter. I in fact wondered if art had either consciously or subconsciously influenced HexCam’s design, or perhaps their study of nature had serendipitously arrived at the same conclusion.


Choosing between either two as a favorite is no easy task, as is deciding which is more effective – as such I’d argue that it’s perhaps akin to choosing a ‘favorite child’.

… Wasteland Pattern …

That however, is inconsequentially irrelevant is that ‘Wasteland‘ is my preferred option for day light use and ‘Spectre‘ will undoubtedly be employed during the low light of dusk and dawn as well as the gloom and shadow of the night. I’ve got an event coming up where I be employing both specifically in those very conditions.

… Spectre Pattern …

As exampled, I found that Wasteland proves to be a complimentary accompanying pattern to pre existing pattern amongst my collection, serving well alongside Multicam.


And the darker tones effectively alongside the venerable but ever popular M81 ‘Woodland’ pattern.


However, I would offer in countenance, true effective pattern disruption would best achieved utilizing either BDU’s or Technical Apparel in HexCam’s patterns, possibly even using several patterns at once. I for one will be seriously looking at Spectre patterns for pants and Wasteland for Shirt color ways and again combing with either a Spectre or Wasteland face wrap. 


So, to summarize, I’m highly impressed, in fact smitten with the two patterns issued here, and will putting these in the gear bag or day sack permanently f’sure – if only as its good to have alternatives and options, and these will sit perfectly alongside my MOE.Gun’s Allied Risk Equipment’s face wrap which we reviewed earlier this year, which is perhaps better suited for either the summer or more muted tones of winter.

… both patterns compliment and work with pre existing suites of patterns with ease …

Like Allied’s wrap – these wraps are constructed from 92% polyester and 8% spandex – which makes for a lightweight and breathable wear. Better yet, they’re tapered at either end and crocodile stitched along the ‘spine’ of the wrap which helps it sit more comfortably around the face and not otherwise gathering around the neck.

… Spectre – ideal for low light, dusk, dawn or the dead of night …
I’m aware, that these subsequently may be produced in a lighter and ventilated variant, needless to say retaining the pattern and colors seen here, but most possibly done so for use in warmer or more historically humid climes.

… perfectly suited to the UK’s, North Europe and North American foliage and fauna …

That said, in part why I’ve specifically chosen to look at the camouflage and its effectiveness as a pattern – its impressive, if only for the initial fact it’s broken my traditional perceptions of what a camouflage can do or what we should expect from other current patterns in use today – I’d go as far to call it ‘intelligent’ and look forward to seeing where, who and what’s it’s employed for – S23

**GO GIVE ALLIED RISK EQUIPMENT, HEXCAM & WARCRY A LIKE USING THE LINKS BELOW**


At Allied Risk Equipment has a very limited number of wraps and ball caps in stock, and as I understand it are the only current UK stockist, you can take a look or better yet pick them up here: https://www.facebook.com/alliedriskequipment/


You can keep updated with HexCam here: https://www.facebook.com/hexcamusa/


And of course check out projects, products and equipment from WarCry Apparel: https://www.facebook.com/warcryapparelco/

**BE SURE TO STOP BY THESE GOOD GUYS TOO**

S23 is proud to collaborate with Project Delta Whiskey: http://projectdeltawhiskey.co.uk/

S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/
**Project Delta Whiskey & S23FAMILIA PTW Collaboration T-Shirt ‘Fortune Favors The Brave’ Now Availble** Available now in S, M, L, XL, and 2XL in Black or Grey: https://projectdeltawhiskey.co.uk/shop/pdw-s23-beer-mat-tailored-fit-tee
Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/
s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/

Painkiller – Dan S from Red Troop gives an account of Ambush Adventures   Longmoor Event

Painkiller – Dan S from Red Troop gives an account ofAmbush Adventures  Longmoor Event

Foreword

I had the good fortune and pleasure of befriending Dan S from Red Troop a few years back, if memory serves on the 4th or 5th outing leading TF Viper at the Ai500.
I distinctly recall talking all thing Marui and NGRS as we swapped notes on blasters and admiringly snapped a few phot’s of his awesome blasters.


Well, suffice to say over the years since Dan has not only become a good friend and a long time supporter of the blog, and I all too frequently enjoy his updates and little pieces on all things Plastic Deth on both the Red Troop page and naturally his IG feed.


He recently enquired if I’d be attending an upcoming event at Longmoor FIBUA training camp, lamentably, I was thwarted from doing so due to yet more cancelled rest days …
So we invited Dan to document his exploits, better yet whilst alongside other luminaries from the blog, Diablo, Gray Fox and Cobalt, collectively formed here as CTF226.


Introduction

Getting up at 05:00 Hrs isn’t how I’d usually choose to spend my Sunday morning, but sometimes the game your attending makes it worthwhile. I was invited by a friend of mine, James (C12 from Cobalt) to play at Longmoor with Ambush Adventures alongside the collective of teams known at CTF226 or as they jokingly refer to themselves ‘The Pain Train‘. 


I’ve met a lot of the guys from Cobalt and Diablo from previous games so it was nice to have a reasonable sized group to be playing with, as I’m a firm believer that Airsoft is about those you play with and against …
A game can be whatever you want it to be if your with the right people. As for the site, Longmoor is a site I’ve been to a couple of times before and it has never failed to impress me, although its not a perfect site for Airsoft as some of the open ground can make assaulting buidings a real challenge. 
We arrived on site at around 08:30 Hrs and were shepherded into the FOB area to park up and get our gear ready, this also acted as a safezone throughout the day and was home to a small selection of stock the guys at Socom Tactical had brought down for sale.
I stocked up on a few extra flashbangs and smokes and then headed back to my car to do those final touches that never seem to get sorted until your on site …

Safety Brief

Radios programmed in, Comm’s tested and final pat downs and adjustments made to belts and straps. We grabbed our gear and headed to the safety brief. Safety briefs are something I have a love/hate relationship with …
Pretty much all the information isn’t often news to most Airsofters and generally the essential and site specific stuff is available in an event page or a warn off/pre-mission pack (as per Stirling Events) …
However, they are something you can’t really avoid and I generally try and just listen and not ask too many stupid questions. The Ambush Adventures brief was around 20 minutes long and included a few photos and videos to give examples and keep people entertained. Once the brief was out of the way we grabbed our kit and made our way to the bottom end of the village for our ‘re-gen’ point to dump our day sacks and grab bags, unfortunately we had longer to walk and either through a comms error or an eagerness to begin, we ended up being caught in the middle of a firefight halfway to our start point. 
The first game was a warm up, something i’ve not encountered at a ‘MilSim‘ game before, although I didnt have any misconceptions about this being anything more than an objective based skirmish at a good site run by a very experienced team. 


The defining characteristic for me at a MilSim is that the stucture of an event is geared towards the tension and the anticipation of a good firefight rather than just wading in straight away, this event was always quite clearly going to be a battle of attrition from the moment game on was called. 

Assaulters Up

With this in our heads, myself and the guys from CTF226 (This time made up of Cobalt, Gray Fox and Diablo) we decided that to win the day we had to deny the use of the village to the opposition – and with the buildings near the railway being key to holding the whole area, we pushed in. 


Easier said than done as it turns out, the other team had set up in the very first set of buildings and were raining fire down on us from the moment we were in range. We decided that flanking to the right and taking over those buildings would give us freedom of movement along all three lines of housing and the adjoining gardens and alleyways. 
After gaining access to these buildings a few of us pushed forward to take the furthest line of houses, although with limited access points we had to make use of the windows and hoisting guys over the eight foot walls to gain access throught the gardens. I was massively impressed by the holes these guys could squeeze themselves through and on a number of occasions we came up behind the unsuspecting enemy and cleared them out the buildings. 
Throughout the morning we moved back and forth between re gen and the contested buildings and although the hit taking wasnt perfect, there was a slight breeze that could have accounted for some of the longer shots missing their mark. The marshals were always around but never in the way. 

Rearm

The weather started to get warmer and warmer throughout the morning and I managed to get though my entire hydration bladder before we were called to ceasefire for lunch at roughly 13:00 Hrs. 


I had packed a small lunch but the smell of Pulled Pork rolls wafting through the air grabbed my attention (no surprise to anyone who knows me). Lunch was a whole hour, I feel this really cut into the amount of game time we had, and although I’m sure my body was grateful for the rest and time to grab another couple of pints of water I think 30 minutes would have been plenty.
After lunch, we made our way back to the regen point and I decided to cut down on the kit I was carrying. I had barely managed to keep up with the other guys in the morning, and my plate carrier had caused a few issues getting through mouseholes etc …

Gear Change

A quick swap to a Haley Stategic D3CR and simply mounting my holster on my trouser belt really lightened to the load, although I had to make some hard decisions about what I could carry. In the end, my afternoon loadout consisted of 5 PMAGs, 3 glock mags, comms, 4 smokes and a few frags chucked into cargo pockets. It wasnt perfect but I knew it would allow me though smaller gaps and make crossing that openground a lot quicker, It would also make storming buildings quite painful unless i got the drop on them. The remainder of the afternoon we ended up being cut into 2/3 units due to high numbers of casualties returned to re gen, although having effective comms meant that we could effectively inform each other of friendly and enemy positions. 
The gameplay had slowed down a little by this point and generally we were holding buildings and denying their use to the other team, something that was pretty simple as most people had become a lot slower and I suspect a few had mild dehydration and thus were not performing as well as they could have been.


EndEx

At 16:30 Hrs game over was called, this was a touch early in my opinion as with the lunch break of an hour and the late start in the morning it had cut us to just 4 hours of gameplay. Having said that, the late start wasnt completely their fault and they did try and get everyone sorted and ready to go as soon as possible. There was even a case of at least two players being turned away after the gate closure at 09:30 Hrs, very unfortunate for the guys involved but it does show that they were trying to stick to their published schedule. All in, the walk on was £40 which I feel was worth it for the game I played.  

Final Words

Would I recommend the site? Absolutely. Would I recommend the Event team – yes, but as with all events, make sure you know in your head what type of game this is and have a clear idea of what you want to get out of it. I went into the game with a simple objective …
Storm buildings, shoot people and have good fun with some likeminded people, I was happy at the end of the day because I had accomplished all three of my objectives. I dont know which team won that day, nor do I really care … 
If it was part of a storyline I had invested time and energy into such as Infiltration’s “DystopianSim” or Stirling Airsoft’s ongoing “Chadistan” conflict I might have fought harder for the greater good, but without the groundwork there I simply wanted to put all those expensive toys to use and play Plastic Deth!


My thanks to Diablo, Cobalt and Gray Fox for allowing me to join them for the day, also to Bob and Doug from Reading Gunners who it was nice to catch up with. The event staff for running in my opinion a sucessful day and finally to my wife, for not killing me after waking her up at 05:00 Hrs – Dan S

(**additional photography courtesy of Gray Fox, Diablo and Cobalt**)


Catch up with Red Troop here: https://www.facebook.com/redtroopairsoft/

Ambush Adventures: https://www.facebook.com/Ambushadventures/

Gray Fox: https://www.facebook.com/grayfoxairsoft/

Cobalt: https://www.facebook.com/CobaltAirsoft/

Diablo: https://www.facebook.com/DiabloAirsoft/


**GET EM’ BEFORE THEIR GONE**

S23 Mk II ‘Beer Mat’ Patcheshttps://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/322506771568

S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/


s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/


Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/

Take by Force – MoeGuns Face Wrap Spotlight 

Take by Force – MoeGuns Face Wrap Spotlight 

You may well heard of MoeGuns.Com, I certainly have and as 51k will testify they have too …

Based in Colorado, the United States, as simply stated they are dedicated to creating the coolest products of all time. This is no idle boast, trawling through their back catalogue – they surely have an impressive catalogue of cool patches and apparel, for real steel shooters, military, law enforcement and of course fans of ‘Plastic Deth’ (Airsoft/MilSim).


By way of thank you, for our recent review of Strike Force Energy, our very good friends over at Allied Risk Equipment Consulting have sent down two of MoeGuns face wraps to try out and naturally give you an overview …


We’ve got the UK ‘Arid’ variant – made in Colorado, extremely comfortable moisture wicking fabric UPF 50+ Sun Protection One size fits all Extremely awesome Not welcome in the EU !!!
As they go onto explain, for our brothers in arms across the pond! Drink tea, curbstomp Nazi’s, and pour vinegar on everything in style!  


I’ve long been a proponent of the face wrap, regardless of the weather, which here in the UK is more often inclement, and as such often have one in my pocket or day sack, always.
Great for the biting cold and frost of winter, and as moisture wicking neck gaiter during sunnier climes.
I’ll confess, patriotic as the next man, purely out of personal choice – large items adorned with our countries flag have always struck me as a little cliched. However, here the distressed patterning, subdued mottled tones of the chosen color ways selected – here make for a more subdued and sublime affair, complimenting any other camouflage worn.

It’s always the little details that please me, and here MoeGuns have delivered in style with a concealed label print replete with US flag printed just short of the seam, a nice touch f’sure.


Both ends of the wrap are double stitched, opposed to most wraps which are just cut, and prone to becoming frayed or rolling up on themselves, this with its scissor stitched seam, helps retain its shape, form and height.


 Besides, if anyone gets too close to recognize the iconic bars of the ‘Union Jack‘ flag it’s either too late for them or they’re a friend …


These are also, available in ‘Betsy Ross‘ and ‘Blue Line‘ variants, as well as Australian and Canadian patterns – the latter with its oversized Maple Leaf looks really bad ass !!!


Comprised of 82% polyester, 8% spandex these are a lightweight, breathable option for those looking for a functional alternative to solid block colors which have traditionally dominated the market for years. Better yet, with a little added patriotic morale.
These are of course available from MoeGun’s web store (see link below) but, for those based in the UK or for that matter Europe, these are available exclusively from Huey’s Military Tactical Outdoor store. 


Huey’s deserves a special mention here, along with MoeGun’s wraps these guys are truly an overwhelmingly stocked online emporium of military, outdoor and tactical gear and equipment. Often all offered at incredibly competitive pricing supported by second to none customer service – check em’ out for yourselves.

This Union Jack variant is exclusively through Allied Risk Equipment, and available from Huey’s MTO

**UPDATE**


I’m pleased to announce Allied Risk Equipment are back with a new 2nd variant now in a very fetching and contemporary ‘urban grey’ better yet featuring their company logo – the best just got better. You can pick this up directly from Allied Risk’s FB store here: https://www.facebook.com/alliedriskequipment/posts/822623911248560

Or as it’s been reported Huey’s MTO will also be carrying these exclusive variants.

So, to summarize – MoeGun’s have, much to my initial chagrin, produced here a face wrap which has to my own surprise become an instant firm favorite and now sits securely in my day sack as part of Every Day Carry – in part, it’s design is actually after all quite appealing and more importantly comfortable and with plenty of stretch and give makes for an easy wear – S23

**COMPETITION**


We have an MOE face wrap and three boxes of Strike Force to give away, simply head on over to our Facebook page to enter: https://m.facebook.com/S23GolfMike75/

**GET EM’ BEFORE THERE GONE** Limited Second Run of our Mk III 3rd Anniversary Patch – Get Em’ here: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/322503518954

Check out more from MoeGuns here: https://www.moeguns.com/

Check out Huey’s MTO here: http://www.hueys.co.uk/epages/es151784.mobile/?ObjectPath=/Shops/es151784

https://www.facebook.com/alliedriskequipment/

S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/

s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/

Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/

Infiltrate – High Ground Gear Single-Hand, Drop-Down MBITR / PRC-148/152 Pouch Spotlight 

Infiltrate- High Ground Gear Single-Hand, Drop-Down MBITR / PRC-148/152 Pouch Spotlight 

I’ve been sitting on this review, a long list of chores and interviews I’ve yet to complete. As it stood today, I’m able to cross this of the ‘to do list’ …

TRI MBITR AN/PRC 152’s

A few years back, I was fortunate enough to pick up what was then, a slightly more reasonably priced pair of Triumph Industries PRC 152 MBITR Radios (TRI).

… comm’s check …

Whilst I’ll defer to our more learned colleague over at the ever awesome Tactical Associates, these for me are a huge leap beyond the battered Motorola’s of old. Durable, functional and packed with features make them one of the go to high end choices for MilSim and Plastic Deth Communications.

Originally, one sat in the MBITR wing pouch on my much missed JPC, in the OEM wing mount pouch. However, shortly thereafter acquiring the CPC, not wanting to abide with the fixed MBITR pouch already on the carrier. Neither did I want the standard MBITR pouches I’d historically used on former load outs, such as Eagle Industries RLCS or SFLCS options. 

Old school …

I wanted something a little more tangible, something which I could palpably manipulate and give such a stunning functional communications platform a worthy home. Additionally, that brief had not only had to include a secure protective system of carriage, but one that screamed functionality and would allow easy access to operate …

Enter High Ground Gear Single-Hand, Drop-Down MBITR / PRC-148/152 Pouch

… new school !!!

High Ground Gear (HGG), quite aptly and succinctly offered this product description- This Drop-Down MBITR Pouch embodies our philosophy of “head up, eyes on the enemy”. Unlike all other drop down radio pouches, this one is designed to be opened and closed with only one hand so you can keep one hand on your weapon at all times. Not only that, but it gives you unlimited access to radio screen, buttons, and battery. As always, we provide an opening in the bottom so you can change batteries on the fly without having to disconnect from cables and head-sets. Also, by routing cables through the cable retention points, you will prevent your radio from getting hung up on cables every time you want to view the screen. Basically, this is the smoothest handheld radio pouch ever made. Stop communicating, start shooting – HGG

Additional Features/Specs:

•Single-Hand Secured – keep one hand on your gun


Quite simply put, as per this pouches design brief allows you to have your blaster up in the fight, and access your radio without taking your eyes of the target.


This is achieved by simply releasing the Nexus Fastex ITW buckle, and pulling the padded/quilted pouches torso away from the rigid backing, which naturally attaches to Plate Carriers and Day Sacks via the MOLLE points on the rear.

Once open you can access the radio  without removal, changing and manipulating its functions with ease and without having to disassemble your comm’s to do so.

To put back in position of carriage, gently pulling the two draw strings attached to the buckle pulls the pouch, ergo the radio close to the body, simply fasten the buckle and your good to go.

•Zippered Battery Access – cables/antennas stay on while you change out


Superb functionality here allows you to access your battery, switching it out in seconds without removing the radio, or removing the pouch. 


Better, it saves the need to remove and disconnect comm’s cables, PTT’s and antennae when switching out batteries as it can now simply stay in place.


•Smart Cable Retention – cables never impede drop-down access

Both internally and externally, the pouch is outfitted with four hook and loop retention points. 


Allowing for easy management of excess cabling, even stowage of the antenna and as you can see here, a chem light and pen !!!


•Total Port Access – side ports large enough for Silynx connectors

 

Two ports are cut either side, either for attachment of PTT connectors that utilize the side port pin attachment or just to press the radios PTT manually.



•Weight: 0.34 LBs

Despite dropping in features, reinforced stitching, zippers and buckles it’s a paltry 0.34 LBs, which with the minor impedement of additional weight of carrying comm’s, is a warmly welcomed small mercy. 


It’s impressive nonetheless when considering it’s plethora of features.

•Materials: 500D

Made from the ever durable 500D Cordura HGG have produced possibly as it stands, one of the definitive radio pouches on the market. It’s quilted outer, offering a modicum of protection and with its stiffened backing attachment point, you have confidence that your comm’s are not going to be needless knocked or damaged when brushing through door ways, or exiting and entering vehicles.

It’s little touches that really finish it off, such as the admin loops for policing excess cable, and even the MOLLE has laced loops for easy and speedy attachment to your chosen form of carriage.

To conclude, this is a superb option to truly consider when looking not only for carriage solutions, but comm’s management too. Intuitive, adaptive and easy to install – it’s earned and won its place in my gear locker with ease – S23

Check out more from High Ground Gear here:http://www.highgroundgear.com/products/single-hand-drop-down-mbitr-prc-148-pouch

**GET EM’ BEFORE THEY’RE GONE- LAST FEW LEFT** Thank you to all that have preordered, we are due to start shipping imminently – however we a have a few left. Whilst meant as surprise, these patches will not only come with a ‘S23 Diamond’ stickers, but a limited oversized ‘S23 Diamond Bumper Size’ sticker too – by way of thank you for support and patience. Limited Second Run of our Mk III 3rd Anniversary Patch – Get Em’ Here: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/322471234559

S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/
s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/
Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/


Planet Caravan – Airsoft International Exclusive Content

Planet Caravan – Airsoft International Exclusive Content

Each and every month we produce exclusive content for the venerable pages of Airsoft International. Often commentary based, a social conjecture on the scene, or overview on its myriad of genres, to reviews, load outs and more …

Vol 12 Issue 11 http://www.ai-mag.com/product/airsoft-international-magazine-volume-12-issue-11/?v=79cba1185463

Just short of our third anniversary we penned this piece originally printed in Vol 12 Issue 11, a return to our skirmishing roots – and as such, to give you the chance to see what we produce each month for Airsoft International I’ve reprinted it in long form.
Territory – Elite Action Games Site Visit


Roots



Every Sunday thousands of players, in the UK descend upon their local Airsoft sites. Regardless of weather, rain or shine – they turn out to once again wage ‘War’ and make much ‘Plastic Deth’ …


It’s with this very enthusiastic approach to our beloved past time that I and very good friend Jon A descended upon what not only was my home site for many years, but also significant in that this was where my very first skirmish took place.

Inside Knowledge



Often overlooked, the genre of Airsoft commonly known as Skirmishing is for many not only as good as it gets, but perhaps a commonality amongst most most if not all players. Undoubtedly I’d wager, most MilSim gods, Speed Soft fanatics, and even RealSim re-enactors where born on your venerable skirmish field.


It’s this ethos that drove us to get out of the office, not only to re live the glory days of our origins, but to see what thousands of you, our readers religiously follow week in week out.

Furthermore, we thought it only fair, whilst revisiting old haunts we’d also review one of the UK’s best and most established Airsoft sites, the Airsoft International award winning Elite Action Games in Surrey.
Biased or not, many years before officially coming onboard I penned the very review that accompanied their site award way back in 2009.
Regardless, I’m keen to find out not only how the site has evolved, and more relevantly, why after all these years the buzz for Skirmishing has not waned, but grown exponentially.
A little history, not long formed before I actually started playing ‘Plastic Deth’ EAG Dorking (or Delta Kilo as I later affectionally coined it after its popular Nam based games). Was the sister site to both EAG Worthing, and the now sadly lamented CQB mayhem that was EAG Epsom, popularly known as ‘The Tunnels’.

Return to Strength



Anyhow, virtually almost exclusively for two and a half years, I cut my teeth and virtually every other weekend saw me descend upon EAG Dorking, ever refining my load out and more importantly my skill set. 


Woodland based sites are not always to everyone’s taste, preferring either CQB based arenas or more urban style sites. However, here’s where EAG excels, it utilizes its extensive undulating terrain, eerie forestry and existing fauna and foliage not only to its advantage. They’ve considerably added to its vast size with buildings, fire bases and entrenched positions to best facilitate not only game play, but to create a tactically complex AO for you as player to operate within. 


This allows for any given scenario run over the course of their walk on days, any number of options and solutions to approach your opposing force.


Yes, it’s skirmishing, but they’ve cleverly disguised it and embellished not only the site, but the game play to provide a far more immersive atmosphere be it the casual passing player, young gun or veteran MilSim aficionado. 
So, it’s this premise that only furthers what is aside from a truly natural beauty spot, but lends an atmosphere of suspense and terror that would easily lead you to believe your fighting across the Mekong Delta, in the height of summer an Ecuadorian jungle or in winter, Cold War Northern Europe.

This is all bolstered by friendly, amenable and professional staff, who as enthusiasts of the hobby themselves work long and hard to deliver a top day to all present. 

Safety Brief


So, back here after few years absence whilst crossing the country playing at a whole slew of sites, and event. It appeared whilst much had changed and been improved upon it was reassuringly familiar. I must confess, I’ve missed the relaxed atmosphere and pre game amble as people gear up over a hot drink.
Safety briefing was succinctly informative, detailing the rules and site regulations without sending everyone to sleep, but more importantly reiterated EAG’s long standing commitment to safety, fair play and honest hit taking. This ultimately set the tone for the day, that we are all here to have fun. 


Martin, head marshall admirably picked up the slack whilst John recuperates from recent surgery – was keen to iterate and explain to us that the sites key ambition, as it always has, is to ensure varied and different styles of objective gameplay. This, is because whilst the site attracts a large number of new and old players who descend upon the site, they are keen to offer something that entices more veteran players from other genres of the past time.

Assaulters Up


First game of the day was, whilst a simple premise, was an attack based scenario. Here, including my accompanying photographer and two other long standing players – simply put, we took on the remaining sixty players who took up defensive positions with the labyrinthine FOB.


As we assaulted from two flanking positions, fallen players joined our side and increased our attacking force until only a few remained.
Here, the newly built FOB, built upon the remains of the old ‘Paintball’ fort really shone. Once inside its newly increased size is broken down into maze of corridors and doorways with elevated fortifications and watchtowers. 

It’s really cool to transition for woodland assault to interior CQB and this scenario allowed for a great start to the day.

Ammo Dump


Despite the weather being absolutely diabolical, much of the earlier snowfall still being present. The site despite being swamped in huge knee deep pools of rain and slick mud over sixty players had braced the cold and wet to break the post New Year blues.
To be fair, all credit to the site the mud and rain only added to its character, and fighting through the slimy muddy undulating undergrowth for me just made it all the more immersive.
So, everyone freshly warmed up from the first bout, we broke into a very simple domination game fighting over munitions in the middle of the Cable Reel field. This was essentially a good excuse to get into a good old firefight. I’d lost none of my enthusiasm as I and my buddy soon managed to find a well concealed fighting position overlooking the munitions we’d been tasked to retrieve. Despite scoring an incredible number of hits against the OPFOR, they clearly had determination on their side, despite heavy casualties they retrieved far more ammo than we did.

The Sands of Time



Before we departed, an old favorite of mine, was wheeled out. An old military crate, armed with a switch to reverse the lights between red and green was situated in the dead ground between the Cable Reel field and the old Fire Base.
Simply, teams had to fight across these two positions, switch the crate to their designated color, the device recording the time spent on either red or green, the longest accumulated time being the winner.
Whilst this may sound a rudimentary and basic affair it’s designed to, and works very well at encouraging both teams to utilize the expansive natural terrain and constructed cover and defensive positions to flank and block each other, all the whilst under a withering hail of fire. 
All credit to the players who braved the obnoxious weather and biting cold, we all became so immersed in the firefights we nearly forgot about the box altogether. So intent on moving and firing between cover and flanking positions, people where having just too much fun.
It’s this which perhaps one of EAG’s strongest assets in its armory. It’s commitment and longstanding experience amongst it organizers and experienced marshals to ensure attending players have fun.  

FOB Delta Kilo


Whilst the remainder of the site set off to explore the remainder of the site and play out several scenarios before lunch, I and Jon set about taking a really good look at the new FOB. A formidable four walked structure, it poses as an intimidating presence in what is an already expansive and varied site. With its watchtowers elevated fighting positions not just along its walls but across the FOB as well, it gives defenders a 360 degree defensive view.


Once inside, here transitioning to a pistol is the way forward, it’s breaks down in a confusingly good warren of passage and walkways. This allows for some superb, frenetic CQB action. The walkways too, add to the 3D combat as they allow defenders elevation with which to pour down fire on would be invaders.

EndEx



So, a welcome return to the skirmish field. Possibly in today’s generation of players who pursue ultra realism within MilSim, or the thrills and spills of frenetic paced Speed Soft, the skirmish genre has possibly become overlooked, forgotten maybe even neglected. It’s was a very welcome reminder what I’d been missing. Good old fashioned action, getting gears and kit dirty and muddy whilst slinging plastic in long and hard fought gun fights was an exhilarating and refreshing change of pace. 


Hey, at the worst I got a great days exercise and much needed opportunity to refresh my skill set.
Better yet I got spend my day in the company of some truly superb Airsofters, who’s hit taking, honesty and integrity towards gameplay is truly commendable. All bolstered by enthusiastic marshall’s who only seek to further drive the days games to ensure they long continue to reach heady heights of excitement and action.
A Snipers View



Longstanding friend, and today my photographer Jon A wheeled out his formidable PTW in the guise of a Mk 12 Mod 0.



Jon’s
been a longstanding player for over a decade, and like me, has branched out into the more immersive world of MilSim. Today he too was keen to explore his skirmish roots, and get back to basics.
(Here he us through hit taking, being behind the long gun and how the site best lends its self to taking long shots)

As Andy S23 said, I’ve been playing for over ten years, in such time I’ve drifted over to the more immersive MilSim structured events.
After a brief hiatus, I returned to the scene – complete with tuned and superbly accurate PTW in the guise of a Mk 12 Mod 0 SPR.
Returning to not only a site I frequented but to return to the skirmish scene was an intriguing proposition.
That said, the terrain, foliage and heavy tree line really allowed me
to move around, get some good line of sight on the opposition putting down either accurate sustained fire, or even suppressing the opposition to allow team mates to move up.
As much as he’ll hate me for saying it, I prefer to run a far lighter load out, allowing to carrying enough magazines to stay in the fight without getting snagged on branches and bushes.
This, ultimately assists with just getting down on the ground, prone, comfortable and behind my blaster to take the shot I’ve spent ages getting into position with out compromising concealment.


Despite the poor weather, like S23 a good soft shell, with a warm under layer proved more than adequate to keep me warm and dry. Boots were coupled with Seal Skin socks, I just wish I’d brought my gaiters.


Hit taking was fantastic, and reassuringly gives confidence to just relax and enjoy skirmishing – a friendly well run site, varied terrain, all made for a fun day out. Jon A



Skirmish Gear

So, as the weather was so inclement, a segue on from my previous article on cold and wet weather gear, here’s a quick run down on the gears and kit I assembled for the day at EAG in the pouring rain.


As I knew beforehand that it’d be bitterly cold, sitting only just above minus temperatures I ran my Lightweight Thermal PCS smock, this not only kept me warm but over laid with my Patagonia Lvl 5 Soft Shell, dry too.


As previously discussed a few issues back, it doesn’t have to be bank balance breaking, but some good quality apparel that’s well maintained can make all the difference between sitting on the sofa watching television or really getting out and into the mix with the best of em’ – regardless of just how bad the weather gets.


However, I’d decided that as today was going to involve a lot of running around, even in the cold this may cause core temperatures to rise. So, to mitigate that I ran ToySoldiers MBAV, with only training plates to reduce weight, and naturally give some modicum of reference to visually sporting, aesthetically at least my usual load out. This was ably coupled with Haley Strategics D3 Chest Rig, which gave me an ample supply of four magazines upfront, two secondary magazines and the ability to carry flash bangs and munitions to reload. This coupled with Crye’s MRB belt which supported my dump pouch, admin reload for my pistol also carried an additional four magazines if I really got pinned down in any heavy firefights. Initially feeling somewhat lost and bewildered without all the usual trappings of gear carried, but this proved to be a very successful happy medium. I satiated the inner gear fiend whilst keeping low drag and high speed with the best em’ …


I gave the new Patrol Incident Gear FDT gloves a good run out, whilst soon soaking wet and slick with mud the held up well and dried exceptionally fast. I’m keen to keep punishing these, purely just to see what they’re really made of and can they withstand the rigors of aggressive gaming.


Likewise, the AKU Pilgrim GTX boots, often submerged whilst crashing through puddles and slick mud kept my feet dry and gave a reassuring sure footed grip throughout.


This, really worked out well – it was a lightweight low drag load out, even with the obligatory helmet (better safe than sorry, as I’ve a predisposition to bashing my head). It also gave me the option, had the rain subsided to either ditch the soft shell, or if I’d started to overheat remove the lightweight thermal pullover. 
All this aside, Jet Boil and Aeropress was on hand to make up a fresh cup of coffee.

However, as it stood Mother Nature did her best to freeze and drench us all off site. Nonetheless, despite such poor weather I remained, otherwise dry, comfortable and in the fight. A testament to modularity and layering the right technical clothing can ensure fun can be had skirmishing despite what the weather sends your way – S23


You can catch with all the up to date news, game dates and information for Elite Action Games here:


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EAG.Admin/

Web: http://www.eliteactiongames.co.uk/


** S23 Mk II ‘Beer Mat’ Patches Back In Stock And Available Here **

Wether your rocking Multicam, M81, DCU, UCP or solid greens, tan or black you can now show your S23FAMILIA pride …

S23 Mk II ‘Beer Mat’ PVC patches back in stock – S23

You can get your Mk II patch right here:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/322506771568


Celebrating our third anniversary of the blog, we have created our third Mk III patch – the S23 patch.

Measuring 5.6 cm by 3 cm in ‘burnt orange’ with black embroidered 23 – our S23 ‘Ranger Diamond’ celebrates the very best of the S23 Familia ethos.
This is a pre order limited to only 50 pieces – delivery takes 2-3 weeks – S23

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/322503518954

S23 is proudly sponsored by ToySoldier: http://www.toysoldier.com.hk/
s23 is proudly sponsored by Emperion: http://emperionstore.com/
Don’t forget you can read our articles exclusive to Airsoft International each and every month:http://www.ai-mag.com/
S23 proudly supports Allied Risk Equipment Consulting https://www.facebook.com/alliedriskequipment/