Monday, April 18, 2005

Field Test - Utilikilts

It's about FREEDOM.
I got a chance to test out my Utilikilt this weekend. I took the family camping in the mountains. Despite the snow and brisk evening and early morning temperatures, I was very comfortable. The Utilikilt is modeled after a traditional kilt, but has heavy cargo pockets and is made from your choice of colors and material. For my UK, I chose a heavy cloth with a woodland camo design. The waist band on the UK is about 3.5 inches, and each UK is custom designed to fit the owner's body type. Mine is 6'2", 250 lbs. with a beer gut and not much of a butt. On my outdoor outings, I like to have my survival tools. This weekend, I wore my Gerber multi-tool, Busse Battle Mistress, and a full-sized .45 caliber Glock. What is interesting is that I hardly remembered that my Glock was on. I believe this was due to the waistband resting in a spot that makes wearing a heavy load not uncomfortable. I also felt that the pleats in the kilt made my 15 inch battle mistress much less conspicuous. I never felt the kilt slipping, or the need to hike it up or adjust. I also noticed that just pulling my t-shirt out allowed me to completely conceal the Glock. That is a real bonus with summer right around the corner.

For hiking and jumping across creeks, the UK was outstanding. Very comfortable even if I did get a couple of cold splashes of stream water on areas that are normally covered. I did sustained a LOT of scratches and small punctures on my shins from briars, sticks, and from breaking firewood that I wouldn't have gotten if I were wearing thick jeans or BDU's. I also noticed that when I had to kneel, my knee was on the ground - not as comfortable as kneeling with pants. However, I believe the trade off is worth it.

I admit it was also a bit awkward manually pulling fabric under my butt when I sat on a seat. Bending over is a new experience too. I learned to be aware of which direction the wind is coming from. Once or twice, I had the feeling I was giving the neighbors a glimpse of my plumber's crack from the ground up, but nobody said anything, so I don't know for sure. Oddly, NOBODY even commented on the fact that I was wearing a kilt except for my 5 year old daughter who said, "Dad, why are you wearing a skirt?" and my 7 year old who lifted the back up to see what I had on underneath. Her gasp and snicker said it all. In stores, it was amazing that people hardly even seemed to notice. Clerks smiled to greet me, but no more than usual and never appeared to glance down or raise an eyebrow. The funniest was the National Guardsman who noticed me, did a double take, and then pretended not to notice me. Several times I would notice him looking at me, but when I would look right at him, he always seemed to be busy reading ingredients on bottles. I thing he was concerned that the camo kilt might become summer issue BDU's. :-)

When "nature called" another convenient aspect of the UK shined. For those who are modest or travel outdoors with groups, you can have plenty of privacy with the UK and still take care of business.

I also laid on a hammock for a while. It felt great and I must admit, some naughty ideas crossed my mind. I was so comfortable, I think I actually rested. If my family were not on the trip, I probably would have slept in the hammock overnight.

After two days in the woods, I was glad to throw it in the washing machine when I got home. From the washer, I just shook it, laid it flat, snapped the pleats and let it dry on the floor.

No seams, less heat, lots of cargo space, freedom of movement, and a great unique look all make the UK my new favorite clothing. I can't wait to get a couple of different colors. I think tan and black will be next.

If you desire Freedom, you can get it right away with the Utilikilt. For a good look at the UK and some very entertaining "Mock-U-Mercials" check out

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