Mossy Oak Rainsuits (buy online)
It all began in West Point, Mississippi, with a fistful of dirt. Obsessed with the notion of getting closer to critters, Mossy Oak’s founder and CEO, Toxey Haas, gathered up a bag of leaves, sticks and dirt from under his favorite hunting tree, walked into a fabric factory and dropped it on the counter. Facing an audience of startled faces he made a bold request, “Can you print fabric that looks like the stuff in the bag?” People snickered, shook their heads and probably contemplated calling security. Little did they know he was on to something big.
Toxey realized that the key to developing natural looking camouflage was to use natural elements: dirt, leaves, bark and limbs, along with their natural colors to allow the wearer to blend in perfectly with their natural surroundings. Before then, most camouflage patterns simply obscured the outline of the wearer, which made the person more difficult to see at a distance.
Mossy Oak's first patterns used natural elements and colors, and electrified the camouflage industry with specialized designs that made the hunter actually blend in to their surroundings, making them difficult to see up close. Bottomland, Greenleaf, Treestand, Full Foliage and Fall Foliage completely redefined camouflage effectiveness — and represented a giant step forward in camouflage design.
After hours and hours of field testing and hunting, Mossy Oak discovered that they had overlooked a critically important natural element. An element that was found in every type of terrain, during every time of the year: shadows. Shadows are everywhere; in the woods, in the duck marsh, and even in open fields — Mossy Oak's development team quickly realized that shadows are the most common element of nature.
The first "shadow" camouflage pattern introduced by Mossy Oak was Break-Up, which revolutionized the way people thought about camo. Break-Up was much more effective at concealment — in so many different hunting situations — that it quickly became a best-seller.
The secret to Break-Up was strategically placed shadows which not only enhanced the natural look of the pattern, they "broke up" the surface of the pattern, making it more difficult for the eye to focus on. Break-Up was as hard to see up close as it was at a distance, and soon serious hunters realized that Mossy Oak Break-Up was the closest thing to an all-purpose camouflage pattern that they had ever experienced.
Mossy Oak's development team quickly followed up on the Break-Up revolution with new specialty patterns that also employed shadows. Shadow Grass was introduced for waterfowl hunting, and instantly became the dominant pattern in duck marshes in every flyway. Shadow Branch was enthusiastically received by treestand hunters for late-season hunting when the woods lose their autumn color during the early stages of winter. Shadow Leaf became an instant hit with squirrel hunters, late-season turkey hunters and early-season deer hunters who sought concealment when the hardwood leaves were still green. And Forest Floor was introduced to provide maximum concealment when the fall foliage was at its peak. All of the patterns were uniquely designed for specialized hunting terrain, and all featured the same strategically placed shadows.
After many more hours in the field - and in front of computers - Mossy Oak discovered two exciting new ways to enhance the natural elements of our camouflage: an ultra-realistic bark pattern and ghost shadows. Using the computer, Mossy Oak generated an ultra-realistic bark pattern (based upon scanned images of oak bark) to replace the original Bottomland background in Break-Up. Then, they created light, soft grey oak limbs (to replace Break-Up's dark limbs) with dark "ghost" shadows to break up the surface. The ghost shadows were another Mossy Oak first, because they replicate the effect of shadows cast by branches that are in front of the pattern — between the pattern and the viewer — to create an enhanced 3-D effect.
The result was absolutely amazing, and Mossy Oak decided to call the "new" pattern New Break-Up. Introduced in February 2002, New Break-Up took the camouflage world by storm and remains a best-seller today.
In 2003 following the success of New Break-Up, Toxey Haas and the team at Mossy Oak released New Shadow Grass. Based on original Shadow Grass, New Shadow Grass features a computer-enhanced background of digitized red oak bark, which is overlaid with a subtly mottled Bottomland pattern. Next, extensive field research was conducted in various wetlands, prairies and fields to carefully select and position each blade of grass. Finally, the natural colors of the pattern were enhanced to develop contrast and definition creating a 3-D pattern that is ultra-effective in the field.
In 2004, Mossy Oak completed the final testing and development of an exciting new camouflage pattern named Obsession®. Designed to complement New Break-Up, Obsession shares many of the unique concealment elements we pioneered with Break-Up, and adds some exciting new visual features, which greatly increases its versatility.
Obsession offers the same proven effectiveness features as New Break-Up, but is built on the foundation of a lighter digitized background creating more versatile blending characteristics in a wider variety of woodland and non-woodland environments. The Obsession pattern uses a unique combination of proven Mossy Oak elements, like the same realistic limbs and ghost shadows used in New Break-Up, and new, carefully selected fall-tone elements mixed with strategically placed green leaves and vines. The result is a pattern that offers true versatility both geographically and season to season.
Then in 2005, after technology improved to the point that Mossy Oak could reproduce elements exactly as they are seen in nature, Mossy Oak tackled terrain that is wide open with little to no cover.
The first rule of camo is to blend into the natural surroundings, but let’s face it. Some of the most exciting hunts take place in areas where the only natural surroundings are the stubble and dirt at your feet. The fact is, disappearing on the open range is the ultimate concealment challenge, and one Mossy Oak wasn't about to pass up. Drawing on thier experience as hunters and driven by the obsession to get as close as possible, Mossy Oak introduced Brush – the ultimate, open-range pattern. Brush blends grasses, dirt, natural brush elements and subtle shadows to provide the ultimate concealment in places once impossible to find cover. Now you can hide in plain sight.
After celebrating thier 20th Anniversary in 2006, Mossy Oak started 2007 with a bang – a steel shot bang to be exact. Thier newest pattern, Duck Blind was designed to be equally effective across all waterfowl flyways from the east to west coast. Duck Blind is built on a base background of true dirt colors with different tones to represent wet and dry ground with elements of millet, wild oats, corn stalks, phragmites, Johnson grass, soybeans and native grasses selected and placed to achieve maximum effectiveness. Unique shadows enhance depth and create the ultimate 3-D effect. Finally muted shades of brown, tan, gray and soft black were added for blending into harvested fields, marshes and wetland environments. All you have to do is sit down – and be the blind.
It may have all begun with a fistful of dirt, but nobody really knows where it might end. Driven by both passion for hunting and intense desire to develop the perfect camouflage pattern, Mossy Oak is devoted to testing, trying, experimenting and questioning everything they do. It's a relentless quest for perfection and results in break-through thinking and trend-setting patterns.
After 20 years, Mossy Oak has become more than just a camouflage company – Mossy Oak has grown to embody an outdoor lifestyle. With apparel, nearly 1,000 licensees, BioLogic wild game seed products, Mossy Oak Productions, Mossy Oak Properties and now the online Obsession, Mossy Oak's many endeavors have been nothing short of ambitious. That's why Mossy Oak say's, "It's not a passion. It's an obsession."