When choosing the best pistol for every day carry there are many considerations for which gun to choose. I often carry a semi automatic handgun chambered in 9mm luger but my concealed carry gun changes based on the season - I choose to carry various types of pistols depending on the weather, which obviously dictates what I’m going to wear. For example, if I’m wearing multiple layers of clothing and a jacket because it’s cold, I’m more likely to carry a handgun in a right hand position versus an appendix position and potentially use a vest to mask my gun; versus putting that gun underneath my shirt where it would be more difficult to draw. I’m under the opinion that the handgun should fit the appropriate outfit. A favorite gun of mine to carry is a Glock 17 which is a full-size semi-automatic striker fired pistol which acts as a single action only (SAO). A full-size Glock pistol is not the ideal handgun for concealed carry for most as the barrel length and overall length of the gun in general, as well as the size of the polymer frame and grip is a little big for most people. But for me being a larger frame male I prefer to have not only a full-size frame that fits my hand well but also the round capacity to carry 17 rounds of ammo in the mag plus one in the chamber. In fact, if you add any standard base plate extension you’re going to get an additional 2 to 3 more rounds of 9mm ammunition on top of the already high capacity of the gun. The bottom line is I like to carry a different gun for different circumstances.
Now I’m going to outline what I carry for each type of clothing. If it’s summertime I’m not a fan of concealing my gun inside of shorts under a tee shirt. You lose all of the advantages in carrying concealed when someone can see your print through your shirt. I prefer to carry an everyday carry style pack that fits my environment. For example in places that I travel like Utah, Colorado, and Montana fly fishing is pretty popular. I’ll carry a Patagonia fly fishing bag that allows me to carry my survival kit and my medical trauma/first aid kit and a concealed gun. Many people argue that carrying a concealed handgun inside of a fly fishing bag defeats the purpose of carrying concealed because it doesn’t allow for a quick draw. I disagree because I think if you’re situationally aware, which means you’re taking in information, processing that information and then making deliberate actions or behavior then you’re likely to be ahead offensively. Meaning, I would stage the bag in front of my chest which would allow my handgun to be one zip away or one action away in the draw stroke when I’m in a more dangerous part of town.
I’ll typically carry the Patagonia fly fishing bag anywhere that I have a shirt that’s going to give away the handgun that I’m carrying. Another consideration is being somewhere where having the bag fits into the lifestyle, especially with the Patagonia fly fishing bag, based on my pattern of life it fits in everywhere I go.
For cold weather if I’m wearing a jacket and I’m out and about running errands or short duration trips meaning I’m not on the road on a long trip then I’ll put a revolver like a Ruger LCR 5 shot 38 plus P caliber revolver inside of my pocket. One, a hammerless revolver has a very long trigger pull, but also affords you the ability to be able to shoot through your pocket and not induce a malfunction. This makes a revolver a good pocket pistol versus carrying a semi-automatic pistol in kydex where I have to have it concealed in my waistband. This allows me to securely acquire a grip and address a potential threat by having my hand in my pocket and not giving away my intent or delaying my ability to react to a shooter or other threat.
Lastly, if I’m wearing a collared shirt, which is usually in a colder environment, I’m more likely to carry a full size SIG P320x-carry. A full-size pistol that large, I prefer to carry at the center of my belt buckle to allow for quick access but also for comfort while sitting. A lot of people who carry on the right side or the left side of their waist, have to readjust the holster inside of their belt as the grip gets in the way of seatbelts and chairs, making different seating positions uncomfortable and can be discouraging for somebody who’s new to concealed carry. Your concealed carry pistol has to be comfortable to allow for a reliable and consistent carry. The Fieldcraft Survival ‘inside the waistband holster’ (IWB) I designed for my time contracting with the CIA. I made this holster to allow you to press-check, load, and unload while still keeping the pistol inside the holster. I offset the clip on the holster to allow you to truly carry the pistol center of your belt buckle. You want to avoid having the backstrap of the gun near your hip flexors or the edges of your waist to avoid discomfort and printing. Check out our website at Fieldcraftsurvival.com for a line out of all of our holsters.
Mike’s every day carry:
Glock 17 9mm pistol inside the waistband with a Fieldcraft Survival inside the waistband holster (IWB)
SIG P320X-carry with a Fieldcraft Survival inside the waistband holster (IWB) or inside of a Patagonia Atom Sling 8L.