The computer generated "Temperate Woodland" pattern (shown) was adopted in the early 2000's and was a substantial camouflage improvement over the earlier single olive drab colour for combats. The military is now testing a new design (Frédéric Peing -Rad-Can

Canadian military testing new camouflage combat uniforms

Several hundred soldiers at the Canadian Forces base in Petawawa Ontario will be wearing new combats (what Americans call “fatigues”) this month.

It’s part of a new programme to replace the current uniforms.

It used to be that the army simply had olive green combat uniforms In the late 1990’s, a new computer-generated pixilated design was created called the CAnadian Disruptive PATtern- known as CADPAT.

Starting at the end of September 2019, 3rd Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment will begin wearing coats and trousers, shell fragmentation protective body armour, bush caps, helmet covers and rank patches in the “Prototype J” mid-spectrum pattern. (Pte R Kingerski-Canadian Forces)

It was issued in three colour styles for different environments, a mostly green “Temperate Woodland”, a tan/brown “Arid regions” and a mostly white “Winter” pattern.

A member of 3rd Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment, wearing the current CADPAT inspects the prototype uniform from the Soldier Clothing and Equipment Modernization Trial at Garrison Petawawa on September 4, 2019. (Able Seaman Elizabeth Ross)

The arid regions pattern came about in 2003 after the military was heavily criticised for sending soldiers to the desert-like Afghanistan with the forest green uniforms making them stand out and very easily spotted by the enemy against the light tan and brown backgrounds

Wearing the “arid region” pattern, a Canadian soldier takes a position during a patrol in Arghandab, a district of Kandahar province, Afghanistan,, on July 6, 2008. The “arid region” tan pattern was developed after soldiers were sent into theatre wearing forest green uniforms. (Allauddin Khan/Associated Press)

The CADPAT designs were a great improvement on the single olive colour as tests showed soldiers were significantly harder to detect by an enemy.

The new uniform being issued to some 600 members of the 3 Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, is the only one of several proposed patterns to be selected for field trials. Developed by Canadian defence scientist it is known as “Pattern J”,

The new style appears like it could be a move toward a single replacement for the two green and tan patterns, having a  mostly brown tan included with the greens and black colours.

Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, The Royal Newfoundland Regiment’s Arctic Response Company Group conduct a winter patrol during Exercise SIBERIAN HUSKY 2019. The winter version (lead soldier) of the Canadian Disruptive Pattern camouflage is not being revised, unlike the Arid Regions and Temperate Woodland versions. Photo: Captain Ian McIntyre, 37 Canadian Brigade Group Public Affairs. ©2019 DND/MDN Canada.

Canadian Special Forces wear the U.S. MultiCam pattern which is not expected to change for the time being.

Evaluations will involve soldier feedback, and body scanning and other data collection. Officials say it isn’t the final pattern, but probably close as changes and adjustments are made. A final choice will be made by 2022, with full issue to come over the few years.

YouTube: CADPAT vs U.S MultiCam (Wick Photography)

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4 comments on “Canadian military testing new camouflage combat uniforms
  1. Avatar john jackle says:

    Black at night is the way to go, in my opinion fighting should be conducted at dawn or dusk on our terms. Furthermore, white is the only way to go for winter of which we have 8 months of in Canada! I was in the military Royal Regina Rifles in 1989 we wore olive green which was useless in both scenarios. I believe it will be a lifetime before some moron in the military finally realizes this and gets it right…I have owned multicam pattern for landscaping work and it doenst really blend in with anything at work apart from being durable due to its polyester construction. john

  2. Avatar Philippe Derosiers says:

    I have a comment. I was trained with the Canadian “battledress MK III”. The battledress is the name used in the British Commonwealth armies for “fatigues” in the US. The Battledress MK III was excellent. Besides the fact that it was drab olive, there were no major issues with it. Ottawa threw it out, the whole thing with the great combat boot made by Greb in Quebec (that was probably the only issue) that is still produced and sold worldwide. Since Ottawa got rid of the MK III they can’t figure it out period. I’ve uploaded this picture on IMGUR – – (the link is safe). This is the kind of non-sense Canadians have to live with. Since the DND was told by other members of NATO that Canadians stuck in the scenery like a sour thumb in Afganistan it was downhill since and I lost sight of the end of the tunnel when it comes to Ottawa having a single clue of what they are doing. They can’t figure out a decent camouflage uniform for the land branch of the army. In that perspective we were better off with the drab olive of the battledress MK III than that complete and utterly confused situation we can immediately see on the picture I provided. Ottawa is a lost cause end of the story.

    • Avatar dan Perry says:

      Afghanistan was very tan… as well as very green. We didn’t have a single issue mixing the green and tan ar-pat together while in theater. Cadpat worked well in canada, it also worked very well in Afghanistan.

      Multiple nations have adopted a variant of our pattern because of how well it functioned. But it’s old and there have been advancements.

  3. Avatar J Drapeau says:

    Successive Canadian governments have done little to ensure Canadian sovereignty over the Arctic and espexially the NWP. Trudeau has ignored this completely.