My favorite paddling spots are all iced over, so I’m getting my outdoor recreation on feet these days. As I was out for a woods walk with my dogs this afternoon, I experienced the usual freezing fingertips. I dream of owning a great pair of winter gloves that fit well enough to enable you to actually use your hands, but also keep them extremely warm. Anyone have a favorite brand/model of gloves they can recommend?

Whem mountaineering

– Last Updated: Dec-27-04 9:39 PM EST –

I use a big mit in an outermit, (like Outdoor reaearch curved moonlite pile mit liners and some thinner glove liners. When I need my hands, off go the mits and the glove liners do the trick. When I don't need the dexteriety, on go the mits.

What do you need your hands for. I do well with campmor giordinis and such like lots of the time.Goretex insulated gloves under $30 but no fine dexterity.

everyday use in the city: polartec wind blocs (happen to get em at the north face outletfor about 22 like the traction inserts. I drive so i am not outside for long in these.

leather over thinsulate and knit wool is pretty good perhaps the best one piece overall combination of warmth and dexterity got them at my local outdoor store (hiltons tent city.)

Aleutian fleece lined neoprene
Got em for $20 at Sportsman’s Warehouse. They stay very warm even while wet. They fit tight but I can tie/untie nots and straps with them on.

Agree on the leather and wool
Supple deerskin gloves over lightweight wool liners are surpisingly warm and preserve dexterity. Polypropylene liners work well but are not as warm as wool.

Another option is to use some convertible glove/mitt thingies. The gloves are 3/4 length, leaving exposed fingertips, and the attached half mitt can be pulled over the fingers for more warmth when finger dexterity is not needed. These are commonly available in wool and fleece, but I bet a pair made from stretch Polartec (smooth outer face with soft microfleece inner face) would be best.

Try "Possum Gloves"
Found on http// Possum gloves are a mix of possum fur and merrino wool. They are very very wickable, so your fingers stay dry and warm and yet they are very light and thin gloves, amazing how warm they are. I use them with a very light pair of primaloft mittens for windy and very cold conditons. Most of the time while active, the gloves are all I need! While stopping or in extreme conditions, on with the light mitts. Even then, hands don’t freeze if take off mitts. These are tested by many hikers and backpackers and are quite unusual, not just another fadish item. They work.

No Brand Name
I sometimes run across bulky, black gloves on clearance tables that are very, very warm. I think Home Depot was the last place I found them.

They’re not leather… some kinda ‘windbreaker’ looking fabric and have a “Thinsulate” tag.

They are inexpensive and WARM. You can’t tie your shoes with 'em on but you can shift gears on a bicycle. My bike buddies will whine about their cold hands and I just smile. Now if I could find some socks made like those gloves.

Ahhh, the Holy Grail of the outdoorsman
I suspect that many of us have been on a lifelong search for the ultimate winter handwear, ultra-warm, waterproof and with the dexterity of a latex surgical glove. Well, they don’t exist…yet. At best, you may get two of the three criteria.

Mitts will always be warmer than gloves. I agree with the others that for cold conditions, mitts over liner gloves is a hard combination to beat. The standard in mountaineering these days seems to be a medium weight liner with a grippy palm under mitts or heavier gloves. When dexterity is needed the outer layer is shed temporarily (hopefully they’re clipped you your sleeves).

If you’re not looking for something that can handle the rigors of ice/snow climbing any thick insulated mitts or gloves will work and keep you warm and you don’t need to spend a bundle, either. Stores like Marshall’s and TJ Max are heavily stocked with gloves and mitts at great prices right now. Double layer fleece or Thinsulate gloves/mitts with a waterproof/breathable shell can can be had for under $20.

If you need gloves for rugged and/or dextrous activities, here’s one caveat: I’ve found that Thinsulate is very slippery stuff and doesn’t work well for mitts or gloves used for hanging onto things like ice axes. The insulation slips against itself and requires a death grip on the tool, which is very tiring on the hands.

Dachstein boiled wool mitts and gloves are still available (but pricey) and are sort of a classic for mountaineering. They’re very warm and quite water resistant. I have to admit that I haven’t used mine in a very long time, since lighter weight and more waterproof alternatives became available.

they make possum socks as well
check out the possum socks as well (or not of course!). I am not into pricey stuff you can do just as well with from local discount place, just these possum items are pretty amazing. The folks on that web site are the real deal, no hype, scientific outlook, no dogma, lots of experience. They search around the world for these things, and they are not into the high priced spread as such. That said, if it really works better, they are not biased against it either.

2005 New Year’s Resolution

" Put it out there but then, Don’t force anyone into anything, don’t force anthing on yourself"

Mmm… warm toes

– Last Updated: Dec-28-04 2:50 PM EST –

I had a toenail drop off due to cold weather a couple years back. Ouch!

I have since started putting those "Warm Hands" chemical-tea bag-looking things between my cycling bootie and shoe up at the toe. My toes are still cold but the nail doesn't drop off.

That might be an option for hands also. One of those "Warm Hands" in each mitten.

Oh... when I titled that thread "No Brand Name" I was just saying I can't find a brand name on my warm gloves. I wish it had one so I could recommend / replace them.

They’re out of stock
You can order them directly from New Zealand for $10.34 a pair. There’s a flat rate of $10 for shipping, but if you’re ordering three or more pairs (or other items) it works out to be cheaper. Most importantly, you can get them.