Help keep my hands warm in the winter!

-- Last Updated: Nov-24-09 7:36 PM EST --

My NRS Rapid gloves don't keep me dry at all, however, they are warm above freezing, and a little below with liners. I'd like a good option for warm and waterproof. Waterproof ski-gloves are pretty bulky. What does everyone else use?

I only canoe, but I use T-grip, pear, and a double bladed paddle. I'm in the pacific northwest, but I canoe in December in the Midwest. So my temp range is 40F to -5F that I'd like to be able to handle.

I've got a son young son who is often a paddling companion (when the weather is decent in the winter), and so I need to get him things often.

How are pogies/mambas for canoeists? I think snap dragon makes a canoeists mit, but it doesn't look like anything special. Will regular pogies for a kayak paddle work? I know they would work for my double bladed paddle, but how about my others?

What about NRS Toaster Mitts? Are they fully water proof? I get no dexterity with them, but if they were warm and waterproof that might be workable.

It was recommended to me to try pogies with Sealskin gloves. Anyone else do this? It seems this setup would be quite versatile. But my concern is with the pogies and canoe paddles?

What do you have, what have you tried that you didn't like, or what do you wish you had?

Any specific pogie/glove recommendations?

I appreciate your advice and suggestions!

Mitts are the way to go
I canoe too. I use Outdoor Research Adrenalin Mitts. They work great! I paddle very hard as a fitness paddler. My regular workout is 6 miles upstream to the Broken Oar Bar and Grill for breakfast and 6 miles back. I average 4 mph+ in a Clipper Sea1. Mitts are the most important part. Gloves do not allow the sharing of heat to your finger tips. Breathable is very important. If your hands get wet and stay wet you’ll be and stay cold. Third is the cuffs. The cuffs allow you to share the heat from your arms to your fingertips. And lastly is waterproof. Paddling a canoe your hands almost never get wet. But if you do touch the water with a stroke, no big deal. I paid $45.00 I thing at REI for them. They are very lightly insulated. I just bought a pair of Neoprene Mittens for rough and wet, cold weather canoe paddling. I was e-chatting with a few people that have owned them for years and recommended them to me. I’m sure I’ll be happy with them. I really like them. I’m hoping this is the year it doesn’t get cold enough or wet enough to need them much. HA!,shop.flypage&category_id=17&product_id=62&Itemid=1&vmcchk=1

Happy Paddling!

Check out…
Glacier Glove brand of neo gloves and mitts. I’ve used the ‘Perfect Curve’ pre-curved finger glove with light fleece lining for years and they rock. They use a high grade Yamamoto (I believe?) neoprene again. They had switched last year to a cheaper neoprene but are using Yamamoto again this fall. They now have a pre-curved mitten built much like the pre-curve glove too. Very warm and durable. Check 'em out.

Dittoo on de Glacier Gloves (nm)

Diving (as in scuba) dry gloves
Tho’ I’m not sure I’ve had them in temps lower than high single digits. If you are moving into negative territory, I can’t vouch for how they’d do.

sorry but I have to disagree strongly about the glacier gloves.

In temps around freezing I find they are not very warm.

In temps above they are okay until you sweat and then your hands get totally soaked inside and freeze.

I like the mitts from NRS…very warm in any weather but bulky

The level six mittls are nice but I think that the palms are too grippy to allow the shaft to rotate in your hand smoothly with J stroke.

Level six makes some awesome gloves that I just got and seem very warm for gloves vice mitts. Hihgly recommend them.


What about the
NRS Navigator Gloves?

I use layers
I have some cheap wool fingerless gloves, that have a nice padding on the palm, inside of a pair of outdoor research cornice gloves.

So far, the coldest weather I have paddled in, was only in the 40s, but my hands stayed toasty warm the whole time.

It is supposed to be colder tomorrow morning, so I’ll see how well they do then.

These are not Glacier gloves

– Last Updated: Nov-25-09 12:53 AM EST –

As I said, I haven't had them in sub-zero, but these aren't Glacier gloves. They are true diving dry gloves, ours are Deep Sea or something like that. As admitted on the Glacier glove site, they are thicker than Glacier gloves or other paddling gloves. I think it is 5 mill, but I'd have to recheck. No matter though - there area few brands of them available in serious scuba shops these days.

I disagree with the contention on Glacier's site that they are too thick to paddle with. We've been using them for a few winters now, and that has not been an issue. They add some time getting on really difficult skirts, or skirts over recessed coamings, but they paddle just fine.

Glacier Gloves work
for me in the range of temp specified…

As hands may differ, I can understand they may not work for all.

I used to use OR Overmitts over wool mittens but my hands got too hot. The nice thing about overmitts with a non slip palm is that you can adjust the layer underneath and go with a thinner glove or thicker mitten and change that insulating layer as conditions change.

Level 6 mitts, like neoprene mittens, absolutely dry no leaks at all. How warm they are depends on what you wear under them, but your hands will definately be warmer if they stay dry.

Bill H.

another advantage
another advantage to wearing something like the level 6 or nrs mitts is that they are designed for use in and around the water. So if you somehow do get your hand submerged in the water and get your hand and / or glove wet it will still work just fine for insulating.

I would think that a waterproff goretex mitt with liner would be great unless you slipped getting in thte boat or something to where you fell in the water since I would imagine that the wrist seal would not be enough to keep the water out.

It woudl really suck to somehow get the inside of the glove wet and then have to deal with it for the rest of the day.

Of course you could carry multiple liners…but still.


level 6 mitts
These seal pretty well for me at least. I’m wearing either a dry top or my drysuit when I’m wearing them and they seal well with them. The mitts are way too warm to wear unless it’s pretty cold out so I’ve not tried them more than a couple times without the dry clothing.

Bill H.

I use OR over-mitts over regular paddling gloves. If I need my fingers, I can slide them off easily and put them right back on. Many people make water proof over mitts and you can put some Aquaseal on the palm for a sticky grip if needed.


Deep See Diving Gloves
I have also gone to the Deep See brand diving dry gloves. They aren’t warm enough at the very low temps, but with an overmitt or pogie they work quite well. As Celia mentioned they are a bit tough to get on, but have a neoprene like cuff that seals over a drusuit wrist gasket about as well as a semi drysuit neck gasket. The seams on these are sealed with waterproof tape and they do stay dry unless you submerge over the cuff. One drawback is that they are quite slippery on composite shafts. As a result I wax the grip area with XC ski wax.

I have also used NRS Toaster Mitts, but really dislike them. They are not warm for me, nor are they waterproof as they (at least older ones) have stitched seams. I tried to seal all the outside seams on mine using Aquaseal, but they still leak.

I would like to try the Level Six mitts, they look promising.



Another Level Six Vote
Best I’ve tried. Much easier to deal with than Nordic Blues.

level six
Are the Level Six mitts watertight even when rolling? Do they fit between the latex cuff and neoprene outer-cuff of a drysuit without bunching or folding, so that they can make a decent seal?

Getting the inside wet is not always bad

– Last Updated: Nov-25-09 6:34 PM EST –

My favorite example of this is something I've mentioned at least twice here before, but here I go again. On a very cold, rainy day, I tried a very expensive pair of thick neoprene paddling gloves for the first time, and my hands were terribly cold after just a short time. I switched to my backup plan, cheap wool gloves with non-waterproof wind-shell mitts, and due to the rain, the whole works got soaked to the point that I could have squeezed water out of them after about 15 or 20 minutes. My hands remained soaking wet for the rest of the day, but they stayed perfectly warm. Lots of people still underestimate the ability of wool to insulate nearly as well when it's soaking wet as when it's dry. For soaking-wet wool to keep my extremely cold-prone hands warm on a cold and rainy day, all day, says a lot about how well wool insulates when wet.

Toaster mitts keep your hands pretty warm. If you turn them inside out and put a small bead of Aquaseal on all the seams, then they really stay dry. I’ve been paddling a Greenland paddle this season and the bulkiness of the mitts doesn’t seam to bother me like it did with a typical Euro-paddle. It’s snowing here now, but I’m going out in the morning. I’ve only got about two more weeks of paddling left before the ice comes here in northern Wisconsin.