How can I keep my hands warm while hiking in the winter?

Oh, wise gear guru, what are the best gloves for winter hike in the Adirondacks? Lorne Brooklyn, New York

Sep 17, 2004
Outside Magazine

REI's Performance Glove Liners

A: I take this approach to gloves: Carry lots of them. It seems that when it's cold, wet, and snowy, it's almost inevitable that gloves get a little wet. And when that happens, it's always a good thing to have spares. Besides, gloves are neither bulky nor heavy, so it's not a particular hardship to pack extras. In your case, I'd recommend three different gloves.

First, get an inexpensive pair of glove liners, such as the REI Performance Glove Liner ($12; www.rei.com). These are remarkably warm for their weight, and are great when it's chilly out but you’re hiking or otherwise doing something that keeps you fairly warm.

Next, find yourself a pair of good, all-purpose gloves. I continue to like Manzella's Tec 850 gloves ($50; www.manzella.com), made with Malden Mills Powershield. These are astonishingly warm for a fairly light glove and provide great dexterity while also offering near-total wind protection and good rain- and snow-shedding capabilities.

Finally, get some good mitts. Outdoor Research's Glacier Mits ($79; www.orgear.com) have a waterproof shell and a warm fleece lining. Just the ticket for hanging around camp or taking a break in cold weather.

So there you go. Of course, I also usually pack one other thing—a pair of old-fashioned wool gloves that I've had for years and years. They're my absolute emergency gloves in case everything else is wet or lost. New ones run around $15.

Revisit last year's review of the top gloves on the market: "Glove Affair"
Filed To: Snow Sports

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