UKC

Winter Glove Systems

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Kelly Cordes has been collecting opinions from some very good ice climbers on gloves and has put them on his blog: http://kellycordes.wordpress.com/extras/glove-system-replies/ It's quite interesting although clearly there isn't a simple solution and different people have different ideas, really well worth reading though as this questions comes up here so often. UKC's own mixed climbing, expat-Spaniard hardman*, Ramon, has also done a good article on the gloves that he uses: http://ramonmarin-uk.blogspot.com/2009/11/winter-systems-i-gloves.html

I think it is Will Gadd who makes the point in Cordes' post that any glove that cause tension when you close your finges around your axe will not work as well. I've found the same as well, which is why less insulation often keeps your hands warmer than more insulation. Why you can't find more shell-goretex or similar gloves without hugely complicated layers of insulation or pull-out inner gloves that come out every time you take the bloomin' thing off I don't know.

People might be dissappointed that nobody at any points mentions Dachstein mitts.

At least I think he is only the mixed-climbing, expat-Spaniard harman who regular posts on UKC.
 PeterM 08 Nov 2009
In reply to TobyA:

Interesting articles indeed. The one thing I've been looking for but seems unavailable is a thin neoprene liner glove. It is just a thought at the moment. Currently using extremities winter gauntlet and outdoor designs Layeron gloves as liners.It works pretty well, but I do run rather warm.

PeterM
In reply to PeterM: My experimentation with neoprene gloves ice climbing has been pretty disastrous to the extent that I remember taking them off halfway up a pretty short one pitch fall, chucking them down to the ground in disgust and having to climb the rest of the pitch in my belay mitts that fortunately I had clipped to my harness! The same gloves are great for spring sea kayaking though!

 WestslopeColo 08 Nov 2009
In reply to TobyA: Neoprene sounds like a good idea until you try it! I had a similar experience where I wore them up the first pitch, then climbed the rest of the climb in thin polyester liners because they were warmer!
In reply to WestslopeColo:
I have some Neoprene gloves that are specially designed for fishing. Little use for course fishing but they are great for sea fishing. Wore them while diving too. You have to remember that they work by getting wet, that is, a layer of water is trapped between your skin and the glove on the inside of the glove. The heat from your hands heat the water and thats what keeps you warm. Same as a wet suit.
The problems of getting these working while winter climbing are obvious!
In reply to blanchie14c:
Should have said for those who are interested, my winter glove system is rubbish but kind of works! Its the best of a bad lot really as I'm not a glove person anyway.
1 pair of silk liners (walk in and out with them, suprisingly warm as long as they are dry)
OutDoor Designs climbing gloves for the climb
Spare pair of thinsulate type gloves
If the weather is really foul and cold/wet I'll sub the thinsulate jobbies for gortex mits with fleecy liners.
Thing I've learned with the climbing gloves is that upon reaching the belay, I prefer to set things up and belay barehanded. When i take off my gloves, I'll pop em inside my jacket so they are next to my body. Stops em freezing up. The mositure from the sweat on your hands will quickly freeze the gloves solid and they take ages to thaw out once your hands are back inside and even then, you'll tempt the screaming abbdabbs!

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