Gearbox: 2024 Gloves

Keeping your hands warm and dry on any tour is a must. But depending on the weather, the best glove or mitten for the job changes. So, we reviewed the whole gamut—from extra warm mitts to low profile glove liners.


Warm Gloves

Black Diamond Equipment Spark Gloves

“I’m not a glove man,” said our tester, who suffers from self-diagnosed Reynaud’s Disease. “But these are the five-fingered equivalent of a woodstove.” Goatskin leather and Primaloft insulation make them toasty and comfy in dry conditions, he said, and the stretchy BD.dry waterproof layer helps on soggy, close-to-freezing days. If he had to nitpick his new favorites, the fleece liner (which in general had a cozy, new-sheet feel) sometimes bunches up. He’s willing to overlook that, however, because the big-but-not-too-big, under-the-coat neoprene cuff keeps the Spark in place all day. Plus, he said, “The reinforced palms mean I won’t end up at the hardware store buying replacements halfway through the season.”

Flylow Super D Lobster Glove

Flylow’s gloves have come a long way since its reps first started DIY waterproofing and branding work gloves to give away at events. The Super D Lobster Glove is a testament to their progress. “Soft, comfy and warm,” according to a tester. These lobster claws employ goatskin leather, a wool blend lining and Flylow’s 100% recycled Greenloft insulation to keep your digits warm. Plus, as our tester applauded, “The extra-long cuff is wide enough at the end to fit over my jacket” and the perfect length. Per said tester, add in the “very soft” suede thumb layer for wiping your goggles or face and you’re ready to brave the coldest and snowiest of days. You might want to size down: These three-finger mitts run a little big, per our tester.

Hestra Wakayama Mitt

“Whether you’re skiing or stacking wood, there is nothing more classic than a leather mitten,” our tester said, sliding on her Hestra Wakayama Mitts. With a removable wool terry liner, the mittens, she found, were versatile in changing temperatures and for wearers who may prefer other liner combinations. “I always wear mittens over gloves,” our tester said, “but it’s a challenge to not go from sweating on the skintrack to freezing after I drop in.” While comfort is a priority for our tester, she isn’t willing to cut corners on style. Thanks to the Wakayama’s classic cowhide exterior, however, she found no issues at all as she fell udderly in love with the mitt’s timeless, tan outer shell and its nuanced paracord wrist adjustment.

Gordini Polar Mitt

“These look imposing with their size, but once you slip them on, your hands are immediately enveloped in a fleece and down duet of beauty, comfort and joy,” a tester said of the Polar Mitt. Underneath the goatskin leather outer is 700-fill down. The combo provides double dryness: AquaBloc waterproofing on the outside and sweat-wicking DownTek insulation on the inside. “I really like the blend of materials, technologies and features,” our tester said. As a ski patroller, he reserved them as his cold-weather work mitt, and, when he hit the skintrack, he always kept them in the bottom of his pack, explaining, “These are expedition-like mittens but more versatile for everyday activities like skiing and ice climbing.”

Vermont Glove Company Uphill Skier

Vermonters need a ski glove that can stack firewood, latch onto the town rope tow and keep calloused fingers warm around the campfire. The two-in-one Uphill Skier uses a merino liner and a goat leather shell that is reinforced where the thumb meets the palm. The result is a workhorse that offers dry transitions from uphill to down in the backcountry. “Super sturdy, great construction and stitching,” one tester said. “A true mountain glove to protect from everything. Could also be used for welding.” He noted they run large and suggested sizing down, adding that even in a smaller-than-usual size the leather over-glove lacked dexterity. Still, he concluded, it’s “a glove you can keep for generations.”

Spring & Touring Gloves

Gordini Windward Glove

Our tester found the Windward Gloves to be standard. But, like the half-eaten chocolate bar and smooshed PB&J so many of us reach for in touring packs, if it works, why change it? And, per our tester, these gloves work. “Perfect for every use on the mountain, from backcountry to resort skiing,” he said. The ThinDown insulation was warm enough to keep his hands toasty while riding, but not too warm to make him ditch the Windwards in the spring. While most of the glove is a water-wicking, breathable polyester, the palms are reinforced with leather. “Leather is super supple,” our tester said. “Easy to do fine operations like buckle adjustments or rope and carabiner handling.”

Ibex Glove Liners

Touring gloves, liners, mittens—soon we’ll carry an entire REI glove section in our backpacks. According to a world-traveling tester known for needing to pack efficiently, however, the Ibex Glove Liners help pare things down. “These liners are crafted so well,” she said. “They’re thin enough to layer under heavier gloves without bunching but keep my fingers warm when I wear them touring.” Made from merino wool, Ibex’s liners feature low-profile stitching to help them fit under a variety of gloves and have conductive sections on the thumb and forefinger. “These worked with my smartphone even when it was snowing and cold,” our tester noted. Merino products can be flimsy, but, so far, she said, “These feel durable and have no signs of holes.”

Outdoor Research Stormtracker Sensor Glove

Our tester recommends the Outdoor Research Stormtracker Sensor Glove for either “a warm spring day” or “a hot-blooded human.” With a tactical palm made of Gore-Tex and high-quality goat leather, these gloves have a water-resistant membrane that is durable but breathable. On steep ascents and bootpacks, our tester found the glove’s long cuffs useful but wished for “larger and sturdier loops that make the glove easier to clip to a carabiner, or to add wrist straps to.” When spring sunshine comes out, she donned the Stormtracker for everyday use, from skintracks to fetch time with her dog. “These gloves can be used in any setting, whether or not skiing and riding are involved,” she concluded.

Swany Pro-V

“I don’t always wear driving gloves, but when I do, I choose the Pro-V,” said a tester not known to be classy in his beater Tundra. “Then I wear them for spring skiing.” The smooth-grain leather on the palms and around the fingers is buttery, as is the fleece lining. Dexterity is off the charts. “Rollie cigarettes, origami, needlework, I could probably do any of those with these on,” our tester said. “They’re also great for adjusting backpack straps and bindings.” The Velcro closure strap kept a kung fu grip on his wrist, and his only drawback was that he can’t wear them year-round. “My poor fingers would freeze in them in the bleak midwinter,” he said, “but I’ll bust them out on the first sunny day.”

Truck Tour

“Simple and effective,” said our Kootenay-based tester, who was converted to touring gloves after using these. She added, “When I’m cruising up and down, they’re all I need.” Featuring a soft, goat leather palm and windproof, water-resistant, four-way stretch material on the top of the hand, she found her fingers protected from the elements without overheating. Typically a women’s medium, the size six gloves were a perfect fit, and she appreciated the slim, not too snug design. The best features, however, were on “the kitted-out thumb,” where she says a soft, suede patch keeps wiping your nose comfortable and a crosshatch thread pattern on the thumb pad enables gloved phone use. Just bring an extra pair of mitts if you’re planning to dig pits, as our tester’s Tours were soaked after prepping a snow profile.

Where to buy

Truck Tour

Backcountry readers, use discount code BCM_24 for 15% off you next order from Truck Gloves!

These reviews were originally published in Issue No. 156. To read more, pick up a copy at, or subscribe to read our gear reviews earlier when they are published in print.

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At Backcountry Magazine, we are committed to providing you with honest and informative gear coverage. To support our work and continue delivering quality content, we are including affiliate links in our reviews. Partnerships with retailers are separate from coverage, ensuring that our reviews remain unbiased. These links help us earn a small commission if you make a purchase through them, at no additional cost to you.

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