Posted by: old_user on Sep-02-09 10:10 AM (EST)
I was excited to read down through your article for the skinny on the 'best' kayaking gloves for cold water.
As a 5-year veteran kayak guide in Antarctic and Arctic waters plus a mediocre case of Reynaud's I feel I might have something to contribute. I've burned my way through SEVEN pair of so-called cold water paddling gloves that were given me by NRS. It's important to remember and state that while neoprene gloves might work in some conditions the material itself is only good to about 50 degrees (F). Cold resistance drops, then, when there's wind and the hands are wet, an unavoidable occurance, whether through sweat or the inevitable addition of the water you're paddling in.
For my buck I get the biggest band out of using Gore Tex gloves lined with Thinsulate and made specifically for snowboarding.
For the coldest/windiest days in Antarctica I may add a heat pack (for my Reynaud's) and of course a good thick pogie. My favorite brand (and I've tried many) are Snapdragon.
CASH SAVING HINT: Check in with TJ Maxx to find out when their skiing sale is, normally in Oct/Nov depending on where you live. I've bought them there every year for 5 years now, for usually around $20/ea. Look for the long gauntlet ones with a cinch cord at the end of the tall cuff. I've used these consistently now, having rejected all the well-intentioned 'cold water paddler's gloves' that are marketed. I even provided NRS with reviews about adding one of these types to their line but I see they haven't done it yet.
Hope this helps.
Louise, Trumansburg, NY
The Kayak Wing
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Posted by: old_user on Sep-02-09 10:29 AM (EST)
Most of my paddling companions find pogies not so useful as they limit your hands to one position on the paddle.
Posted by: old_user on Sep-02-09 11:15 AM (EST)
From an old canoe racer: best gloves I have found are golfing gloves. Get them on sale....one right and one left...and you have a bargain. I go for the synthetic ones....they dry out quickly...and last at least one full season.
Posted by: old_user on Sep-03-09 5:08 PM (EST)
Yeah, but how warm are they??? You're not talking anything below 55 degrees F, are you? That would hardly do...
Posted by: wavetamer on Nov-04-09 10:25 AM (EST)
Hmmm....I found that bicycle gloves work, too, especially with the padded palm....we are talking summer - warm and dry ( or quick and easy to dry).
Posted by: old_user on Sep-03-09 5:10 PM (EST)
Yup, tried them too. Disaster. As I mentioned earlier, neoprene is only rated for 50 degrees F and above, and I'm fairly certain that's for 4-5mm suits, not the much thinner mil gloves/mitts. But hey, if it works for you...
Posted by: old_user on Sep-09-09 10:51 AM (EST)
Posted by: old_user on Nov-22-09 7:39 AM (EST)
FWIW, I was out paddling for 4 hours yesterday in 47 degree water. Since neoprene is only rated to 50 I figured I better leave my mitts under the bungies and paddle barehanded :-)
Posted by: wavetamer on Nov-04-09 10:24 AM (EST)
I don't use pogies but when I have I found them to slide up and down the shaft and rotate as needed so I don't understand your comment about them only being in one place? Still, I prefer gloves and yes, mittens tend to keep fingers warmer than gloves or poggies. Safe paddling!
Posted by: wavetamer on Sep-02-09 11:09 AM (EST)
HI, good points...one has to find what works best once most of the option are laid out. I have a similar pair of gloves (Goretex lined, extended cuff...I love them! Probably the best glove I have. I don't remember the palm being particularly non-slip for paddling, but will give them a try as they are a great, warm winter glove. Thanks for the good comments.Safe paddling.
Posted by: wavetamer on Jan-06-10 2:20 AM (EST)
Can't beat tried and true experience. I am a BIG fan of Snapdragon! Excellent stuff. I, too, have a GoreTex glove with Thinsolate lining. I don't take them paddling (yet) but find them to be the best for active cold weather. Nothing beats a well insulated "chopper" mitt or downfilled for extreme low activity cold. Thanks for the good comments.