I don’t know about you, but I’ve had the hardest time finding a pair of gloves that keep my hands warm and comfy while cycling when the thermometer dips below freezing. I spent much of last winter…the first I’ve ridden through regardless of weather…worried about permanent tissue damage in my pinky fingers. I tried several different models of cycling gloves from Pearl Izumi and REI’s Novara before giving up and pulling an old forgotten pair of Hotfingers ski gloves out of the attic and making do with them. They were pretty effective all the way down to -10F, the coldest temperature I rode through.
But there was the pinky problem and no easy fix. I thought about bar mitts, but they’re just another piece of equipment that attaches to the bike and needs to be dealt with when arriving at a destination. I ruled them out relatively quickly. My life is all about keeping things as simple as possible.
I looked at ice fishing gloves. They’re effective against cold, but most reviewers complain about durability. I was about ready to give up when I came across Craft of Sweden. I’ve been to Sweden many times. It’s cold in Sweden…Minnesota cold. The Swedes are very good engineers….some of the best anywhere. Hmmm. Maybe they can make a pair of gloves that keep my hands warm no matter what Mother Nature does. Ja!
So I bought these Craft lobster claw cycling gloves and finally had a chance to try them out yesterday. The ambient temperature was 28 degrees. There was a pretty decent westerly wind as is typical in the empty quarter. My face was cold. So were my arms. My toes? Cold, too. But my hands were comfy. I went 35 miles. They never got cold. They never sweated. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.
The lobster claw design keeps the pinky next to the third finger, which keeps it warm. It’s kind of like having mittens with the flexibility of a glove…the best of both worlds. Braking and shifting was no problem at all. As you can see from the picture above, the reflective tape on these gloves is also very effective which is sort of nice now that Daylight Savings Time is but a mere memory. The gloves are also waterproof which should help on snowy days. They extend over the wrist. Build quality is solid if not spectacular. Size is a little small, so I went with XLs instead of Ls and they fit very well. The price is right. Sweet!
Now 28F is not -10F so it remains to be seen what happens when fall turns into winter and it gets really, really cold; but I am cautiously optimistic. I like these gloves and would consider buying other Craft products. I’ll post updates as the season goes on…