Test rider Carsick John has been trying out these Glacier Gloves that, although not the most sophisticated looking, do exactly what they are intended to; keep hands warm, dry and functioning.
GLACIER GLOVE SUPER G RACE GLOVE REVIEW
Words: Carsick John
It’s rare that something as mundane as a pair of gloves can get you emotional, but the moment I first saw the Super G Race Gloves by Glacier Glove I had a rush of emotions, mostly: hatred, fear and panic.
Most of my mental vitriol was directed at the outrageous look of the gloves which is somewhere between serial killing toxic avenger and fetish scuba diver.
In Glacier Glove’s own words, “This glove is the best race specific glove we have. Good for cold and wet racing or extremely hard efforts in the cold and wet." So these gloves are squarely aimed at the racing and endurance set and not your casual trail rider. With this in mind I donned exhibit A & B and headed to the woods.
It was minus 10 degrees and 5 minutes into the new Ice Age when I set off on the first (and in my mind only) test ride, safe in the knowledge that with temperatures this cold no one would be outside to see me wearing the gloves.
My riding buddy Edam (not his real name) was the benchmark for the test, wearing a pair of standard long finger gloves and a growing sense of humour, referring to me as ‘Marigold’ for the duration of the ride.
We set about our mission, which was a chilling 10km loop of single track. Once riding, the added wind chill took less than a minute for all of our fingers and thumbs to be completely cold & frozen.
After less than 10 minutes on the bike however, the gloves started to kick in and a small miracle happened, my fingers came back to life and the threat of frostbite disappeared.
Not so for Edam’s fingers in the standard gloves, which remained firmly frozen for the whole ride and which still struggled to hold a pint even after we’d decamped to the warmth of the pub.
I wouldn’t say these gloves are exactly warm in this kind of temperature but the Glacier Glove is definitely effective against the cold and a massive improvement on frozen digits.
Hand in glove
There is a slight draw back to the neoprene material however, as even though these gloves are claimed to be super thin they still feel bouncy when you ride, the 2mm thick neoprene making even the thinnest grips feel spongy and big. They also have a tendency to give you a strange sweaty palm feeling, but that’s still a small price to pay if you ride regularly in the cold and wet.
Testing times part two
Intrigued by these ugly yet highly effective gloves, I decided to go Eskimo and see what kind of temperatures these gloves could take on.
Finding myself a frozen lake I made a small fishing hole with a hammer and plunged my Glacier Gloved hands into the abyss, whilst timing the whole sorry episode.
The result was quite amazing.
Initially I thought the whole event would be over in 15 minutes, but not so. Even with prolonged plunging into the frozen water my hands never got cold, wet or frozen. They really do work.
For me the conclusion of this test is clear, do not judge a book by its cover. Whilst these gloves will scare passing strangers and get you untold grief from your riding chums they’re highly effective against extreme cold and wet.
The Glacier Gloves are clearly not for everyone, but as they’re aimed at racers, who should be caring more about function than form anyway, they have to score very highly. Of course they would fair well for those who aren’t racing and simply need to keep their hands warm too, it’s just a matter of taste as to whether you’d feel good riding in them regularly.
For me emotions run high with these gloves but after the test I have nothing but warmth, love and happiness towards ‘The Marigolds’.
Available in sizes S to XL, the cost is £49.99 and not surprisingly they are…in stock.
Extremely effective against cold and wet.
Turn your grips into spongy tubes.
They make you look scary.
More info: Glacier Glove Super G Race Glove
UK distributor: 2Pure