Grip Grab Raptor gloves won’t turn you into a bird of prey, but they will keep your hands warm and the attention to detail that’s been lavished on them makes them very easy to live with.
These long-finger gloves from Danish company Grip Grab are warm down to a bit above freezing in dry conditions, thanks to a soft-shell fabric back. They’re grippy too, with lots of thin rubber printing on the palm, fingers and thumb so you don’t slip off the grips or levers even when things get damp.
Founded in 2000, Grip Grab is three Danish brothers, Kristian, Martin and Bjørn Krøyer and the company is focused on warding off the cold from your head, hands and feet. Cold hands and feet in particular make the Bikemagic crew very grumpy indeed, so anything that reduces chill-induced misery is very welcome.
The Raptor gloves have done an excellent job of keeping us cheerful lately, and not just because their shell material does a good job of keeping out the chill. They also have a gel patch at the base of the palm – dubbed Doctor Gel by Grip Grab – that absorbs handlebar shock and buzz, and one of the nicest wipe patches we’ve used.
It’s an unavoidable fact of winter riding that it makes your nose run. The cold aggravates your eyes, you produce more tears and they drain down the puncti (the little holes in your lower eyelids by your nose) into the sinuses and thence into your nose. Meantime, the blood vessels in your nose expand too, which makes your mucus membranes produce more moisture to protect the inside of your nose. Practical upshot: you have to be able to wipe your nose while riding. The Grip Grab Raptors have a lovely, soft fleece wipe patch on the back of the thumb, so it doesn’t irritate soft nasal skin.
Grip is obviously important to Grip Grab, so the Raptor gloves have a patch of synthetic leather on the neoprene cuff to make it easier to pull them on, and the velcro closure has rubber ribs so you can snug it firmly around your wrist.
These little details, plus small, tight stitching on all the seams, add up to an overall feel of quality; the raptors are well made and well-thought-out.
We can only find two things to complain about. The most significant is that it’d be nice to have a clip or a pair of embedded magnets to keep them together when stored. Magnets in the wrist pull would also make it easier to hang them up to dry as you could just attach them to any steel surface.
Gripe #2 is that they’re at the high end of the price range for mid-weight winter gloves. We think the detailing and quality justify the price, just, but you’ll have your own take on that.
As Wiggle is the exclusive UK source for Grip Grab, they’re currently listed at 10 percent off RRP, and we’d expect that to continue.
Well made, comfortable and effective winter gloves.
Warm down to around zero Celsius
Soft wipe patch
No clip or magnets to keep them together
A shade pricy
More information: Grip Grab Raptor gloves
UK supplier: Wiggle
What Grip Grab says about the Raptor gloves
A cross-season glove that combines warmth, durability and perfect fi t, making it ideal for MTB and cyclocross. For protection on cool spring and autumn days.
Rubberized palm for extra grip
DoctorGel™ against cyclist’s palsy