There is nothing worse than wearing the wrong hiking gloves outdoors. Your fingers get freezing, and you can’t touch anything; sometimes you do that with pain.
Weather in hiking can change around very fast, and a pair of hiking gloves weigh very little but makes the difference between safety, comfort, and discomfort.
Wearing gloves will give you an excellent level of protection from cold weather (and hot one) and blisters while holding your trekking poles.
You can find a great variety of glove styles and warmth levels online. If you searched, you would find that the “layers” for torso clothing, stands valid for hiking gloves too.
Most people choose to carry a lightweight or fleece liner pair of hiking gloves, along with a pair of gloves that at waterproof to layer over the liners as needed.
Winter is a particular category by itself though and is always best to choose a glove designed for the winter elements.
Make sure to read all the tips on how to choose hiking gloves at the end of this post.
Here is a collection (sorted alphabetically) for a great choice of hiking gloves along with their features, to choose from.
Featured 23 Best Hiking Gloves
Marmot Evolution Glove
Marmot Evoluti Water/wind-resistant, elastic wrists, washable leather, Marmot M1 Softshell Fabric, leather reinforced palm, Falcon grip on Glove.
Mountain Hardwear Hydra Lite Glove
They are made with water-resistant material; thumbs have a suede patch, carabiner loop, pull-loop, adjustable neoprene cuffs.
Pearl Izumi Women’s Thermal Conductive Glove
Touch screen compatible through index fingers, fleece thumb, reflective elements, silicone screened palm.
Marmot Power Stretch Hiking Gloves
Reinforced palm, moisture-wicking, Free-Flow Stretch fit, Grip Zone fingertips, all-purpose liner, and cool-weather glove.
Waterproof, windproof, breathable insert, excellent moisture management, separated lining, bulky.
Mountain Made Hiking Gloves
Quick-dry, preserve heat, super breathable, few durability complaints, touch screen friendly, adjustable size, anti-skid design.
Yamamoto neoprene, soft fleece lining, waterproof, tear-resistant, seamless palm design, Pro Strap.
REI CO-OP Polartec Power Stretch
Breathable Polartec Power Stretch, rubberized palm pattern grip, touch-screen compatible, pull tabs, removable S-hook.
How to choose the Best Hiking Gloves
The warmth factor in hiking gloves
Too warm is not always too good, right? Hiking gloves come in many different materials and warmth levels.
For example, fleece gloves will be a great base-layer glove for cool summer or autumn mornings.
On the other hand, when it comes to winter hiking, then winter hiking gloves need to be made from -at least- water-resistant or -better- waterproof materials.
That is the way to keep your fingers dry. Dry fingers are good, right?
That is the reason suitable winter hiking gloves are -usually- designed with an internal 3-layer insulation system.
This system entraps the air that is warmed by your body, and as a result, your hands are kept warm.
The proper lining allows breath-ability. Thus, far less moisture is trapped between the insulation and your hands, which also helps in keeping your hands warm.
There are gloves with liners that you can remove and others where you cannot.
Of course, you can use extra “cover” for your hands with extra gloves or hand warmers. During hiking, you need to be able to use your hands to grab/hold things; your trekking poles at least.
Some people love mittens, but mittens are made of wool or some nylon-type synthetic material.
Mittens may warm your hands fast, but they will not be water-resistant, and if they are bulky, you will not be able to use them to hold things.
Another type of hiking gloves is the “lobster” type.
These come with three “fingers.” Keeping more fingers in one “glove ginger” can provide more warmth, but you need to wonder if it is practical.
If your hands are fixed around something you hold, they may be handy. Such cases are holding ski poles.
That gives a minimal range of motion, and that is why the majority of hikers prefers the 5-finger style.
The Features of Hiking Gloves
In recent years and due to smartphone usage as a camera, navigation system, or only as a phone, there are gloves that allow uncovering your fingertips.
These are handy when it comes to easy hiking trips, with relatively good weather. However, I think that having a hole in each finger simply allows your fingers to get cold.
If you need to handle your smartphone or any touch screen device, you can look out for such specific gloves with fingertips that are touch screen compatible.
The durability of Hiking Gloves
That is a significant factor. You do want your gloves to last long.
It is not a beautiful thing to reach for a tree branch or grab from a rock and have them ripped leaving you unprotected to cold, blisters and micro-injuries.
When you walk with trekking poles for hours, your gloves must not allow all that friction to be transferred to your palm and fingers.
Depending on the weather you may need different types of more “tough” gloves, either partially covered with leather or other synthetic material.
Layers of Hiking Gloves
The internal removable liners are the norm.
There are gloves where the liner can’t be removed and sometimes makes it a bit tricky to wear them or take them off, as the inner layer is shifting along with your palm.
Then the glove fingers get cluttered from the fabric.
Better to have gloves where the liner is easy to remove. Winter gloves are like that.
The outer part can be waterproof or water-resistant, providing extra warmth and protection, while when the weather gets warmer, you can remove the excess and be comfortable and less sweaty.
The best material for gloves is synthetic.
How to be sure that your gloves fit well
Well, the practical way is to wear a pair in a store. On the other hand, online shopping is more relaxed, so here are a couple of ways to find the correct size.
- The first way: If you have a pair that fits well, measure that, and seek online for the same measurements and size.
- The second way: Measure your palm and overall hand. Then take the numbers and seek online how these “translate” to glove sizes. Use the online shop chat to define the accurate glove size for your case. While sizes vary, in general, a small scale usually means something between 6.5-8 inches, the medium is from 7 to 9, and broad is 8 to 10.6 inches.
We wish you plenty and happy hiking trips! For a big range of outdoor-related gear and tips, visit this section.