When you go backpacking in cold conditions you need backpacking gloves. Cold, stiff fingers can be a real danger, and the last thing you want is to get in to camp and then to have your fingers be so stiff that you cant even set up your tent, to get warm, or your stove, to get dinner going. Even a simple, thin pair of backpacking gloves can do quite a bit to keep your hands, if not toasty warm, then at least warm enough so that they’re still useful to you around camp.
What to look for when you're shopping for backpacking gloves.
Reinforced Palms – If you’re constantly handling things with your gloves on, like trekking poles, water bottles and other equipment, then there’s a chance your gloves will get damaged from all that use. Backpacking gloves that have a bit of tougher material sewn in to the palms will help a lot in preventing that damage.
Windstopper – Many of the better backpacking gloves on the market have something called Gore Windstopper sewn in to them. This material works as the name suggests, preventing wind chill, which can be a real problem with thin backpacking gloves in windy places. It’s a great way to keep your fingers warm without needing big, thick gloves.
Best Backpacking Gloves
A few of the better pairs of backpacking gloves available to you.
Manzella Silkweight Windstopper Gloves - If what you prefer is something small, lightweight and thin, then these are a fantastic choice. They're very thin, but use Windstopper laminate to cut down on wind chill and provide some warmth. They also have extra grip on the palm and fingers to both protect the gloves from damage and give you a better grip on whatever it is you're holding. There's also a women's version.
Outdoor Research Gripper Gloves - If you want something thin that will also provide a moderate amount of warmth then something like the Grippers are a good choice. They're fleece, for warmth, and come with Windstopper laminate sewn in, for a bit of added warmth and protection from wind chill. Finally, the palms and the index and middle fingers are reinforced, to withstand wear and tear and give you an extra bit of grip. A good choice for a bit more warmth. They also come in a women's version.
Rab Guide Gloves - At the durable, do-it-all end of the spectrum are the Guide gloves from Rab. They're insulated, and have eVent inserts, eVent being a wateproof, breathable fabric similar to Gore-Tex. The palms and fingers are also reinforced with leather, to provide maximum durability. If you want something to use, abuse and count on when things get tough, these are a fantastic choice.