I suffer with almost permanently cold hands and spend a lot of time wearing gloves – or seeking out gloves to wear. So, when I was offered a pair of Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex Mitts, I was very happy to give them a try. I took them on a recent trip to walk two mountains in Scotland.
While it wasn’t the coldest weather of this winter, at higher altitude there was a chilly wind and I suffered with cold hands, especially when stopping at the summit for a bite to eat.
Hestra state that the Army Leather Gore-Tex Mitts are “fully waterproof, highly protective, insulated and exceptionally comfortable haven for toasty hands”. They are meant for alpine skiing and general cold weather pursuits.
When Hubby G and I ski in Canada and America, we see plenty of people wearing Hestra gloves and we have often oohed and ached over them in outdoor retail stores. However, they are not cheap and I have so far resisted a purchase. Receiving the gloves courtesy allows me to tell you my thoughts.
Features Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex Mitts include:
- Gore-Tex waterproofing
- Goat leather palm
- Nylon on back of hand
- Soft Fibrefill synthetic insulation, which insulates even when wet
- Wrist adjustment
- Wrist hoop (to stop them flying away when you take them off)
- RRP £150.
- Buy from Trekitt for £135.
My thoughts: Hestra’s Army Leather Gore-tex Mitts
The mitts are immediately cosy but do not feel heavy. Slipping my hands inside the mitts I discovered a lovely fleece inner. This felt soft and cosy against my cold skin.
There is a size chart so you know which size to buy and my mitts still had enough room for me to wear a silk liner glove if needed for extra warmth on very cold days.
There is an adjustor strap at the wrist and another elastic adjustor further up the arm. This means the gloves stay securely on your hand once you have them on and there is much less chance of cold air getting to your hand. My hands felt well protected.
There is also a very useful strap that goes around the wrist. This means that when you take off the mitts, for example, to get something out of a rucksack or to adjust skis etc, the mitts are still attached to you.
I have lost gloves before – expensive and treasured ones actually – because I have taken one off and then it has been caught by the wind and taken somewhere down a glen or ski slope never to be found again.
The mitts are really well made and look very durable. Leather and high quality nylon make them the sort of mitts that I can imagine owning for decades.
So, they are all the good points. And they did a good job of keeping my hands fairly warm.
The problem for me is that I probably need a warmer mitt. I would love a double thickness of insulation, perhaps even three times the thickness. This is because my hands get cold and when the cold sets in, it’s very difficult to ge the circulation back.
On a mild winter’s day they did a god job but I would to choose to wear these for an overseas ski trip unless I wore another pair of gloves underneath. This is actually a good option because a double layer makes good sense for extra warmth but it would be even better if the mitts could be thicker and warmer.
I guess that if they did have more insulation they would be fatter, heavier and more cumbersome but I would rather that than cold hands.
In contrast to my cold hands issue, Hubby G likes a lighter weight glove or mitt. I can see Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex Mitts being “borrowed” long-term by him.
Conclusion: These are well-made gloves by a highly reputable brand and at a great price (if you buy from Trekitt). They will work well for me on summer hiking trips. I would need a more insulated gloves for wear in colder winter temperatures.