Words By: Brian Casey
With the weather getting colder we may still want to get those last few days of padding in. once we have made the decision to get after it we take stock of how to keep yourself from becoming grumpy and cold. We will be looking and pieces of gear for our hands which is a vital part of happy paddling.
PADDLING GLOVES REVIEW
With the different thicknesses and styles, gloves are all way a great go-to for colder weather paddling. What makes gloves so great well with a med thickness (2mm) to heavier weight (3mm and up) you get pretty good dexterity with the lighter thickness and good waterproofness.
Here are a few things to be aware of with your gloves, sizing is very important. Gloves that are too tight can restrict movement and feeling, as well as too big having extra fabric is hard to deal with when trying to hold firmly to a wet paddle. With lots of use, a glove can start to break down, most neoprene doesn’t take abrasion well make sure the palm is well covered and able to stand up to punishment. Gloves can also take time to get on and off making it challenging when you have a bit of warmer weather on the water and are not needing total warmth.
Check out NRS Maverick Glove Video Below:
PADDLING POGIES REVIEW
With maximum warmth and paddle feel is a must for most paddlers, pogies are an excellent choice in later and early season paddling. Pogies are an open-ended envelope that goes over your paddle and has an opening for your hand allowing you to have bare hands on your favorite paddle and keep your finger in a warm neoprene cocoon. Most are 5mm and come in one size making it easy to fit them. They are also easy to get your hand in and out which is nice when you want to transition to sun-warmed hands, or need full dexterity for a quick rescue or gripping ropes.
Somethings to consider with pogies, they are attached to you paddle meaning if you happen to lose your paddle your hands will be exposed to cold water and colder air tempter making for challenging conditions. Pogies are not totally waterproof they can become filled with cold water in pushier water conditions. If you need to have your hand out of your pogies for whatever reason IE taking pictures to throw bagging in rescue scenarios your hands will get cold.
Check out NRS Mamba Pogies Video Below:
PADDLING MITTS REVIEW
For years my grandmother would knit me a new pair of mittens every year, she knew that fingers are weak and get cold on their own. There is strength and warmth in numbers when you keep your finger together. Mitts are a great option to help you stay warmer and more comfortable for paddling adventures. Neoprene Mitts are relatively easy to put on and are comfortable over short or long days.
Mitts have a few downfalls like the loss of dexterity and fine motor movement like tying knots. Sizing is all so an issue too small and you will have trouble comfortably closing your hand and too big you will have flappy bits to deal with causing hand cramps due to over gripping. There is the possibility of water getting in from the top of the mitt as it may not have a tight-sealing cuff.
Check out NRS Toaster Mitts Video Below:
In closing, there is no reason to stop paddling just because the sun is a little further away from us this time of year. Choose your cold-weather accessories carefully, this will help keep you comfortable and warm and will ramp up the fun and safety factor!
For more information please feel free to contact us by any of the methods below:
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