On Sunday November 22nd, I went on a very chilly paddle on Richardson Creek in St. Catharines, Ontario. The paddle was absolutely stunning and as I have this blog, I spent a huge amount of the paddle taking photos! (plus I just love it!) Four hundred and eighteen photos to be exact! As I take all my photos with my iPhone, I can not do so without taking off my gloves. My hands started to get numb and felt like they were getting frostbitten, and this was a huge issue for me! I have two winter camping trips coming up and I am planning to paddle as long as the water isn’t frozen, not to mention hiking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, skating.. etc., etc.,etc.!!!
In order to succeed on my mission of adventuring into and through the winter, I need to have the right gear in place so that I am warm and dry and keep myself healthy. Therefore, I needed a solution to my problem pretty quickly. Coincidentally, my favourite Outdoors Store Outdoors Oriented was having a Black Friday sale and guess what they had on the front page of the flyer…The Marmot Connect Glove ! YAY! Looked like a sign to me, but did they work? I went online and read some reviews of the gloves and it seemed most people were happy with them, except one said they were not very warm. Okay, so far so good.
I went into the store to chat with the person who actually taught me how to kayak, Jamie Bingham. I tried on 2 pairs of the gloves, medium and small. They gloves come in unisex sizing and the small was the smallest they had. They seemed to fit good and even fit underneath my Kombi Mitts I’d purchased a few weeks ago in preparation of my winter camping trips. I decided to buy them and would test them out this Sunday paddling Lyons Creek! (post to follow soon!). The plan was to wear them generally and when it was really really cold, wear them underneath my Kombi Mitts and just take the mitts off when I needed to take pictures or use my phone. Then put the mitts back on to keep my hands from freezing.
On Sunday November 29th, I woke up to a somewhat dreary day. The sun was in and out, mostly out, and the temperature was feeling like -2. Same sort of weather I had last weekend, except the POP was down. I decided to test out my new gloves and go for a paddle, arriving at Lyons Creek around 1pm. I put my boat in the water, put on my new gloves and off I went.
The gloves felt good on my hands overall, not too thick or thin and they held my paddle nicely.
They had grip strips on the inside on the palm and then had the pads for texting on the thumb and finger tips on each hand. I had a hard time not taking them off to take photographs with my iPhone as I was so used to doing it in the past, but I forced myself to keep them on and use them to take pictures and do everything with them on.
At first I thought they were working okay, but as I used them I starting noticing an issue. They would swipe the screen open and get me into my photos. Taking pictures worked mostly using my thumb, but I definitely could not text with them on or perform other phone functions as easily as I thought I would be able to. For opening apps and texting especially, it was difficult to hit the tiny keys accurately with gloves on that were just not as sensitive as fingertips.
The other reason I think I was having the issue was due to the fact that even though the gloves were a size small, they were a size small unisex, not ladies small and they were still too big for my little fingers!!! I took a few photos above to try and show how they fit and what it was like when I used my index finger to push on the screen. My fingertips basically did not reach the end of the fingertips in the gloves. When I would use my index finger to pick apps or try and hit keys to text, the glove would fold over on itself at the end and only a portion of the text pad would touch the screen, I guess not always enough to make the connect, connect?
After wearing them for a few hours, you can see there is almost a bend forming in the fingertip and the longer I wore them, the harder it got to use them. The thumbs weren’t too bad. After a few hours using them, I would say their connectivity was about 95% of the time and that was my main reason for having them, taking photos. The fingers were down to about 30% effective by the end of the paddle though, and started out only around 50%. I found it difficult to do anything screen related that required the fingertip touch, however, the reason for this could be and probably was, that they are just too big for me?
As I paddled for the second and third hours, my fingers were beginning to get a bit numb. I had read that these gloves were good, but not very warm and now I was experiencing that myself. I hadn’t brought my Kombi mitts as I hadn’t thought it would be cold enough to use them, but I did have a small set of cheap gloves from Shoppers Drugmart in my backpack and put them on underneath the Marmot gloves. I was at the point that I had to do something. Adding the mini mittens underneath the Marmot gloves kept my hands warm for another half hour or so, but after that my fingertips started to feel numb again and I had to paddle back to my car and call it a day! My phone said it was zero degrees at that time, but there was a bit of wind and I was on the water, so I’d put it at -5 max, just to give you a rough idea of the approximate temperature. The sun had also vanished behind the clouds in the last hour of my paddle, contributing to the cold as well.
Overall, I really do like the concept of the gloves and I think with the proper sizing and a bit more insulation in them, they could be awesome! I’m curious if others have tried these gloves and what their feedback is on them? Also, if anyone has texting gloves that are warmer and your feedback and information on them?
I hope this post was beneficial for you in some way and you enjoyed it. Thanks so much for reading and if you have any suggestions, criticisms or feedback of any kind, please leave me a comment and I’ll get back to you as soon as I am able to.
Happy Texting and Paddling!