My hands get pretty torn up on 3 season bushwhacks – so much so that it looks like I’ve been in a fight with a spruce tree, which is the case more often than not! I won’t try to defend bushwhacking, which most trail hikers probably think is insane, but I like it because it gives me a deeper connection to the wilderness than trail hiking. Bushwhacking is like time travel back to the days before there were trails.
But finding comfortable hand protection has been problematic, insofar as the leather handgloves I use for trail work, are too hot for summer bushwhacking and dry too slowly when it’s wet. I’ve since switched to Grease Monkey Gorilla Grip Gloves which have proven remarkably comfortable for hot weather bushwhacking and only cost about ten dollars per pair.
The best things about these gloves is the dexterity they provide. One side is completely waterproof and coated with a shiny surface, while the other side is a breathable fabric that keeps my hands from sweating out, even in very hot weather. The material is thin enough that there is no loss of feeling in my fingers: for example, I can tie my shoes while wearing the gloves and even operate a smart phone or gps device.
The durability of the Gorilla Gloves is also excellent. I haven’t snagged or torn them on any foliage, despite several very long bushwhacks, and they provide complete protection for my hands. Weighing less than one ouce per pair, I will probably carry them from now on in my pack since they are so light and I’m often tempted to explore off-trail on hikes which are primarily trail-bound.
While good for warm weather, I will probably switch back to a regular cold weather glove when it snows again, but for spring, summer, and autumn when temperatures are warm enough, these are the perfect bushwhacking gloves for me.
Will Reitvelt first turned me onto these gloves in a post he wrote about Ultralight Bushwhacking on the Gossamer Gear blog. Thanks Will!