Have you ever tried to tie a small hook onto a really thin line with freezing cold fingers?
It is an exercise in endurance and patience. But what if I was to tell you that you can easily avoid one of the most unpleasant sensations in the world?
This article is going to show you how to avoid numb fingers, stinging knuckles and frostbite, as I look at some of the best ice fishing gloves of 2021.
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For a flexible and dynamic approach these gloves fit the bill quite nicely. They offer the best of both worlds. With a relatively good level of insulation, and the ability to free up your fingertips for that detailed and delicate work, they are a great solution.
There are 3 ‘cut’ fingers on each of these gloves. To gain some extra dexterity you simply flip off the fingertip section.
Will it get in the way when I am tying knots?
Actually, no. Palmyth seem to have thought of everything. Located in the back of each fingertip is a small magnet. When you flick the tip of the finger section backwards it is securely held out of the way. Once you are done, simply detach it and pull it back over your finger.
Whilst the gloves aren’t the thickest material they compensate with a breathable and windproof outer shell, which cuts down on the need for thick padding.
But it’s not just about the cold right?
Right… You want to function as well as warmth, and for that reason any area of the glove that will be ‘working’ is lined with tough and grippy leather. Adjustable Velcro wrist straps make sure the gloves remain firmly attached.
Windproof and breathable fabric prevent windchill.
I really liked the magnetic fingertips. It’s a clever solution.
Neoprene is incorporated into the glove, giving quick drying properties.
The gloves are water-resistant, but if they get soaked, your hands will get wet.
They aren’t the thickest, so for more extreme weather you might want to consider an alternative.
For a day that is just the wrong side of ‘mild’ they offer good quality performance. The magnetic fingertips are certainly convenient and foolproof.
There’s a lot to like about these gloves and provided you aren’t fishing in really extreme conditions, they offer excellent value. If you want to see them in more detail, check out this video.
The Stormr Strykr gloves are pretty substantial, with a 2mm thickness and lined entirely with a microfleece they will keep your fingers nice and toasty. The fingers are fully stitched with no gaps, so once you have the gloves on, your fingers will remain covered until you take them off.
But are they waterproof?
Indeed, they are waterproof, however, whilst they are designed to keep the rain and snow out, they aren’t meant to be fully submerged. The good news is that the majority of the glove is constructed from neoprene which is warm and dries quickly.
There is more…
A nice feature is the fleece section on the back of the glove. When you are sat with the rod in your hands it is normally the backs of your hands that are exposed to the elements, so this extra protection is actually pretty effective.
Durable and grippy duratex grip.
Good water resistance.
Designed for harsher weather.
You may struggle to tie knots with the gloves on.
These gloves will let water in if you submerge your hands.
These gloves offer a reasonable compromise. They aren’t bulky so will be suitable to perform any task that doesn’t require your fingertips. As long as you don’t push them too far, they should keep your hands warm and dry in all but the worst conditions.
Palmyth seem to be masters of innovation, in these combo gloves they seem to have thought of everything. If you invest in a pair of convertible mittens, you’ll have plenty of dexterity as each individual digit is cut away to allow you the full use of all of your fingertips.
You needn’t worry about them being cold either, as when they are not in use, your fingers will be safely stowed under a mitten cover that is lined with a microfibre fleece.
There’s a lot more packed into these gloves too. As you’ll know, when the wind blows it can feel much colder than it really is, Palmyth would appear to know this too as they have been kind enough to line the gloves with a windproof membrane.
They have even gone so far as to include a pocket to stow a heat pouch in each glove, so when the temperature really drops, you’ll be able to customize your level of warmth.
But what about the downsides…
Again, the gloves aren’t 100% waterproof, so whilst they’ll keep you warm you don’t want to give them a dunk in water for any prolonged amount of time.
Full finger dexterity with mitten section removed.
Finger loops allow quick removal and donning of the mitten section.
The gloves have excellent grip.
When the mittens are on you have very limited dexterity.
A pair of these shouldn’t disappoint, you have the best of fingerless gloves and mittens all rolled into one. They are easy to use, and feature magnets to keep the mitten section out of the way. These would be a great choice as a good allrounder.
So, you want something that is warm and waterproof and allows you to wriggle your fingers? If this is your criteria then this pair of gloves should tick all of the boxes.
With a dual lining, these gloves are filled with 3M Thinsulate and then topped up with a plush and thick fleece, giving the ultimate in keeping your extremities warm.
When using them when actually fishing you’ll be able to keep a good grip, regardless of the conditions, as the palm surface is coated with anti-slip silicone.
It would have been nice to see the entire palm coated instead of just the ‘pressure points’, but any area lacking in silicone still has a thick layer of grippy synthetic leather.
Any other features?
The one I really want to talk about is the water resistance. Unlike our previous suggestions, with these gloves you could hold your hand in water all day and still stay dry. They are 100% waterproof and offer a really solid choice if the conditions require something that will absolutely keep your hands as dry as possible.
The devil is in the detail…
The gloves also feature loops to pull the gloves on, and a feature that I really liked was the ‘wiper’ available on the thumb. It will allow you to defrost a phone screen or get rid of the occasional drip from your nose too. (don’t worry we all do it).
Super thick insulation, guaranteed warmth.
Integral heat pad.
A clever ‘wiper’ feature.
100% waterproof, even if fully submerged.
Not suitable for work requiring fine motor skills.
The palm grip is only partially lined.
These gloves are for seriously cold weather. If you want to fish in extreme conditions and get a pair of high-quality gloves these are definitely worth consideration.
Your hands will be warm and dry all of the time, and these could be real contender for the best waterproof ice fishing gloves. The only downside is that you may have to take them off if you are handling anything small.
These gloves are possibly the warmest I’ve seen. Utilizing a whole manner of fabrics and technologies to guarantee warmth. They have gone for a hybrid approach with gloves that are neither truly mittens or gloves.
Let me explain…
Think ‘lobster claw’ and you will be in the ballpark. The thumb and the first finger feature a detachable tip, and your remaining digits will be wrapped up in a fixed mitten. What the glove lacks in mobility it more than makes up for in warmth. They are absolutely packed with thick dual-material insulation.
Unlike our other gloves, the outer material is in fact entirely natural, and is constructed from durable and rather eye-catching goat leather. This is good as it is soft, grippy and hard wearing.
Hold on a minute…
This is has a real downside, because, it absolutely is not waterproof. They might tolerate the odd splash or snow shower, but anything more than that and they are going to soak that water up.
That’s a big downside in my book. If you have ever got leather wet you will know that when it dries it tends to turn from soft and supple to hard and brittle.
The warmest gloves I have found, with super-thick insulation.
Magnetic detachable thumb and fingertips.
Poor water resistance.
Only having a finger and thumb free can be quite limiting.
If I fished only on very cold, but very clear days, they would be a top investment. The lack of flexibility with the mitten section is down to personal preference as I like to have more than a finger and thumb free, but overall, they offer real warmth.
Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best. There isn’t anything particularly advanced about these gloves, but if you are anything like me, you’ll just want something that works.
They are constructed from durable neoprene and the palm section is covered with a layer of super grippy textured artificial leather. They are ever so slightly padded and for weather which is slightly cooler, should do a reasonable job of keeping your hands warm.
The thumb and index finger section are split to allow you to stick your naked digit out into the fresh air. There is no way of securing the empty thumb and finger section so it just rests behind your bare-naked digit.
That’s not bad, is it?
Well, it would be nicer if you could keep the empty sections out of the way, but that said I have found that a Velcro fastening tends to give up and become worn pretty quickly so the fact that they haven’t included it isn’t a big deal for me.
The gloves are not waterproof, but due to the material they are made from grip shouldn’t be an issue, if they did happen to get wet.
The gloves are lightweight and durable.
They are thin enough to allow you to use your fingers even with them covered.
They have a really good grip.
The padding could be a little thicker.
There is no way to secure the loose finger and thumb section.
These gloves might not be quite substantial enough for a whole day on the ice, but for occasional use or taken as a backup they would be ideal.
It might be an idea to combine a couple of solutions to give you everything you need in a glove. If you aren’t looking to take your gloves off at all, or are comfortable with manipulating things with your gloves on, then this pair is great.
The reason we chose these gloves is because they are basic and no-nonsense. Tough rubber handling areas ensure that you will have the firmest grip and they really protect your hands. They are machine washable too. If you’ve had a good day and handled a lot of fish then this is something you are really going to want in a pair of gloves.
Want to know what makes them so great?
The key feature that drew my eye was that they float. It only takes one careless minute and you’ll have one warm hand and one cold hand if your glove disappears into the deep. For a simple, affordable and durable glove, these are not a bad choice.
Machine washable ensuring freshness.
The glove is really durable and grippy.
Buoyant in water.
Not a great deal of insulation.
Fairly thin on extra features.
They aren’t the thickest we have suggested, and it might be worth adding thinner pair below, but if you want to add layers to your hands they could work well.
The Glacier Glove will keep your hands warm and dry, they also look pretty neat too. If you are fishing for a species that is easily spooked, the camo pattern should ensure that your hands blend in.
The gloves are a blend of technologies mixing the stretch of neoprene with the warmth of fleece material to give a good all-round experience.
So, what’s not to like?
Not much really. The cuff of the glove isn’t elasticated or securable, but that said I’ve found that’ sometimes adding an extra step to remove a glove can be more trouble than it is worth. With these gloves you will be able to pull them off and put them on really easily.
I really like the grip on these gloves. The palm area is surrounded by a one piece ‘shark skin’ texture. This will stick to any item regardless of whether it is wet or dry. Speaking of wet, the gloves are also 100% waterproof.
Super cool looking camo pattern.
Lightweight and waterproof.
The fingers aren’t removable.
No method of securing the writ end of the glove.
These gloves would have been perfect if you could remove fingertip sections, but that said they still perform reasonably well. They are custom-built for outdoor pursuits and offer warm, dry hands and excellent quality.
Buying guide to the Best Ice Fishing Gloves
If you have read our review, you’ll have seen that there are a surprising number of features in a pair of gloves. It’s hard to know what’s important and what isn’t.
But, looking after your hands when ice fishing is almost as vital as looking after your feet. We are going to talk about the things that turn very average gloves into the best fishing gloves for cold weather.
Should You Wear Gloves for Fishing?
The simple answer is, it depends. But I’m going to say if you fish in cold weather then the answer should be yes. Being warm is vital.
If you’ve seen my ice fishing gear list you’ll notice that warm clothing features pretty early on. If you choose a pair that don’t do a good job, it is only going to make life harder. Having cold, wet hands and being unable to fish properly will be something you do only once.
Try and choose something that offers a happy medium. Essentially look for a degree of protection from the elements but also the versatility to allow you to use your hands effectively.
It would be a terrible shame to find the fish and then have to retire early because your fingers won’t work anymore.
What are the Best Winter Fishing Gloves?
At the end of the day you are looking for a solution that will cover you for most of your fishing. If you are a fisherman who prefers to keep their gloves on all day, or fish in conditions that make it necessary, then you will be looking for a range of features to enable that. In this case, removable finger sections might be exactly what you need.
But choose wisely…
If you fish in milder weather the chances are you aren’t going to need super thick gloves and removable finger sections. In short, make a top list of features that you really want, such as waterproof fishing gloves or heavily insulated fishing gloves, and then look for nice ‘extras’ afterwards.
What Materials are the Best Fishing Gloves for Winter Made From?
Neoprene is a solid choice. It holds heat well, offers a degree of water resistance, and dries quickly when it gets wet. Look for things such as rubberized or leather grip on the palm sections.
The lining of the gloves is equally important. Windproof layers afford you the luxury of choosing a thinner glove. 3M insulation is as good as it gets for keeping hands nice and snug.
The story doesn’t end there…
If you have fished for any amount of time, you’ll know that your gear can get a bit, well… Dirty. You are going to be handling all sorts of things, including fish and bait.
So, it is important that you are able to give your gloves a quick wash every now and then.
What’s more important is that they are the same size when they leave the washing machine as they were when they went in! Pick something that is machine washable.
Oh, and don’t forget to breathe…
Wind and waterproof layers are all good and well, but if they cause moisture to collect within the glove you may find that your hands end up wet and cold anyway.
So make sure that if your gloves are waterproof they are also breathable too.
Do I Need Winter Fishing Mittens or Gloves?
It’s a trade-off. Mittens actually keep the fingers warmer than gloves as they have a greater internal area that holds more heat. But with mittens you lose general dexterity.
Fortunately, manufacturers have addressed this issue so you can get the best of both worlds with folding mitten sections or half mittens.
My list of the best ice fishing gloves of 2021 features quite a lot of choice. But in order to decide, you’ll need to figure out exactly what is the most important quality you are looking for.
Do you want water resistance, a good grip, warmth, or perhaps a combination?
If you’ve found a pair that you really love, why not tell me about them and I’ll think about adding them to the list…