One of the most frequently asked questions I get asked is, "Don't you get cold?"  Well, yes.  I used to.  I commuted during the winter for three years before I discovered the little gem known as mittens.

I have had two really expensive pairs of gloves that have left my fingertips numb by the end of a ride.  Both were cycling specific.  One pair was fifty dollars and the others were ninety.  Yes... NINETY.  They really are some of the most expensive pieces of cycling equipment I've purchased... and neither worked.

That's some major disappointment.  The common factor in both sets were that they were five-finger gloves.  And I couldn't help but think that maybe mittens would be warmer.  Well, my boss gave me a $25 gift card to Dicks Sporting Goods for Christmas this year and I couldn't help but think that this would be the perfect opportunity to buy some cheap mittens.

I walked in and within five minutes grabbed a pair of twenty dollar Columbia mittens off the rack and checked out.  What an awesome purchase.

My hands are warmer now than they've ever been.  I've never gotten cold since buying these things.  I was honestly concerned about shifting without fingers but it hasn't been bad at all.  I'm a fan of bar-end shifting (being a commuter, I want the reliability) and the function hasn't changed one bit.

So, if you're out there wondering how to do it with snowy days and numb fingers, try the cheap mitten approach.  It's worked wonders for me.

Get out there.


  1. Yeah, I learned the hard way as well that the warmth factor doesn't always correspond to the price. I also learned that "cold" and "winter" cycling gear doesn't mean to me what it means to the marketing departments that push the expensive stuff. Cold and winter weather for the cycling companies means 40F or maybe 30F degrees. I ride in -10F and -20F. The colder it gets the fewer cycling specific peices of clothing I wear.

  2. I agree with you, Doug. "Cycling" gear doesn't cut it. The $90 pair are Gore
    Bike Wear (a very reputable cycling company). Even though they were their "winter" gloves, they didn't work. Their winters must be different than mine. My coldest ride has been -2 and the cheap mittens were still great. I sometimes bring the Gore gloves for the ride home when the mittens would be too hot, though. And the their credit, the Gore's are awesome in cold rain. They're very waterproof. So they still have a purpose in my wardrobe. Thanks for the insight, Doug!