As expected, school is keeping me too busy to post often.
Also as expected, fall is approaching, and I deemed it necessary to buy some new gloves so I'm ready when the cold finally decides to get here.
These are the gloves of choice. I just got a replacement pair from Colorado Cyclist (which inexplicably had the lowest price I could find, ~$42 delivered) because I lost one of my old pair at the end of last season.
What made those Wombats so great?
- Easy on/off. Just tug on the fingers. This is essential for the urban commuter, and even more so for the working cyclist. I think it helps that I wear a Large, even though according to Descente's numbers I should wear a Medium.
- Shell vs. insulation. Though I've tried only a couple other winter gloves, my beef with them was that they absorbed water and didn't block enough wind. The Wombat acts more like a rain shell than a cotton sweater. They're still plenty warm, as I believe they are somewhat insulated, but I find that generally, for the coastal Mid-Atlantic winter, windproofness is about the most important clothing feature, and the Wombat put the others to shame here.
- Versatility. In the thick of winter, when the forecast can vary dramatically over the course of a week, these are the only gloves I use. They work when it's pouring rain and 30°, or 0° and blowing hard, and even when it's 50° and just a bit windy. With a good pair of gloves, my whole body feels disproportionately warmer--that is, the gloves add more warmth-feel than one would think. These are definitely warm gloves, and on long rides I could see sweat becoming an issue, but I wore them on hilly 10-mile treks without a big problem.
- Long cuffs. This expands the cycling wardrobe because my wrists stay pretty warm even with a non-cycling jacket (e.g. a peacoat).
- The finger flap is a cool idea, but my trips were short enough and never in cold/wet enough weather to warrant their use very often. Nice to have when necessary, though., and they fold out of the way when not in use.
- Reflective Descente logo on the back of the hand helps with signaling safety.
- Classiness factor. They're not big and bulky like ski gloves. They may not win any fashion awards, either, but with commuting cycling already pretty dorky, a sleek black pair of gloves is nice.
- Solid construction. I wore my old pair for a year of commuting and late-night couriering without so much as a thread unraveling. Not a super-long test period, but a lot better than the Cannondale gloves I had, which ripped at the wrist after only a few weeks.
Why do these new Wombats seem like they'll rock even harder?
- Absorbent terry cloth thumb for wiping sweat away. One of my biggest problems with the old model.
- Grippier palm/thumb/index/middle finger area. These had been plain suede material, and now they have little grippy numbs somewhat like de-clawed Velcro, which would be a cool name for a rock band.
- Slight padding added to the meaty part of the palm. Lack of padding wasn't a big problem before, but it should make a nice addition.