Whether temps were in the 30’s or below zero, my fingers always seemed to be close to the perfect temperature. The only time I truly found the glove to be too warm was when skiing in the backcountry on longer approaches. In those instances, it wasn’t so much that my hands were too hot, but that the glove wasn’t breathing well enough, so my hands were sweating (they are leather, after all).
This though points to an attribute that I absolutely love about this glove: the PrimaLoft and Polartec insulation is basically unaffected by any moisture in the glove. I can remember many times where I would accidentally get a pile of snow in my gloves on a cold day and think, “great, now my hands are going to be wet and freezing!” and later realize my hands were still toasty warm even if they were a little damp.
Good gloves are not cheap, so when I buy a pair I expect to get a decent amount of use out of them before they start to fall apart. Unfortunately, my boot buckles are notorious for eating up fingertips, so this has effectively ruled out the use of any nylon finger tipped gloves from my collection. I’ve always loved leather gloves anyway since they are often warmer and more durable than nylon.
In any case, the Black Diamond Patrol gloves have definitely stood up to the test. I have used my current pair for at least a hundred days, and the only issue I’ve had is with two fingertips that have worn out slightly (damn boot buckles!!). Everything else on the glove is holding up incredibly well. I have never treated the leather with any sort of protection, so they have faded slightly and I can saturate the leather on a warm and wet day, but never all the way through.
The best thing about the BD Patrol glove is that it offers a significant amount of warmth and durability without being overly bulky, and with a leather that isn’t so stiff that it’s uncomfortable and impossible to work with. Sliding your hand through pole straps is easy; opening and closing boot buckles a snap; zippers on your coat or backpack can easily be pinched; peeling off and folding up backcountry skins is a piece of cake; and they are soft enough that you can wipe snot from your nose all day (sexy!) without having to worry about looking like Rudolph (the red nosed reindeer) at the bar later.
Given all this, you can bet that when my Patrol gloves finally do bite the dust (which doesn’t appear to be any time soon), I will be heading straight to Black Diamond and grabbing another pair.