5 Best Orienteering Gloves for Protection: Top Picks for Durability and Comfort

July 03, 2024 7 min read

For orienteering enthusiasts, having the right gear is essential to your performance and safety. One key piece of equipment you should consider is a reliable pair of gloves designed specifically for the challenges of the sport. Choosing the best orienteering gloves can significantly enhance your experience by providing the protection and grip you need.

A table with 5 pairs of orienteering gloves, each with varying levels of protection and grip, displayed against a neutral background

When navigating through diverse terrains, proper hand protection becomes crucial. Whether you are facing rough trails or varying weather conditions, the right gloves can make a noticeable difference. In this article, you'll find an overview of the top five orienteering gloves to keep your hands safe and comfortable.

1) Sealskinz All Weather Gloves

A pair of Sealskinz All Weather Gloves, designed for orienteering, lay on a rocky trail, surrounded by dense forest and a clear, winding stream

When it comes to all-around protection, the Sealskinz All Weather Gloves stand out. These gloves offer a combination of waterproof, windproof, and breathable materials, ensuring your hands stay dry and comfortable.

The gloves feature a three-layer construction designed to provide warmth and durability. They have a soft lining that enhances comfort without compromising on performance.

The outer layer is rugged and resistant to abrasions. This helps keep your hands protected from rough terrains and underbrush, making these gloves a reliable choice for any orienteering adventure.

Sealskinz uses a close-fitting design that allows for maximum dexterity. You'll find it easy to handle maps, compasses, and other tools without removing your gloves.

In addition to their high functionality, the Sealskinz All Weather Gloves come in various sizes. This ensures a snug fit tailored to your hand, reducing the risk of slippage and improving grip.

The gloves also feature touch screen compatibility. This means you can use your smartphone or GPS device without taking them off, adding a layer of convenience during your outdoor activities.

The combination of quality materials and thoughtful design makes the Sealskinz All Weather Gloves a top pick. Their all-weather capabilities ensure that your hands remain protected, allowing you to focus on navigating your route.

2) Inov-8 All Terrain Pro Gloves

A pair of Inov-8 All Terrain Pro Gloves lying on a rugged terrain, surrounded by orienteering equipment and a map, ready for adventure

When you’re navigating challenging terrains, the Inov-8 All Terrain Pro Gloves provide the durability and grip you need. These gloves are designed to handle rough and unpredictable conditions without compromising comfort. The stretchy material ensures a snug fit, allowing for a high degree of dexterity.

The gloves feature a breathable fabric that keeps your hands dry during exertion. This is essential for maintaining grip and comfort throughout your orienteering adventure. The silicone grip on the palm enhances traction, making it easier to handle maps, compasses, and other gear.

The All Terrain Pro Gloves also offer extra protection with reinforced fingertips. This feature helps prevent injuries from sharp branches and rocky surfaces. Despite their rugged construction, these gloves remain lightweight, ensuring you don't feel encumbered while navigating.

Another advantage is the touchscreen compatibility of the gloves. You can use your GPS devices or smartphone without having to remove them. This convenience ensures that you can stay on course and keep your hands protected at all times.

The gloves come in various sizes to fit different hand dimensions, ensuring a customizable fit for maximum comfort. They are also machine washable, which makes maintenance straightforward after muddy or sweaty expeditions.

These gloves are ideal for those who need a reliable balance of durability, comfort, and functionality. With Inov-8's reputation for quality outdoor gear, you can trust these gloves to meet your orienteering needs.

3) Bridgedale Waterproof Ultra Fit Gloves

A pair of Bridgedale Waterproof Ultra Fit Gloves are laid out on a table, surrounded by orienteering equipment and a map, ready for adventure

Bridgedale Waterproof Ultra Fit Gloves offer excellent protection and comfort for outdoor activities like orienteering. These gloves feature a waterproof membrane to keep your hands dry in wet conditions, ensuring you can focus on navigation without distraction.

The gloves also have a snug, ultra-fit design that allows for dexterity and precision. This means you won't have to remove them when handling maps, compass, or other tools.

They come with a silicone grip on the palm and fingers. This ensures a firm hold on equipment, minimizing the risk of slipping.

The material is breathable and helps to prevent your hands from becoming too sweaty. This feature enhances comfort during long or strenuous orienteering sessions.

Bridgedale's ergonomic design ensures the gloves fit well, reducing discomfort and the likelihood of blisters. Proper fit is crucial when you're out in the elements for extended periods.

You can trust these gloves to provide reliable performance in a variety of weather conditions. From rain to cold temperatures, they are built to handle it all.

These gloves are also lightweight, so they won't add unnecessary bulk to your gear. This makes them a practical choice for anyone serious about orienteering.

Bridgedale Waterproof Ultra Fit Gloves combine functionality with durability. Investing in a pair means you'll be well-equipped for your next adventure.

4) Salomon Pulse Handheld Gloves

A pair of Salomon Pulse Handheld Gloves displayed on a table, surrounded by other orienteering gear. The gloves are sleek and protective, with reinforced padding and a secure fit

Salomon Pulse Handheld Gloves are designed for orienteering enthusiasts who seek both comfort and functionality. These gloves offer a snug fit that ensures you maintain full control over your map and compass during your adventure.

The gloves are made from high-quality materials that provide excellent durability. They are lightweight, which makes them easy to wear for long periods.

The breathable fabric keeps your hands dry even during intense activity. This moisture-wicking feature is particularly useful in maintaining grip and preventing slippage.

The fingertips of these gloves are designed to be touchscreen-compatible. This means you can use your GPS devices or smartphone without having to take your gloves off, adding an extra layer of convenience.

With reinforced palms, the Salomon Pulse Handheld Gloves offer added protection against rough terrain and potential blisters. This makes them ideal for prolonged use in challenging environments.

The adjustable wrist strap ensures a secure fit. This design element helps to keep debris out and adds to the overall comfort.

In terms of aesthetics, these gloves have a sleek and modern look. They are available in several sizes to cater to different hand shapes and preferences.

Salomon Pulse Handheld Gloves are built to meet the needs of serious orienteering participants. They combine practicality with advanced features to aid your navigation efforts effectively.

5) Outdoor Research ActiveIce Chroma Sun Gloves

A pair of Outdoor Research ActiveIce Chroma Sun Gloves are shown being worn for protection during orienteering

The Outdoor Research ActiveIce Chroma Sun Gloves are designed to protect your hands from the sun and provide cooling comfort. These gloves use ActiveIce technology, which reacts to your body's temperature, keeping your hands cool as you move.

You'll appreciate the UPF 50+ sun protection, blocking harmful UV rays during your outdoor adventures. The gloves’ lightweight and breathable fabric ensures a comfortable fit while preventing overheating.

The silicone grip pads on the palm and fingers offer excellent control, making these gloves ideal for orienteering. Whether you're handling a compass or navigating rugged terrain, you'll find the grip reliable.

A thoughtful feature is the fingerless design, which enhances dexterity without sacrificing protection. This allows you to handle maps, GPS devices, or other tools with ease.

Durable and quick-drying, these gloves are made to endure long hours in various weather conditions. They are easy to care for, requiring just a simple wash to maintain their performance.

Your hands stay cool, protected, and ready for action with the Outdoor Research ActiveIce Chroma Sun Gloves. They offer a blend of functionality and comfort, making them a valuable addition to your orienteering gear.

Material and Durability

Durable gloves lay on rocky terrain, surrounded by dense forest. Material labels show strong, weather-resistant fabrics

For orienteering gloves, the materials used and their durability are crucial factors. You'll want gloves that offer both comfort and robust protection against various outdoor conditions.

Types of Materials

Orienteering gloves are typically made from materials like nylon, polyester, and spandex. These materials provide flexibility and breathability, ensuring comfort while navigating rugged terrains. Nylon is well-known for its resistance to wear and tear, making it a popular choice.

Polyester offers excellent moisture-wicking properties, keeping your hands dry. Spandex adds stretchability, contributing to a snug fit. Some gloves incorporate leather or synthetic leather for added durability and enhanced grip. These leather components are often strategically placed on the palms or fingertips for better control and handling.

Water Resistance and Weather Protection

Water resistance is essential for orienteers who tackle varied weather conditions. Gloves made from waterproof materials such as Gore-Tex or treated with a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating are effective in keeping moisture out. This ensures your hands remain dry during wet conditions.

Weather protection features don't stop at water resistance. Many gloves come with insulated linings for cold weather and ventilated designs for warmer climates. Look for gloves with reinforced stitching and sealed seams as these enhance their ability to withstand harsh environments. This combination of features ensures your gloves can handle the unpredictability of outdoor adventures without compromising on comfort or durability.

Comfort and Fit

A hand reaching into a backpack, pulling out a pair of orienteering gloves. The gloves are sleek and durable, with reinforced padding for protection

Orienteering requires gloves that fit well and maintain comfort in various conditions. The right size ensures dexterity, while proper temperature regulation keeps your hands comfortable.

Sizing Guide

Choosing the right size is crucial for orienteering gloves. Most manufacturers provide a sizing chart. Measure the circumference of your palm and compare it to the chart.

Tips for measuring:

  1. Use a flexible tape measure.
  2. Measure around the widest part of your palm.
  3. Check both hands and use the larger measurement for sizing.

A snug fit without being tight is ideal. Gloves that are too loose can slip, while tight gloves can restrict movement.

Temperature Regulation

Temperature regulation in orienteering gloves involves materials that balance warmth and breathability. Gloves might have layers of insulation for cold weather, or moisture-wicking fabrics for warmer conditions.

Key features:

  • Insulated gloves: Use these for winter or cold conditions.
  • Breathable materials: Essential for avoiding sweaty hands.
  • Ventilation: Mesh panels or vents can improve airflow.

Understanding these features helps you pick gloves suited for varying temperatures, ensuring your hands stay comfortable during your activities.

Additional Features

A pair of orienteering gloves laid out on a table, with reinforced padding on the palms and fingers for protection. The gloves are made of durable, weather-resistant material

When choosing the best orienteering gloves, considering features like grip and dexterity as well as touch screen compatibility can greatly enhance your experience.

Grip and Dexterity

Grip and dexterity are crucial for handling maps and compasses effectively. Look for gloves with reinforced palms made of materials like silicone or rubber for better grip.

Polyester-spandex blends provide a balance between flexibility and durability, ensuring you maintain finger dexterity. Padded fingers can offer comfort without compromising the feel. A snug fit is also important to avoid slipping and ensure control in wet or muddy conditions.

Some brands add textured patterns on the fingerpads to provide extra grip when handling small items. Gloves that use pre-curved designs tend to align better with the natural shape of your hands, offering greater precision and ease of movement. Adjustable cuffs with Velcro or elastic bands offer a secure fit, preventing the gloves from moving during intense activities.

Touch Screen Compatibility

Touch screen compatibility is essential for using GPS devices or smartphones without removing your gloves. Gloves with conductive fabric on the fingertips allow you to operate touch screens seamlessly.

Typically, materials like silver or copper threads are integrated into the fabric at the fingertips. Look for multi-finger compatibility, which includes the thumb, index, and middle fingers.

Ensure the touch sensitivity is consistent, even in cold weather, to prevent frustration. Test the gloves with your devices before heading out to confirm their effectiveness. Some gloves also feature touch screen-compatible overlays that provide both protection and the ability to interact with digital devices efficiently.

Focus on gloves that balance sensitivity and durability to ensure they meet your orienteering needs without compromising on performance.