Sun Gloves?

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Viewing 25 posts - 1 through 25 (of 50 total)
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    Michael Reagan


    Locale: Southern California

    As a Southern California hiker, I normally rely on a wide-brimmed hat and lightweight long pants and a long-sleeved shirt as my primary defense against sunburn. I prefer to use as little sunblock as possible. One area of concern is the tops of my hands that are routinely exposed while using trekking poles. I've heard of folks using lightweight gloves or even sun shields made of Tyvek or the like, but I apparently didn't pay enough attention at the time to remember much about brands or types.

    I'm wondering if anyone here uses some sort of warm weather sun protection for their hands other than sunblock, and if so, what you have learned and what you like. The need would seem to be something that would provide adequate sun protection, yet a degree of ventilation and perhaps even sweat dispersal. They would also need to be durable enough to withstand the rigors of constant trekking pole use without coming apart.

    Any ideas?


    BPL Member


    Locale: The Cascades

    I haven't used these but someone on here said they did.

    Leigh Baker


    Locale: Northeast Texas Pineywoods

    I had a pr. I bought from a fishing site. Light and spf 50 I believe. Try googling.

    Robert Cowman
    BPL Member


    Locale: Canadian Rockies
    Brad Rogers
    BPL Member


    Locale: Southeast Tennessee

    It is laughable to think of using something like this where I hike, but I bought a pair of REI Sunscreen Gloves for a six day hike on the JMT I will be doing this September. I don't know if this is overkill or not, but I don't like using sunscreen so I thought I would rely on clothing as much as possible. They are fingerless, seem wicking, and are only 0.6 ounces per pair. Obviously I can't tell you how well they will work yet, but they seem like they will do the job.

    Mary D
    BPL Member


    Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge

    I have a pair of the overpriced Sun Precautions shields (see link in Doug's post) but anyone with some sewing skills should be able to cobble up their own. They are much cooler than gloves (which I tried and discarded) and don't have to be removed to work my camera.

    Bob Gross
    BPL Member


    Locale: Silicon Valley

    I have some cotton inspection gloves that are commonly used in the electronics industry. They weigh only 0.36 ounce per pair in my size. I won't claim that they have any warmth, but they are so thin that I can double up or triple up and still remain in the vicinity of one ounce. On a cold or rainy day, I can put disposable vinyl gloves over them.


    Link .
    BPL Member


    Martha S.


    I got some cheap white potting gloves from Kmart or somewhere similar. My sister doesn't like to wear the whole glove so she cut the fingers off.

    But then, we're cheap.

    Hiker 816
    BPL Member


    Locale: Denver
    James Castleberry


    I cover everything I can and wear a pair of older Glacier sun gloves. They are all cotton, pretty thin and very comfortable. Newer version has lycra, which I haven't tried and am not that keen to. I picked up a bunch of the cotton ones on closeout for about $5 or $6 a pair at Sierra Trading Post. Sun gloves protect my hands, keep them clean and they dry easily when washed. If Kmart or other retailer has thin white gardening gloves, those sound like they will work great. Most of the sun gloves I looked at when shopping seemed way overpriced for basic simple hand covering.

    Daryl and Daryl
    BPL Member


    Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth

    I wear a long sleeve nylon windbreaker for sun protection. It is a larger size than I normally wear so the sleeves are long enough to cover my hands and thereby protect them from sun and bugs.

    John Vance
    BPL Member


    Locale: Intermountain West

    I too pull my sleeves over my hands for sun protection. I have modified a couple of base layers with thumb holes farther back in the sleeve to accommodate this and it works great.

    BPL Member


    Locale: Eastern Washington

    Another vote for 'Coolibar'–great sun gloves.

    BPL Member


    Locale: Northern California

    I just used Sungrubbies on my last hike in Yosemite. I also use them while driving. They're not hot at all and also leave my fingers free from the last knuckle up, which is good for dexterity. I'm hoping that these will be good for mosquitoes, but if push comes to shove I'll spritz some deet on the back–the only place I'll use deet. Then I can take them off for eating.

    Michael Reagan


    Locale: Southern California

    Thanks for all the recommendations! As usual, this forum is the "go to" place for the best information on gear.


    Clint N.


    Locale: Utah

    I intend to try the Eclipse Sun Gloves this summer. They interest me because they are more of a sleeve extension with a thumb loop to hold them in place; they don't have fingers. This seems a bit cooler and no fabric between the fingers. They cover the back of the hands only but that seems adequate since if using trekking poles, fingers are usually curled under or around the handles. They're available at Amazon for 16.95.

    BPL Member


    What sun? Haven't seen the sun in a while where I live. I'm more apt to wear goretex or neoprene gloves with all the rain here!

    BER —
    BPL Member


    Locale: Wisconsin

    Had similar problem with burning the back of my hands while on my last paddling trip.
    Bought some Buff gloves. Initially tried the angler gloves but decided I didn't like the leather palm. Sent them back and got the water gloves instead. Much more comfortable and just enough silicone on the palms to give some grip. My size S/M pair weighs 1.2 oz.

    BPL Member


    This is an old thread but I still haven't found a good solution. I have long used the Patagonia sun glove. When walking with sticks, it does not adequately protect the thumb from sun. This glove is made for anglers. When you hold a walking stick, the wrist is supinated and the top of the thumb is directly exposed to the sun.They hold up relatively well for what they are. The seams tend to unravel a bit. I have found they can withstand 3 or 4 weeks of hiking just fine. The newer version has an open palm.

    The tops of the thumbs will burn while walking with sticks and the Patagonia sun glove does not cover most of the thumb. Sometimes i wrap the thumb with something (little strip of cloth, tissue, gauze) and tuck it in to the glove.

    I am considering taking a merino liner glove and cutting off the fingers at the PIP joint and only cutting off the very tip of the thumb. Icebreaker used to have some in lighter colors…like bright red instead of black. They would have to be hemmed to prevent unraveling. If they were snug enough, they could possibly still serve as liner gloves under more substantial gloves.

    When really desperate, I yank my sleeves down over my hands and keep it down over the thumb with my pole strap…less than satisfactory.

    I am going to check out some of the gloves mentioned here. IMO, the sun exposure to the thumb remains the issue when walking with sticks. Thanks for sharing.

    Jeff Jeff
    BPL Member


    I used coolibar sun gloves on the PCT. I only carried a small tube of sunblock for my face. It worked very well.

    BPL Member



    Thanks for introducing me to the brand. Some useful looking sun accessories.

    Which gloves? Fingerless or full fingered.

    I generally walk with sticks when I backpack which heavily exposes my thumbs. The fingerless look short in the thumbs…like most such gloves…which seem to be aimed at anglers. I want the thumb covered to the nail bed. The fingers are fine as the hand is curled and the distal segments are in the shadows.

    I think B.G. might have the right idea on this one.

    BPL Member


    Locale: Northern California

    Sungrubbies cover all fingers and thumb up to the last knuckle. I use hiking poles and find that I wrap my fingers around the poles, and that pretty effectively protects the final exposed area of my thumb/fingers. YMMV.

    BPL Member


    It just occurred to me that everyone may not grip their walking sticks the same! I am a skier and and I do the under and over and tighten the strap to create a solid platform. I can't conceive of doing it any other way. (Except for the click in ski poles.) The angle really makes for intense exposure on the top of my thumbs. I might not be making sense with my sunburned thumbs! Sorry.

    Yeah, fingers are fine even just covered to the PIP. My issue is the thumbs!

    If I don't find anything better, I will probably continue to use the Patagonia or OR versions and bring a little role of gauze or fabric for the thumb. Tape would work but will break down the skin eventually.

    full coverage
    I can easily keep everything covered except the thumbs! As others have mentioned, the fingers are fine as they are wrapped around the stick and in the shadows.

    Max Dilthey



    Maybe I'm crazy… but take a 3-inch x 3-inch square of any fabric- a cotton bandanna, a piece of silnylon, a square of silk, and superglue the very center to the top of your pole with a little dot of glue.

    If you cut it to size, it should just gently rest over the top of your hand while remaining highly ventilated and not getting caught anywhere.

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