As I entered the world of winter road riding, I was clueless as to how to gear up. After a few years of collecting gear, I've got a pretty well-rounded quiver of clothes and accessories for every occasion, but I'm always on the lookout for something better than what I've got. One weak link has been winter gloves. My most comfortable ones aren't very warm. Liners help and add versatility, but are a small hassle. My warmest gloves are fine when it's really cold, but as the temperature or my work load rises, they start feeling damp and creepy. Last year, while milling around in Spokes, I started trying on gloves. I also have really wide hands, so I'm always on the lookout for the perfect glove. I decided to try a pair of Louis Garneau Super Prestige Gloves.
The Garneau specs says these are good to 14 degrees. I can't testify to that, but they're good for a very broad range of temperatures due to the fold-away lobster claw shells.
These gloves are pretty warm while in the five-finger mode, but they convert to lobster mode by way of an easily deployed shell that folds into a pocket on the back of the glove. The shell is not really noticeable while tucked away, but provides a real increase in performance while allowing fingers to couple up and snuggle. The split design makes for easy shifting and braking and the fingers are easily exposed for more delicate tasks like unwrapping a bar.
You can also leave your forefinger and middle finger out for dexterity and for communicating with rude drivers while leaving your pinkie and third finger warmly tucked away.
The gloves cost about 45 bucks. Bike gear is expensive enough when you are sure of what you're buying and we've all experienced the frustration of buying something, only to relegate it to the back of the drawer after a few disappointing uses. On the other hand, cost is forgotten soon enough when a piece of gear serves you well over the years. That's stuff that works.