Last updated January 1, 2017
One essential in winter biking is finding a way to keep your body warm. One of the most difficult body parts to keep warm are the hands and fingers. Whatever you use to keep your hands warm cannot be too bulky or inhibit movement because you can’t compromise the dexterity of your fingers. Your fingers have to be able to press the brake levers and operate the shifters at a moment’s notice. If the gloves that you use are too bulky, you won’t be able to do these tasks. Also, many find that gloves meant for other winter sports either don’t provide adequate wind protection or cause hands to sweat making them freeze.
One option for keeping your hands comfortable during a winter ride are bike pogies. Named after a trash fish and initially developed for use in kayaking, pogies are essentially gloves that attach to the handlebars and encapsulate the brake levers, shifters, and your hands. Usually worn with a thinner insulated glove, pogies provide additional insulation for your hands and protection from the biting wind.
They are made by a handful of manufacturers with varying levels of insulation, so you should be able to find a set that best fits your riding style. Many also have reflective material to increase your visibility on these shorter winter days. Here are a bunch of companies that make bike pogies, along with some information about what temperatures they’re best for and where to buy them. (Listed from approximately least to most expensive.)
This post contains affiliate links.*
Apocalypse Design Bike Toasties
Based out of Fairbanks, Alaska, Apocalypse Design makes pogies called Bike Toasties that retail at $84. Bike Toasties can be purchased with a shell made of either Ultrex or Cordura. Inside you will find two layers of Climashield, 5.3 ounces of lightweight filament insulation, and a taffeta lining. The pogies are attached using an elastic band that grabs the handlebar on the inside and a Velcro strap that attaches on the outside.
Bar Mitts makes nylon-laminated neoprene pogies for all types of handlebars. Because majority of their models are not insulated, you will have to wear gloves with more insulation than with some of the other pogies.
Bar Mitts offers two pogie models specifically for mountain bike handlebars. The basic Mountain Pogie Handlebar Mittens feature 5mm thick nylon laminated neoprene and come in 3 sizes: S/M, L, and XL.
Bar Mitts also makes a pricier Extreme Mountain Pogie with thicker 6mm laminated neoprene that is also lined with fleece on the inside. The Extreme Mountain Pogie comes in one size fits all. All Bar Mitts include a ventilation zipper to regulate temperature.
Wolf Tooth Components makes the Singletrack Pogie which features three warmth settings by adjusting the fold-able cuff and zipper, a 420D Diamond rip-stop nylon shell laminated with jersey and closed-cell foam, and easy installation/removal thanks to Wolf Tooth’s proprietary bar plug mounting system (bar plugs are included with purchase of Singletrack Pogies). Singletrack Pogies also offer both enough coverage against the cold but also enough of an opening that you can get your hands out quickly if needed.
Buy on Amazon: Singletrack Pogie
45nrth makes a highly-rated pogie called the Cobrafist. The Cobrafist retails at $125 and can be purchased online and at many local bike shops. The Cobrafist is a very advanced pogie made with wind resistant 600d poly shell and insulated with PrimaLoft® Gold Eco 400 gm insulation. For temperature control, the Cobrafist has water resistant zipper vents and two inner pockets to hold hand warmers among other things. To keep the cold out, a foam donut seals around the handlebars.
Handmade in Fairbanks, Alaska, Dogwood Designs makes two pogies: the Standard Winter Pogie ($120) and Winter Plus Pogie ($170). The Standard Pogie is made out of an insulated nylon construction with fabric stiffener to create room for your hands. It also incorporates a gasket around the handlebars to keep the cold out. The Winter Plus Pogie adds premium hi-loft insulation for colder conditions to the Standard Pogie Design.
Revelate Designs Pogies
Based out of Anchorage, Alaska, Revelate Designs makes two different pogies. Their Williwaw Pogies are made for temperatures between 0 F to 25 F and retail for $95. Compatible with flat bars only, they are constructed from a 3 layer laminated material: 600 denier polyester outers, foam for insulation and structure, and a thin fleece layer closest to the hands. The Wiliwaw Pogies are attached to the bars internally using included bar end attachments.
Their Expedition Pogies ($235) can be used in temperatures as low as -50 F using the liners and +15 F when the liners are removed. They are attached in the same way as the Wiliwaw Pogies but feature large gusseted pockets that hang below each hand. The shells are made from 210 denier double ripstop nylon with quilted 12oz synthetic insulation and 70 denier silver taffeta lining inside. They also feature Removable Polartec 300 series sherling pile liners.
Quick Tip: If you leave your bike outside or in your garage, you can heat up the inside of your pogies with a hairdryer. Also don’t forget to pick up some handwarmers for these cold winter bike rides.
Buy on Amazon: HotHands Hand Warmers 10 Pair Value Pack
*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase based on my referral, I’ll receive a small commission.
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