The most honest and in-depth reviews of outdoor sports equipment on the planet.

Hestra XCR Short Glove

Hestra Army Leather Short GTX glove, Blister Gear ReviewProduct: Hestra XCR Short Glove

FEATURES

  • Pull strap with velcro closure
  • Handcuffs
  • Themolite/Fiberfill insulation
  • Bemberg/polyester lining
  • Hestra 4-way stretch
  • Army Leather goat-leather palm

Test Locations: Niseko, Japan; Eaglecrest ski area, Alaska; Alaska Backcountry; Summit County, Colorado

Days Worn: 35

My home ski area, Eaglecrest in Juneau, Alaska, experiences extremely variable weather conditions throughout the course of a typical winter. Temperatures bounce around the freezing point, and we get pouring rain; storms that deliver perfectly creamy maritime powder; clear, frigid arctic high-pressure systems; and everything in between.

It may come as no surprise, then, that it’s nearly impossible to find a glove that can handle everything, but I’ve tried—without a great deal of success. It’s become a never-ending quest for me.

There are a few gloves, however, that seem like they can handle a particularly broad range of conditions. One is Hestra’s XCR Short. With a combination of Gore-Tex and leather, this glove utilizes two of the best materials available for a glove. Additionally, a sexy design and Hestra’s reputation for making quality gloves made the XCR Short an obvious choice to try.

Leather is an excellent material for gloves because of its outstanding balance of durability and dexterity. All-leather gloves are great in dry climates, but once you introduce a significant amount of moisture, their good qualities start to deteriorate. By including a panel of Gore-Tex to the XCR Short, Hestra aimed to give this glove all the benefits of a leather glove while making it waterproof and breathable.

I can say that this addition of Gore-Tex makes the glove more versatile than an all-leather glove, but the design has a few limitations. The majority of the glove is leather, which is going to get wet even if you waterproof it. After two liberal applications of Hestra’s leather balm, this was the case, even in the absence of extreme moisture during such activities as shoveling snow, building jumps, or skiing on days when the temperature was near the freezing point.

For the most part, this moisture affecting the outside of the glove wasn’t an issue, except when it was cold enough for the moisture in the leather to freeze, which caused the glove to stiffen. I never had any major dexterity issues with freezing leather on moderately moist days, but it certainly became harder for me to move my fingers after the gloves had hardened.

The biggest advantage of the added Gore-Tex became apparent on really wet days. The panel, which covers the back of the hand and part of the thumb, helped to extend the amount of time it took for the outer layers of the glove to become saturated, and even on really wet pow days, the XCR Short never soaked all the way through.

Andrew Gregovich, Hestra XCR Short, Blister Gear Review.

Andrew Gregovich, Superstition, Niseko Village.

As long as there wasn’t any significant freeze-thaw action, I still retained adequate dexterity with the outwardly dampened gloves.

4 Comments

  1. Wookie1974 April 17, 2012 Reply

    I think the reviewer forgot to mention one important fact: These gloves are very nearly the most expensive I have ever seen. At over 120 Euros a pair in my local shop, I’d expect them to not only be perfect, but to include a wet-bar and a massage function.
    Best gloves ever? A pair of heavy welder’s gloves from Tractor Supply baked up with Sno-Seal two or three times at the season’s start. Had mine for 5 years. Work everywhere, dexterity is only getting better, and they cost me 25 Bucks.

    • Andrew Gregovich Author
      Andrew Gregovich April 17, 2012 Reply

      Yes these gloves are very expensive, but for the price you get an exceptionally well-made glove that will hold up in a variety of conditions. They are not perfect and I must admit that I prefer a cheap pair of gloves from the hardware store in some cases. If your welding gloves work well for you, great. The bottom line is gloves work differently for different people. Despite the price, I think that people who buy this glove (like JayT) will be satisfied with their purchase.

      AG

  2. JayT April 17, 2012 Reply

    I’ve been using these gloves for the past 6-8 weeks and love them. Found them discounted for “only” $120 on evo. Expensive, yes, but worth it. Super comfortable and they worked fine for me even on really wet days.

  3. Dan October 13, 2012 Reply

    I’ve had a pair of Hestra Heli gloves for 3 seasons and they are soooo worth the money. Can’t remember what I paid but definitely over $100. Mine don’t have goretex but I’ve never gotten wet and I ski in the Pacific Northwest; it snows clam chowder. The best thing about Hestra gloves is the fit I find so many gloves out there have an extremely poorly made liners that have seams all over the place and get all bunched up and they are too narrow in the fingers and therefore ever so slightly restrict bloodflow. Hestra gloves have the seams stitched inside out so the outside of the liner looks goofy with all of the seams but the inside is completely seamless and totally smooth! Also, I’m a huge fan of removable liners, which my Heli gloves have.

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