Pogies vs. Gloves by Chris Follmer

 You all remember our buddy Chris Follmer right? Did you know this guy will ride during the Winter in Wisconsin without gloves…ya he uses something called “Pogies.” Read what he has to say below.

Big Fo’ all iced up and lookin’ pretty!

This, like most cycling decisions, is a lot of preference. Since I started riding pogies in the cold, I haven’t looked back. I started with Bar Mitts and liked them, but they were a little small for my big hands and winter gloves. They really acted like a windshield for your hands, and they did retain some of the heat as well. They have front zippers that you can use to regulate the temperature if you wish. They sell on their website for about $65, which is well worth having warm hands.

 

Big Fo’ and his pogies

Since then, I’ve upgraded to Dogwood Designs pogies, which are made in Alaska. If anybody knows anything about cold weather activities, it’s Alaskans! These are one of the best bike purchases I have ever made. They are crazy warm, to the point if it’s in the upper 20’s I don’t even wear gloves! They have plenty of room in them, when I go on longer rides, I actually carry an extra pair of gloves and some candy bars in them and have room to move. They are not cheap, they sell for $120 to $170 depending on the amount of warmth you want, but I rarely ride cold Wisconsin winters without them. I usually wear my Planet Bike Orion full finger gloves and am comfortable for an all day ride on the bike.

Big Fo’ riding in the ice and snow with his pogies


11 Comments

  1. Tom February 4, 2013 7:21 am 

    I started using bar mitts on my commuter (north roads handlebars) for the first time this winter. What a difference! The last few years I wore ski gloves that had to be removed every time I wanted to adjust a zipper or buckle. Now I wear a thin pair of glove liners underneath the bar mitts all winter. It’s also one less thing to have to lug into the office or store. Here in the DC area you really don’t need anything warmer. My bar mitts + glove liners works down into the lower 20s before I need to move up a glove weight.

  2. RANTWICK February 4, 2013 7:25 am 

    I ride all winter but have never invested in pogies. Those things sure look like they would work wonders… I have suffered cold fingers on some of my fairly short winter commutes. Thing is, I’m too cheap to buy some. Maybe I should take a crack at making some instead… anyway thanks for the post; always nice to see others cyclists digging winter.

  3. Matt February 4, 2013 7:50 am 

    Hmm, I’d love to see a pogie round-up. I’ve been considering them – my hands seem to get too cold below about 20F no matter what I’m wearing (though some things definitely make it a slower progression to miserableness than others). What’s around besides the Bar Mitts and Dogwood Designs?

  4. BluesCat February 4, 2013 8:07 am 

    A gal named Shanna Ladd, who also bike commutes in Alaska, gave instructions for creating Pogies out of a thrift store down jacket in the comments section of a post she wrote: Winter Commuting in Alaska ….

  5. Tom February 4, 2013 8:38 am 

    I bought my bar mitts in the summmer from my LBS’s bargain bin. Half off! So keep your eye out for deals.

  6. RANTWICK February 4, 2013 8:40 am 

    @BluesCat – Thanks! Just what I needed.

  7. Elizabeth February 4, 2013 12:07 pm 

    I got my BarMitts online.. but haven’t yet used them on my commuter. I have used the kind for drop bars and my hands definitely stay warmer but have felt a bit crowded (and I have small hands!)

    I’ve looked at other brands of pogies – including the Dogwood Designs and also the Moose Mitts from a company in Michigan. Plenty of resources- http://www.icebike.com/Clothing/handprotection.htm

  8. db February 4, 2013 12:45 pm 

    I’ve used Bar Mitts for 3 winters now. Wish I had bought them sooner. They are amazingly effective.

  9. DanD79 February 6, 2013 3:06 pm 

    Can anyone recommend something that works as well for toes, especially in snowy/snow melt conditions? That and breathing sub-freezing air are what put me back in the car during the winter.

  10. Ghost Rider February 7, 2013 4:12 am 

    @DanD79 — lots of hardcore winter warriors switch out their pedals for BMX platforms and then just wear snow boots to ride. It’s cumbersome, a bit, especially if you’re used to more svelte cycling shoes…but I’ve tried it and it seems to work pretty darn well.

    I usually use neoprene covers for my training rides. Planet Bike makes some very economical ones for cycling shoes, and there’s a brand called Neos that makes overshoes for “regular” street shoes.

  11. Elizabeth February 8, 2013 2:12 pm 

    I’m a fan of snow boots with BMX platforms.

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