It's hard to pick the perfect combination of layers for a spring morning run. Today, for instance, it was only 25 degrees at the outset of my run but closer to 40F by the time I was finishing up on the trails. Pieces that can handle a wide range of temperature quickly become my favorites, and my current favorite gear is my pair of Trail Running Gloves from La Sportiva.
I picked these up with a sweet coupon that I won from Rockhopper Races, but I would honestly pay full price to replace them. They're well-constructed from gorgeous materials, like most items in their inventory (if only their pants ever fit me!). I've owned similar pairs from several American running brands, but these perform above and beyond every one of those.
First, my favorite detail is that the palm of the gloves is made from a knitted mesh fabric. I have to admit that while I was stoked to try a mesh palm, I had worries about its durability--I figured I'd snag the fabric on something within the first week. I'm thrilled to report that my expectations were surpassed. The palm mesh keeps my hands from overheating on longer runs with rising temps, it's grippy enough that my water bottle and holster feel secure against the fabric and it's tough enough to survive some tumbles out on the trail. The tips of each index finger are also treated to work with touch screens, which is a welcome luxury.
Of course, we wear gloves for their warmth, and these provide that too. The back of the hand is made from a more traditional knit to insulate that side of the hand, which is, when you really consider it, the part of your hand most exposed when you run. The back of the thumb is a soft fleece panel, perfect for wiping at your nose or brow--we all drip when we run in the cold!
For colder mornings, high wind or wet days, there is a wind and water resistant over-glove that store in a wrist pocket. Now, I've had over-gloves before, but none of them had an elastic opening as snug and durable as La Sportiva's.
Finally, there is a key pocket on both(!) gloves, but calling it a key pocket hardly does justice to the storage capacity. Yes, your key will fit, but so will a credit card, an electrolyte gel, or another small item. It's a lot of storage for a glove, and the fold-over pocket keeps your items secure.
I'd also like to award La Sportiva extra points for designing a women's glove that is not pink. You have two choices of color ways, both mostly blue, that suggest that La Sportiva sees us as athletes first. Well done!