As anglers, our hands are one of the most depended on parts of our body. However, in days past I rarely protected them. I would rather have them get sunburned or become numb than feel any sort of restriction on them. It wasn’t until I was exposed to frost bite on a winter fly fishing trip that I bought into the idea of gloves. Now, no matter the season, I find myself wearing gloves. A quality pair of gloves is going to keep you on the water even longer than you thought.
Best Fly Fishing Gloves: Quick Picks
The Simms Gore-Tex Infinium Gloves are the best full finger gloves for fly fishing. They’ll keep your hands warm, but have finger openings that allow you to slip out your fingertips to tie knots.
The Orvis Pro Insulated Convertible Mittens are the best winter fly fishing gloves because they turn into half finger gloves when you’re fishing and full mittens when you’re moving between spots.
Best Gloves For Fly Fishing: Full Reviews
The Simms Headwaters Half Finger Glove is a great glove for cold weather. These gloves are wind resistant as well as moisture wicking. Being that they are a half finger glove, you’ll find that they still keep your hands impressively warm. Your fingertips are exposed to the elements, but the control you have over your line is worth the exposure. For only $30, you’re getting high quality gear for a great price.
- Heat-pack compatible Pocket- On the wrist, you’ll see a place to store a heat pack. Shake yours up and put it in your wrist! It’ll keep the hands warm for a few hours.
- Durable Water-Repellent treatment- You’ll find these on the gloves, so you’ll find that it can resist wind and a bit of weather.
- Polartec Power Stretch- Regardless of the size of your hands, you should be able to fit into these gloves! You should find a size that works for you.
If you’ve worn Orvis’ PRO Insulated Hoody, then you’ll feel the same fabric and insulation on these gloves. These gloves are the perfect option for those full days where you’re walking quite a bit between spots. You have the option to wear them as half finger gloves or fold them over to be full mittens. These gloves are a bit more expensive, but for $80, you’re going to get a reliable and warm set of mittens.
- You have four different sizes to choose from with these gloves: small, medium, large and extra large are available! It’s not a one size fits all.
- Ax Suedge Synthetic Leather Palm- This synthetic leather allows you to grip your rod even if your hand is wet. You’ll get a little extra grip as your glove gets wet.
- Nylon Ripstop/Insulation- The insulation and ripstop are going to keep your hands quite warm. It’s a good winter glove.
If you’re going out for some fall or late spring fishing and are worried about cold hands, the Simms Wool Half Finger Glove is a great option. Their simple design makes these the ideal fishing glove. They’re half finger gloves, so you won’t have anything for your fingertips, but they’ll keep the palm warm. These gloves only cost you $30.
- TPU Palm Overlays- These are surprisingly durable gloves. The added material where you would grip the rod will give you more confidence to make all the necessary movements.
- The S/M and L/XL may cause anglers to fish with gloves that aren’t as specific to their size, but they’ll be a good enough fit.
- Low Profile- These gloves are low profile. They don’t feel bulky, but they do the job.
If you spend time fishing open water in windy areas, you know the struggle of a cold wind on your hands as you’re fishing. The Simms Guide Windbloc Series gloves are half-finger gloves made to endure windy conditions. Plus, you’ll have your fingertips free to handle fish or tie on flies. For around $30, you’re getting a great deal.
- Heat Pack Pocket- The top of the glove has a small pocket for you to put in a heat pack. This makes a bigger difference than you would think!
- Windbloc Fleece- The Windbloc Fleece technology is great. I own other Simms gear with it, and it truly does keep that biting feeling away from you.
- Extra Grip on Palms- as you’re palms get wet, the added material is going to keep any water from seeping in to your gloves!
The Fingerless fleece gloves from Orvis are great spring and fall gloves. They aren’t bulky enough to complete protect you in the winter, but they’re great for somewhat cold weather. Plus, they’re made from a reputable company, so you know they’re specifically made to be fishing gloves. When you feel the weather start to turn, these half-finger gloves will do a nice job of keeping you on the water longer. For only $30, you’re going to be satisfied.
- AX Suede Synthetic Leather- The synthetic leather is only going to get more grippy as your gloves and hands get wet.
- Tight Around Fingers- The material cinches around your fingers. This is a small detail, but many companies leave the half finger gloves more open around the fingers which can cause them to readjust.
- The four sizes, small, medium, large and extra large, allow you find something that fits.
If you’re anything like me, wearing half finger gloves can feel strange. However, it’s not easy to make full finger fishing gloves! Simms accomplished it with their design on the Kispiox. These were made with PNW Steelhead fishing in mind. They’re warm, water resistant and half a nice amount of protection on those wet and cold days. These are $65, but extremely durable.
- Fleece Lined Back of Hand- The interior on the top of our hand is fleece lined, so you get a bit of wind protection.
- Neoprene Palm- The palm of these gloves are neoprene, so you can grip and feel extra protected when fishing.
- Technology Finger- There are times when you land a giant and want to snap a picture. The pointer finger is touch compatible.
Simms packed quite a bit into the Gore-Tex Infinium Gloves. These are full-finger gloves that are ideal for those cold weather days. We all know that those cold days can be productive, but it can be hard to stay on the water in colder temperatures. For $90, you’re making an investment, but they’re worth your time. Plus, there are sizes ranging from XS to 2XL to help you find the perfect fit. These gloves are $90, so keep that in mind!
- Diagonal Thumb, Index and Middle Finger Openings- These are great to slip your fingers out to tie knots.
- TPU Palm Overlays- These help you grip your rod and anything you need on a cold, wet day.
- Touch-Tech Compatible- Whether you’re using electronics on your boat or your phone, these will work!
Now, where many anglers purchase cold weather fishing gloves many forget about sun gloves. If you fish on the flats or in especially sunny areas, you want to make sure you’re protecting your hands. The Simms Solar Flex gloves are enough to protect you from the elements, but they don’t feel too hot. These half finger gloves are made of 92% polyester, so you don’t even feel them. They’re a great $40 investment.
- UPF 50- These are going to keep the sun from burning you!
- Built-in Stripping Guard- You won’t wear out these gloves thanks to the suede overlays.
- Open palms- These gloves have openings on the palms to let them sweat and release any moisture.
The Bugstopper Gloves from Simms are half finger fishing gloves made to stop the sun and biting insects. If you’re fishing in the woods or in a swampy area, you’ll find mosquitoes that are wanting to take a bite out of your hand. You don’t want to be smacking bugs away while you’re trying to make a cast.
- Insect Shield- The insect shield on the back of the hand prevents any bugs from stinging through them.
- Stripping Guard- The suede on the pointer and middle finger keep these gloves in great shape.
- Long Length- These gloves go partially up your wrists to protect you from sun and insects.
These completely fingerless gloves are a nice lightweight option for fly anglers. The fabric is quick drying, so you don’t have to feel as if you have wet hands for the entire day. They’re a simple and comfortable protector for the back of your hands. Plus, they’re only $30.
- Open palm- You can still grip and sweat out the palm of your hands.
- UPF 30- They protect your hands from serious sunburn!
- Fingerless- You don’t have to worry about fingers on the gloves slipping up or down.
Choosing Gloves for Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing gloves are there to protect your hands. Whether you’re in freezing weather in the midst of snow or spending time on the flats on an 85 degree day, your hands are at risk. We often forget about protecting them until it’s too late. Purchase yourself a pair of warm weather and cold weather gloves and you’ll be thankful that you did.
Many companies create their gloves with different materials. Some are neoprene which are great if your hands are in the water quite a bit. They may not be as warm, but they’re fully waterproof! Fleece is another good option because it’s a great insulator. If you’re in extremely cold weather, fleece is a great option. Wool is also a great insulator, but it’s fairly bulky and not water resistant at all! Also, the majority will have some synthetic material to allow for stretch and movement.
Full finger vs half finger vs mittens
Full finger gloves are great for the anglers who don’t plan on spending a lot of time using their fine motor skills. Maybe you have a guide that is tying on your flies or you don’t plan on changing your fly any time soon.
Half finger gloves are great for the anglers who need to change flies, leaders and tippet. No, they’re not as warm as full finger gloves, but they do the job of keeping your palms warm while still giving you movement.
Mittens are great fishing gloves if they can fold back and expose your finger tips. If you move between spots and spend a decent amount of time walking, then they’re a great option.
Final Thoughts On Gloves for Fly Fishing
Fly fishing gloves are an underrated part of our fishing setup. I didn’t know what I was missing until I started using them. You may think you don’t need them or don’t see the point, but the extra bit of protection makes a world of difference!