The FlyLow Goat Ridge Glove is a pretty kick-ass glove for its $50 price tag. While it might look like a more expensive version of the basic Kinko's work glove, FlyLow built in enough design changes to make the Goat Ridge significantly better than the hardware store variety work glove. The Goat Ridge uses synthetic insulation, an improved finger design for better dexterity, a waterproof membrane and higher quality goat leather that is triple baked with Sno-Seal's Bees wax for extra weather resistance. We loved the Goat Ridge as a more advanced work glove, that excelled at rope handling, and colder weather backcountry touring. The Goat Ridge is a pretty good as a pure resort glove but if we weren't working hard enough our testers found their hands getting cold around 15F and below.The Goat Ridge is the "highest end" of FlyLow's series of work gloves that also includes the half leather Fly Low Tough Guy Glove and the similar designed and waterproof-membrane-lacking pigskin leather Ridge Gloves ($40).
FlyLow Goat Ridge Glove Review
Cons: Insulation packed out a little faster than others. just okay dexterity
Manufacturer: Fly Low
Our Analysis and Test Results
Like many things about this glove there isn't anything special about the insulation of the FlyLow Gloves. The Goat Ridge uses an effective 60 grams of FlyLow's proprietary Heat Rac insulation that kept our users hands warm while resort skiing down to around 15F. The Goat Ridge does feel warmer in real world use than its 60g of insulation implies likely because of the water proof membrane and the thick heavily coated leather. If we were more active we felt we could use the Goat Ridge in temperature much lower than 15F. Because of the all leather design we did think these felt noticeable warmer than FlyLow's half leather cousin the Tough Guy Glove and around the same warmth as the Rab Guide glove and the Outdoor Research Riot Glove but not as warm as the Outdoor Research Revolution Glove or the DaKine Scout Glove.
The one thing to keep in mind is we felt the insulation packed out a fair amount noticeably reducing warm in one medium to heavy-duty season of use. This is something that many gloves suffer from, but we felt like the insulation used on the FlyLow gloves packed out a little faster than most of the other gloves we tested, but again they are only $50.
The Goat Ridge Gloves have solid dexterity, but not excellent. Our testers found these gloves sensitive and dexterous enough two buckle boots, unlock car doors and even sloppily sign our name. We could easily tie and untie most knots with these gloves and we know several ski guides that love these gloves for their rope handling prowess. That said if you spend a little more money you can buy a glove with better box-stitched designed fingers that will be more dexterous and offer better over-all "feel".
The Goat Ridge Gloves, contrary to their appearance, actually do feature a waterproof membrane to help keep you dry. They rely equally as much on the water resistance of the goat skin leather outer that is well treated in Snow-Seal's Bees Wax twice and "Triple baked by hand in Colorado" for extra water resistance. These gloves should be re-treated somewhat regularly (2-4 times a season depending on use) and as a nice touch, FlyLow includes a pack of Nikwax to help revive them and keep them going strong.
The Goat Ridge gloves are TOUGH and despite their $50 price tag are among the most durable outer gloves overall in our review. This is why several ski guides and patrolers rock them. The leather is beefier than most other gloves we tested and it covers the our whole hand. The insulation isn't as long lasting and we noticed it significantly packing out after a season of moderate use making the glove feel a lot less warm than when they were new.
Features and Ease of Use
As you might expect the Goat Ridge is a pretty no-frills glove. The only real features it has are its elastic wrist strap that actually does a fantastic job of keeping snow out of your glove. The only downside is once it became wet from sweat or precipitation then snow would sometimes stick to it. But for $50 FlyLow isn't going for fancy feature rich with these gloves.
The Goat Ridge gloves are best appreciated by users who are looking for a more advanced "Work" glove than the Kinco's can offer. Mountain Guides, ski patrollers or folks who just plain work outside will love these gloves. And of course if they trash them, you aren't as bummed out as you would have been if you had done the same to a $150 pair. We loved them for colder weather skinning while backcountry skiing and thought they were a solid choice for riding chairs as long as it wasn't too cold out.
Value and the Bottom Line
The Goat Ridge gloves are an awesome value and there is no question for certain applications they are an amazing glove for the price. They aren't as water resistant or as dexterous as several other models in our review, but they aren't bad, which helps the Goat Ridge's all-purpose nature. We love these gloves for backcountry skiing, mild-temperature resort riding and even some mountaineering. For pure resort skiing and snowboarding in colder temps where the beefy all-leather outer is less important, we would recommend you check out the Outdoor Research Revolution Gloves that retails for only $15 more.
— Ian Nicholson