The Hestra Army Leather GTX is one of our favorite all-around gloves, particularly for colder climates or for folks with hands that get chilled easily. This contender is one of the most durable options on the market. With minimal upkeep, which involves retreating the exterior leather 1-2 times per year, it will outlast most alternatives, making its $180 price tag easier to swallow. With that in mind, its closest competition, considering both overall design and warmth, would be the Black Diamond Guide.
Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: One of the warmer models, inside feels soft and cozy, durable, above average weather resistance
Cons: Expensive, just okay dexterity, leather needs to be retreated slightly more than other models
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex should be a consideration for any skier or snowboarder who rides in colder climates, where their local mountain has ancient and slow double chairs, or simply for people whose hands get cold easily. This cozy feeling model offers so-so dexterity overall but pretty good dexterity when compared to models that feature similar levels of warmth that were both included in our review and considered for our testing. The Gore-tex insert means its ready to handle most storms especially if you re-treat its leather exterior quasi-regularly.
The Army Leather GTX was one of the warmest gloves we tested. This contender was warmer than all of the other gloves, except for the Black Diamond Guide; there wasn't a huge difference in warmth between the Leather Gore-Tex and the BD Guide, but it was noticeable. We felt comfortable skiing in most conditions to around 0F, as long as it wasn't too stormy. This glove was certainly a step up in warmth from the Black Diamond Legend, but it is worth noting that the Black Diamond Guide performed similarly earning a perfect 10 out of 10.
Our testers noted that the Army Leather Gore-Tex had a cozy fleece lining that feels spectacular when you slip them on. Not only does it warm your hand up quickly, but we found that it added to the sensation of warmth and it was something we preferred over both of the previously mentioned gloves, earning the Leather Gore-Tex a third-place finish in our overall scoring.
The Army Leather GTX offered better-than-expected dexterity, especially considering the amount of warmth that the wearer is provided. In our real-world testing and side-by-side comparisons, this contender proved to be more dexterous than the Dakine Titan, and the Burton Gore-Tex. While it wasn't quite as warm as the Black Diamond Guide, it was close, and it offered better dexterity and softened FAR quicker than the Guide.
When performing fine motor skills, such as manually unlocking a car door and writing our name, this contender scored a 7 out of 10. Our review team determined that while the race was close, the Leather Gore-Tex was not as dexterous as the Gordini Storm Trooper II, the Outdoor Research Illuminator, Arc'teryx Fission, or the Outdoor Research Revolution. We found we could manually unlock a car door but only very sloppily write our name.
As you might expect from the name, the Army Leather GTX uses a Gore-Tex insert inside a water-resistant leather. This glove was one of the most water resistant in our fleet, scoring a near perfect 9 out of 10, offering optimal protection. It excelled in our bucket of water comparisons, as well as in real-world use.
We found it offered approximately the same level of weather resistance as the Black Diamond Guide. The Army Leather Gore-Tex performed better than Hestra Leather Fall Line, Gordini GTX Storm Trooper II, Dakine Titan, and Burton Gore-Tex.
This glove is tough! Like other Hestra Gloves, the leather is best served when a leather conditioner is applied. This helps keep the exterior leather water resistant. Applied one or two times per year, the conditions will extend the life of this (and all) contenders. Throughout our testing, we found that this glove did not have any durability issues whatsoever during our three-month testing period, taking home a perfect 10 out of 10 for durability.
This glove has a solid number of extra features that make it easier to use, like one of our favorite wrist-leash/keeper straps; these straps were removable and low profile. It also has a hanging loop on the pinky to facilitate faster drying, along with a wrist strap, which is positioned under the wrist. The wrist strap is low profile and stays out of the way, all while doing a fantastic job of keeping the glove snug and increasing dexterity.
We did like the included carabiner (not for climbing) to keep the gloves attached when not in use. Unfortunately, it was so big that we didn't like it dangling while skiing or snowboarding, but we felt that if we took it off, we were just asking to lose it. The Leather Gore-Tex scored an above average 8 out of 10 in this metric, ensuring that the wearer is getting decent features for the buck.
The Army Leather GTX is a killer glove for winter recreation, especially in colder climates. Being one of the warmer gloves out there, it also has decent dexterity, which allows it to be a good choice for a wide range of applications. For skiing purposes, it fits the bill and is an excellent option, scoring third in our fleet. If being used for mountaineering, it certainly serves its purpose, but keep in mind that the fixed lining takes longer to dry out than the Black Diamond Guide's removable liner, which will affect those planning extended trips.
At $180, this is one of the more expensive gloves in our review. The Leather Gore-Tex is close in price to the similarly performing Black Diamond Guide, $170, and our Editors' Choice, the Arc'teryx Fission, $175.
Close in price to the top performers, the Hestra Army Leather Gore-Tex is indeed a high scorer. Earning fantastic marks across the board, but specifically in warmth and durability, the Leather Gore-Tex has what it takes to accompany you on those cold weather missions. It will also provide excellent dexterity and a fair amount of features.
— Ian Nicholson