BackpackGearTest
  Home Guest - Not logged in 

Reviews > Clothing > Gloves > TNF Power Stretch Gloves > Owner Review by Ray Estrella

The North Face Power Stretch Gloves
By Raymond Estrella
OWNER REVIEW
January 08, 2009

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Raymond Estrella
EMAIL: rayestrellaAThotmailDOTcom
AGE: 48
LOCATION: Orange County, California, USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 6' 3" (1.91 m)
WEIGHT: 200 lb (90.70 kg)

I have been backpacking for over 30 years, all over California, and in many of the western states and Minnesota. I hike year-round, and average 500+ miles (800+ km) per year. I have made a move to lightweight gear, and smaller volume packs. I start early and hike hard so as to enjoy the afternoons exploring. I usually take a freestanding tent and enjoy hot meals at night. If not hiking solo I am usually with my wife Jenn or brother-in-law Dave.

The Product

Manufacturer: The North Face Inc (TNF)
Web site: www.thenorthface.com
Product: Power Stretch Gloves
Year purchased: 2006
MSRP: (US) $30.00
Weight listed: N/A
Actual weight: 2.2 oz (64 g)
Size reviewed: XLarge (also available in XXSmall - Large)
Color reviewed: Black (also Graphite Gray and Brownie)

Power Stretch Gloves
Picture Courtesy The North Face

Product Description

The North Face Power Stretch gloves (hereafter referred to as Power Stretch or gloves) get their name from the Polartec Power Stretch fleece they are made from. This highly breathable, 4-way stretch material is made for next-to-skin use. It has a durable nylon outer layer that is wind and abrasion resistant, and a soft inner layer that pulls moisture away from the skin.

The Power Stretch material is very soft to the touch.

The gloves are as basic as a glove can get. There is a stretch cuff and five fingers. That's it. No leather palms or finger tips, no grip-strips or goggle squeegee. Just a plain ol' glove.

Field Locations

San Jac in back


These gloves have been used on many winter trips over the past three years. Most of them have been in our two local ranges, home to either Mt San Gorgonio (which I am on my way to above) or Mt San Jacinto on the other side of the valley (seen behind me). They have also been used in the Sierra Nevada and White Mountains.

The most concurrent use was on the John Muir Trail in fall of 2006 and 2007 in Kings Canyon Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks.

The temperatures have been from a low of 15 F to highs around 50 F (-9 to 10 C). I have worn them to as high as 14496 ft (4418 m) in elevation.

Observations

I bought the North Face Power Stretch gloves for pretty much one reason. I wanted the smallest packing, lightest gloves I could find while still providing some warmth. I was going on a 100 mile (160 km) hike of the northern half of the John Muir Trail in October. As it is often above tree line I knew that I could expect some cold mornings. But I did not want to waste space or weight taking bigger gloves (which I already own) that I may not need as it could be an Indian Summer and be warm.

As that trip saw an extreme drop in temps, some days not even getting above 40 F (4 C). I was pretty happy to have them along. The gloves worked great and I came to love their hand hugging fit. I wore them starting out every morning, taking them off once I warmed up. I stuffed them in my pack's side pocket to be able to pull them back on if the wind chilled my hands too much.

I took them the following year to do the southern section of the Pacific Crest Trail. This trip saw us hit by two surprise snow storms. We hiked through one and just made it out in front of the other. I was very thankful to have the Power Stretch gloves on this trip.

careful...


Because of my experiences on those trips I found myself taking them on my true winter trips also, like the one above crossing a creek in the San Bernardino Forest. I carried big warm gloves or mittens too but found the Power Stretch gloves were fine for hiking in. Plus I can slip on my big gloves without taking the Power Stretch off first. I just use them as a liner glove.

Even in my winter camps I break them out when setting up my tent or cooking as it is much easier to wear them than my bulkier big gloves. Quite often by the end of the evening they would be wet from melted snow. Once I am done for the night (and wearing my heavy warm gloves) I put the Power Stretch gloves inside of my parka. They would usually dry in just a couple hours from my body heat. If they did not dry completely I brought them in my sleeping bag with me.

For as much use as the gloves received over the course of two and a half years of use they held up pretty well. But after many many washings and lots and lots of use they finally developed holes in both gloves. First the cuffs started pulling apart from so many donnings. Then they developed holes at the seams where the thumbs meet the palms. I threw them away in fall of 2008.

I do think that I got my money's worth and then some. Right now I am using a similar glove from another manufacturer but I would not doubt that I will get another pair of the North Face Power Stretch gloves in the future. I leave with a shot in The San Jacinto Wilderness being clobbered by the first storm of the winter. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow…

First snow

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

Read more reviews of The North Face gear
Read more gear reviews by Ray Estrella

Reviews > Clothing > Gloves > TNF Power Stretch Gloves > Owner Review by Ray Estrella



Product tested and reviewed in each Formal Test Report has been provided free of charge by the manufacturer to BackpackGearTest.org. Upon completion of the Test Series the writer is permitted to keep the product. Owner Reviews are based on product owned by the reviewer personally unless otherwise noted.

If you are an avid backpacker, we are always looking for enthusiastic, quality reviewers. Apply here to be a gear tester.


All material on this site is the exclusive property of BackpackGearTest.org.
BackpackGearTest software copyright David Anderson