The outdoor industry is beginning to look more and more to wool as an insulating fiber. In addition to a collection of jackets and vest, similar to those announced by Smartwool and Ibex, Ortovox is bringing wool insulation to a set of Freeride Gloves and Mittens that will keep your fingers toasty warm during those icy cold days on the slopes.
Instead of turning Down Under for the wool supply, Ortovox has partnered with Swisswool, a range of new wool collection centers across the Swiss Alpine valleys. At shearing time in the spring, sheep farmers hand in their pure wool to the collection center where they obtain a fair price, keeping the local Swiss production a viable and profitable business.
Special heat zones envelop the Freeride Gloves, with 120 g/m2 wool insulation on the palms and 150 or 200 g/m2 insulation on the backside. All those wool fibers are packed inside a wind and water repellent Toray Dermizax EV housing. Adjustable cuffs and straps on the back of the hand ensure you get a nice tight fit.
A soft merino lining, on the inside of the Freeride Gloves, adds some extra warmth along with next to skin comfort. A breathable membrane ensures your hands won't overheat and start to sweat. Goat leather palms provide extra grip on your ski poles or for detailed tasks.
The Freeride Mittens are made up of a separate inner and outer mitten, giving you the flexibility to use them both together or on their own. The inner wool insulated mitten is surrounded by a ripstop nylon fabric with a merino wool lining. The outer mitten is made from the same wind and water repellent Toray material, using goat leather on the palms for improved grip.
Keep an eye out for the Ortovox Freeride Gloves and Mittens in time for the next winter riding season.