I thought it was a small matter to most of us. But the truth is, it’s not. I received an email from Miss M (not her real name) asking me on what type of gloves that she could use to climb Mount Kinabalu.
- Can an ordinary gardening gloves would do?
- Do I need a water proof gloves, in case the climbing gets too wet and I don’t want my hands to be freezing?
- When will I use the gloves?
- Do I need to wear the gloves all the way from Timpohon Gate to the summit?
- What would you suggest the type of gloves that I should buy?
- Can I get the gloves in Kota Kinabalu / Kundasang / Kinabalu Park?
The above questions are all not from her only, but from various resources for the past few years of my writing on Kinabalu. I will try to answer the questions in a collective way, so that every new climbers will benefit from it.
Honestly speaking, I did not use high tech, waterproof gloves in my past climbings. I only use the ordinary Made-In-China nylon gloves that is usually used for gardening and small house contractor that cost me around RM2 per pair. I bought 2 pairs and wear both pairs during my past climb up the mountain.
GLOVE NYLON KNIT REVERSIBLE
Mine is in white colour…
There are two major reasons why you should have a pair of gloves while climbing up Kinabalu;
- To protect your hands from rope burn during the second phase of the climb and protect from the rough rock surfaces when you need to scramble once in a while on the barren rock face.
- To protect your hands from freezing while climbing up the summit at night in the dark, moreover if you are climbing during wet season.
The above reasons basically answers the questions on what type of gloves that you should choose, but seeing from my personal experiences, the ordinary nylon gardening gloves that I used does not gives you full protection for both conditions. The gloves (at least) could only prevent your hands from rope burn, but not from the cold night climb.
Get your gloves from EMS
However, if you check out any outdoor stores, getting a specialize gloves for this kind of climb can surprise you. The price may be way out of your budget. However, getting a good and proper gloves for your climb may differentiate your climb from “good” and “bad” if weather is not on your side.
Waterproof gloves is quite expensive, but you should consider it among your choices. Belay gloves and rappel gloves is not necessary, but I would recommend it if you are planning to go on via ferrata route. Your hands will thank you if you decided to invest on those kind of glove, as you are going to hold ropes, rocks and metal all the way on the via ferata trail.
You are not going to use the gloves all the way from Timpohon Gate, but only during the second phase of the climb from Laban Rata. It’s a night climb, and the temperature can go down to 5 degree Celcius. Cold weather will makes your fingers numb and cramp, so a good and suitable gloves is almost necessary.
Oh, you could get the ordinary gloves that I used while you are here in Sabah, but bare in mind that the gloves that I used are really not suitable. You should get the proper one, moreover if this is the only time that you could manage to climb Kinabalu!