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Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

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Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Kai » Thu May 03, 2012 5:16 pm

Many of my alpine gloves and mittens come with cords to attach them to your wrists so you don't drop them.

I don't use these cords, and I've never dropped a glove while climbing. I just remove these cords (and cut off the little buckles that hold the gloves together too.)

When I take a glove off, I generally just stuff it down the front of my jacket.

Do other climbers use these cords? Do you find it useful to have a cord so your gloves can dangle when not on your hands?
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby ExcitableBoy » Thu May 03, 2012 5:22 pm

I use these all the time. If fact, I add idiot cords to my gloves that don't come with them, made from boot laces and cord locks. I lost an expensive lobster mitt on Point Success. I took one off to tie my boot laces. I stuck it in my mouth and my partner asked a question. When I opened my mouth to answer I watched the glove slide 4,000 feet down the Kautz route and out of sight. I use idiot cords now so I can take off the big glove and tie knots, take photos, whatever.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby ibndalight » Thu May 03, 2012 6:48 pm

I now use them. I had a glove fly off in some high winds on Denali. It fell down 60 feet on the 16K ridge and was caught but a member of another team below me. Ever since then i start to use them.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Sarah Simon » Thu May 03, 2012 6:53 pm

One of my favorite uses of these retention cords on my winter mits is "hand temperature moderation." That is, if my hands start getting hot, then I can let the mits dangle and cool my hands down (just wearing my liner / bottom layer). Then, if the temperature drops / winds pick up, I easily wriggle my hands back into my mits in just seconds. (No fumbling in the front of my coat or in pockets, etc.)
Go climb a mountain
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Woodie Hopper » Thu May 03, 2012 7:36 pm

I don't like it when the cords occasionally get tangled around something, but to me it's better to use them than risk losing a glove or mitt at an inopportune time. I guess if nothing else, I've gained some piece of mind.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Fletch » Thu May 03, 2012 7:54 pm

Depends on the route and the temps and what im going to be doing (fixed ropes, tying knots, etc, I use teh cords - taking a photo or peeing, probably not)...
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby mtndonkey » Thu May 03, 2012 10:09 pm

I've added them to my main alpine gloves as well. They are extremely useful when you want to throw off a glove to deal with an ice screw/other pro, carabiner, rope etc. It is nice to just pull the glove with my teeth and let it dangle so I don't have to take my focus off the task at hand. I just tied a slip knot into some cord and I always put it on when I put my gloves on and then it never gets in the way and is easy to adjust.
Last edited by mtndonkey on Fri May 04, 2012 7:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Kai » Thu May 03, 2012 10:56 pm

I'm convinced.

I'm going to use them on my next climb and see how things go.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby lcarreau » Fri May 04, 2012 1:49 am

Wish I would have used them while cross-country skiing in western Alaska during the blizzard of 1994.

My right mitten blew off, and I would have developed frostbite if my friend's dog had not retrieved my mitten ... for crying out loud!
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby darinchadwick » Fri May 04, 2012 8:06 am

Somewhere I remember seeing Mark Twight on some hideous new route in Alaska, placing an ice screw as fast as he could bare handed while his glove dangled from its cord. If it's good enough for Mark Twight...
And if you've never seen your glove drop off...blow away then the question is valid.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby JonW » Fri May 04, 2012 3:08 pm

Keep in mind that not all idiot-cords are created equal. I lost a glove on a windy day in Huntington's Ravine on Mt. Washington despite using an idiot-cord. The idiot-cord on some older OR gloves was very poorly designed and relied on a plastic disk to slide up and down the cord. Unknowingly, the disk had loosened on my wrist while wearing the glove. I took the glove off expecting the idiot-cord to be snug around my wrist and a few seconds later I was asking my buddy "Where's my glove?" Luckily, I had an extra pair or typing this post might have been much more difficult.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby Sierra Ledge Rat » Sat May 05, 2012 1:18 pm

Only when I'm on Denali or some other serious alpine route
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby ExcitableBoy » Sat May 05, 2012 2:44 pm

JonW wrote:Keep in mind that not all idiot-cords are created equal. I lost a glove on a windy day in Huntington's Ravine on Mt. Washington despite using an idiot-cord. The idiot-cord on some older OR gloves was very poorly designed and relied on a plastic disk to slide up and down the cord. Unknowingly, the disk had loosened on my wrist while wearing the glove. I took the glove off expecting the idiot-cord to be snug around my wrist and a few seconds later I was asking my buddy "Where's my glove?" Luckily, I had an extra pair or typing this post might have been much more difficult.


Good point. My home made versions made with boot laces and cord locks are pretty secure. I bet by looking around at your local REI you could find some 3mm cord and tiny cord locks to save weight.
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Re: Do you use the "idiot cords" on your gloves?

Postby DukeJH » Sun May 06, 2012 4:29 am

I use them too. Hypoxia turns me into an idiot sometimes.
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