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williamhj 12-07-2011 12:36 AM

I'm looking to get a good pair of polarized sunglasses. Thus far I haven't spent much at all on them, just stuff I get in a gas station, but I have trouble spotting fish. I've read through some of the threads on sunglasses but still have some questions for anyone who might have some guidance.

Do you get what you pay for? For example, if you look at the Orvis Superlights at $49 is the quality gained by going up to one of their Zeiss lenses is worth the extra $100 or so?

Secondly, do folks have a pair/lens they swear by? I'm open to recommendations if you've got one. If the quality is worth it I'm willing to pay more for better, but if there's a great pair for under $100 I don't need the name recognition to make me happy. I just want to be able to spot the fish better.

Living in Colorado, I primarily fish smaller streams, which are my preference, though we do fish some of the bigger rivers, alpine lakes, etc. I'm leaning towards an amber lens.


caseywise 12-07-2011 12:54 AM

Re: Sunglasses
i'm a big fan of smith sunglasses. there customer service is outstanding and the glasses themselves are very nice.
my current pair are the smith shelter with the grey lenses.


dusty h 12-07-2011 12:59 AM

Re: Sunglasses
Ive tried a few different brands and always end up going back to Smith, dont get caught up with going with a fishing company or anything like that. As long as you get a reputable brand i.e. smith, oakley, orvis etc. you should be all right. Im a strong believer in not only the quality of the lens when it comes to eyewear but also the fit of the glasses. My suggestion would be to get a couple of recommendations from the guys at your local fly shop and then try them on. Good luck, everyone is gonna have a different opinion when it comes to eyewear.

caseywise 12-07-2011 01:16 AM

Re: Sunglasses
smith service is great!
i recently sent in my year 4 year old smiths in for a tune-up and was rewarded the price of the original shades and or a store credit towards a new pair:shades:
now thats a good company!:D:D


lthrnk03 12-07-2011 02:36 AM

Re: Sunglasses
I've been a loyal Smith customer for about 10 years. They make great shades! I am a firm believer in "You get what you pay for". I'm willing to pay the extra $$ for quality lenses.

russellb 12-07-2011 05:03 AM

Re: Sunglasses
I have used Smiths as well for years but recently switched to Maui Jims, I doubt I will go back.

okuma 12-07-2011 05:39 AM

Re: Sunglasses
I found a pair of Costa Del Mar two years back on e bay. Gray lense. Totally satisfiied with the quality and polarization of them

Ard 12-07-2011 10:24 AM

Re: Sunglasses
Hi William,

Here's a few thoughts from a guy who tries not to over think everything; I only ever used amber lens when shooting sporting clays or skeet on dreary days. They give great definition in poor lighting conditions but I would not want them for general use. If you choose gray your will adapt to them rain or shine, spotting fish is a matter of acquired talent and I personally don't need different colors for different days. Remember that is a personal thing and you or others may not agree with my approach to lens color. Last but not least, regardless of which glasses you buy, whether they are a cheap 'Fish Finder' or made by Zeiss you must keep and protect them. I've been relying on the same fishing glasses for 20 years and haven't scratched them yet or lost them. Once you become used to the darkened / polarized view of everything and your glasses are helping you to locate more fish they will become as valuable as the rod you are carrying and you'll protect them just as well. I guess that was meant to say; whether they are bargain basement or top of the line the biggest danger is losing or breaking them.

Once you get used to wearing them all the time you'll love whatever you get.

williamhj 12-07-2011 10:54 AM

Re: Sunglasses
Thanks for all the feedback so far. I have heard good things about Smiths so have been looking at them a bit. I do want to get into a fly shop to try some on, but I wasn't sure if I could tell how they'd do seeing into the water based on how they perform in the store. I'm interested in the gray lenses as I've really only heard about amber and rose lenses for fishing.

Hardy, I know about losing sunglasses! I won a nice pair some time ago and lost them shortly there after. Now I always have a strap attached and I haven't lost a pair since.

mysticm 12-07-2011 12:29 PM

Re: Sunglasses
Another vote for the Smiths. I opted for the frames with the Polarchromic copper techlite lenses. These are terrific against glare and the polarization is fantastic. They are also photochromatic so the tint changes with available light. I have found this great when fishing early in the morning or into dusk. The copper tint is particularly good in bringing out the contrast in freshwater (shady, small streams with vegetation)

Another thing is that the Techlite lenses are made from glass (not polycarbonate) so there is little chance of scratching them & they have very little 'birefringence' (distortion) issues that can sometimes exist in polycarbonate lenses.

Finally, I don't work for Smith :) ...just love them after experimenting with some of the other comparable brands.

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