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How to Select Sunglasses for Fishing

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Not many injuries occur from fishing, accept an occasional lure in the eye. However, since fishing takes place outdoors, you need to protect yourself from ultraviolet radiation. Also, because fishing takes place on or near water, there is a high amount of glare. The proper eyewear can help control glare, and let you see through shallow water. Here is what to look for:

  • Ultraviolet Radiation: Make sure that whatever glasses you choose absorb 100% of ultraviolet light. (See UV and its Effects on the Eyes for more information).

  • Polarized Lenses: Glare manifests itself in what is called polarized light. Glare increases on surfaces such as water or snow. This creates distracting blurs. Polarized lenses absorb 98% of the glare so you don't need to squint. It also allows you to better see through the water, good for fishermen who fish in shallow water. These lenses are a must for anyone on the water.   

  • Lens Material: Since fishing is not a high risk sport, any lens material can be used.

  • Frame Material: Any frame material can be used. It is basically a style decision.  If your eyes tear or you fish in cold temperatures, you may want to consider frames with foam to seal out the wind and cold.

  • Lens Color: The color of lens you choose depends on the time of day you most often fish. If you are fishing in the early morning or late evening, use a vermilion or rose colored lens. This is a low light lens, but still blocks out the glare during these times of the days. If you fish in the middle of the day, use a brown or gray lens. This will provide the best shielding from the sun.  Also, Lighter color polarized lenses like Amber or Yellow are good for shallow water fishing.

  • Prescription Lenses: Most any frame can be fit with a prescription lens, and polarized lenses are available in most prescriptions in all lens materials.

Recommended Styles: Smith and Vuarnet make glass lenses in the above mentioned colors and have prescription availability on most styles, and LX Polarized and Native only make polarized lenses.   Bolle makes polarized styles with polycarbonate lenses and the above mentioned lens colors and all have prescription availability . Rudy Project, has a polarized photochromic lenses that allows you to see LCD screens like fish finders.  Liberty Sport also has a fishing line available with prescription lenses.  Julbo also makes frames with polarized and photochromic lenses for varying light conditions. Ocean also carries a polarized line that also floats in water.  

Fishing Sunglasses