TEST SERIES BY ERIN M. HEDDEN
October 30, 2012
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Erin M. Hedden
Southeastern Colorado, USA
5' 9" (1.75 m)
153 lb (69.40 kg)
Backpacking Background: I have been backpacking since 4 years of age, taking long trips into the mountains with my family. I hike various terrains from mountains and plateaus to grasslands and prairies. My excursions can be a day hike with a light-weight waist pack, a loop trail taking up to 5 days on which I keep my pack as light-weight as possible, or an in-and-out trip for a night or two where my pack can be heavy. Slow and steady is my pace and I use a tent or a hammock depending on weather and terrain.
PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS
Manufacturer: Bushnell Outdoor Products
Year of Manufacture: 2012
Manufacturer's Website: http://bolle.com/
Listed Weight: N/A
Measured Weight: 1.1 oz (31 g); Bag: 0.3 oz (9 g); Case: 2.3 oz (65 g)
Measured Lens Size: 70 x 45 mm (2.75 x 1.75 in)
The Bollé Rainier comes in six different colors and they are as follows:
Dark Satin Gray with True Neutral Smoke Lenses; Holographic Silver with Rose Blue Lenses; Shiny White with True Neutral Smoke Fire Lenses; Shiny Red with Photo Rose Gun Lenses and Dark Satin Gray with True Neutral Smoke Polarized Lenses.
|Courtesy of Bollé|
The Bollé Rainier style that I am testing is the satin gray frames with the true neutral smoke polarized lenses.
The polarized lenses of these sunglasses are made of Trivex. Dual-sided hydrophobic/oleophobic coatings on the lenses are for repelling perspiration and making cleaning the lenses easier. This is part of the B-Clear technology Bushnell Outdoor Products used to make the view through the lenses "crystal-clear".
Carbo Glass is a scratch resistant coating that was used on the Bollé Rainier sunglasses, which are made of a nylon material called B88 themselves, in the hopes of being lightweight as well as durable.
The Bollé Rainier came in a 100% recycled paper made box which was printed with soy-based ink. Inside the box I found a black hard shell sunglasses case with the Bollé Alpine logo on it. Inside the case were the Bollé Rainier sunglasses tucked inside a soft cloth bag with a cinch draw. The sunglasses themselves impressed me with how light weight they felt in my hand, and on my face when I tried them on for the first time.
I also found inside the box the red and white slip that outlines the warranty information, the consumer repair policy and procedure and the instructions on how to care for and clean the Bollé sunglasses. The instructions are written in English, French, Spanish, Dutch, Italian and Portuguese.
While trying them on for the first time I found that the lenses were a little darker than the sunglasses I was wearing prior to receiving these glasses. The lenses of the Rainier sunglasses are also larger than those that are in my previous pair, but not by much. When I wore them outside for the first time it was a cloudless day, the sun positioned almost at it's highest point in the sky, just a little more to the west as it was two o'clock in the afternoon. The Rainier sunglasses polarized lenses proved to cut glare and the size of these wrap around glasses proved to me that they were designed to let in as little light as possible in order to protect the eyes.
Bollé makes the claim that the Rainier sunglasses are hydrophobic and are not going to fog up, which interests me and I am looking forward to finding out how true this bold claim is. I often sweat on the trail and have a problem with sunglasses getting filthy and fogging up and if the claim that these sunglasses are hydrophobic and no-fog is true, that will make life so much easier on the trail. I also look forward to trying these sunglasses out on the lake.
The Thermogrip material that Bollé uses on the Rainier is a bright green that stands out well against the satin grey frames. The bright green Thermogrip material lines the back of the ear pieces, the nose piece and the top, inside, portion of the frames themselves.
CARE & CLEANNG
Written on the pamphlet that was included inside the box there are instructions on how to care for and clean the Bollé sunglasses. Here it is recommended that the sunglasses be stored inside the pouch or case when not in use.
It is stated that the lenses of Bollé sunglasses are made of an industrial-grade polycarbonate material that is 20 times more impact resistant than glass and the lenses are treated with a premium hard coating that will help to limit scratching. However, that does not mean that the lenses are scratch proof, so it is recommended that care should be taken against scratching the lenses.
In order to clean the lenses of the Bollé Rainier sunglasses it is stated in the instructions that all loose particles be blown off of the lenses and then be cleaned with a lense cloth or a soft cotton cloth. A warm solution of mild liquid soap and water can be used with the cloth as well.
It is recommended that paper products never be used to clean the lenses, as this can lead to unnecessarily scratching the lenses.
Using any cleaning products that contain ammonia is not recommended.
Rinsing the lenses with fresh water if salt is present on the lenses is recommended since salt is highly abrasive and can damage the lenses.
Never place the sunglasses lens down on any surface. Never put the sunglasses in a pocket or purse and leave loose because this could lead to damage from other objects that may be loose inside the pocket or purse. And never leave the sunglasses in extremely hot or cold conditions, such as on the dashboard of the car.
I am excited about trying out the Bollé Rainier sunglasses and look forward to getting them out on the road, on the trail, on the lake and in the bush. I look forward to finding out if the claim that these sunglasses are hydrophobic and no-fog is true, or not.
I like that these sunglasses are light weight and I love the coloration and dark lenses much more so than the pair I was using previous to receiving the Rainier sunglasses.
This concludes the IR, my LTR to follow in 4 months, thanks to BackpackGearTest.org and Bollé for letting me test these sunglasses.
FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
Since Receiving the Bollé Rainier Sunglasses I have been wearing them at work on the ranch here in Southeastern Colorado where temperatures have been above 100 F (38 C) each and every day throughout the entire summer. During the evenings the temperature would drop to between 93 F (34 C) and 96 F (36 C), but rarely got any lower than that.
I have also worn the Bollé Rainier sunglasses while driving all around Colorado and Northeastern New Mexico.
Along with wearing these sunglasses at home, at work on the ranch and while driving, I have also been wearing these sunglasses out on fishing trips to various lakes. Ordway Reservoir, John Martin Reservoir, Holbrook Lake, Ryan's Ponds, an out of the way unnamed pond near the dump southwest of La Junta, Colorado, Lake Isabel, Martin Lake, Horseshoe Reservoir, Blue Lake, Bear Lake, North Lake and Monument Lake.
The Bollé Rainier sunglasses have also been worn on the trail and in the backcountry on several trips, hikes, scouts and general exploration outings in Southern and Southeastern Colorado. I have worn them throughout much of the San Isabel National Forest, in the wildlife preserve near Rocky Ford, Colorado, through the Comanche National Grasslands and to the wildlife preserve of Two Buttes near Springfield, Colorado.
While wearing the Bollé Rainier sunglasses on a backpacking excursion into the Wet Mountains of the San Isabel National Forest I spent the majority of the 3 days and 4 nights at an elevation of 8,500 feet (2591 meters) but hiked up to the top of Greenhorn Mountain where my ending elevation was 12,352 feet (3757 meters). Temperatures stayed between 95 F (35 C) and 99 F (37 C) throughout my entire stay on the mountain.
During an extended trip to Trinchera Peak in Southern Colorado in the San Isabel National Forest I started out at an elevation of 8,650 feet (2637 meters) and ended at 9,995 feet (3046 meters) in elevation where I spent the next 6 nights and 7 days.
Throughout the entire summer the days were hot and because of the current drought Colorado is experiencing there were no occasions when I wore the Bollé Rainier sunglasses when it was cloudy or overcast. There was only one rain storm during the entire summer and on this day I did not wear the sunglasses.
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
While out in the Wet Mountains during a hike along Ophir Creek I began to sweat pretty heavily and noticed that the inside of the lenses were fogging up a little. It resolved itself pretty quickly because of the small slits in the peripheral section of the frames which were allowing for ventilation. There was no need to remove the sunglasses to wipe down the lenses manually because the fog on the interior portion of the lenses resolved itself rather quickly.
I cannot say that I had any trouble with glare during driving with these sunglasses on and because of their shape and size I had no issues with sunlight blinding me because of light getting past the glasses from over the top of them, from under them, or from the sides.
Cleaning the Bollé Rainier sunglasses was easy using the included glasses baggy or with the use of a silk cloth that I carry along inside the case.
At one point during a hike up to Trinchera Peak in the San Isabel National Forest the case, which was hanging from an attachment point on the exterior of my backpack, got snagged on a small tree branch and the clip came unsnapped from the case. Luckily I heard the case hit the ground and retrieved it immediately. Reattaching the clip to the case was easy but I noticed that it was a weak connection. After this incident I began carrying the case inside the backpack so as not to repeat the same occurrence and avoid losing the glasses or the case.
The Rainer Sunglasses performed well in the direct sunlight that I experienced throughout the entire summer and I had no issues with them in the shaded areas along trails and in the mountains, however, in late evening it became harder to see through the lenses as they darkened things down quite significantly during these late hours of the day.
In summery I found that the Bollé Rainier sunglasses were comfortable to wear, they reduced the amount of glare while I was driving and the polarized lenses reduced the amount of sunlight in my line of vision.
They did fog up a little with some sweat and some tears but that problem remedied itself because of the ventilation slits that are located on the sides of the frames.
The Bollé Rainier sunglasses were easy to clean and did not get scratched easily as I did drop them on a few occasions.
The case was tough and protected the glasses from getting smashed on two occasions. Once when I sat on the case when getting into my vehicle and once when a friend stepped on the case on accident in camp.
The bag that came with the sunglasses was easy to keep in my pockets and good for storing the sunglasses in when the sun went down. The bag also worked well to clean the glasses as well.
The only problem I encountered was the weak connection between the hard case and the attached clip. The connection point between the two was found to be weak and this showed to be a bit of a problem when the case got tugged on lightly by a small branch on the trail.
LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
With summer coming to it's end and hunting season on the horizon I spent several weekends hiking around the Sangre De Cristo Mountains in the Sulphur Springs region in Huerfano County, Colorado going from an elevation of 7,000 ft (2,134 m) up to 7,500 ft (2,286 m) on most occasions, but there were several times when I ventured further up into the mountains to wind up at an elevation of 8,125 ft (2,477 m) before returning to the bottom of the mountain pass.
When fall had settled in and the light had changed in the atmosphere I began scouting around the Big and Little Sheep Mountains near Gardner, Colorado on private lands for Elk. At the base of both of these mountains I began at an elevation of 6,969 ft (2,124 m). Reaching the top of the Little Sheep Mountain I topped out at an elevation of 12,241 ft, (3731 m). I did not reach that elevation while scouting around the Big Sheep Mountain and only made it to 8,300 ft (2,530 m) before having to turn around and head back down.
The remainder of my time spent out on the trail while backpacking, scouting and hiking was at an elevation of 4,178 ft (1,273 m) in Southeastern Colorado.
Weather was always sunny or mostly sunny on every occasion where I was out in the Sangre De Cristo Mountain range and it was the same for my time on the private lands near Gardner, Colorado. My time in Southeastern Colorado on the trail was also rewarded with nice weather and sunny conditions except for on one morning when the river basin in which I had been camping had become choked with fog
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
There was a little bit of notcible change in the view through the Rainier lenses as fall set in and the light around me outdoors dulled, other than this change I did not notice any significant differences in views during my hikes up into higher elevations. I did not have any problems with darkening of my vision while in shaded areas and had not issues with the lenses fogging up or becoming hard to see through. Overall the Bollé Rainier Sunglasses performed well in all the different locations, elevations and situations where I wore these sunglasses. The Rainer sunglasses proved to be easily cleaned and the lenses did not get scratched easily, nor did they fog up very often, only on two separate occasions did they fog up and that was either because of sweat or tears but because of the side vents on the frames the issue quickly resolved itself and did not need to be remedied manually.
In summary I feel that the Bollé Rainier sunglasses performed well in the field, on the trail, in the mountains, plains, prairies, canyons, rivers, lakes, reservoir and even on the road where I would wear them while hiking, fishing, driving, kayaking and climbing. I had no problems with them at any time and I personally feel that these are very well built and engineered sunglasses for the avid outdoors enthusiast.
This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.
Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.
I would like to thank Bollé and BackPackGearTest.org for allowing me to test the Rainier sunglasses. This concludes the Test Report for the Bolle Rainier Sunglasses.
Read more gear reviews by Erin Marie Hedden