ProView – Spy Dega Sunglasses

Josh Goldbach is our Associate Director at Adventure Treks and a sixth year Regional Director. He studied Psychology at Eckerd College and is a graduate of the NOLS Instructor Course. He has worked as a glacier guide in New Zealand and as a Course Director for The Boojum Institute. He is a Wilderness First Responder and a Leave No Trace Master Educator. In his free time, Josh can be found mountaineering, ice climbing, and whitewater kayaking. – Adventure Treks

I’m fortunate to spend a lot of my personal and professional time having fun outdoors, and since I have very light-sensitive eyes, I’ve always been picky about my sunglasses. The Spy Optic Degas are well-suited for all my favorite outdoor activities and keep my eyes happy and comfortable.

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I tested the Degas in weather-fickle western North Carolina:

  • Whitewater kayaking on the Green River Narrows
  • Mountain biking in DuPont State Recreational Forest and Bent Creek National Forest
  • Hiking along the Blue Ridge parkway

At first glance, I was impressed by the Degas’ aesthetics. The frame color was a soft matte black, and they looked sharp—I could wear these straight from the river to the bar without feeling too techy.

DEGAI liked how the frames felt snug without squeezing my skull. One of the biggest complaints I have with sunglasses is how easily the frames stretch out, especially when you wear them over a hat on your head. The Degas seemed to stretch very little, if at all. I was initially a bit concerned about their durability, as the frames aren’t as rigid as some of the other shades I own. However, they proved sturdy after wearing them under two different helmets, storing them in a pack, and generally exposing them to light-to-medium duty abuse. Also crucial: The nosepiece was grippy without being uncomfortable, helping me avoid the dreaded slip down my nose.

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Spy’s Happy Lens™ technology is supposed to block out the “bad” UV light that damages your eyes, while letting in the long-wave blue light that helps buoy your mood and awareness. While my mood stayed pretty steady (unrelated to the glasses), I was handily impressed that I could see equally well at high noon with intermittent shade and in the murky light of dusk on a cloudy evening.

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Some people hesitate to drop a lot of dough on polarized lenses, but the Degas’ grey-green Trident™ polarization is more than worth it. The clarity was sharp, and while most wrap-around polycarbonate lenses have some distortion, here it was almost imperceptible. One con: although the frames stood up to vigorous testing (and I don’t treat gear lightly), the lenses did scratch a bit.

Pros: Great lenses, snug-fitting frames, attractive design

Cons: Lenses not super scratch-resistant

Shop Spy Optic, now on Outdoor Prolink 

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