A lot of time and effort goes into planning that perfect fishing trip to an exotic location or even just a short weekend getaway. Even the smallest of details are planned months in advance – the best lures, lines, rods, and reels often get packed and unpacked a hundred of times before the date of departure eventually arrives! The one thing however that most people often overlook which should probably be considered one of the most important for a good trip is excellent optics. A bad set of sunglasses can cause loads of frustration and missed opportunities. It is important to note that good pair of sunglasses not only protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and glare (as well as flying lures or flies – let’s be honest, we have all seen those disturbing images on the internet) but also play a crucial role in assisting anglers in spotting fish and identifying structure.
When it comes to optics anglers are confronted with the challenge of choosing from a wide variety of products from a number of manufacturers. However, from a personal perspective and years in both the commercial and recreational fishery, there is only one brand which is in a league of it’s own… Costa del Mar! Their mission was “to create the clearest sunglasses on the planet for life’s great adventures” and working along side skippers and fishermen, I think it is safe to say that the mission has been accomplished. However, it is important to note that this brand offers a wide array of products perfectly adapted to suit a variety of conditions so be sure to pick the right tool for the job!
What to consider when building (yes, thats right – you can order glasses to your specifications through the Costa online store – another reason why we love this brand) or choosing a set of Costa sunglasses suited to your needs:
Costa de Mar have six different lens colours on offer, each adapted to suit different light intensities ranging from extremely low light conditions to blinding glares. The infographic below, taken from the Costa website) provides a more detailed description of the different lens colours and what they are suited for. However, it is important to note that your eyes may prefer a different lens to another due to varying sensitivity. I have extremely sensitive eyes, and find that my BLUE MIRROR lenses are often my go to pair of glasses. Whilst these are labelled by Costa as being more suited to the offshore fishing environment, I can highly recommend them for shore-based fishing activities and would highly recommend them to anglers looking for an all-round pair of glasses. Living in the desert, often means long overcast days during winter, and this is where the COPPER lenses out perform the BLUE MIRROR. The copper lens is better suited to lower light conditions as they increase contrast and colour on even the dull days. However, I would not classify this lens as suited to an all-round pair of glasses, especially for those of you suffering from sensitive eyes. I often find that during days of partial sun and partial cloud these lenses can become a bit bright during moments of sunshine resulting in squinting.
Plastic or glass lenses?
Once you have selected your lens colour, you will then need to choose whether you will be opting for the glass or plastic lens – each of which has its own advantages and disadvantages. The scratch resistant 580G, Costa’s glass lens, is considered to offer the highest level of clarity. However, if you are opting for something a little cheaper or are just prone to clumsiness the plastic lens will not leave you disappointed. The 580P, Costa’s plastic lens, is considered to be a light, highly impact resistant lens. Their special C-WALL coating prevents water, dirt and oils from sticking to the lens, preventing those irritating marks from spoiling your view. Both the 580G and the 580P are top quality optics and provide 100% UV blockage and 100% polarisation meaning that your Costa’s will always be offering quality protection that your eyes deserve. Personally, nothing ruins a good pair of sunglasses more than a few scratches and this is where the slightly heavier glass lens wins in my opinion.
Frame style and size:
With over 60 different styles of frame on offer as well as four different size categories, your pair of Costa’s can be selected to suit your style and needs. Having owned a number of different frames there are two things which I can recommend you take into consideration when choosing frames:
- The rubber lining found on frames such as the BLACKFIN, can often part from the nylon frame, a source of great frustration! Carlos is generally considered to be one of those people which puts a products lifetime to the test however this seems to be a common problem. In order to avoid it I would suggest choosing an alternative frame.
- The metal Costa decal found on frames such as the SEA FAN can develop green corrosion spots. If you are living close to the ocean, I would suggest investing in a pair which lacks this metal decal to prevent your investment from looking scruffy.
In conclusion, why choose Costa del Mar?
Having tried and tested a number of brands over the years this is one that we would without a doubt recommend to anyone looking to invest in an excellent pair of optics. The lens technology (varying light sensitivity, light-weight lenses) and option to customise (choice of lens, material, frame style and size etc) is what makes this a desirable product to all fishermen and women around the globe. What makes Costa del Mar even more appealing is their ‘backed for life’ policy. Costa del Mar has a lifetime warranty to protect consumers against defective materials and workmanship. Should you feel that your purchase has not lived up to your expectations a claim can be submitted.
Another reason to support the brand is their participation in a wide array of environmental and conservation efforts such as their ‘Kick Plastic’ campaign, Project Guyana and more.