No Fear Panther Ski / Snowboard GogglesI have been snowboarding for many years now, but up until Christmas 2011 I had never been on a mountain as I lived in Birmingham and had only ever used our local indoor Snowdome. Before I moved from the UK I found out we were going to be going snowboarding in the Czech Republic for Christmas so I decided that as obviously there is a big difference between an indoor Snowdome and a huge mountain I would need some kind of protection for my eyes against the various kinds of weather I might encounter.
After a quick search on Sportsdirect.com I found these No Fear ski / snowboard goggles for a bargain price of £14.99 plus postage. The RRP was £49.99 so £14.99 was the perfect price for me!
No Fear Ski and Snowboard goggles come in a variety of shapes and sizes as well as colours. On Sportsdirect.com they have a wide selection of Adult and Junior goggles, mainly in black or white and from what I have read on the site most of the goggles have very similar specifications and the only differences are really the colour and size. The No Fear Goggles I have are the 'Panther' ones and they are black in colour with a tinted lens which looks a nice blue in certain lights.
Making AdjustmentsWhen my goggles arrived I was rather excited and instantly took them out the box to try them on. Adjusting the strap was really easy and just a case of sliding the elastic strap through a plastic buckle until it is the size you desire. This is the only adjustment I needed to make before I could wear the goggles and it took me all of a few seconds.
Once I had the goggles on I felt a bit alarmed that they felt so big and covered pretty much most of my face, however when my new helmet arrived and I tried them once again I realised that they actually were a pretty normal size and looked fine. I also liked the fact that my helmet came with a very handy goggle clip which was the perfect size for the strap on these goggles so I knew I would stand less chance of loosing them.
On The MountainSo, Christmas 2011 arrived and I'm just a big ball of excitement and ready to go snowboarding! Complete with new helmet and goggles I was heading for the top of the mountains. But did the goggles do their job?... The answer is Yes...
On Christmas day and Boxing day we spent a total of around 10 hours (split across both days). For my first run down the mountain I had my goggles firmly in place and was quite amused that everything had a yellow tint to it. At first this distracted me and but after a few minutes I did become adjusted to it, the thing I did have quite a bit of an issue with though was that the goggles made me feel almost blinkered and that I couldn't really see what was to my left and right without turning my whole head, because of this I decided to take the goggles off and place them on my helmet, the weather was nice so I took a chance that it would be ok without them, which I was. A few hours later the weather turned very misty and there was a very fine drizzle in the air which started to affect visibility, for this reason I decided that I would rather feel slightly blinkered than struggle to see anything at all and pulled my goggles back into place. At this point they had obviously gotten a little wet from the drizzle and at first I still struggled to see so I gave them a quick wipe with my gloves and was quite pleased that when I started to build up speed the water on the lens seemed to run off in the same way water runs off a car windscreen that's just been washed.
As for the blinkered feeling, I noticed after a couple of runs down the mountain that I was no longer noticing it as much, whether this was to do with me concentrating more on being able to see where I was going or that I had simply adjusted to how it felt to wear goggles, I don't know, but either way feeling blinkered was no longer a problem and neither was the drizzly weather conditions.
The goggles are made with a foam edging which makes them feel really comfortable against my face and especially against my nose, they caused me no problems with regards to breathing and nose comfort! They are also fitted with a thermal air cushion within the foam which kept my face (as they covered most of it!) feeling nice and warm. There are a couple of small ventilation covers on the goggles underneath the lens and they have a special 'anti-fog' double lens to prevent them from misting over as the temperature changes from the top to the bottom of the mountain and also the difference between the heat from your face and the outside temperature. I can happily say that this anti-fog lens works perfectly and I didn't have any issues with them clouding over or misting up at all.
PriceThe RRP for these goggles is £49.99, however I bought mine off sportsdirect.com for £14.99 plus postage of around £3.50ish. I've just had a quick look on the website now and they do still have them available at £18, which in my opinion is still an excellent price.
Recommended?Overall I am really pleased with my goggles, while I don't always wear them as I don't really need to unless the weather turns miserable I find they are easy to adjust and fit, they stay attached to my helmet securely when I don't want to use them and then when I do want to they simply fit into place within a second and I'm ready to go feeling confident I will have a clear view ahead of me! I recommend these goggles for anyone who is looking for reliable and reasonably cool looking goggles at a low price.
Thanks for reading! :)