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Gear Review: Julbo Contest

Transition seamlessly between seasons with these year round sunglasses.
FGG 2010 Julbo Contest 445x260Julbo Contest (Courtesy Photo)

Shades for all seasons: The Contest proved to be the perfect eyewear whether testers were winter mountaineering in New Hampshire’s Presidentials or hiking among wildflowers in Colorado’s Never Summer Range. That’s because the photochromic Zebra lens delivers the desired amount of shade or light in a surprisingly wide range of conditions. “They darken to nearly full protection in high-altitude sun, yet they lighten so much in dim conditions that I often forgot to take them off until after the sun was down,” reports one tester, who used them for all-day snow climbs and never missed the lack of polarization. The half-rim (bottomless) frame boosts coverage, while thick sides block peripheral glare. And they never slip: Big, grippy nose pads keep them in place on sweaty climbs, and the curved, rubberized ear pieces prevent bouncing while running or mountain biking. $160; 1.4 oz.; julbousa.com

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