Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Product Review: Smith Optics

I've been fishing since I was a little kid.  I started out fishing off the dock at our house in Alaska, using a simple hot dog on the end of a heavy hook wrapped with lead.  When we were camping I would spin fish for rainbows, cutties, and dolly.  We never spin fished for salmon. When I was a teenager we would troll for salmon, and I worked on guide boats and commercial fishing boats. During all those years, I rarely if ever wore sunglasses.  I certainly didn't wear glasses to help me fish.
When I re-discovered fishing about 10 years ago, I didn't think about sunglasses being a valuable tool or necessity for fly fishing.  Eventually, I purchased a cheap pair of polarized glasses.  Then I moved up to a good pair of Costa sunglasses.  I had horrible luck with those Costa glasses and ended up using a mid-priced set of  Native glasses instead. The Native sunglasses were great, especially for the price; however, after two years, I lost them. I decided it was time for an upgrade.
I had heard good things about Smith Optics for years and decided to pull the trigger.  I ultimately selected the MaverickThey weren't cheap.  Quite honestly, I didn't notice a huge difference with the glasses right away.  However, I did notice that I was becoming much better at spotting large fish and catching those fish.  My first thought was that perhaps I was becoming a decent fly fisher.  Then I realized that the sunglasses might have something to do with it.  I spent years never understanding what people meant by "sneaking up" on large trout.  I am now able to spot large trout on a regular basis.  The effectiveness of the Smith Optics sunglasses became quite apparent a few weeks ago when I was fishing in the Everglades.  The Guide was standing on his platform looking for fish. On numerous occasions, I spotted fish that the Guide didn't see until after I pointed out the fish.  I was at a far worse vantage point - the glasses are that good! 
Obviously, sunglasses aren't going to make you catch fish.  The being said, high quality polarized glasses can make a huge difference - especially when targeting large fish.  I can't imagine trying to fish without my Smith's.  Next time you're in the market, consider Smith