Item 9 on the Boy Scout list and item 2 on the The Mountaineers updated list of Ten Essentials is Sun protection. The Mountaineers classic list provides item 3 as simply Sunglasses and sunscreen. Sun protection  is a broad category and today, we look at the first of many items in it. defines sunglasses as “eyeglasses with colored or tinted lenses that protect the eyes from the glare of sunlight.” A compounding of “sun” and “glasses,” the word originated between 1800 and 1810.

While, it seems like the best days to be out in the wild are the sunniest, there will be times when the sky is dark and cloudy, which can still be beautiful. There will be dark nights sitting around the campfire. These are times when sunglasses are unneeded. For these times, as part of our FamilyTrivium sun protection system, each of us incorporates a sunglasses case. With a Velcro belt loop and clip, the affordable, but flexible Outdoor Products model is available for a couple of dollars at Walmart stores in our area. These protect our sunglasses from being damaged by other items in our packs.

When it comes to sunglasses, a pair of $5 polarized fishing sunglasses from Walmart are better than none. The ones with copper colored lenses are actually pretty good for driving in a variety of weather conditions. The smoke colored lenses are preferable in the bright sun and can help you spot things (fish) below the surface of the water that you might not see otherwise. Perhaps the boldest allure of inexpensive sunglasses is for those that tend to loose them. That said, there’ nothing wrong with a nice pair of sunglasses if they’re within your budget.


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