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Old 01-25-2012   #21
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 27
My eyesight is absolutely horrible and have worn glasses since second grade and contacts since seventh grade for a total of 42 years. I kayak with my contacts (soft extended wear Bausch & Lombs but I take them out every night) and have never had a problem except on occasion when I get splashed in the face and get a good hit of water in my eye. I even open my eyes under water but don't make a habit of it. I've never lost a contact, always carry spares and couldn't imagine boating in glasses.

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Old 01-25-2012   #22
lhowemt's Avatar
at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,346
Some may want a mirror to put in spare contacts. My old river knife was shiny enough it worked, but the new ones aren't. I bought a "compact", those women's powder makeup things and took the makeup thing out. It's nice, the mirror is protected and it's pretty low-profile.

Rain-x is the best anti-fog I've found, just don't get it in your eyes. It works not only for fog, but helps the glasses sheet water faster/better so they clear in rowdy water.

I am a river, babe - I've got plenty of time, I don't know where I'm going, I'm just following the lines..... - "We are water" by Shaye
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Old 01-25-2012   #23
North Bend, Washington
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 476
Huh- Never would have thought of Rain-X even though I use the stuff on my windsheild. Gonna have to try it.
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Old 01-26-2012   #24
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 350
^I've used RainX. Both kinds (anti-fog rainx, and traditional, or a combination of both). It seems to help, but not completely prevent it.

Fogging glasses do suck, I agree, but the truth is, I'm yet to have any major issues or incidents from it, just annoyance.

I probably shouldn't bother with goggles in whitewater, but like I said, I just plan to test it (playboating). They fill with water, they have to be drained, but that's why I said maybe. If 9/10 times I get flushed upside through a big rapid like tunnel, they stay sealed, then maybe it's not so bad. If you get goggles that fit you well, who knows (I don't). I'm not explicity recommending it, just thinking out loud.

In any case, swimming goggles are great for the pool (not that that means anything in this thread).

I'll look into the sportier contacts, too. If there's some extra big ones for the right price, they might be the best way to go.
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Old 01-27-2012   #25
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
I'm a big fan of the scuba helmet for kayaking.

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Old 01-27-2012   #26
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
Honestly, I fight this issue too and have been playing around combinations that work for me. I'm fine with contacts 90% of the time, but big hits seem to always flush a contact for me.

I started using Seal XP swimming goggles, and what I found is that they're amazing for surfing (when you're in a wave that constantly splashes water in your face) or for deflecting splashes in a rapid, but if I go over in turbulent water they almost always fill with water and the result can be interesting.
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Old 01-28-2012   #27
Thronton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 665
Originally Posted by river_danno View Post
Thanks everyone. I'm constantly getting my contacts sort of was around a bit, and my eyesight is poor enough that I'm essentially blind without them. I'm contemplating glasses as I progress onto harder stuff.
Me too. I've been wearing glasses, and as was mentioned before, a good strap and a durable frame are key. Anti-fog coating of some sort helps, but they eventually fog up once they get wet. They also tend to spot as they dry.

I started wearing contacts on the river this past summer. I like them a lot more, but I only raft, so I am not swimming as much. I did do a lot of swimming as part of some training last spring, and they seemed to stay in pretty well. I lost one in my eye for a few minutes, but it eventually found it's way back to my cornea... LOL

Going forward, my recommendation would be to go with the contacts, but bring a pair of glasses as a backup. If you're as blind as I am, losing a contact could actually be dangerous if you can't see where you are going for the rest of the trip.
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Old 01-29-2012   #28
Kayak/SUP Instructor
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The High Ground, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,325
I think contacts work fine. Blink when you take a face shot and carry a pair of spares in your PFD.
"Let us cross the river to the other side and rest beneath the shade of the trees." ~ Last words of Thomas Jonathan ''Stonewall' Jackson
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Old 01-29-2012   #29
mtriverrat's Avatar
Lewistown, middle of MT
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 222

I also have terrible vision and am not a candidate for Lasik. I always wear my contacts. I keep a spare in the front pocket of my lifejacket and wear sunglasses to decrease splash. I have never lost them but they got pushed to the side of my eye in Lava Falls last year. Wouldn't have been able to see with my glasses either. One of the guys on the trip lost his glasses in a flip and he had a strap on them. Stick with contacts.
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Old 01-29-2012   #30
Nessy's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 255
I have a pair of neoprene croakies. So far so good. I haven't figured out the fogging problem, but I'd rather deal with fog than a lost contact (or worse a contact wedging a pyrite flake against my cornea). Glasses also reduce splashing. Polarized amber lenses can also add to your experience by reducing glare and improving contrast. My biggest problem so far with glasses was floating Deso last year. The high sediment volume in the river resulted in a heavy buildup of dirt on my lenses.

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