Australia’s a spectacular country and nobody knows that better than off-roaders. We get to places other people never seem and we can look at them from a whole new perspective. All it takes is a good 4wd and some imagination – and the right gear, of course. At Tough Toys we’re all about making sure you have whatever you need to get out there and explore, and years of experience means we know what people are looking for to fit out a wagon or Ute. We also know what a lot of people aren’t looking for, but maybe should be, and we’d put eye protection right at the top of that list.
Eyes are vulnerable, and unfortunately all the fun outdoor stuff we love doing puts them at constant risk. Driving, even off-road, is pretty safe unless you’re in an open-topped wagon, but a lot of the fun happens when you’re out of the cab. Of course so does a lot of the less fun stuff, like recovering yourself when you drive into a soft patch, and that can be risky. It’s pretty obvious of course; you’re working with a load of tools to get a heavy vehicle out of bad ground. Spinning wheels can throw up sand and grit, and if any of it gets in your eyes it’s going to sting. A snatch strap under tension can also throw off dirt and debris. If you find yourself stuck, you need to make sure you have some kind of eye protection before you get out to deal with it.
When you stop for the say and set up camp there are still a few hazards around. Pegging out an awning seems pretty safe, but you won’t be saying that after a tensioned guy line gets away from you and hits you in the face – it’s going to sting. Breaking or chopping your firewood can be risky, too.
Then of course there’s fishing. It’s a great way to relax, and also pretty good at keeping the barbie in business; nothing tastes as good as a fish you caught yourself. If you think getting dust in your eyes is bad, though (it is) you don’t even want to think about fishhooks. Casting without some eye protection is not a good idea.
We know the chances of you picking up a nice pair of safety goggles to wear when you’re touring are pretty slim. No surprises – you’d look pretty weird if you did that. There’s no need anyway though, because a decent pair of sunglasses will protect you from pretty much all the things that tend to get in your eyes. The main thing is that word “decent”. A $10 pair of aviators isn’t what you’re looking for here, because cheap plastic lenses can shatter easily and probably won’t even do the whole “keeping the sun out” thing that sunglasses are meant to be good at. Considering how important your eyes are it’s worth spending a bit more to get a quality pair with ballistic lenses and proper UV protection. The best we’ve found are the Byfield Optics range – these are awesome, and they look good too.
It’s easy to overlook details like decent eye protection, but even if you never get bogged in (yeah right) good sunglasses will come in handy just about every time you go touring.