Julbo Trek Sunglasses

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Manufacturer Description

The Trek’s mission is simple: to achieve optimum performance while moving fast in extreme environments by providing highly technical, yet lightweight eyewear. For those committed to the outdoors via mountaineering, climbing and trail running, the Trek is the perfect combination of technical mountaineering principles and lightweight performance ergonomics. Detachable shields black lateral rays from intense glare as well as offer superior ventilation when necessary. Julbo’s Flex Nose design and 360° adjustable temples provide optimum hold.

Features

  • Frame material – Durable polycarbonate construction
  • Detachable shields
  • Adjustable flex nosepiece
  • 360 degree adjustable temples
  • Zebra lens tested
    • Photochromic lens – 7-42% light transmission rate
    • Anti-fog coating
    • Brown tint
    • 100% protection against UVA, B and C rays
    • Recommended for mountain biking, running, climbing, skiing, riding, and other outdoor sports
    • Case, gasket and lanyard included
  • Made in France
  • Temple length: 112 mm
  • Frame width: 141 mm
  • Lens height: 44 mm
  • Lens width: 65 mm
  • Bridge: 22 mm
  • Weight – 1 oz
  • Available in 3 lenses – Zebra, Camel, and Spectron 4
  • Lens width – 69 mm
  • Nose bridge – 12 cm
  • Temple length – 115 cm
  • Retail – $120-$200 depending on Lens Choice, $180 as tested

YMMV Review

Julbo is a sunglass company located out of Jura department in France. This area is known for its mountains, and that is where Julbo got its heritage. Julbo has been making eyewear for 125 years now and still designs out of this region of France. Julbo wants to be known for its outdoor spirit and created eyewear directed at toward activities that give you the freedom to be outdoors.

From the Front with no Attachments - Click to See Larger
From the Front with no Attachments – Click to See Larger

Their products focus on high-quality optics while keeping the eyes protected from the harsh sun. For YMMV Reviews, I have worked with Julbo once before on the Trail sunglasses which were geared towards riding and running. This time I wanted to test something with a bit more of a mountain design but still versatile enough for much more.

Testing

With that theme, I tested the Julbo Trek Sunglasses a variety of ways. I used them on the bike, hiking, running, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. I used them in conditions with a lot of glare such as sunny conditions in the snow to low light commuting on my bike. I was not able to get any testing at really high altitudes; 9000 feet was about the max.

Front with Attachments On - Click to See Larger
Front with Attachments On – Click to See Larger

Design ★★★½☆

Appearance (30%) ★★★½☆

Construction (40%) ★★★★☆

Sustainability (10%) ★☆☆☆☆

Weight (20%) ★★★☆☆

The Julbo Trek Sunglasses are made to be versatile. To accomplish this, they have been designed with a bunch of features that make them good for a variety of sports: mountain bike riding, running, climbing, hiking, skiing, and more. Like most sunglasses, you will find on the market the Trek has been made with a durable polycarbonate that is both light and tough. The Trek has full-coverage lenses to protect the eyes with a couple of other features that can be used or not depending on the activity. There are side shields that can be inserted to block out the glare that can enter from the sides. These are small but effective at closing the gap between the lenses and the temple area on your face. Another piece that can be added is a sweat blocker that sits against the forehead to keep sweat out of the eyes when working hard. Of course, this does no good if the glasses fog up so the Trek also has venting built into the lens and an anti-fog finish to keep your vision clear. For those that need it the Trek are able to support an optical clip for corrective lenses.

From the Side - Click to See Larger
From the Side – Click to See Larger

The Julbo Trek comes with three different lens options depending on your activities of choice. The lenses are the Spectron 4, Camel, and Zebra lenses. The Spectron 4 is the darkest tint and is made for sports when conditions are very bright. They are not photochromic, so they are less versatile but also less expensive. The Camel lens polarized photochromic lens that is ideal for mountaineering and skiing. It has an anti-fog coating and is similar to the Zebra, but with a polarized lens. The Zebra is also photochromic with an anti-fog treatment like the Camel. It is not polarized, which makes it better for a wide range of sports and gives is a wider range of tinting. This is the lens I tested. All the lenses provide 100% protection from UVA, B, and C rays. The Camel and Zebra lenses are in Julbo’s NXT collection, which has excellent impact resistance to protect your eyes even in the instance of a crash or accident.

Sweat Blocker - Click to See Larger
Sweat Blocker – Click to See Larger

Several of the other features of the glasses are made to optimize the fit. The nose piece is adjustable to give a custom fit and made to stay in place even if sweating. The temples on the Trek are also adjustable. They can move in 360 degrees and are made similarly to the nose piece in that they will hold well in all situations. The Trek comes with an adjustable strap that can be used or not depending on your preference. Other included pieces are a case and protective bag that can be used to clean the lenses. Looking into the sustainability of the glasses, I have not been able to find much information. For that reason, I gave them one in sustainability.

Top with Lanyard - Click to See Larger
Top with Lanyard – Click to See Larger

Fit ★★★★☆

Adjustability (15%) ★★★★½

Comfort (25%) ★★★☆☆

Eye Coverage (30%) ★★★★☆

Head Sizing (30%) ★★★★☆

I have a smaller head so larger sunglasses tend to look a bit funny on me. The Julbo Trek I would classify as medium-large. On me, they are slightly big but with the adjustable nose and temples, the glasses never moved around on my head. One of the good things about a larger sunglass is that it has more eye coverage. Since these are made for skiing, cycling, and mountaineering, having more eye coverage is a excellent thing. The large lenses make it so I have no loss of vision when wearing them. Both the temples and nose piece use a rubbery material to keep them in place. Whether running, riding, or skiing the sunglasses always stayed in place. The temples felt good, but I did find the nose piece to be a little less comfortable. Not bad but I could feel it from time to time.

Temple Piece - Click to See Larger
Temple Piece – Click to See Larger

One thing that did not work for me was wearing the glasses under a hat. I do like to bend the bill of my hat a bit so that makes the space underneath a little smaller. Some glasses work, and some don’t. Without a hat on the issue with some sunglasses is sun and sweat coming in between the space between your head and the glasses. Fortunately, the Julbo Trek comes with a piece that addresses that problem. There is a foam piece that can be clicked into the glasses that acts as a sweat blocker and also reduces the glare from a high sun. While this sweat blocker may not be the best-looking thing, it is very functional and that is what is most important, right?

Performance ★★★★☆

Breathability (20%) ★★★½☆

Clarity (25%) ★★★★☆

Durability (20%) ★★★★☆

Sweat Blocking (15%) ★★★★☆

Versatility (20%) ★★★★½

What I really like about the Julbo Trek Sunglasses I tested is the versatility. I could use them for nearly any sport with the different add on and photochromic lenses. The lenses I tested were the Zebra as I wanted a very versatile lens without being polarized. Polarized lenses make it harder to see slick conditions so if I wanted to use them on the bike, then this was the best choice. The lenses can adjust their tint from 7-42% visual light transmission. What is really cool about this is that it only takes 28 seconds to do so, that is really fast. It was really nice to have a pair of sunglasses that worked both for riding in the bright sun and able to protect your eyes even when the light gets low before you get home. I even used the sunglasses in the dark on a couple commutes. They were not so dark that I could not see and enough to take the edge off of oncoming headlights.

Adjustable Temple Arm - Click to See Larger
Adjustable Temple Arm – Click to See Larger

I used the sunglasses several times where I figured fogging may be an issue but never had any problems. The lenses do have some vents built in, but I think the anti-fog treatment is what really keeps them from fogging up. Another thing I liked about the sunglasses is the temple shields that can be added to reduce glare and fill in the space between the glasses’ frame and the temple area. When adding the shields it definitely blocked any extra glare from getting in through there. When wearing them, I never noticed any changes in breathability or fogging. As with all Julbo Sunglasses I have used or tested, the visual clarity has been good. From my experience, there is no visual distortion. I mentioned the sweat blocker before but did not touch on how well it really does keep sweat from running down into your eyes. I have really short hair and when coupled with hot temperature and no hat the sweat can really get running down my face. With the sweat blocker, I could feel the sweat run down my forehead, but it never made it into my eyes which I did appreciate. After the run, you could tell it was working as the foam with be wet from soaking up sweat. One other feature the glasses come with is a lanyard that hooks onto the temples. I have found the glasses fit snug enough that I never needed it but having it just in case is a good thing.

Case and Bag - Click to See Larger
Case and Bag – Click to See Larger

Overall ★★★★☆

Overall, the Julbo Trek Sunglasses are a very versatile option. The clarity is great and couple with all the add-ons and photochromic lenses you really can use them for nearly any sport. I am a big fan of versatile items because it is really easy to have a lot of gear, believe me. The sunglasses are not cheap but being versatile does make it easier. For me, the Trek does feel a bit bigger than I normally prefer, I am sure for most people these will not feel big. The Julbo Trek does have three options for lenses so you can get what you need, if you want what I think is the most versatile, then I would recommend the Zebra lens. The Julbo Trek Sunglasses retail for $180 in the Zebra lens, but I do think they are a good value if you want a “do it all” pair. I know I have used them for a lot of activities. As always, your mileage may vary.

Pros [field name=iFrame]

  • Very adjustable
  • Lenses adjust fast
  • Stays in place well
  • Sweat blocker works

Cons

  • Nose piece is occasionally uncomfortable
  • A bit large for me
  • On the expensive side

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About the Author

I am an avid runner, cyclist, swimmer, hiker, climber, skier and many other activities that would make this list too long. I started Your Mileage May Vary Reviews in Early 2011 to combine two of my passions: sports and gear.

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