Over the years, I’ve determined that nothing can ruin an otherwise good day of snowboarding (or skiing) like a bad helmet and goggles. There’s a ton of reasons ranging from a completely uncomfortable fit, to miserable designs, or totally ineffective safety features. Seeing as I have a collection of roughly half a dozen helmets in my gear closet and just as many goggles, I’m starting to feel like I’ve seen and worn it all. Oh, and tested all of them thoroughly with good falls. That’s important. 😉
So as both a gear addict and head injury prone snowboarder, I was immensely excited when Bollé asked if I’d test and write about some gear for them. I left the selections up to them, and found Bollé Gravity goggles and a Synergy helmet on my doorstep a few days later – coincidentally shortly before my Colorado snowboarding trip. Perfect timing.
I was immediately giddy about the aesthetics for both products, which is pretty unusual about me. Like many snow sport enthusiasts, I’ve been rocking a plain black helmet and solid colored lens frames for a long time and I’ve been perfectly alright with that. But given the option of combining a fun bright design with phenomenal safety and visibility, I’ll take that any day.
As mentioned earlier, a great looking helmet can be totally worthless if it isn’t comfortable and safe. So, testing the helmet and goggles multiple times on the slopes was important. Unlike many of the helmets I’ve worn, I quickly forgot I was even wearing a helmet. Coupled with the Gravity goggles, I was quickly enjoying increased peripheral vision and a total lack of condensation inside my goggles. Success! To make it even better, my goggles included Bollé’s Modulator technology. This meant that I was able to wear the same pair of goggles in insanely bright conditions, whiteouts, and the dark shade of glades without any adjustments or visibility issues. The Modulator technology did all the work for me.
As for safety, I never actually set out to put gear through the most extreme scenarios when I test, but sometimes bad stuff just happens. A few days into wearing my awesome new Bollé setup, I took one heck of a fall – which seems to be the usual for me this winter. I was overwhelmingly thankful that not only did my Bollé helmet hold up incredibly well, my head did too. Since the Bollé is so well fit to my head and significantly lighter than other helmets I’ve worn, I didn’t experience anywhere near as much of the impact or whiplash as usual. I was able to continue riding that day and the rest of the week.
Needless to say, Bollé packs their gear with lots of great features I’m still discovering and testing out. Be sure to check out their goggle and helmet technology pages for some great feature information. Here’s a few so far that I’m loving:
- Helmet: Synergy Airflow Extractor – Unlike many helmets with an option of closed or open vents, Bollé included an active air system and a forced air system. One constantly sucks away heat and moisture from the front of your helmet (one of the big reasons for fogged up goggles) and six other vents let you control airflow in the rest of the helmet.
- Helmet: Fit System – Remember how I mentioned how nicely this helmet fits? That wasn’t a sheer coincidence. Bollé included an easy to use and access liner fit system. Thanks to it being on the outside, I can easily change it depending on the head liner thickness I’m wearing.
- Goggles: Flow Tech Venting – My second favorite pair of goggles is an older pair of Bollé’s, but the Gravity goggles were an absolutely wonderful upgrade thanks to the Flow Tech venting. I noticed a whole lot less fogging than usual… and better yet – no frozen condensation.
All in all, I’m in love with my Bollé setup and probably need to start getting rid of some of the helmet duds in my gear closet. The Synergy helmet and Gravity goggles are going to be hard to beat!
Disclaimer: I was provided these products by Bollé for testing and review, but opinions are all my own.