It’s been an inside joke for years. After one particular outing with the Kawasaki crew, where we ventured through some severe weather off of North Carolina’s Outer Banks, I lost two pairs of Bomber sunglasses and a favorite pair of goggles. Exposing my eyes to searing salt spray and whipping winds that day left me in an irritable mood the rest of the trip. And since then, whenever I join Kawasaki’s media group, I am been greeted with a complimentary pair of goggles.
Although appreciative of the many pairs of cheapo goggles in my gear bag, my choice of eye protection tends to sway a little more picky. For riding on water, two things are a must – and are intrinsically tied – ventilation and clarity. So often riders resign themselves to whatever is handy, be it a pair of snow goggles, motocross goggles or even swimming goggles. None of these are ideal as they fail to meet the needs of riding a personal watercraft.
That is why I am so drawn to Dragon Alliance’s MDX Hydro Goggle. Designed specifically for watersports (i.e. riding your personal watercraft), these beauties feature waterproof tri-layer neoprene face foam that not only is designed to survive prolonged exposure to water, but also keeps out unwanted water from entering.
The foam is also what allows the Dragon Hydros to float in case you do lose them, but the 1 1/2-inch strap features a silicone bead that grips firmly to your helmet (if you’re wearing one). The frame is made from polyurethane, which keeps it lightweight and flexible.
But Dragon’s lenses are where it shines most. The frames allow for wide, panoramic lenses opening up your range of vision far more than others we’ve tried. Of course, their lenses are 100-percent UV (UVA/UVB) proof and coated in a proprietary anti-fog treatment. And all anti-fog lenses are available in polarized, blue and all available lenses for MDX framed goggles. And of course, switching out lenses is made easy so you can adjust tints or replace scratched lenses.
Not once did we find any cause for demerit while using our two pairs of Hydro MDXs. Visibility was at a maximum regardless of weather or temperature. Adjusting them to fit young adults or even children was a cinch. We simply felt that the fitment, visibility and comfort of these goggles were leaps ahead of any we have tested before.
Eye protection is a must, as is a life vest. We strongly recommend these. Do not let the $69.95 retail price dissuade you. They’re worth it. We picked up our from Western Powersports, but can also be found at Optima Racing and Thrust Innovations.