The Oakley Line Miner has a large fit and impressive field of view both vertically and horizontally. The frame was relatively stiff but curved around tester’s faces well. The nose cut was nice and large and the lens did not fog due to the dual vents. It worked great in a variety of lighting and weather conditions. As for negatives, it was the only goggle in the top five of this with a “traditional” lens change system (snap the lens into the nose cut, and then line it in the margins all the way around the frame).
The Oakley Line Miner is one of the larger- and medium-sized cylindrical goggles (they come in two sizes) with a wide nose opening and great lenses. The goggle has a large fit and impressive field of view both vertically and horizontally. The frame was relatively stiff but curved around tester’s faces well. The nose cut was nice and large and the lens did not fog due to the dual vents. It worked great in a variety of lighting and weather conditions. As for negatives, it was the only goggle in the top five of this with a “traditional” lens change system (snap the lens into the nose cut, and then line it in the margins all the way around the frame).
Field of View
The large model Oakley Line Miner has a great field of view, both vertically and horizontally. Even the medium frame model has a large field of view despite its smaller size. Our in-house test yielded a 170-degree field of view, which was among the top performers. The large nose cut obstructed the view somewhat when looking down, but we had to look for things to complain about in this category.
Weight, Fit & Comfort
The large sized Oakley Line Miners came in at 5.8 ounces, which was right in the middle of the pack (the 20 goggles tested ranged from 4.3 ounces to 6.7 ounces. The large nose cutout and aggressive curvature of the Line Miners is a perfect match for medium-sized faces. They did not slip around at all, making them overall the best fitting and most comfortable of all the goggles tested. The foam was nice and soft but durable, and the strap was easy to adjust. We paired them with five different helmets and found no major issues with a goggle gap. The large size Line Miners fit well over prescription glasses.
No significant fogging occurred in the Line Miners while tested in the relatively dry climate of Colorado. They performed well on wet snowy spring days and we even took the goggles out for some warm cross country days. They had little to no fogging despite our perspiring.
Lens & Frame Quality
The Line Miners received the only 9 out of 10 in this category. The lenses performed well in many different lighting conditions. Even in flat light, these lenses helped to define the texture of the snow better than any other goggle tested; there was no distortion around the edges. Testers did experience a small amount of glare that was not cut by the lens on bright days when the sun was low in the sky—but we had to get really picky to find something to complain about. We found the frame a little stiff, but it worked well with most of the testers’ faces.
Lens Change Ease
This was the only category that the Line Miners really fell short in. They have resorted to the “traditional” system where one has to snap in the lens at the nose first, then snap the lens in at each of the corners, making sure that it stays in the rails of the frame all the way around. With a little practice, we were able to remove and replace the lens in 37 seconds (the next quickest traditional lens remove and replace was more than a minute, and most of them took up two minutes). Like with all of the “traditional” lens systems, the lenses acquired greasy fingerprints in the change process (gotta use that sunscreen!), and required use of the lens-cleaning cloth. With the quick-change systems now setting the standard, this may be the last time that a “traditional” lens wins Best in Class.
The strap was easy to adjust and it stayed in place on and off helmet due to the gummy silicon that goes all the way around the inside of the strap. The strap is one continuous piece, and the elastic was just stretchy enough for moving them from face to forehead without any issues. It comes with a lightweight storage bag.
Leigh started skiing at 8 and converted to snowboarding soon thereafter. His first board was an original 1985 Sims Kidwell Roundtail, which he still rides on powder days. He has written articles for numerous magazines and recently published a novel. He lives and works in Denver and hits the hills on weekends with his family.