Coming under the MET helmet umbrella, Bluegrass Eagle makes use of many of the same technologies and design features developed by MET, but with different branding and a slant towards trail riding, enduro racing and downhill. Along with helmets, Bluegrass Eagle also offers a range of gloves, riding apparel, and body armour, including the Crossbill knee pads we recently tested.
At this point in time, the Bluegrass Eagle helmet line is rather succinct. There are three full-face downhill helmets, one piss-pot dirt jump helmet, and this; the Golden Eyes helmet.
Bluegrass Eagle Golden Eyes Helmet Features
- Designed for trail riding and enduro racing
- Integral in-moulding PC outer shell
- Impact resistant EPS foam liner
- 13 vents
- 360 degree safe-T Advanced fit system
- Adjustable visor
- Kevlar straps with anti-pinch buckle
- Removable anti-allergenic interior padding
- Integrated goggle clip
- Accessories: Removable camera/light mount, USB LED light device
- Sizes: Small (52-57cm), Medium (56-59cm) and Large (58-63cm)
- Colours: Black, Black/Red, Green, Orange (tested)
- RRP: £89
In terms of design, the Golden Eyes is a new-school trail/enduro helmet built with added coverage and hop-up with extra features like goggle and POV camera compatibility. Based on the pricier MET Lupo & Roam helmets, the Golden Eyes stands as a value-oriented alternative that’s still packed with safety for high-risk technical riding.
Compared to the original Golden Eyes helmet launched in 2015, the new version has been updated to add a third size to the range. Now splitting into Small, Medium and Large sizes, getting the right fit should be a touch easier.
Despite being on the cusp of the Small, I went with a Medium size Golden Eyes helmet, and the fit is ideal. I’m not sure I would have fitted into the smaller size, despite my noggin circumference measuring up at 55cm. To help with dialling in the fit, a small adjuster wheel is positioned on the back of the harness for tightening or loosening the helmet, and you can also move this rear harness up and down via a 3-position adjuster. It’s easy to access with one hand while riding, and the adjustment range is nice ‘n’ fine.
The Golden Eyes helmet has a very deep shape that isn’t too far off a half-lid skate helmet. It’s quite thick too, with loads of EPS foam sitting between the hard plastic outer shell and your skull. There are a lot of so-called ‘trail’ helmets on the market that are simply road helmets dressed up with a visor. Not the Golden Eyes lid though. This guy provides noticeably more coverage, and especially around the temples and on each backside of your head. It doesn’t quite have the same coverage as a Bell Super, but it isn’t far off. Being made of Kevlar fabric, the straps themselves are quite burly and it gives the helmet a reassuringly solid feel.
The overall shape of the Golden Eyes helmet is what we’ve come to experience with MET helmets, being of the slightly more oval shape rather than being completely round. That works for me just fine, and thanks to the excellent fit, the Golden Eyes helmet remains nice and stable. I also tested it with the optional camera mount, which cleverly plugs into the main central vent on top of the shell. With minimal helmet flop, the camera footage proved to be nice and stable, meaning I couldn’t use this helmet for my homage to the Blair Witch movie.
I will say that ventilation isn’t amazing, as there are only 13 vents dotted throughout the shell. Combined with the added coverage, the Golden Eyes helmet can get pretty warm on sunny summer days. However, I haven’t seen a lot of those lately, and I actually prefer a slightly less vented helmet for winter and shoulder-season riding anyway. The pad inserts can be removed for cleaning if you find they’re getting a little too stinky over time. The visor is also pretty full-on, being of the enormous moto-style variety. It’s adjustable via a three-point system though.
One other accessory I tested on the Golden Eyes helmet was a small clip-on LED light that fits to the rear of the harness. With an internally rechargeable battery, this LED uses a simple button to turn it on or off, making it easy to access while the helmet is on. The battery will give you up to 4 hours of run time, and it’s recharged via a USB cable. It costs €39 as an optional extra, but I think it’s a really useful piece of kit. There were several times that my after work rides went a little *ahem* longer than usual, and having the red flashing LED built into the back of the helmet was reassuring for getting home in the dark.
Bluegrass Eagle may get overlooked by its fancier MET cousin, but the Golden Eyes helmet is an excellent lid for those who want the safety and features at a more reasonable price point.
|From:||Bluegrass Eagle, bluegrasseagle.com|
|Tested:||by Wil Barrett for 6 months|