View Full Version : Headlamps/Flashlights
Any thoughts on headlamps vs flashlights? Any specific brands/models that you'd recommend.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions or comments.
You don't have to hold a headlamp. Leaves both hands free to do things with.
You can use the latest three LED headlamp or make a simple one out of a single LED Photon, Pocket-Bright, etc by attaching velcro to it and to the underside of the brim of your cap. It ain't a bad idea to have one of the single LED lights as a backup. I have found that tying it on a string around my neck keeps it where I can find it AND keeps me from losing them, which WAS my biggest problem with them.
ray o vac makes an decent and inexpensive one availible at wally world - 11 bucks if I recall
whichever light source you choose aleays make sure to have a back-up.
My favorites are:
Princeton Tec Aurora (3 oz., bright LEDs, adjustable settings)(on sale at Campmore now for $19):
Photon light with on/off switch (less than an ounce, good backup light):
I'd have to say headlamps are preferrable to baton-style flashlights, since your hands remain free. However, the choice becomes more complex than that, since even small flashlights can be attached to your head with a headband and some velcro. The question then usually centers around how much light you really need and what style of lamp your prefer. For backpacking, this is almost certainly some sort of LED light.
A small LED keychain light can often suffice. It can be used as a headlamp by velcroing it to your cap (as mentioned already). If night hiking, it is preferrable to attach it to your waist belt or someplace similar, since this gets the light away from your eyes and allows you to see depth better while still keeping your hands free. Also, at night you might also try using a green LED to maintain your night vision as much as possible, though even most white LED lamps are diffuse enough not to harm your night vision too much. Your eyes can adjust very well to odd-colored lighting. Some people may prefer yet other LED colors, so feel free to experiment. I've personally been using a Princeton Tec Aurora (white LED only) and am very happy with it. Many hikers carry smaller, lighter models, but I sometimes need the extra light and don't mind the "heavy" 2.8oz. headlamp in exchange for it. And anyway, the Aurora is already much lighter than my previous headlamp, a 9.25oz. PrinceTec Solo (weight including spare batteries, spare bulb, and accessories, none of which are needed with LED's). Many people get by quite happily with only a keyfob single-LED light, often with hook and loop tape on the light and on any places they want to attach it. If you carry more light than this or prefer an incandescent lamp of some sort, the keyfob LED is the best kind of backup I can think of.
I don't really want to suggest brands and models, since there are hundreds of excellent lamps available in a variety of styles. However, I have noticed that PrinceTec is now selling the Aurora headlamp packaged with a "free" keyfob LED light. This sounds like a good package for the money.
Just wanted to say thanks for all the feedback. Really appreciate you guys taking the time to help out.