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Theresa

headlamp advise

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Hey guys,

I’m going to order a good headlamp. Should it be expensive? What are quality of a reliable head lamp? Is LED better? I understand that headlamp is more convenient when you climb, but I want to have a reserve light (flashlight or lantern). Are there nice waterproof models?

thanks

 

Edited by Theresa

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My personal favorite feature on a headlamp is the ability to "lock" it so it doesn't accidentally turn on in your backpack. Other than that, it mostly depends how big you want it. Bigger ones are typically heavier, brighter, more expensive, and more durably/waterproof.

 

I'm personally a fan of the BD Storm for mountaineering. Older folk will probably want brighter lights than younger people because their vision isn't as great anymore.

 

It's a good idea to bring spare batteries, sometimes people bring a spare headlamp. Headlamps work much better than flashlights or lanterns. They don't take up your take up your hands when your climbing/holding poles/looking through your backpack and you don't have to worry about them rolling down the mountain if you drop them. Often, if you are using your headlamp it's because your late and it's dark, or a storm has come in, and it's "don't fuck around" time. Headlamps are good for that.

 

That said, lanterns can be nice when camping and you don't want people shinning their headlamps in your face when talking to you.

 

 

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Big recommendation for the Petzl Tikka, Tikka + or Tikka XP. Best headlamps out there
+1

It's a good idea to bring spare batteries... Headlamps work much better than flashlights or lanterns.

Best place to carry spare batteries is inside a spare headlamp.

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+1 for BD Storm. I've currently got 3 scattered in different cars/gear kits, and I've found them to be bright, reliable, waterproof, and easy to use. Plus I've had good experiences with BD customer service if you have any issues. Totally just personal preference, but I've always found the various BD models to be more intuitive to operate then the models by Petzl, which I'm sure are nice as well.

 

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if you're just going out for the weekends.. which I do 99% of the time.. I looked into Zebra lights. Yes they require a rechargeable non-standard battery, but burn times and lumens absolutely destroy the standard 'hiking' lamps available in gear shops and online. It's also waterproof and bomber machined metal housing construction. cost is commensurate.. if you travel abroad I would not get it on account of the battery stuff. Can be used as a flashlight if you needed (comes out of headband holder with effort)

 

 

I did use it on a 7 night trip in the Wind Rivers and when I got home my battery was only half empty (used it for a few hours every night).

 

http://www.zebralight.com/H600w-Mk-II-18650-XM-L2-Headlamp-Neutral-White_p_117.html

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My personal favorite feature on a headlamp is the ability to "lock" it so it doesn't accidentally turn on in your backpack. Other than that, it mostly depends how big you want it. Bigger ones are typically heavier, brighter, more expensive, and more durably/waterproof.

 

I'm personally a fan of the BD Storm for mountaineering. Older folk will probably want brighter lights than younger people because their vision isn't as great anymore.

 

 

As a beginner, I have not purchased a quality gear yet. I use this headlamp, https://www.mrosupply.com/lighting/emergency-lighting/flashlights/1750208_5492_nebo/

But I realize that I need something better. Thanks, I will try to buy BD Storm with the Christmas discounts.

 

Edited by Theresa

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Depending on your uses some lights will be better for you than others. Timetraveler got me turned onto the Black Diamond Spot. I've been very happy and bought several when they went on sale. The storm has the same rating on gearlabs, longer battery life but not as good proximity. For taking out on a multi day effort, that would be reversed. As I car camp a bit, the Spot is better, then I bought an Icon to climb a vertical hole and being old needed a lot of light. As it turns out, Plaidman bagged that route without me:-( but I still have the headlamp and it will wake up the owls in the treetops it's so powerful.

 

As John says, Petzl makes good lights as they have been involved in reliable caving lights for many years so are very trustworthy.

 

The Black Diamond Ion has been the tiny headlight I've kept in my chalkbag for "just in case" times. Until I found the Petzl e+lite. The thing is shockingly tiny (in a good way), but otherwise not as good in most regards as other lights. For it's usage for me, that is 99% of the time being in a chalkbag and only pulled out when I screwed up and got benighted, it is perfect. Good info here to help you decide. http://www.supertopo.com/reviews/gear.php?cat=1167&c=headlamp They have the Coast as the best deal. I've never handled one but would trust their review. Just remember that they didn't test or verify battery drain which some BD's tend to have and Princetons and Petzls don't. (generally)

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People make fun of me but I actually have had pretty awesome luck with the cheapo energizer headlamps. My BD SPOT has decent features but sucks at altitude/cold weather. My Petzl Tikka XP is decent all around. In the end there's no best, just what you end up shelling out the dough for.

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