Light at night: headlamp on the trail

headlamp - Dwight RabeI’m trying to buy a headlamp as a gift for Dwight.  I will inherit his old one as he is starting to need something more high powered for night running. The old one is an Energizer LED headlamp which still works but just doesn’t have the oomph necessary for dark nights and lonely trails.

Brightness: I’m looking for something that is between 120 and 140 lumens, preferably with adjustable brightness and a focusable beam. For trail running you need much more light than a regular headlamp for camping – you have to be able to see the trail at night, while moving fast.

Waterproof: I’m looking for something that is at least water-resistant and preferably waterproof.

After quite a bit of research, it came down to these choices:

Petzl MYO® RXP. maximum brightness of 141 lumens (and it has adjustable settings down to 13 lumens). It is water-resistant, and it has a top-of-head strap and battery pack at the back, so it is stable on the head of the runner.

Black Diamond’s Icon Polar Headlamp, at 200 lumens – but it relies on heavier batteries (four AA’s, as opposed to only three in the Petzl) in a separate housing worn on your hip or in your pocket. This was a feature that Dwight was really not impressed about as he felt like it would bother him.

Went with the Petzl. The price ($74.95) and the quality combined is what made us decide on this one.

We also looked at a Fenix 15ED handheld light as an  extra light for long races and as a safety measure on dark night runs. Many of the reviews like the 140 lumens this puts out and its relative lightness. At $30 it’s good value – of course durability will be a matter of time and testing.

Do you have any other suggestions on the headlamp and handheld light front?

Listening. Observing. Participating. Writing. Photographing. Reflecting.

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Anna Blanch_Gill Gamble_blogAnna Blanch Rabe is an Australian-born writer and photographer currently living in eastern New Mexico. She is an attorney (not licensed in New Mexico, and not your attorney) and the former Executive Director of a non profit. You can follow her adventure on Not A Pedestrian Life, or Facebook.

 

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