The Best Hiking Headlamps

The Best Hiking Headlamps
Lighting the way during an alpine start or shedding a little glow on a late-night dinner, headlamps are a staple item of gear among outdoor enthusiasts. When selecting a headlamp you should consider the size, weight and intensity of its light source. Available in an array of designs and configurations, the most common headlamp found in outdoor retail stores are high-output LEDs (light-emitting diodes). Often having a lifespan of up to 100,000 hours, LED headlamps are tough and ideal for rugged use at the campground or in the mountains.

Petzl Tikka Plus LED

Petzl has been a leader in outdoor gear innovation for over 30 years. The Tikka Plus is a product of Petzl's ongoing research and forward thinking technology in the design of headlamps. Lightweight and efficient, this water-resistant headlamp comes equipped with four LEDs and an accessible push-button switch that allows selection of four lighting levels including a bright strobe light. Featuring a ratcheting swivel head, users can shine the flood light beam where it is need most. Average price as of 2009: $34.95

Black Diamond Cosmo LED

Weighing 2.8 ounces, the streamlined design of the Cosmo LED provides six brightness levels and two strobe light settings. Offering a flood beam light, this dependable and water-resistant headlamp is compact, with the batteries and LEDs combined into one case. One of the Cosmo's most attractive features is an automatic turn-off after nine hours to prevent accidental burnout. Average price as of 2009: $29.95

Mammut Lucido TR1

The highly dependable Lucido TR1 features four high-powered LEDs angled to match your peripheral vision and eliminate dark spots. Operable in two brightness levels, this long lasting headlamp will provide flood beam illumination for up to 60 hours. Mammut has gone the extra mile by equipping the Lucido TR1 with a switch lock mechanism to prevent an accidental flip of the "on" switch. Average price as of 2009: $34.95

Article Written By Patricia Poulin

Patricia Poulin is a freelance writer based out of the western slope of Colorado. Poulin's travels and insight have chronicled in print media resources, such as "Inside Outside" and "Breathe" magazine. She is also a regular contributor for other various publications including "USA Today." Poulin holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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