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Thread: Help picking a headlamp

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hank6046 View Post
    I appreciate your honesty. I don't understand the people who want all the lumens of a F350 light bar strapped to their head (this is not a weapon light and should not be judged by the same criteria), I get the reliability part for sure, but a headlamp to me is so I can see things in my work space and have my hands free. I use them all the time when hunting and camping and I like something fairly reliable and handy. If your talking tactical the name of the game is signature reduction, so I just like a Red lens model preferably, with anything I think the KISS method is sometimes ignored with accessories, and the new "Instagram Hotness" is what people want
    Ha!

    If folks want to strap a bang-zoom light to their head they might consider something like Malkoff's headlamp holder. They'll have far more choices among compact handhelds to suit their lumen and candela wants/needs, such as the OP wanting high candela (long throw).

    https://malkoffdevices.com/products/...eadlamp-holder

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hank6046 View Post
    I don't understand the people who want all the lumens of a F350 light bar strapped to their head (this is not a weapon light and should not be judged by the same criteria)
    Do you mean lumens or lux, given the weapon light comment? "Horses for courses" as the saying goes. High power helps to see into hard shadows missed by streetlights etc. and it lets you see where you're going instead of just lighting your immediate surroundings. Do you ever hike off-trail at night?

  3. #33
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    Help picking a headlamp

    I’ve had really good luck with these headlamps. I have the 1250 lumen one, batteries, has red and green. What I like is that I can adjust the throw through three different settings, narrow to wide with just a twist. It’s not tacticool but I use them 4 nights a week and they last. https://coastportland.com/collections/headlamps

    I have some “fancy” black diamond rechargeable thing that I use when I fly, and it’s “ok” for that. It can’t touch the coast for power though. The bd is lighter and smaller but the interface isn’t as easy and it doesn’t have the power. I’ve used the coast 4 nights a week from -45f to 110f and they’ve just worked, rain snow, jet fuel, deice fluid, dropped, thrown into lockers, not cared about one bit, they’ve just worked.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by ubet; 04-20-24 at 01:10.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Disciple View Post
    Do you mean lumens or lux, given the weapon light comment? "Horses for courses" as the saying goes. High power helps to see into hard shadows missed by streetlights etc. and it lets you see where you're going instead of just lighting your immediate surroundings. Do you ever hike off-trail at night?
    I mean both, I remember this being discussed with the level perspective such as weapons or clothing or gear, there are layers or tiers to it. As you said, "Horses for the Courses" but the headlamp was likened (and I say this loosely) to your side arm, when your flashlight was your carbine. To your questions above I do not hike with a headlamp in the "on" position, I will in have a flashlight often with a lot of lumen, lux and decent candela, but that would be my main light source when hiking this has more versatility then a headlamp as I can sweep it in front of me while moving and take in more information while and utilize it at different levels hold it up high, down low which gives me different perspectives especially in the woods while dark. The head lamp would be my backup, it can be used in conjunction, but for the most part it isn't needed and furthermore you'll probably want to maintain some level of vision acclimated to the dark.

    So I guess I should start with were I'm coming from with this discussion as I seem to have already irritated people with my comment. I have trained for night time tracking with LEO and Rescue Resources with my former dog "Lula" a Bloodhound, and went through a 5 week training course by a NACSW (Scent dog) certified instructor. During said course we went over lighting employment.
    Dr. Carter G. Woodson, “History shows that it does not matter who is in power or what revolutionary forces take over the government, those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they had in the beginning.”

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hank6046 View Post
    I mean both, I remember this being discussed with the level perspective such as weapons or clothing or gear, there are layers or tiers to it. As you said, "Horses for the Courses" but the headlamp was likened (and I say this loosely) to your side arm, when your flashlight was your carbine. To your questions above I do not hike with a headlamp in the "on" position, I will in have a flashlight often with a lot of lumen, lux and decent candela, but that would be my main light source when hiking this has more versatility then a headlamp as I can sweep it in front of me while moving and take in more information while and utilize it at different levels hold it up high, down low which gives me different perspectives especially in the woods while dark. The head lamp would be my backup, it can be used in conjunction, but for the most part it isn't needed and furthermore you'll probably want to maintain some level of vision acclimated to the dark.

    So I guess I should start with were I'm coming from with this discussion as I seem to have already irritated people with my comment. I have trained for night time tracking with LEO and Rescue Resources with my former dog "Lula" a Bloodhound, and went through a 5 week training course by a NACSW (Scent dog) certified instructor. During said course we went over lighting employment.
    There is no way I would hike with a flashlight, especially if needing to be off-trail (where the terrain is often tough enough that we would be mandated to use a helmet if it was a SAR callout). I absolutely would need my hands free in order to utilize hiking poles, for scrambling, or simply for better balance in general. To use your analogy, the flashlight would be more akin to a long range precision rifle, to be used in static locations to sweep a ridgeline or observe a terrain feature, while a powerful headlamp would be the carbine, as it would be the primary method of navigating the immediate terrain. To emphasize, everyone on my SAR team carries multiple headlamps; the majority do not carry a powerful flashlight (most carry micro flashlights more for admin stuff at awkward angles or medical assessment use, if any flashlight at all). Even in a recreational setting, I would much rather use a headlamp than a flashlight, as it still allows me to keep my hands free, whether it be for using hiking poles, ice ax, or keeping them free for scrambling.
    Last edited by Defaultmp3; 04-22-24 at 09:25.
    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    老僧三十年前未參禪時、見山是山、見水是水、及至後夾親見知識、有箇入處、見山不是山、見水不是水、而今得箇體歇處、依然見山秪是山、見水秪是水。

    https://www.instagram.com/defaultmp3/

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Defaultmp3 View Post
    There is no way I would hike with a flashlight, especially if needing to be off-trail. I absolutely would need my hands free in order to utilize hiking poles, for scrambling, or simply for better balance in general. To use your analogy, the flashlight would be more akin to a long range precision rifle, to be used in static locations to sweep a ridgeline or observe a terrain feature, while a powerful headlamp would be the carbine, as it would be the primary method of navigating the immediate terrain. To emphasize, everyone on my SAR team carries multiple headlamps; the majority do not carry a powerful flashlight (most carry micro flashlights more for admin stuff at awkward angles or medical assessment use, if any flashlight at all). Even in a recreational setting, I would much rather use a headlamp than a flashlight.
    So where are you hiking? I don't hike with polls and I'm not scrambling up mountains. The only time I'm really having to use polls is snow shoeing. I'm in the woods surrounded by trees (Deciduous forest) where in order to maintain the trail or watch for the switch back you would want to have the ability of changing the light angle can give you a much different perspective to give your self more information as just having the headlamp with just one directional source of light. Also I would say that your own eye's night vision is important to keep for your peripheral vision. If I'm also looking at my buddy or most likely one of my kids, I'm not shinning them right in the eyes with my headlamp. I can see the use of a high powered headlamp when I'm kayaking or canoeing at night into a duck blind, but I cannot say that I'm utilizing this for hiking.
    Dr. Carter G. Woodson, “History shows that it does not matter who is in power or what revolutionary forces take over the government, those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they had in the beginning.”

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hank6046 View Post
    So where are you hiking? I don't hike with polls and I'm not scrambling up mountains. The only time I'm really having to use polls is snow shoeing. I'm in the woods surrounded by trees (Deciduous forest) where in order to maintain the trail or watch for the switch back you would want to have the ability of changing the light angle can give you a much different perspective to give your self more information as just having the headlamp with just one directional source of light. Also I would say that your own eye's night vision is important to keep for your peripheral vision. If I'm also looking at my buddy or most likely one of my kids, I'm not shinning them right in the eyes with my headlamp. I can see the use of a high powered headlamp when I'm kayaking or canoeing at night into a duck blind, but I cannot say that I'm utilizing this for hiking.
    I do SAR in southern AZ, but there's quite varied terrain, given some of the mountains we have, so we cover desert scrub, semi-desert grasslands, and forests; we will always be carrying rescue packs that typically weight at least 30 lb, and can often be substantially more. For recreation, I've also hiked quite a bit in the mountains of CO, CA, and WA; I am a huge believer in poles, and am also often carrying a ruck that is often close to half my body weigh, so the poles help with that, particularly in elevation changes; I also find myself carrying much lighter daypacks in rougher terrains, often in the scree and boulderfields above the treeline, or in post-hole filled snowfields or on the glacier. In all these situations, having free hands is very important to me. Having multiple angles of light to get different perspectives is certainly something that is quite important in SAR, but the need to be hands free in order to safely navigate, particularly off-trail, is even more important.

    The issue of blinding people with lights is simply being cognizant of where you're pointing the light; an important skill to learn in many roles, particularly those where helmet mounted lights are the norm (firefighting, caving, etc.).

    On the issue of peripheral vision, we get around that by simply a combination of having a decent amount of spill in the headlamp (even better if you can have a headlamp that can output both a thrower and a flooder at the same time) and constantly scanning.
    Last edited by Defaultmp3; 04-22-24 at 10:06.
    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    老僧三十年前未參禪時、見山是山、見水是水、及至後夾親見知識、有箇入處、見山不是山、見水不是水、而今得箇體歇處、依然見山秪是山、見水秪是水。

    https://www.instagram.com/defaultmp3/

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Defaultmp3 View Post
    I do SAR in southern AZ, but there's quite varied terrain, given some of the mountains we have, so we cover desert scrub, semi-desert grasslands, and forests; we will always be carrying rescue packs that typically weight at least 30 lb, and can often be substantially more. For recreation, I've also hiked quite a bit in the mountains of CO, CA, and WA; I am a huge believer in poles, and am also often carrying a ruck that is often close to half my body weigh, so the poles help with that, particularly in elevation changes; I also find myself carrying much lighter daypacks in rougher terrains, often in the scree and boulderfields above the treeline, or in post-hole filled snowfields or on the glacier. In all these situations, having free hands is very important to me. Having multiple angles of light to get different perspectives is certainly something that is quite important in SAR, but the need to be hands free in order to safely navigate, particularly off-trail, is even more important.

    The issue of blinding people with lights is simply being cognizant of where you're pointing the light; an important skill to learn in many roles, particularly those where helmet mounted lights are the norm (firefighting, caving, etc.).

    On the issue of peripheral vision, we get around that by simply a combination of having a decent amount of spill in the headlamp (even better if you can have a headlamp that can output both a thrower and a flooder at the same time) and constantly scanning.
    So I'll admit I'm learning something.
    I'm somewhat familiar with South AZ as my mom and step dad where in Green Valley for the last 4 years, I've done a few hikes at Old Baldy/ Madera Canyon, just in the day time on trail.
    I do not have experience off trail in Colorado or Washington although I did grow up in both places as a kid so I understand the terrain and why you'd want to keep your hands free.
    I completely understand the need for a light pack even here in the woods as the snag factor is high off tail and there is often people who bring the whole back of their truck worth of supplies, I was only an EMR (MN rating for a person who could stabilize the patient) and the actual Sheriffs Department and County EMTs were there for the heavy lifting with that.
    I still like having a flashlight over a head lamp in the woods and river trails near me. I'm not going over boulders, or need to navigate terrain with polls, I'm more worried about fallen logs, holes and the need to utilize the light in a way to better judge distance and height of obstacles or terrain, I tend to also like the ability to point out said obstacles. It seems like you are working with a team of individuals that train on certain SOPs, and because of the SOPs the headlamp is your main lighting source, I understand that. I'm not doing that, even when we had call outs for a Silver Alert at night we were doing sections of the woods in and around a Suburban area where I didn't need to utilize all of the tools you probably do. Now I'm mainly working with my buddies or kids to get to tree stands, or ground blinds, we more so have to stalk in for this for lack of a better term, this means we don't want the signature that you do.
    Dr. Carter G. Woodson, “History shows that it does not matter who is in power or what revolutionary forces take over the government, those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they had in the beginning.”

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hank6046 View Post
    So I guess I should start with were I'm coming from with this discussion as I seem to have already irritated people with my comment. I have trained for night time tracking with LEO and Rescue Resources with my former dog "Lula" a Bloodhound, and went through a 5 week training course by a NACSW (Scent dog) certified instructor. During said course we went over lighting employment.
    Please don't count me as one of the irritated. I find it useful to learn what works for others and why. You said you do not hike with a headlamp turned on. What do you use for continuous light and how do you hold it? What do you do when you need your hands for something, e.g. do you let a flashlight dangle on a wrist lanyard? How tight of a beam is your primary light? Are you lighting your path with the spill or the spot? If the spill don't you run down batteries pretty quickly, and if the spot don't you miss a tighter beam for searching and navigation?

    I use a headlamp because I often use a hiking stick in one hand and I like the have the other hand free. I've tripped hard a few times because a light above eye-line doesn't cast shadows that are visible on rocks in the path, so I get what you're saying about holding a light at different levels and I sometimes move the light to my collar or shoulder to deal with this. If I have a handheld light too it usually has a narrower beam than I am comfortable hiking with and I use it intermittently, for navigation and checking anything that catches my eye but is too dimly lit to make out.
    "We must all hang together, or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately."

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Disciple View Post
    Please don't count me as one of the irritated. I find it useful to learn what works for others and why. You said you do not hike with a headlamp turned on. What do you use for continuous light and how do you hold it? What do you do when you need your hands for something, e.g. do you let a flashlight dangle on a wrist lanyard? How tight of a beam is your primary light? Are you lighting your path with the spill or the spot? If the spill don't you run down batteries pretty quickly, and if the spot don't you miss a tighter beam for searching and navigation?

    I use a headlamp because I often use a hiking stick in one hand and I like the have the other hand free. I've tripped hard a few times because a light above eye-line doesn't cast shadows that are visible on rocks in the path, so I get what you're saying about holding a light at different levels and I sometimes move the light to my collar or shoulder to deal with this. If I have a handheld light too it usually has a narrower beam than I am comfortable hiking with and I use it intermittently, for navigation and checking anything that catches my eye but is too dimly lit to make out.
    So I started this in 2012-2013 timeframe and stopped around 2015, we were taught to do shoulder height and sweep. A few of us cool guys where running Fenix flashlights at the time, all spill around 600-800 lumens, run time was around an hour (a lot of people were still running older maglites), wrist lanyard is a must. We had spare batteries in our packs. We would run the dogs in a make shift police call line and stop every 10 to 15 minutes to get back into a search line. I ran the leash to a bungie belt and my other hand was often on that or the Sport Collar transmitter, also had a lanyard, but was often in my pocket.

    I now for hiking or hunting, I still run a cheap Anker flashlight (I think I paid $25 at Walmart) or a LAPG with around 1000-1300 lumens but has a adjustable head, I like this because I can zoom in on particular features or terrain, this is super helpful for pointing things out like someone's tree stand or ground blind as we enter into an area. I still like to do the shoulder height sweep but also drop to a waist area sweep looking for tree markers for the pathway to a deer stand or to get a broader view of a clearing. I hunt and hike a lot in the northern woods where there is a lot of impromptu swap that will appear, its nice to have a light that you can point into the water to ensure that your not going to step down to a shelf where the water can get in an 8inch boot.

    I tend to use cheaper lights when hunting or hiking, I've got Streamlight and Surefire handhelds, but often times go with the LAPG or said Anker as one the prior Fenix light ended up at the bottom of the lake when duck hunting and my son lost my $230 Surefire Scout when we were camping.
    Dr. Carter G. Woodson, “History shows that it does not matter who is in power or what revolutionary forces take over the government, those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they had in the beginning.”

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