Flashlights and Head Lamps

You might only be planning a short hike in the morning, but things can happen. A twisted ankle three miles from camp might require you requiring several hours to back. And in the mountains, with the steep canyon walls, it gets very dark, very fast. This is why I never leave the campsite even for a walk of a 1/2 mile without a LED powered flashlight in my pocket. A small light can light your way back to safety or be used as a signling beacon to summon assistance.

Of course for longer planned hikes, you will want to pack one or more flashlights or headlamps in your fanny pack, back pack, camera bag or what ever you are taking with you. Why carry extra – they are cheap and you can always give one to someone who is less prepared then you are. If you have one headlight and you need it to get down and someone else has none but it is dark, at under $20.00 for a nice headband light or a few dollars for a small hand held light, it is cheap insurance for their safety.

Most these light weight lights are battery powered with a single AA battery or maybe two at the most. Some high end commercial use units for miners and construction workers might require more power, but there is no need to spend the money of units of that brightness or durability. As a result, I but batteries in large multipacks and before setting out, put a couple extra in a plastic bag to take with me. Some units are rechargable an you might opt to go that route. My problem is that if you forget to recharge it and it is out of power with several hours of traveling down the trail in darkness, now what. Personally, toss in spare battery and be back on trail in minutes.

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Courtesy S. Ward – Mountains towering above the desert