This Fenix rechargeable headlamp deserves consideration for your emergency gear and/or Bug Out Bag.
by Leon Pantenburg
Disclaimer: Knivesshipfree.com is a survivalcommonsense sponsor. I did not get a free product for this review, and was not paid to write it. Neither KSF nor Fenix had any input in this post.
My hunting and/or fishing days usually start and end in pitch darkness. In November and December, when I typically hunt deer in Mississippi, sunrise is about 6 a.m. and sunset happens around 5 p.m. To get to my stand by dawn requires a hike in about an hour before first light. I typically stay out hunting until dusk. If I get a shot, it will most likely be a few minutes before it gets dark. That means the gutting, quartering and dragging will happen in pitch darkness.
You want both hands free, and don’t want to worry about rain damaging the light.
Then, back at camp, I like to read in my sleeping bag. An intense beam is way too much, and may be so bright that reading becomes difficult. Also, for walking around camp, you don’t want to disturb other campers or hunters by using a bright spotlight to find your way.
I learned the value of a good headlamp years ago, and have field tested several. Recently I have been using the Fenix rechargeable headlamp, and there is a lot to like about it. It has been lighting my way in the woods all deer season, as well as helping me keep track of a black Lab in the darkness on nightly dog walks.
Here are the specifications (Courtesy of Knivesshipfree.com)
- Length: 3.4″
- Width: 1.8″
- Height: 2.0″
- Weight: 4.3oz. (excluding batteries)
|Mode||Output (Lumens)||Max Runtime||Max Distance|
According to the website: Fenix Lights: HL60R Headlamp – Rechargeable Li-Ion Battery
Featuring a micro-USB port for go-anywhere charging, the Fenix HL60R Headlamp delivers a maximum output of 950 lumens, beam distance of up to 381 ft and a run time of up to 100 hours from just one rechargeable 18650 Li-ion battery. This headlamp is equipped with neutral white LED for better color rendering, a side switch to activate the five brightness levels and the red night vision mode. The HL60R is an all-season headlamp designed with an all-metal housing and waterproof up to 2m underwater.
Includes 18650 Li-ion battery, headlamp straps, top headband mount, spare O-ring.
Here’s the good stuff:
Weight: Bulky battery packs can be a real hassle, especially if you are wearing a headlamp under a rainsuit hood during a shower. I have used a Black Diamond Icon very successfully, but I don’t like the bulky battery pack. This Fenix makes it easy to wear the headlamp on a cap, while still wearing the hood on your coat.
Here’s the clincher: The light can be recharged with any cell phone charger. That means you can juice the battery while you’re driving, or any place that has an electrical outlet. Carrying extra batteries for electronic devices is just common sense, but with the rechargeable, you might not need them.
Variable lighting: This is my favorite part of this light. It has options for everything from dim to spotlight. The Eco mode is great for reading. I use the low to medium mode for regular trail walking, and the Turbo is really, really bright. My usual dog walk is about 20-25 minutes every night, and the low and medium modes mean my battery will last about 10 to 29 hours. If you pay attention to your settings, and only use what you need for the particular conditions, the light should easily last for about a week of camping.
Waterproof: A headlamp should be waterproof, IMO, since I always seem to end up doing something in the dark in the rain. This feature will be particularly appreciated after you’ve harvested a big game animal, it’s dark, and Murphy has decreed that it will start to rain and sleet.
Not to mention, there is no better opportunity to drop your light in the water than when wader hunting for ducks in the pre-dawn.
I’ve been very pleased with the Fenix, and it has been in my daypack all deer season. Considering the way it has been working, it will most likely stay there.
You can buy a Fenix headlamp here.
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