I love my headlamps! Yes, I said headlamps…plural. I currently have four headlamps, including my new favorite, the Petzl MYO RXP. You might be wondering why am I such a big fan of headlamps, and why I have so many. Here are a few reasons I like having a headlamp at the ready:
1. Headlamps are more convenient than flashlights. Flashlights are bulky and heavy. You wouldn’t want to carry one around in your backpack on a climbing or backpacking trip, and trying to do anything with your hands while holding a flashlight is a pain. Not so with the headlamp. With a mini-flashlight attached to your forehead, your hands are free cook dinner at your campsite, look through your backpack for that toothbrush you swore you packed, or fix a flat tire on your way home from Foster Falls. The MYO RXP is my go-to backpacking/climbing/outdoor adventure headlamp, and the Zipka2 is a no-brainer in my car.
2. A headlamp buys you time. If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you’re limited to some degree by the rise and fall of the sun each day. Having a headlamp changes that. You can start earlier, end later or even wait until dark to get started. I’ll admit that I haven’t had the opportunity to climb at night, but I know folks that have, and they tell me that climbing by headlamp changes the whole experience – and that it makes it more comfortable to keep climbing outside in the summer. Don’t want to climb or hit the trail for a run when it’s 95% in the shade? Wait until dark. Problem solved.*
3. Headlamps make you safer. Outdoor sports are full of unexpected delays and hangups. Trying to get off a route, hike out or set up camp after the sun goes down is no fun, and it isn’t safe. Sprain an ankle as you hustle back to the car after a day of climbing and you’ll wish you had a headlamp. Especially as you try to rummage through your pack for your first aid kit. You do have a first aid kit, right?
Maybe you’re thinking, “That’s all well and good, but I don’t go climbing all the time, never go camping or backpacking, and I call AAA for my car problems.” Okay, then. Check out this list of practical ways to use a headlamp around the house:
1. Walking the dog at night. If you have one hand on the leash and one hand on the flashlight, how are you going to hold that poop bag?
2. Power outage. Storms, blown circuits and night time ceiling fan installations are no match for a headlamp.
3. Night reading. Trying to finish that chapter of To Be Brave and Sweetie’s asking you to turn off the bedside lamp? Let the headlamp keep the peace.
4. Floorboard scavenger hunts. So you dropped it in the car, and now you can’t find it anywhere. Good thing you have that headlamp.
5. Home repair. If you’ve ever tried fixing a leaky faucet, installing a new garbage disposal, hooking up a DVD player, or finding a sock that went AWOL behind the washing machine, you probably wished that you had better lighting. Say it with me: headlamp.
6. Grilling out. Until God gives us a third hand, it will be physically impossible to use a flashlight, turner and tongs at the same time. This presents a problem when you’re trying to flip burgers and dogs after dark. Lucky for you, God gave you a big, round light post between your shoulders. Use your head; get a headlamp for grilling.
7. Late night games of Hide & Seek. If you haven’t, you should.
So there you have it. The headlamp, celebrated. They’re practical, convenient, and they open up a world of adventurous possibility. They’re fun, cool, and safe. Can you think of other uses for a headlamp? Got any stories about how a headlamp saved the day? Head on over to The Crag’s Facebook page and share your insight!
*Headlamps can’t cure humidity. Nothing can cure humidity.