Headlamp for the Hiker – Fenix HL26R

For a full video review, visit my YouTube channel. Link to the specific video below

The HL26R headlamp is very compact, it’s small enough to slip in your pocket in case a spontaneous hike should arise. As an avid cyclist, it’s a little under-powered for one of my night rides, but what it lacks in lumens, it makes up for in longevity.

The headlamp has two flood LEDs, and one spot LED, to allow for alternate light beams for different circumstances. The flood has a max output of 40 lumens, which it sustains for 13 hours on the 1600mAh, internal battery. The spotlight mode is where it really shines, where the burst gets up to 450 lumens for 90 minutes on a full charge. Unfortunately, you are not able to mix the flood and spot modes together, as they operate independently, but thankfully it’s a very quick switch from one to the other as your need changes.

The rechargeable battery can show its charge level by the four built-in LEDs, and at a glance you can tell if you need to top off before heading out the door. The battery life is the main draw of this device in my opinion, as it engineers its output for the best combination of light and runtime. In a hiking application, a dimmer flood-beam is quite sufficient for walking speeds, and with a max runtime of 100 hours on low, you can really make it stretch if you find yourself lost in the woods some night. The SOS mode could help you out too, as it runs at 40 lumens, for 26 hours, which would be three full nights if you ran it for 8 hours per night.

In the comparison photos below I tested all modes with a static ISO setting for consistency, and it shows the different situations where you may use the headlamp. Across a snowy field, on the deck in close range, or walking down a night-time road.

Whether you’re working around the house, or taking a hike through the woods, you’ll be happy to have the HL26R with you.

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