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Headlamps on long, cold routes?
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brokesomeribs


Dec 13, 2009, 1:19 AM
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Headlamps on long, cold routes?
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My current main headlamp is the BD Icon. It's amazingly bright, has good life, etc. But I've never really used it below.... 32 (or 0 for the rest of the entire world). My only gripe is the weight becomes kinda noticeable after wearing it on my already heavy helmet (Ecrin Roc) for 10+ hours on long days.

That said, I'm probably picking up a Meteor helmet this week.

But this winter I'm finally going to be getting out and doing some longer alpine days (or multi-day trips) up in the Dacks and NH Whites where it can get pretty damn cold. -20F is not uncommon.

Should I be looking into a headlamp with a belt-pack instead of head-mounted batteries? I have the rechargeable lithium pack inside my Icon - will that hold up to the cold any better?

Thanks!


mountainsheep


Dec 13, 2009, 7:06 AM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Headlamps on long, cold routes? [In reply to]
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I use a Myo XP the hip belt version and i really like it as there is very little weight actually on your head and you can also keep the batteries nice and warm so they last longer but the wire does get in the way when first putting it on (ie. where should the battery pack go) just remember to take plenty of spare batteries


rschap


Dec 13, 2009, 10:04 AM
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Re: [mountainsheep] Headlamps on long, cold routes? [In reply to]
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Batteries dont work well in the cold. Your best bet in temps under 40 is to have a battery pack that goes in your jacket. If you get down to -20 my bet is your headlamp wont last long. I also suggest carrying it in your jacket while not using it.


robpatterson5


Dec 13, 2009, 1:03 PM
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Re: [rschap] Headlamps on long, cold routes? [In reply to]
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I've had good luck with a BD Spot and Litium batteries.
I think Lithium is key, only thing is that rather then storing the headlamp in your pack, when you think you might start to need it put it inside your jacket close to your base layers. Nice thing about the Spot is that its so small that this is not a problem.
Should be all you need in the Dacks even for a longer trip. Would pack one set of fresh spares, but then I always do that.

If you were going to say Alaska and planning on climbing through the night in -20 and below temperatures I'd say go with a external battery - but even if your climbing in the Dacks at night it is not for all that long. IMO external batteries are really for those who expect to be out and needing light for 8-10+ hours of very cold darkness, or for some serious reading when winter camping. :)


(This post was edited by robpatterson5 on Dec 13, 2009, 1:05 PM)


petsfed


Dec 13, 2009, 2:26 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Headlamps on long, cold routes? [In reply to]
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I've had good luck using a system that lets me keep an insulated hood over my head all the time. Could be a problem in certain situations (eg where you get to working so hard that you need to drop the hood), but I've yet to find those when its -20F.

If you expect to be working in the dark for long periods of time where that's the daytime high, definitely get a beltpack.


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