The front lanterns are an accessory in the backpack, since we can suffer any setbacks that, although we did not think about it, forces us to spend the night in the mountains.
The evolution of the front lanterns has allowed comfortable and very light models, something that is appreciated in the mountains. In addition they allow us to have hands totally free to be able to use them and not having to carry any material that gives us light.
The use of front lanterns has many advantages, and some of them are enjoying the necessary lighting having completely free hands or having the beam of light in the same direction as our eyes when installing in our head - this, in addition, eliminates dead spots and shadows thanks to the fact that the lighting affects the same angle as the view.
Another important aspect is the emergence of the LED headlamps (Light Emitting Diode). This type of light emitting diodes do not melt, something very valuable when we take care not to carry spare bulbs. In addition its energy consumption is minimal, which means that the battery life is infinitely higher than that of traditional light bulbs.
High power LEDs, also known as hyperbrillants, even surpass the benefits of halogen bulbs.
What do we have to demand from the front lanterns?
Inside the front mounting lanterns, all must meet a series of conditions to be suitable for use in the mountain.
The intensity of the light, power or range of the focus is measured in lumens (unit of measurement in which the power of the luminous flux or quantity of visible light emitted by a source) is expressed, and refers to how the light beam project .
To date there are models that offer a range of up to 300 meters. However, the use of front lanterns is recommended for the activity developed. In this way to walk, run or cook a range that is around 15 meters is more than enough (40 lumens).
On the other hand, for tracksradunning, we recommend a range of power supplies with a minimum power of 150 lumens,
Autonomy The less we demand more autonomy. And the other way around. As the intensity of light, it is necessary to adapt the characteristics of this mountain material to our needs.
Most of the frontlights offered by the market include ways to save energy, which allow both power and autonomy to be regulated.
Batteries or battery? It is a matter that has flourished for some time. The market offers models that present the possibility of using normal batteries, rechargeable batteries or rechargeable ion-lithium batteries, more resistant to cold.
The batteries are optimal if we have the ability to charge the battery through a USB connector from a computer, a portable solar panel or the electrical network.
However, the low consumption of LEDs significantly saves the use and loss of millions of battery units.
Sealing is another important factor. It is measured through the IPX index, and it mentions the resistance to the penetration of the water after a test carried out by the manufacturer. Its minimum value is zero and the maximum eight, being this last submersible up to five meters.
Types of front lanterns
While it is true that we could elaborate a very extensive document with the different types of front lanterns aimed at outdoor activity, without entering the details we can distinguish three types:
Those of traditional type mount the portapiles separated from the focus that emits the beam of light. Some models have a triple band of fastening to the helmet or to the front for a greater subjection. Its handling with gloves is not complicated, and they have large ranges surrounding - some models - 300 meters.
There are models that work with batteries and others with rechargeable batteries and the weights are variable as well as prices, depending on their characteristics.
Those of occasional use, for their benefits and weight, are designed to get us some difficulty when needed. It is always recommended to wear one in the backpack, since you never know if you can need it.
Finally, the most popular are compact thanks to its comfort, its benefits, its lightness and its size. Normally they have up to four LEDs, they carry the battery pack integrated in the focus and have good reach.