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Hiking is an incredibly exciting experience, and being held back by the lack of good lighting is frustrating, to say the least. For that, you need the best LED lantern possible that’s durable enough to withstand a rough hiking trip, a few splashes of water, and harsh weather conditions.
That’s why I’ve put together this list of the best LED hiking lanterns. So, are you ready to meet your next hiking buddy?
The 4 Best LED Hiking Lanterns in 2020
1. Streamlight 44931
I’m starting off this list strongly with the Streamlight 44931. It can withstand any weather condition you can think of, from snowy days to the hottest summer ones, thanks to its high durability, incredible brightness, and the fact that it’s waterproof.
The Streamlight offers up to 540 lumens of brightness with multiple settings. You can go for the brightest setting that’s perfect for nighttime hiking, and your lantern will last up to 30 hours with its three D cell batteries. The lower your brightness setting is, the longer it’ll last; it can last up to 295 hours on 55 lumens.
Lastly, if you’re worried about damaging your lantern, you can rest assured that the Streamlight can take a beating. It’s made from durable materials that can absorb shocks. What’s more, if your hiking trip involves rivers or lakes, it can be submerged up to one meter with no issues whatsoever.
- Extended battery life
- Multiple brightness settings
- Highly durable
- A little pricey
2. Etekcity LED
Another excellent choice is the Etekcity LED lantern. I don’t even know where to start; this lantern has numerous advantages, from portability and brightness all the way to durability and long battery life.
First and foremost, for hiking, you need a lantern that’s portable like no other, and the Etekcity is just that. It’s incredibly compact, as it can be collapsed to about your phone’s size, without sacrificing brightness. Not to mention, it’s incredibly lightweight at just 10 ounces.
Using 30 LED bulbs, the lantern will bring light to the darkest of hiking nights, especially because it has 360-degree lights of 60 lumens.
Additionally, it uses AA batteries, which is incredibly convenient for two reasons. Firstly, AA batteries are small enough that you can carry spares in your backpack effortlessly. Secondly, they can last up to 30 hours of usage!
- Collapsible and lightweight
- 30 hours of battery life
- Incredibly bright
- Affordable price
- Can’t be dimmed
3. LE LED Lantern
I just had to include the LE lantern because of its outstanding brightness! With 1,000 lumens, this lantern will bring sunlight into your hands. Not to mention, it’s also highly durable with IPX4 protection, so you don’t need to worry about bumping or dropping it.
First of all, the lantern has four light modes so you can adjust the brightness to your setting. The modes start from 300 up to 1,000 lumens and range from warm light to flash.
In case you’re worried about battery life, it’s not the best, but it’s fine. The LE uses three D batteries and can last from 12 to 25 hours, depending on which brightness level you’re on. What’s more, the lantern is water-resistant from all angles, so you don’t need to worry about a splash or two throughout your hiking trip.
- Good value for the money
- 1,000 lumens of brightness
- Waterproof and durable
- Four light modes
- Relatively short battery life
4. Internova Monster
If the LE’s brightness impressed you, wait till you meet the Internova Monster. With a brightness of 1,500 lumens, it’s like having your own sun in your palm. If that seems too bright for your liking, it has four modes with different levels, so you’ll always find the perfect setting for your situation.
If you’ll be hiking in rainy weather, there’s nothing to worry about considering that the Monster lantern is water-resistant. And to add, it’s durable enough to handle a few bumps along the way.
Operating on four D cell batteries, the Monster lantern can last up to 72 hours on 30 lumens, which is the low mode, and up to 1.5 hours on maximum brightness at 1,500 lumens. To be fair, that’s not the best battery life out there, but you can always lower your brightness for your lantern to last a bit longer.
- Impressively high brightness
- Highly durable
- Short battery life
How to Pick an LED Hiking Lantern
Before committing to the first LED hiking lantern your eyes land on, there are a few factors that you need to take into consideration.
You’re probably already carrying a hefty backpack on your hiking trip; you don’t need to add any more unnecessary weight. You need the most portable lantern possible that won’t cause arm fatigue or hurt your hand.
Make sure the handle is ergonomic and that the lantern itself is lightweight, so you can carry it up and down your trail effortlessly.
Having an incredibly bright lantern is a double-edged sword. Generally, producing brighter lights needs more power; therefore, your battery drains faster. More importantly, if your lantern is too bright, it’ll hurt your eyes in the long run. On the contrary, if it’s too dim, you won’t be able to see clearly, defying the whole purpose of having a lantern in the first place.
For the best experience possible, opt for a lantern that offers multiple brightness levels, so you can adjust it according to your situation and time of the day.
Opt for an LED hiking lantern that can take a splash of water, rain, or snow. Additionally, make sure it’s durable enough to withstand a few bumps along the road, or you’ll just end up with a damaged lantern in the middle of the night.
LED lanterns are an excellent choice for hiking. They can last quite a while and provide impressively bright light even during the darkest nights. For that, I strongly recommend the Streamlight 44931. It’s incredibly durable, waterproof, and even has four brightness levels. I wouldn’t ask for more!