I found a simple lightweight solution to replace my heavyweight Petzel Tikka XP 2 headlamp. It's a MYOG Half Ounce Headlamp. The headlamp is actually two lights with each one mounted at eye level on either side of the head. By mounting two Photon Freedom Micro flashlights to a lightweight elastic headband at eye level on either side I have been able to cut my headlamp weight by 83%. Since I already carry two Photon Freedom Micro flashlights anyway the additional weight for the elastic headband is only 1/10th of an ounce (4 grams). Now that's what I'm talkin'bout.
|Half Ounce Headlamp|
The height and direction of the lights can be easily adjusted on the go. Each light can also be detached for use as an individual flashlight.
|Velcro is used to attach the lights to the headband. The hook & loop is sewn to the lightweight elastic headband and attached with adhesive to the Photon Freedom Micro.|
I used to think the little Photon Freedom Micro lights weren't bright enough. It was an easy way to lower base weight on a spread sheet but it really didn't seem to have any true functionality. To put it simply, a little LED is just not bright enough AND I have to actually hold it. Come on. That's not a solution, it's just another problem. My Petzl Tikka XP 2 only weighs 3 ounces and it puts out 60 lumens. . .
Then I went camping in the Prescott National Forest last winter to do some cold weather camping and I brought both. A Petzel Tikka XP 2 and two Photon Freedom Micro LED lights. To my surprise the two LED lights seemed just as bright as my headlamp. I had just purchased the new version of the Photon Freedom Micro lights that were supposed to be 30% brighter than the previous version, and it seemed like the two of them put out plenty of light. They stayed bright much longer than the Petzel Tikka XP 2, which has considerable loss of brightness after about half an hour.
But were they bright enough to actually hike safely at night? My next test was during a 14 mile training hike in the coastal canyons of Laguna Beach. I got a late start and I was still two hours from home when it started to get dark. By 10:00 pm it was really dark and I had to hike out of Woods Canyon up a winding single track trail with over 800 feet of elevation gain in less than one mile. I was able to hike out safely using the Half Ounce Headlamp with no problem and it was completely dark with no moonlight.
So there it is, the MYOG Half Ounce Headlamp. See you on the trail, even if it's at night!