Aspen Times Weekly: Fenix HL55 Headlamp |

Aspen Times Weekly: Fenix HL55 Headlamp


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Rugged, waterproof and bright, the HL55 headlamp by Fenix is a workhorse of a light. Its anodized aluminum body houses a single large LED capable of igniting a dark trail (or burning a retina if carelessly aimed at a face).

Indeed, from a small lens the headlamp can blaze up to 900 lumens of night-piercing light in “turbo” mode. Fenix cites a shine distance of nearly 400 feet.

I tested the HL55 over the past two months, including hiking, running, and biking at night. I also reviewed it during night orienteering events, where visibility is needed to read maps, follow dark trails, and find checkpoints in the dark.

As headlamps go, the HL55 is small for its brightness. Just a couple of years ago a 900-lumen light would have required a large lens, multiple LEDs, and a big external battery pack on a cord.

The Fenix, in contrast, houses all its power and light technology in a slim, 3×2-inch metal box. An elasticized band keeps it centered on the forehead even if you’re running hard and bouncing down a trail.

For more on this product, visit Stephen Regenold is the founder and writes about outdoors gear for Gear Junkie.

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