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Here Are The Best Camping Flashlights For 2021

The days are getting warmer, the forest is in full bloom, and adventure is calling: Camping season is upon us. Whether you’re heading into the wilderness for a week or just a weekend, if you still haven’t added one of the following camping lights to your essentials list, it’s time to step up your game.

From the humble headlamp to the luxurious lantern, you will find below our top picks for every type of camping flashlight, as well as some helpful camping tips to make sure you’re prepared for your next excursion.

Plan Ahead

If you want to have a good time, planning ahead for a weekend outdoors is essential. Once you’ve decided where you’ll be camping, it’s time to sit down and figure out everything you’ll need.

We recommend writing down a list of all the gear you’ll want to have on hand, then working your way down the list, checking items off as you go.

Lay everything out where you can see it, and only check an item off your list after you’ve physically packed it in your bag/car. That way, there’s no possibility of arriving at camp only to find you left your tent, cookware, or camping flashlight behind.

Pro Tip: Check the weather a week in advance, and then check it again the day before you leave. If there’s any chance of rain, snow, or other inclement weather, this is your chance to make sure you’ve brought the right shelter and gear to handle it all.

Why You Should Carry A Flashlight When Camping?

There’s a reason a reliable flashlight/headlamp is one of the “ten essentials” of camping gear.

Bringing a quality flashlight on your next camping trip guarantees that you’ll have all the light you need to set up camp after dark, find your way to the bathroom in the middle of the night, and get your sleeping arrangements set up when it’s time for bed.

A camping flashlight is also important in case of emergencies. Whether you get caught out on a hiking trail after dark, get lost in the woods, or find yourself broken down on a dark forest service road, a reliable, long-lasting source of light becomes an indispensable emergency tool.

The Best Camping Flashlights To Consider:

Here are our selections for the best camping flashlights in-store. As always, if you’ve got any questions about the torches you see below, just get in touch with us! We’re happy to help.

Camping Flashlights:

Fenix PD36R:

It’s compact, powerful, long-lasting, and clips anywhere you want to carry it, from your pocket around camp to your favorite backpack when you’re out on a hike.

The PD36R was Fenix's first flashlight to feature a powerful 21700 li-ion battery, which means it can run for up to 115 hours on a full charge, which makes it the perfect camping companion. Add an IP68 waterproof rating and a five-foot drop protection rating to that versatile performance and you’ve got yourself a great and rugged addition to your outdoor gear. 

Klarus XT21C:

The Klarus XT21C pushes the boundaries of performance even further, with a 3200 lumens maximum output that makes it as good around camp as it is for search-and-rescue duty.

Its lower-light settings aren’t quite as useful as the PD36R above, but if high output and long beam distances are priorities for you (the XT21C throws for up to 324 meters), this IPX8-rated light makes an ideal wilderness companion.

Fenix E28R:

Fenix’s E28R is a super-compact (just 4.29” long) light with a ton of versatility. It can run off 18650 or CR123 batteries, operates in an incredible range of temperatures from 45* C all the way down to -35* C (see specs for more details), and is both fully water and dustproof with an IP68 rating.

Six separate output modes guarantee the perfect light for every situation (it’s even got a strobe feature for self-defense), and the user-friendly power switch/battery life indicator ensures you’ll never be caught by surprise with a dead flashlight when you need it.

Fenix E35 V3.0:

Love the compact size of the E28R but want some serious power to boot? The E35 V3.0 is just 4.6” long but packs a full 3000 lumens max output.

Its Luminus SST70 LED bulb is one of the best bulbs money can buy, and casts light up to a full 240 meters at full power.

In typical Fenix fashion, you’ll also get six output modes, a versatile pocket clip, and full IP68 water and dust-proofing.

Fenix PD40R V2.0:

The Fenix PD40R has been a best seller for years, and now it’s been upgraded to the incredible and easy to operate v2 version.

3000 lumens output backed by a 21700 battery, super-fast USB Type-C recharging, and computer-controlled intelligent heat protection are just a few of the new features you’ll find in the latest PD40R powerhouse.

IP68 waterproofing comes standard, as does the v2’s whopping 17-day extended runtime, which both guarantee this light will last from start to finish on even the longest camping trips.

Fenix FD30:

Most flashlights have to pick a happy medium between a long-casting, narrowly focused beam and a wider but shorter beam that covers more area for a shorter distance. 

The new Fenix FD30 solves that dilemma with a rotary-focusing adjustment, allowing you to dial in exactly the kind of beam you need whether you’re cooking in camp or hiking trails after dark.

Its dual switch system also allows you to choose between using the traditional side switch or its tactical tail switch for fast access to modes like turbo and strobe.

Camping Headlamps:

Fenix HM65R

The Fenix HM65R is no ordinary headlamp. In fact, it’s one of the best camping flashlights in our store, thanks to its unique dual-beam design that allows a choice between spotlight, floodlight, or both simultaneously. 

It’s also incredibly powerful, cranking out up to 1400 lumens from its single 1860 Li-Ion battery.

Fenix HL60R

If you don’t need a full 1400 lumens from your headlamp, or just prefer a more traditional package, the Fenix HL60R is a great alternative.

It still packs a full 950 lumens on its brightest setting, but also includes some campground essentials like a red light mode for late-night reading in the tent and simple one-switch operation for on/off and mode selection duties.

Nitecore HC65

Nitecore is another brand making some of the best camping flashlights out there right now, and Nitecore HC65 is their top-of-the-line offering.

It’s got everything you’ll need and, thanks to its triple output design, it also allows you to choose between the main high-powered CREE XM-L2 LED bulb and a second auxiliary LED that produces low impact light in either white or red tint. With this headlamp, you’ll have access to 11 modes in total, including SOS, Strobe and Beacon.

Nitecore HC33

Having a tough time deciding between an EDC flashlight and a headlamp? Don’t bother, the Nitecore HC33 checks both boxes.

Want a high-powered headlamp that cranks out up to 1800 lumens at full power? You’ve got it. 

Want a compact EDC torch you can clip to your pocket or pack? You’ve got it.

Want a high-powered headlamp that cranks out up to 1800 lumens? Just clip the HC33 into the included headband mount and you’re good to go. 

Camping Lanterns:

Fenix CL30R:

The CL30R is Fenix’s take on the classic camping lantern. Its broad cylindrical shape and top-mounted handle are both familiar features of your grandfather’s old Coleman gas lantern, but a quick tap of the power switch instantly grants access to anywhere between 10 and 650 lumens depending on the mode you select.

What’s even better is the CL30R can run on a single 18650 battery, but will accept up to three, boosting runtime to a full 400 hours, and the lantern itself has a micro USB charge and discharge function, to serve as a power bank for your other digital devices; it’s a great addition to your camping gear!

Fenix CL20R:

Looking for a camping lantern but not looking for a full-sized version? The Fenix CL20R is small enough to be clipped on your backpack strap but still packs a respectable 300 lumens.

A built-in 1600 mAh battery further simplifies things, and is easily recharged using a standard micro-USB plug.

A red light mode, overhead hanging loop, magnetic bottom, and IP66 water and dust protection all sweeten the pot for this budget-friendly micro-lantern.

Fenix CL09:

Tiny but powerful, the Fenix CL09 is both the smallest lantern and smallest light on this list. Roughly the size of a single battery, it packs a full 200 lumens of spherical illumination, making it as compact as it is versatile. This one is a must have! 

Its multiple light modes include white, red, and green lighting, and its included 16340 Li-ion battery has a charging port built right on it, which makes it super convenient. 

Olight Obulb

You’ve gotta love Olight Obulb for their fit and finish. This 55 lumens lantern comes in six different colors and looks as natural on your outdoor patio as it does in your tent.

The built-in 630mAh battery offers a full 56-hour runtime, and is easily recharged using Olight’s patented magnetic charging ring. Red and white lighting modes are available, with an added “emergency flash” option that comes in handy for roadside safety.

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