Best Headlamps For Hunting(2023) Reviews And Buying Guide

The wise hunter wakes before the dawn and is set up in his tree stand before the sun rises. The only problem is you have to see your way there without scaring away all the deer. A headlamp is the solution, but not just any model. Our staff of expert hunters weigh in with their pick for best headlamp for hunting.

These are the exact headlamps that we use to get to and from our stands in the dark, as well as to help blood trail a deer in the dark, after it has been shot.

What Is The Best Headlamp For Hunting?

The best headlamp for hunting is the PEAX Backcountry Duo Headlamp, which we have reviewed in detail just below along with a number of other great models. Not only is it tough and waterproof, but it has a rechargeable battery with a large capacity as well as a red-light mode that's ideal for hunting whitetail deer.

11 Best Hunting Headlamps At A Glance

11 Best Hunting Headlamps Rated And Reviewed

Best Overall: PEAX Backcountry Duo Rechargeable Headlamp

Peax Backcountry Duo Hunting Headlamp

The PEAX Backcountry Duo is a rugged headlamp designed specifically for the outdoors. It features a bright LED light producing a maximum of 1,000 Lumens as well as red and white lights combined with ultra, high, low, strobe and fade modes. 

An advanced feature is the rechargeable battery that powers the lamp for up to 69 hours at a time, rather than replaceable batteries that drive up costs over time. It's also quite easy to use with a single button and simple charging.

Features:

  • XLamp XM-L2 1,000-Lumen LED light
  • 3600mAh rechargeable battery
  • Machined aluminum housing
  • 180-degree adjustability
  • White and red lights
  • Max 69 hours battery life
  • IPX6 water resistance
  • 2.65 ounces

Peax Backcountry Duo Headlamp In Red Mode

What We Like:

  • The battery life is seriously impressive on this model, giving you up to 18 hours of bright light even on the high setting. Depending on the settings and how frequently you use it, you might get a full season out of this headlamp on a single charge.
  • The IPX6 water-resistance rating is enough to handle rain. That said, if you think you might drop it in standing water, it might not be enough.
  • The aluminum housing is durable enough to keep the headlamp running for season after season, but it's still lightweight and comfortable on your head.
  • The easy adjustability on top of almost 500 feet of range makes this headlamp versatile for numerous uses. Use a long bright beam for hiking into your tree stand but then keep it low and short for arranging your accessories once you're there. 

What We Don't Like:

  • The Backcountry Duo only has white and red light modes, lacking green and blue that can be useful in many circumstances.

Here is a video that shows you all of the features of the Peax Backcountry Duo Hunting Headlamp.

If you hunt a lot or in rough terrain or are just tired of flimsy equipment that breaks easily, the Backcountry Duo is your best bet. It's tough with a long-lasting battery that gives you consistent, powerful light where and how you want it.


Editor's Choice: Ledlenser MH11 Rechargeable Headlamp

LedLenser MH11 Hunting Headlamp

The big draw of the MH11 headlamp from Ledlenser is that it has Bluetooth technology built in. You can connect it to your phone to change the brightness and color settings in addition to setting timers and more advanced programming. For simple hunts, this may be overkill, but on overnight trips that involve multiple positions and activities, it's a great feature.

Aside from the tech, the MH11 is a high-end headlamp. It maxes out at 1,000 Lumens with a beam of over 1,000 feet. It uses a convenient rechargeable battery that lasts 100 hours on the lowest setting. And as for settings, there are a ton, including red, green and blue light.

Features:

  • 1,000-Lumen LED light
  • White, red, green and blue lights
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Max 100 hours runtime 
  • Programmable light modes
  • Temperature control system
  • Bluetooth connection
  • IP54 dust and water resistance
  • Handheld convertibility
Ledlenser MH11 Hunting Headlamp In Green Mode

What We Like:

  • The Bluetooth connectivity lets you adjust settings and timers from your phone. This is great for overnight hunting trips as well as other activities.
  • The easy switch between headlamp and handheld flashlight makes using it in the tree stand more convenient and precise.
  • The MH11 headlamp, unlike many models, has dust resistance. This improves its durability in extreme hunting conditions.
  • On the highest setting, the beam pierces over 1,000 feet. That's more than enough for hiking into the woods and makes finding a harvest in dim light a lot easier.

What We Don't Like:

  • On the highest setting, the battery only lasts four hours. However, you can turn down the intensity and put it on red to get a lot more time out of it.

The MH11 is an excellent choice for those who love the newest technology and powerful LED lights. It's hard to find a model that gives you better versatility when it comes to settings and programming, and you can do it all right from your phone. At the same time, you get a long, bright beam for the darkest of nights. 


Best Battery Life: Petzl Tactikka + RGB Headlamp

Petzl TACTIKKA +RGB Hunting Headlamp

The Tactikka is a basic headlamp that gets the job done in hunting situations. If you're familiar with headlamps, this one will be a breeze to use with a simple setup that lets you cycle through a huge range of colors and modes. In fact, you get red, green and blue on top of a standard white light.

Keep in mind that the Tactikka is not a rechargeable headlamp. It uses AAA batteries, but you do get considerable life out of them. In fact, on strobe mode, you can get a whopping 400 hours of light. That's well over two weeks straight of use, likely enough to last you a full season of hunting. 

Features:

  • 350-Lumen LED light
  • White, red, green and blue lights
  • Max 260 hours battery life (AAAs)
  • IPX4 water resistance
  • 3 ounces
  • Adjustable elastic camo band

What We Like:

  • The range of colors lets you tailor the headlamp to your preferences and needs in the field.
  • A tougher version of standard camping headlamps, the Tactikka gives you hunting-specific features at an affordable price.
  • Though it comes at the expense of range and brightness, the battery life is super long, so you don't have to worry about the batteries dying in the field. Plus, you don't have to buy expensive batteries as often.
  • The elastic band makes the headlamp comfortable to wear for long periods of time.

What We Don't Like:

  • This isn't the brightest light on the market, and it doesn't have an especially long range.
  • The Tactikka has IPX4 water resistance, only enough to handle some light splashing. If you plan to get stuck in heavy rain, this isn't the best choice.  

If you feel like cheap basic headlamps aren't doing the trick but also don't use one enough to pay top dollar for advanced features like waterproofing and rechargeability, the Tactikka is a good middle ground. It has just the amount of power you need to see through the woods and climb into your tree stand in addition to the color options to keep you hidden and maintain your night vision. At the same time, the price is affordable.


Staff Favorite: Browning Blackout Elite USB Rechargeable Headlamp

Browning Blackout Elite Hunting Headlamp

The Browning Blackout Elite is a bright, rechargeable headlamp specifically designed with hunting in mind. With an aluminum housing, it's durable yet relatively lightweight. You can find some lighter models out there, but that's because the Blackout Elite includes a power bank, arguably its coolest feature. It definitely makes it easier to stay connected on the hunt!

Features:

  • 860-Lumen LED light
  • White and green lights
  • Two CR123 rechargeable batteries
  • Max 96 hours runtime 
  • USB-C fast charging
  • Power bank feature
  • Silent adjustment hinge
  • IPX7 water resistance
  • 5.6 ounces

What We Like:

  • Small but important features like the silent hinge and tan finish show that Browning paid attention to detail when designing this headlamp specifically for hunters.
  • The power bank feature is also ideal for hunting since your phone may run out of juice in the tree stand. This way you don't have to carry a separate power bank.
  • IPX7 waterproofing means the Blackout Elite is fully submersible. It can handle sudden downpours or accidental drops in puddles.
  • The elastic headband, which wraps over as well as around, is stable but comfortable, so it's good for long hikes.

What We Don't Like:

  • Due to the power bank feature, the Blackout Elite is a little heavier than other models. That can get uncomfortable over long periods of time.
  • While green serves the same purpose to an extent, we wish that there were a red-light option for this headlamp.

It's hard to find a tougher and more hunting-specific headlamp. If you encounter rough conditions when you're hunting, the Browning Blackout Elite is a smart investment that can hold up to regular abuse. At the same time, it addresses special hunting needs like silence and camouflage.


Best Waterproof: Fenix HM50R V2.0 Rechargeable Headlamp

Fenix HM50R V2.0 Rechargeable Headlamp

The Fenix HM50R V2.0 is a rugged all-purpose headlamp that's versatile, compact and affordable. It doesn't have many hunting-specific features like camo, but it does have a lot of features that are good for hunting—and a dozen other activities, indoors and outdoors. Most notably, it has superior water resistance and is even submersible. It's also rechargeable, and convertible to a handheld flashlight.

Features:

  • 700-Lumen LED light
  • White and red lights
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Max 42 hours runtime 
  • USB-C charging
  • Convertible to 90-degree flashlight
  • IP68 waterproof
  • 2.75 ounces
  • Plastic storage case

What We Like:

  • For the low price, the HM50R has a lot of advanced features like waterproofing that makes it submersible up to 10 feet. That's more than enough for a rainstorm while hunting.
  • The conversion to handheld flashlight is easy and intuitive, which makes it ideal for use in tight tree stands.
  • The HM50R is lightweight and compact, so even if you don't need a headlamp for your entire hunt, it doesn't take up too much space in your kit. Plus, it's more comfortable to wear.

What We Don't Like:

  • One of the reasons it's so compact is that it doesn't have the most powerful light, though it still manages to reach 377 feet, plenty for hunting. 
  • It comes with a red light, which is great, but is lacking green and blue.

We'd definitely rank the HM50R as the best all-purpose headlamp on our list, only affirmed by the fact that you can convert it to a compact handheld vertical flashlight. If you use a headlamp for more than just hunting, this model could definitely benefit you. At the same time, this is also one of the most waterproof headlamps on the list, so extreme hunters take note.


Waterproof Budget Option: Petzl Aria 2 RGB  Waterproof Hunting Headlamp

Petzl ARIA 2 Hunting Headlamp

Petzl is well-known for their professional industrial equipment from helmets to harnesses. They may not specifically make hunting equipment, but for a headlamp like the Aria 2, you know you're getting a quality product that's built to handle tough conditions and serious applications. In fact, despite its relatively low price, it has a lot of surprising features you won't find on other, more expensive hunting-specific models, making it an ideal budget pick.

Features:

  • 450-Lumen LED light
  • White, red, green and blue lights
  • Max 300 hours run time
  • IK07 impact resistance
  • IP67 waterproof
  • 3.7 ounces
  • Adjustable elastic band

What We Like:

  • The IK07 impact resistance makes it a good headband for tree stands, especially if you have butter fingers.
  • The Aria 2 is very affordable yet has advanced waterproofing that can handle heavy rain and drops in puddles.
  • The headband is washable, so you clean off sweat and keep your odor to a minimum. That's an important feature for hunting since whitetail deer can smell so well.
  • There are multiple color options in addition to the white light, so you can be stealthier and preserve your night vision.

What We Don't Like:

  • 3.7 ounces is a little on the heavier side, especially considering the small size of the light.
  • 450 Lumens is low power and may not be suited for unfamiliar, wilderness terrain.
  • The Aria 2 is compatible with a rechargeable battery pack from Petzl called "CORE," but this is sold separately. As is, it just comes with AAA batteries.

The Petzl Aria 2 is an excellent budget option if you still want important features like waterproofing and multiple color settings. You even get impact resistance in case you drop it from your tree stand. Though the light isn't the brightest on the list, it definitely gets the job done if you need a basic model.


Best Budget: Black Diamond Storm 500-R Headlamp

Petzl ARIA 2 Hunting Headlamp

With the Storm 500-R, Black Diamond integrated advanced technology into a simple, straightforward headband. This results in a highly adjustable device that you can tailor to your circumstances for maximum stealth. In fact, the elastic band even comes in digital camo with a forest green finish for the LED light housing. This is on top of a range of other features ideal for hunting.  

Features:

  • 500-Lumen LED light
  • White, red, green and blue lights
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Brightness memory
  • IP67 waterproof
  • 4.25 ounces
  • Elastic band

What We Like:

  • The brightness memory feature is a good one for hunting. When you turn off the headlamp, it will turn back on at the same brightness setting. In other words, if you have it dim to minimize alerting game to your presence, it won't turn on like overly bright the next time you use it.
  • The IP67 rating means it's waterproof against rain and even brief submersion in shallow water. It's also fully dustproof, so it's good for getting into muck and dirt.
  • The lithium-ion battery is very efficient and lasts a long time.

What We Don't Like:

  • The brightness setting is too easy to accidentally turn up or down.
  • 500 Lumens is definitely on the lower end of the scale. While it's plenty for scrambling up your tree stand, it might not be the best for tracking a blood trail in the dark.
  • It's surprisingly heavy for its barebones construction.

Although the settings are prone to accidental changing, this headlamp is overall one of the best when it comes to ease of use. You can switch between brightness and color settings with ease, and the brightness memory ensures that you keep this setting when you turn the headlamp back on. That's pretty important in hunting situations where stealth is paramount.


Best Lumens: Nitecore NU43 Rechargeable Headlamp

Nitecore NU43 Rechargeable Headlamp

This is a super bright headlamp. With 1,400 Lumens, Nitecore designed it with a piercing beam that reaches around 425 feet. It also has some advanced technological features like a proximity sensor that make it highly versatile and useful in a number of hunting situations and outdoor activities in general.

It's a rechargeable model as well, though we felt the battery life was a bit low. Luckily, this is compensated for by fast USB-C charging.

Features:

  • 1400-Lumen LED light
  • White and red lights
  • Rechargeable 3400mAh lithium-ion battery
  • Max 29 hours runtime 
  • Dual-button controls
  • 4.1 ounces
  • Proximity sensor

What We Like:

  • The 1,400 Lumens provide incredible brightness with a beam that pierces well over 400 feet.  Nevertheless, the proximity sensor dims the light if you get close to things, so you have fewer unwanted reflections, less accidental night-blinding and less startling game.
  • You can charge the NU43 in just two hours, so it's less of a problem if you forgot to plug it in the night before your hunt. Plus, it's much more convenient for overnight trips where you have only occasional access to electricity.
  • You can change the beam from spotlight all the way to floodlight, making it a versatile option for your entire hunt.
  • The NU43 is resistant to falls up to two meters, or around 6.5 feet. In other words, it'll survive if it falls off your head.

What We Don't Like:

  • The battery runtime is really low on this model. Even on the low setting, you only get 29 hours. It charges fast, which helps mitigate this problem, but we still recommend charging it before each hunt.
  • The NU43's elastic band has a yellow stripe. It's not a big deal, especially at night, but it's not exactly camouflage.

For the deep dark wilderness, you'll be hard-pressed to find a more illuminating headlamp than the NU43. At the same time, its ability to change brightness, either by manipulating the simple dual-button settings or by the proximity sensor, keeps your eyes sharp as the landscape changes. Its 1,400 Lumens may be overkill for a simple walk to your tree stand, but if you hunt in extreme environments or do a lot of other outdoor activities, it's a versatile solution.


Most versatile: NightBuddy Headlamp 

NightBuddy Headlamp

We have a couple of guys on staff that use the Nightbuddy headlamp and love it.

The Night Buddy is a basic, low-cost headlamp that includes a rechargeable battery. The battery is admittedly small and just provides a few hours of runtime. However, the design is unique and includes a comfortable headband with a light that emanates from the side for a larger field of view.

Perhaps the most noteworthy feature is the hand-wave operation. This is convenient in any situation but especially nice for hunting since buttons make noise.

Features:

  • 350-Lumen LED light
  • White and red lights
  • Rechargeable 1200mAh battery
  • Max eight hours runtime 
  • 2.65 ounces
  • 230-degree light field
  • Hand-wave operation

What We Like:

  • It's affordable for nearly any budget.
  • The strap is one of the most stable available, so the light remains steady regardless of how much you're moving around.
  • The wide light field gives you more than just tunnel vision like a lot of headlamps. This is especially nice if you need to track a blood trail or find an arrow.
  • It's so lightweight that you're likely to forget it's there. Combine this with the advanced band, and it's a very comfortable model.
  • You can turn it on with just a hand wave, which is a lot easier in a tree stand and it cuts down on excess noise.

What We Don't Like:

  • Even on the lowest setting, you only get eight hours of runtime. Charge it before each use. Still, it's not good for multi-day hunting trips.
  • This is a low-light model. It doesn't pierce very far into the dark, but it can be helpful when setting up in your tree stand.

It's not a wilderness headlamp, but the Night Buddy is an excellent budget choice if you need light to set up your gear in your tree stand before the sun rises. It's also a good addition to your kit in case of emergencies since it's so lightweight. It's comfortable, durable and provides a wide field of light to illuminate your surroundings.


Most Ergonomic: Biolite 800 Pro Headlamp

Biolite 800 Pro Headlamp

Designed for a range of outdoor activities from hunting to skiing, the Biolite 800 Pro is an ergonomically designed headlamp that's comfortable to wear. This is primarily due to the innovative 3D SlimFit construction. Although there are a few things about this model that we found weren't conducive to normal stand hunting, there are a lot of great features that make it a good choice if you have to hike a lot.

Features:

  • 800-Lumen LED light
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Max 150 hours runtime 
  • 5.3 ounces
  • IPX4 water resistance
  • 3D SlimFit construction
  • Constant Mode

What We Like:

  • The light housing is integrated into the headband, which makes it more stable and less prone to bouncing. 
  • The headband features moisture-wicking fabric that helps minimize the effects of sweating under the headlamp. This helps you hide your scent from game like whitetail deer.
  • The battery life is pretty good considering the 800 Lumens of light. Seven hours on high or 150 hours on low is certainly enough to see you through a long hunt.
  • The Constant Mode feature gives you 30 seconds of bright light in case you need extra visibility for a brief period.

What We Don't Like:

  • There aren't any color modes, just white light. This can be a problem if you're worried about spooking game or maintaining your night vision.
  • The 800 Pro is only rated IPX4 for water resistance. Frankly, we don't find this enough to advertise. It will probably hold up to sweat, but we wouldn't count on it in a rainstorm.

We mainly recommend the BioLite 800 Pro if you're going to be doing a lot of hiking over uneven terrain. We really like how stable it is, as well as its moisture-wicking properties for when you're highly active. While we wish it had more hunting features like a red-light setting, it's bright and has a long-lasting battery, so it's a good choice for white light.


Honorable Mention: Bushnell Rubicon 500-Lumen Headlamp

Bushnell Rubicon 500-Lumen Headlamp

The Rubicon 500-Lumen headlamp from renowned manufacturer Bushnell is an outdoor lighting solution geared towards technical outdoorsmen. It involves advanced features like auto dimming along with a tough housing that help it survive varying terrains and demands. 

Here at DeerHuntingGuide.net we love Bushnell products and use them extensively, everything from binoculars to rangefinders and scopes, so we wanted to include a Bushnell headlamp in our roundup.

It's important to note that this is not a rechargeable headlamp and requires three AA batteries. These are included with the headlamp, but you'll have to replace them eventually. 

Features:

  • 500-Lumen LED light
  • White and red light
  • Three AA batteries
  • Max 72 hours runtime 
  • 11.7 ounces
  • IPX4 water resistance
  • Auto dimming
  • Impact-resistant housing
  • Top-strap design

What We Like:

  • The auto-dimming feature gives you the precise amount of light you need whether you're hiking through the woods, looking at a map or setting up your bow in your tree stand.
  • The top strap as well as the rear-battery design make the headlamp highly stable, even if you're moving around a lot.
  • The controls consist of two buttons that allow you to operate the spotlight and floodlight simultaneously for different combinations and more versatility.
  • The housing is one of the toughest and much more likely to survive a fall from your tree stand than many others on this list.

What We Don't Like:

  • The Rubicon is very heavy. Although this does reflect its robust housing that can survive falls, it can wear you down if you wear it for long periods of time.
  • The battery life is pretty good, but it comes from AA batteries that you have to remember to replace.
  • IPX4 is a low water-resistance rating and good for little more than a few splashes. It's not enough for powerful storms.

Altogether the Rubicon is a good choice for mountainous terrain and hunting that also involves considerable hiking, though it is true that the weight can wear down your neck muscles if you're accustomed to it. The auto-dimming feature gives it an advantage in dynamic environments and is also helpful for hunting applications such as setting up your bow, reading a map or going up in a climbing tree stand. It's tough and can last you many seasons and serve other activities in addition to hunting.


What to Look For In The Best Hunting Headlamp

Whether you are buying a hunting headlamp for yourself or as a gift, you will find everything you need to know about headlamps in our buying guide below.

Reliability

You want reliability in all your hunting gear, but especially a headlamp. It's essential for accurate hunting practices, whether that's mounting accessories on your bow or tracking a blood trail. 

More importantly, it can be a matter of life and death. If your light suddenly shuts off on an unfamiliar mountain trail heading to a remote tree stand location, you could be lost till daylight, a dangerous situation. Similarly, a good light is necessary for navigating a tree stand ladder without falling off.

Reliability can be harder to gauge with headlamps because you often use them so sparingly, especially if you only need one for hunting. Their batteries may still lose charge even when they're sitting unused, leaving you without power when you most need it, unless the manufacturer specifically designs it otherwise.

Lighting Modes

Hunting Headlamp Lighting Modes

Lighting modes are what truly separate the most advanced headlamps from the least. Cheap headlamps usually have little more than standard and strobe settings, if that, while the best headlamps for hunting allow you to switch between spotlight and floodlight, various brightness settings, and different strobe speeds. 

Additionally, advanced headlamps have different color modes. Red is the most common, but you may find green and blue too. While red is the go-to for deer hunting because it's minimally visible to deer and doesn't ruin your night vision, blue and green also have their advantages. Green is also less likely to spook a game animal, and its beam pierces a bit farther than red. Blue is best for tracking blood trails, and it's also good for fog.

At the end of the day, it's a good idea to have as many settings and options as possible. It gives you more versatility. You may want a wide red floodlight for hiking through the woods to find your tree stand, but then a dim white spotlight for organizing yourself once you're there. Precision is key.

Water Resistant

If you hunt regularly, you're going to get wet. Aside from rain, which is common during deer hunting season in most parts of the country, the great outdoors and game habitats aren't exactly dry. From lakes to puddles, water is everywhere, and it's better to have a headlamp that can handle it than worry about avoiding it.

RELATED: Best Rain Gear For Hunting

Headlamps are electrical devices, after all, so exposure to water can destroy them unless their housing is water resistant. However, this is far from a binary. Headlamps aren't simply waterproof or not. Instead, they have varying levels of water resistance with some capable of being fully submerged underwater for long times and others barely able to handle your sweat.

Since it's ultimately a spectrum, the best way to judge a headlamp's water resistance is to check its IP rating.

What Is An IP Rating?

An IP rating consists of two numbers and looks like this: IP67. The first number reflects dust resistance, so if you only care about water resistance, pay attention to the second one. It ranges from 1 to 9, higher numbers signifying better resistance to water under more pressure for longer periods of time.

For hunting, we'd recommend at least a 4, which represents "protection against water splashed from all directions for five minutes." This is adequate for most light rainstorms. Still, it isn't enough for serious downpours, much less drops into standing water. For actual submersion in water, you need a rating of at least IPX7.

As a side note, the first number, the dust rating, goes from 1 to 6. Hunting is dirty and mucky, so a high number here is a huge advantage as well.

Durability

Most hunting gear sees rougher treatment than normal household devices. You need a durable headband with a tough housing that will protect the light and mechanisms inside from drops and falls. You should also check that the headband isn't going to wear down or stretch out with repeated use.

Durability ultimately increases the value of a headband too. A $100 headband is actually less expensive than a $20 headband if the former lasts 10 hunting seasons while the latter only lasts one.

Battery Life

Unlike other outdoor activities like hiking or camping, hunting usually doesn't require your headlamp for hours at a time. Therefore, the importance of battery life can be a bit confusing. At Deer Hunting Guide, we still prefer headlamps that have long-lasting batteries for several reasons.

First, a long battery life means you may be able to use a headlamp for an entire season without recharging it or replacing the batteries. That saves a lot of hassle.

Second, bigger batteries with longer runtimes usually have more consistent power profiles. That means that the light doesn't start to dim as the batteries run out, which can be frustrating.

Finally, a long-lasting battery can be relevant on a hunting trip, especially if it's overnight. Battery-life ratings are often best-case-scenario, so you can easily drain a battery if you need to use it for several hours on the high setting. The more juice, the better.

Rechargeable vs Alkaline Batteries

We prefer rechargeable batteries. It saves you money and hassle overtime, and it's simple enough to plug in your headlamp after a hunting trip to keep it charged. Additionally, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries provide better power profiles, meaning the light doesn't dim over time as the battery runs out.

That said, alkaline batteries do have one big advantage. It's easier to carry a spare pack of AAA batteries in your rucksack than a charging cable and power bank.

Comfort

You want a comfortable headlamp, especially if you plan to wear it for long periods of time. An elastic, adjustable moisture-wicking headband is a good start. We also like models that have a top band as this relieves some of the pressure against the sides of your head.

Additionally, it's worth considering the weight of the headlamp. Any headlamp is pretty lightweight, and you'd be hard-pressed to find one over a pound. Nevertheless, even a few ounces of difference can wear you down over time if you're hiking for long periods. 

Budget

Like most things, you get what you pay for with headlamps, though there are certainly good deals and values out there. Nonetheless, the budget models you might find at the local convenience store aren't going to hold up when you're hunting. A quality model will usually cost you at least $50.

Beyond that, you should consider your needs. Don't pay for features you aren't going to use, but also remember that if you plan to hunt for years to come, a durable model could save you money in the long run. 

Warranty

Headlamps are electronic devices, and there's always a possibility that they come with a defect. A warranty ensures that you can get your money back or have the device replaced in this case.

It also shows the manufacturer stands behind their product and its quality. This allows you to buy with confidence.

Best Place To Store A Headlamp

As an electronic device, you want to store a headlamp in a cool, dry location away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. The area should also be free of dust, debris and water sources, especially if the headlamp isn't dust and waterproof.

You should also consider storing your headlamp in a case or bag. This will protect it from scratches and impacts in case something else falls on it. Plus, you'll always know where it is.

Finally, when you store your headlamp, disconnect the battery. This helps maintain its life and keep the headlamp from drawing power or accidentally turning on.

We keep hunting headlamps in our backpack, or sometimes store them on our bow case when we are bowhunting.

FAQs

What is the best headlamp for deer hunting?

The best headlamp for deer hunting is the Ledlenser MH11 Rechargeable headlamp, though our favorite model overall, the PEAX Backcountry Duo is a good choice as well. The Ledlenser MH11 is impact-resistant and includes red and green lights as well as blue for blood-trail tracking. It's also IP53 waterproof and dustproof, enough for rainstorms and submersions, and has a good battery life. 

How Many Lumens Do You Need For Hunting?

Most hunting applications don't require a super bright headlamp because you want to avoid spooking game anyway. 300 Lumens is often enough. That said, the more remote the terrain and the more hiking you'll be doing, the brighter light you'll need. This could mean as much as 1,000 Lumens. 

What is the best Nitecore headlamp for hunting?

The best Nitecore headlamp for hunting is the Nitecore NU43. Its incredibly bright 1400-Lumen LED light pierces over 400 feet into the darkness, which gives you excellent visibility in unknown wilderness environments. Plus, it has advanced technological features like a proximity sensor and rechargeable battery. 

What color light does not scare deer?

Red light is the least likely to scare deer and other game animals. Part of this has to do with the fact that deer have poor color vision and are in fact red-green color blind. As a result, red light is less noticeable to their eyes.

The same is true with green light, which is another good option. However, red light, which is at a lower frequency, does not travel as far as green light, so it has a slight advantage.

Final Thoughts

The best headlamp for hunting will have specific features. When we chose our hunting headlamps, we looked for comfortable, lightweight headlamps that resist water and provide reliable illumination in multiple colors, namely red.

Our favorite is the PEAX Backcountry Duo, but every model on this list met our requirements for hunting and is a solid choice depending on your needs.

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John VanDerLaan

Hi folks! I'm John VanDerLaan and I have a deep passion for the outdoors, and deer hunting in particular. I am what you call a year round deer hunter. I am in the whitetail woods year round preparing for the next years season and I love to share the knowledge that I've gained over 40 years of chasing the wily whitetail! In full disclosure, it is safe to assume that I am an affiliate for products that I recommend. I will make a commission if you buy through my link. You will not pay more when buying through my link. In fact, oftentimes I have negotiated a lower price (or bonuses) for my readers than you will find anywhere else online. Also, when you buy through my link, it allows me to continue to provide you with tons of FREE valuable information through this website!

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