Best Camping Flashlights in 2021 – Reviews & Buyers Guide


Camping flashlights will always be one of the most essential pieces of gear you take along on your camping trip. 

It can become fairly dangerous if you forget your flashlight, and you are caught in the dark. Having the best camping flashlight on hand will ensure that you never get lost, can easily see your surroundings and camp and you also have the ability to use the flashlight in emergency situations, for example, notifying a search and rescue team (we hope it never comes to this!). 

You may be wondering if you can just use any old flashlight or your mobile phone, and the answer is no. 

It all comes down to performance. Period. People who depend on their flashlights, often for their lives, need to be able to count on that flashlight to work.

When it’s freezing cold, scorching hot, desert dry, or rainforest humid. When it’s been beat up, abused, dropped in water, or left in icy snow. They need to know that their flashlight will deliver the light they need for the task at hand.

Aside from the obvious, and using a light to help you see, choosing the best camping flashlight will help you do the following: 

Avoid any injuries: Most wild-camping areas won’t be well-manicured, the floor is likely to be covered in rocks, holes, fallen branches, and tree roots. For the affordable price of a flashlight, you can avoid any nasty falls which could injure you and put an early end to your adventure. 

Animal defense: A strong beam of light is often all it takes to ward off any animals that might stray too close to your tents. As a last resort, the torch could be used as a heavy blunt weapon. 

Notify a rescue team: If the worst happens, and a rescue team is searching for you. A good flashlight for camping can be used as an emergency signal to notify a search team of your whereabouts.

Best Camping Flashlight Quick View:

Best Flashlight For Camping Reviews

1. Anker Rechargeable Bolder LC90 LED Flashlight

Brightness

4.7/5

Water Resistance

4.7/5

Battery Life

4.5/5

Value For Money

5/5

Product Summary

Our top pick for the best camping flashlight goes to the Anker Bolder. We have featured Anker several times on this site for various outdoor electronic equipment, and we are always impressed with the quality of their products. 

This flashlight has a very bright beam of 900 lumens, which is strong enough to sweep light over the length of two football fields (660ft). This is largely because of the fully zoomable from wide to narrow beam. And the 5 different settings; high; medium; low; strobe; SOS. 

The battery life is great, with up to 6 hours of continuous use of non-diminishing brightness from the 3350mAh Lithium-ion battery. One thing we love is that the flashlight is rechargeable, so you don’t have to carry on batteries with you and you can charge on the go via a backpacking power bank

The outer casing is made from Aluminum which is lightweight, durable, and corrosion-resistant. The Bolder has a water resistance rating of IPX-5 and therefore can be used in heavy-rain. If there is an issue with the performance or durability of the flashlight, you can take advantage of Anker’s 18-month warranty. 

The all-metal body has a slip-resistant finish and the anodized Aluminum is resistant from any scratches and chips.

  • Bolder LC90 Flashlight
  • 18650 3350mAh rechargeable battery
  • Micro USB cable
  • Wrist strap
  • 18-month warranty

Technical Details

  • Weight: 6.2 ounces
  • Dimensions: 6.22 x 1.57 x 1.57 inches
  • Batteries: 1 Lithium-ion battery required 
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Luminous Flux: 900 Lumens
  • Cold Temperature Limit: 14℉/-10℃

2. GearLight Tac LED Tactical Flashlight [2 Pack]

Brightness

4.8/5

Water Resistance

4.5/5

Battery Life

4.6/5

Value For Money

4.9/5

Product Summary

The next best flashlight for camping on our list is the GearLight Tactical Flashlight. One of the main reasons this flashlight is such good value for money is that it is a 2-pack – Perfect if you are camping as a family or couple. 

Whilst this camping flashlight only has 1-mode and that is on. This can be seen as a benefit to some people, as flicking through several different modes can become irritating. 

The beam is wide and powerful enough to illuminate a large area, roughly the size of a big backyard. 

The military-grade all-metal body has knurling to improve grip in wet conditions, and a clip to conveniently place the flashlight onto your hiking belt

This flashlight is both weather, and shock-resistant, with an all-metal body and a water-resistant rating of IPX-4, it can stand up to most conditions you will encounter camping in high heat, heavy rain, and snow.

  • 2 x Tactical flashlights
  • 2 x AAA battery holders
  • 2 x 18650 Battery tubes
  • 1 x warranty card
  • 2 x Belt Clips
  • 2 x Hand straps

Technical Details

  • Weight: 5.9 ounces
  • Dimensions: 5.31 x 1.48 x 1.48 inches
  • Batteries: 1 Lithium-ion battery required 
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Luminous Flux: 300-800 Lumens depending on battery type

3. Streamlight Stinger LED High Lumen Camping Flashlight

Brightness

4.8/5

Water Resistance

4.5/5

Battery Life

4.3/5

Value For Money

4.3/5

Product Summary

The Streamlight stinger is a compact and extremely powerful, rechargeable flashlight that offers three microprocessor-controlled intensity modes, strobe mode, and the latest in high power LED technology.

Whilst the Streamlight is highly-priced compared to other flashlights on our list, it’s still a great option if you are looking for the best camping flashlight. 

The flashlight features engineered reflectors that creates an intense beam that lights up a wide field of view.

There are 3 lighting modes to choose from; High for maximum illumination: runs 1.5-hours. Medium for intense brightness and longer run time: 2.5-hours. Low for extended run time: runs 5-hours.

The body is made from heavy-duty anodized Aluminum with a non-slip rubberized grip for better handling and comfort. The lens is made from high-strength polycarbonate that is scratch resistant. 

You can use the flashlight in heavy rain due to an IPX-4 water-resistant rating, as well as this, the camp flashlight has been 1-meter impact resistant tested. 

 

  • 1 x Streamlight flashlight
  • 1 x Ni-MH sub-C battery
  • 1 x Piggyback charger

Technical Details

  • Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Dimensions: 8.85 x 3 x 3 inches
  • Batteries: 1 Ni-MH sub-C (included)
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Luminous Flux: 200, 400, 800 lumens, depending on operation mode
  • Battery life: 1.5hr, 2.5hr, 5hr depending on operation mode

4. Phixton Rechargeable Tactical Flashlight

Brightness

4.5/5

Water Resistance

4.4/5

Battery Life

4.2/5

Value For Money

4.3/5

Product Summary

The Phixton rechargeable flashlight is a great option for anyone looking for extended battery life. The most powerful mode will last for an impressive 6 hours of continuous use, while the low power mode will last 12 hours. 

The all-metal Aluminum body has been shock tested and has a water-resistant rating of IPX-4 allowing this flashlight to be used in the rain. 

To narrow the beam and see further, you can push/pull the head to reduce the beamwidth. 

The high brightness predominantly caused by a high-quality L2 chip, which is 20% brighter than a T6 chip that you find in other comparative models. 

One thing we love about this camping flashlight is that it also comes with a bike mount, that allows you to attach the light to your handle bars – perfect if you are also taking your mountain bike camping. 

  • 1 x L2 Flashlight
  • 1 x AC charger
  • Rechargeable battery
  • USB cable 
  • 1 x car charger
  • 1 x bike mount
  • 1 x protective carry case 

Technical Details

  • Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Dimensions: 7.09 x 1.18 x 3.15  inches
  • Batteries: Lithium-ion batteries
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Battery life: 6hr or 12hr depending on operation mode

5. Keenstone LED Flashlights Rechargeable 2 Pack

Brightness

4.6/5

Water Resistance

4.5/5

Battery Life

4.2/5

Value For Money

4.4/5

Product Summary

The final product on our list of the best flashlights for camping is a 2-pack from Keenstone. Even if this were a 1-pack, it would still be great value for money.

This led flashlight is powered by a rechargeable 2600mAh battery(included), that provides up to 8 hours (Medium-beam mode) run time.

There are 5 different lighting modes that you can take advantage of whilst camping; high beam; average; low; strobe and SOS. 

You can also narrow the beam to create a spotlight, or widen it to create a wider field of light. Many customers report that the wider beam is great for acting as a lantern whilst camping. 

The flashlight’s precision-machined unibody casing is constructed from military-grade aluminum-alloys with a hard-anodized finish. Therefore, it can endure scratches, abrasions and corrosion. It is also, IPX4 rated design for almost any weather conditions you are likely to encounter whilst camping. 

  • Keenstone Led Tactical Flashlight x 2
  • 4 x 18650 2600mAh rechargeable batteries
  • USB charger
  • Micro USB cable
  • User manual

Technical Details

  • Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Dimensions: 7.5 x 1 x 1  inches
  • Batteries: Lithium-ion batteries
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Battery life: High-brightness: 5 hours, Average-brightness: 8 hours, Low-brightness: 14 hours, Strobe: 6 hours, SOS: 16 hours

Best Flashlight For Camping - Buyers Guide

best flashlight for camping

Before you purchase one of the best camping flashlights, it’s important that you understand a few of the key features that flashlights have and what we have taken into consideration for selecting the flashlights in our list. 

Light Strength/Brightness

The first consideration whilst looking at a camping flashlight is the brightness of the light. After all, who wants dull light that can hardly illuminate your surroundings. 

Flashlight brightness is measured in lumens. The higher the number of lumens, the higher the brightness or beam strength. 

Most camping flashlights will have a lumen rating between 300-1000, which is more than sufficient for your camping trip. 

Below lumens and the flashlight might struggle to light up very dark surroundings. And anything over, the light will either be too bright, or drain your batteries very quickly. 

Some flashlights have several modes that allow you to switch between the number of lumens that are being delivered. Usually, the modes are labeled as high, medium, or low. 

Dim settings can actually be advantageous. You might want to stretch the battery life of your flashlight as far as possible on an extended trip, or if you are just looking for items inside of your tent, you don’t want/need a high brightness beam setting. 

Beam distance is another good measure of how bright the light is. Bright light travels further. To help with this, some lights allow you to narrow the beam. This can help you create more a spotlight whilst using the same ammount of power and battery energy. 

Portability

Most camping gear is lightweight and portable, this is because you are likely to be carrying heavy loads or hiking long distances to camp. the best camping flashlight is no exception to this rule. Unlike, large and bulky lanterns or security flashlights, camping flashlights are compact, lightweight, and still deliver a high amount of power. 

Smaller flashlights can be easily attached to your hiking belt or placed inside of your hiking backpack

At the end of the day, the total size and weight of your flashlight is a personal preference. If you need a super-powerful flashlight then you may have to t for a larger version. But if you are on a regular camping trip or want to conserve weight, then a smaller camping flashlight will do the job. 

Battery Life

The battery life of your camping flashlight is very important. The last thing you want to happen is that it fails on you in a time of need. All of the flashlights on our list have a good battery life ranging from 6 hours to 12 hours depending on which mode is selected. That’s continuous use of the flashlight. 

If you are just camping for a few nights, it’s unlikely that your flashlight will be on for 12 continuous hours. 

Another aspect to take into consideration when it comes to battery life is how you can either charge the batteries or replace them. Some flashlights have the ability to both charge and replace the batteries. This is a personal preference and it depends on whether you have access to electricity whilst you are camping.

If not, then replaceable batteries or carrying a power bank is a great option. Or, if you do have access to power on a regular basis then a rechargeable torch will be a more convenient option. 

Water Resistance Rating

Most flashlights for camping have a waterproof rating of IPX-4, all of the flashlights on our list have at least this. Our number one pick, however, has an IPX-5 wate-resistant rating. 

But what does that mean? 

A waterproof rating of IPX-4 means that the device can survive water splashes and sprays from all directions for at least 5 minutes with no damage. With this rating, you can use the torch in the rain, and it’s unlikely that it will get damaged. 

An IPX-5 rating is one step above the IPX-4, it can survive heavy rainfall and more splashes/sprays of water for at least 15 minutes with no damage.

You can learn more about how devices are water-resistance tested.  

Flashlight Material

Main body: The main body of most flashlights built for the outdoors is an all-metal Aluminum casing. This is because Aluminum is strong, durable, lightweight, and corrosion-resistant. You could opt for a plastic flashlight, but it won’t last as long, and it will soon be scratched and dented after being thrown amongst the rest of your camping gear. 

Lens: One of the most important features of a flashlight is the lens. The best camping flashlights will almost always use Polycarbonate as the material of choice for their lenses. 

Polycarbonate lenses are thinner than glass lenses and up to 10 times more impact-resistant than other plastic or glass making it the perfect material for a camping flashlight.  

This type of plastic is also used to improve the quality of light. Most of the LED flashlights available have Polycarbonate lenses that flawlessly transforms a high beam of light with no loss of beam stregnth. 

Final Words

Flashlights are an essential piece of kit and having the right one can be the difference between staying safe or putting yourself in a really precarious situation. 

Camping flashlights are designed to light up a large space. Whilst your iPhone might illuminate your bedroom, imagine what that would be like in a pitch-black forest, you would be lucky to see beyond the first tree. 

And then there is the battery life… The best camping flashlights are designed to be functional for a long period of time with no reduction in performance. Lithium-ion batteries can maintain that performance until the battery is completely drained, unlike standard batteries which cause the light to get dimmer whilst the battery level goes down. 

We know all too well how difficult it can be to make a purchase decision when there are literally thousands of flashlights to choose from, and they all seem to claim to be the best. But,  that’s exactly why we make these posts, so people like yourself can make better-informed buying decisions, and spend more time outside actually using the flashlight. 

We truly hope that this post has given you some insight into the key features that you should look for when buying the best camping flashlight, and that it’s helped you settle on the right light for you. 

Happy camping!

Ned

Growing up in the Lake District, UK I've always been surrounded by nature, whether it's snowy mountains, lakes, or the sea. Throughout school, I gained qualifications in Outdoor Education, and mainly focus my time camping, hiking & kayaking.

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