Despite the always-on, always-connected nature of modern American society, outdoor activities remain a keen interest for many. How many? Upwards of 77 million people go camping in a given year.
That’s to say nothing of all the hikers, people riding bicycles, and even mountain and rock climbers. Of course, for any outdoor activity that will stretch into the evening or night, there is the ongoing problem of light. That can prove as much of a problem at home as it does on the campsite.
One simple fix to the problem is an outdoor lantern. Like many products, though, you can find yourself overwhelmed by choices. If you’re in the market for outdoor lantern lights, keep reading for five tips to pick one.
1. Consider the Activity
You must consider the activity for which you plan to use the lantern. If you want something to help light up your backyard while the kids play late into the evening, then you can reasonably pick large outdoor lanterns or outdoor hanging lanterns.
If you must carry the lantern in a backpack while you hike 10 miles, then the lantern’s weight will matter.
2. Power Source
You must also consider the power source to some extent. If you plan an extended camping trip away from stores, you may want outdoor solar lanterns for easier charging. For shorter trips, battery, liquid fuel, or propane lanterns can often fill the void.
Just remember you must take the batteries, liquid fuel, or propane with you. They’ll take up space and add weight.
You should also consider how much light you think you’ll need. Do you just need something that can light up the inside of a tent? Do you want something that can light up an entire campsite?
The more light you want, the more lumens the outdoor lighting must provide.
4. Light Duration
Light duration typically means the hours of light you can expect from a fully charged set of batteries or a full tank of fuel for the lanterns. The more you expect you’ll use the lantern, the longer the light duration you’ll want from the lantern.
5. Replacement Parts
Lanterns that use flammable fuel almost all use cloth mantles. These mantles can grow fragile after you use them and the lanterns won’t work without them.
You must first consider if you can get extra mantles. If you need replacements, you must determine if you can get them before your trip.
Choosing Your Outdoor Lantern
An outdoor lantern can provide a lot of utility value for camping trips or even in your own backyard. Choosing the right outdoor lantern means considering a wide range of factors.
You must consider the intended use, power source, and lumens provided. After all, too much light can prove as inconvenient as not enough. You must also consider light duration and the availability of replacement parts like mantles for fuel-burning lanterns.
Looking for more camping and outdoor living tips and tricks? Check out some of the other posts over in our Travel and Lifestyle sections.