About Tactical Flashlights

A good tactical LED flashlight is an absolute necessity for every backpacker. 

Every camping or backpacking trip will require navigating the backcountry in the dark and a flashlight will become your most important tool. 

The hardest part in choosing the right flashlight is knowing which one is best for your adventure.  There are tactical flashlights that are smaller and can fit in your pocket, and bigger flashlights with more lighting modes and options that work great for a more settled campsite. 

No matter what your needs you can find all kinds of different flashlights that include different brightness levels, lumens, beam distance, battery life, and even colors.

For more details information on backpacking flashlights, along with tips on finding the right tactical flashlight for your adventure check out “Why A Tactical LED Flashlight Is Needed By Every Backpacker”.

For in-depth product reviews on our favorite flashlights be sure to check out our detailed product reviews below.

Of all the great camping and tactical flashlights we’ve tried, our top choice is the 1Tac TC1200 Tactical Flashlight. 

For more info on this great camping flashlight check out our “1Tac TC1200 Tactical Flashlight Review

Best Tactical Flashlights 2020

    Weight 24 oz
    Lumens 2800
    Beam Distance 1476
    Life Span 50000
    Current Price Price not available

    The Fenix Flashlights TK76 2800-Lumen Flashlight is an absolute beast and a must-have for anyone traveling at night.

    The front of the flashlight has 3 LEDs. The main Cree XM-L2 T6 neutral white LED is your throw and acts as more of a spotlight, while the other 2 Cree XM-L2 U2 LEDs are your floodlights. The two smaller lights contain two different optics. One is neutral, and one is a cool light.

    This light is a bit more complicated than a smaller tactical flashlight, as it has five separate buttons that provide several different settings.

    Pros
    • Includes 3 LED's with 6 Different settings
    • Max 2800 lumens
    • Heavy duty body with tripod mount
    Cons
    • Too heavy for backpackers

    Read our full review of the Fenix Flashlights TK76 2800-Lumen Flashlight


  1. Fenix 1000 Lumen Flashlight
  2. Editors Rating:
    (4.8 / 5)
    Weight 3 oz
    Lumens 1000
    Beam Distance 820
    Life Span 430
    Current Price $80.51

    The Fenix PD35 V2.0 1000 Lumen Flashlight with Fenix 2600mAh is an updated version of the original Fenix PD35 that addresses some shortcomings of the original Fenix PD35.

    This latest version features a CREE XP-L HI V3 LED which gives 1000 lumens output with 273 yards max throw distance for an extremely bright and powerful light beam.

    The buttons have also been upgraded. While the tail click is still in place, the side button is now a stainless steel switch which is more durable than the previous version.

    On the body, the distance and placements of buttons are nice for easy, one hand gripping of both buttons. This makes switching between modes a bit easier.

    Pros
    • Waterproof and highly durable flashlight
    • 1000 lumens output with 273 yards max throw distance for an extremely bright and powerful light beam.
    • Upgraded buttons and mode variety
    Cons
    • The included battery can be a bit cheap and doesn't give amount of advertised life.

    Read our full review of the Fenix 1000 Lumen Flashlight


  3. Streamlight 88085 ProTac HL-X USB
  4. Editors Rating:
    (4.8 / 5)
    Weight 6.2
    Lumens 1000
    Beam Distance 1000
    Life Span 50000
    Current Price $89.99

    The Streamlight HL-X LED Flashlight is a popular flashlight with powerful light output and incredible ease of use.

    The Streamlight HL-X LED uses lithium 2 CR-123A batteries, while this model also includes one 18650 USB Lithium-ion battery.

    There’s even a red o-ring outside the battery compartment to help you know when the battery lid is fully secure.

    This flashlight offers TEN-TAP® Programming, which includes three operating programs. They include: 1) high/strobe/low; 2) high only; 3) low/medium/high

    Pros
    • TEN-TAP® Programming which includes 3 operating programs. They include: 1) high/Strobe/low; 2) high only; 3) low/medium/high
    • Nice array of lumen options including High: 1,000 Lumens, Medium: 400 Lumens, Low: 65 Lumens & Strobe mode.
    • Longer head which will give you a much more precise throw
    Cons
    • Does not accept some batteries. Must be specific to the flashlight.

    Read our full review of the Streamlight 88085 ProTac HL-X USB


    Weight 13.6 oz
    Lumens 2000
    Beam Distance 950
    Life Span 50000
    Current Price $79.95

    The Klarus XT11GT 2000 Lumens CREE XPH35 HD E4 LED 18650 Tactical Flashlight is leading the pack of newer, more compact tactical flashlights that pack a lot of brightness into a smaller package.

    The Klarus XT11GT features three different mode cycles with six different setting combinations, including Turbo, high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS.

    In Turbo and strobe mode, you get 2000 lumens of incredibly bright light. Of course, you can dial this back a bit too high, which goes down to 400 lumens. For those nighttime backpackers, this is a lot of light to help you guide you on the trail, but can be a bit too much for most civilian uses.

    Pros
    • 3 different mode cycles with 6 different setting combinations including Turbo, high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS.
    • 2 back switches and one side switch for more precise setting finder
    • 2000 lumen reaches almost 1000 feet
    Cons
    • Tail click seems to be a bit cheap and can break easily. 
    • Turbo 2000 lumen mode seems a bit much and unnecessary for normal users

    Read our full review of the Klarus 2000 Lumens LED Tactical Flashlight


    Weight 17 ox
    Lumens 2200
    Beam Distance 1000
    Life Span 50000
    Current Price $83.99

    The Streamlight 88060 Pro Tac HL 4 2200 Lumen Professional Tactical Flashlight is a beast of a flashlight that is perfect for backpackers who need a high performing, reliable light.

    The Streamlight Pro Tac HL-4 is a beast both in size and output.

    The light itself includes a large flat lens with anti-reflective coating and a frosted TIR optic.

    You get three separate programming settings controlled through TEN-TAP programming, which makes it easy to scroll through and find your desired setting. Settings include high, medium, low, and strobe.

    Read our full review of the Streamlight Pro Tac HL 4 2200 Professional Tactical Flashlight


Weight 10.6 oz
Lumens 900
Beam Distance 1000
Life Span 50000
Current Price $35.99

The Anker Bolder LC90 2-Cell Rechargeable Flashlight is an excellent flashlight for backpackers who need a reliable light that is simple, yet high performing.

The flashlight is powered with one 18650 USB chargeable battery. The battery casing is unique as it’s a 2-step process that helps protect the battery from any water damage and to help you from losing the battery itself.

The charger also includes a light to tell you once it’s fully charged.

The body is built from durable aluminum and includes an extra-long handle and scalloped-bezel in case you need it for striking. It is also shock-resistant to endure any extreme drops.

Its also IP65-rated water-resistant and can handle rain, snow, and puddles.

Pros
  • Extra secure USB chargeable battery casing
  • 900 Lumen, 1000 feet
  • IP65 rated water proofing
Cons
  • Must scroll through all the settings to get your desired setting

Read our full review of the Anker Bolder LC90 2-Cell Rechargeable Flashlight


Weight 4.8 oz
Lumens 350
Beam Distance 500
Life Span 20000
Current Price $41.04

The Streamlight 88061 ProTac 1L-1AA 350 Lumen Dual Fuel Professional Tactical Light is a cool, multi-featured light that will please any gearhead’s desire for a precise tactical flashlight.

One of the most appealing features of this light is its versatility in battery use.

Like other Streamlight tactical flashlights, the 88061 also uses one CR-123A lithium-ion battery, however, you can also use a AA Alkaline OR AA Lithium Battery as well. The only stipulation is that you get different runtime and lumen output with the different batteries.

Perfect for those of you who have a bunch of unused AA batteries hanging in your junk drawers.

 

Pros
  • Uses both CR-123A and AA batteries
  • Good lumen output and run time
  • Comes with a pocket clip
Cons
  • Light tends to break easily

Read our full review of the Streamlight ProTac 350 Lumen Professional Tactical Light


Tactical Flashlights Buying Guide

Everything you need to know before purchasing Flashlights