Sunday, March 04, 2007

Mini Maglite Solitaire

If you're doing some hardcore hiking through the backcountry, you need a real flashlight with some power. But if you're traveling around the world with a light load and just need to find your way to the squat toilet outside now and then, you only need a basic beam of light. This little Maglite can be just the ticket, with only one AAA battery needed and a sweet retail price of $5.99.

The Maglite Solitaire is not much bigger than a cigarette and though it's metal and feels rugged, it weighs next to nothing. It has a keychain hookup that can also be used to hook it to something more substantial. Otherwise the worst drawback of this little torch would be how easy it would be for it to get lost in your pack.

This Maglite has the usual wide-to-spot adjustment and a bulb that can be replaced. It comes in blue, silver, red, and black. You can find it at the usual travel gear stores, but I got mine at Home Depot, for $5.99 plus tax.

Carry this in conjunction with a cheap MP3 player that also uses AAA batteries and you can use a portable battery charger to keep from adding more acid to the world's landfills and trash dumps.


Anonymous said...

I liked carrying a mini maglite (think it was AA) until I discovered it was causing me to get pulled over and searched at more than one airport. I found out the flashlight was getting flagged by the screeners. Maybe this smaller version will be better.

Unknown said...

It's several times more expensive at $40, but I utterly swear by my Arc AAA light. It uses an LED, so on the same cell as a Mag Solitaire it gets 5 hours of very bright runtime, plus another 5 hours at a dimmer intensity that still beats the Mag. I usually feed it lithium AAAs which run even a bit longer and are much lighter than alkalines.

It's also even a bit smaller than the Mag. I carry it in the side pocket of my Leatherman holster, with a mini-Sharpie on the other side.

Anonymous said...

Fenix L0D-CE beats the Arc in brightness and runtime and is also about $40,

Anonymous said...

I really like maglites, we have a maglite mini (the AA battery one) and it's fantastic. I find the little ones a bit too finicky, but you're right, if you just need something, they're a good option. We also used to have a huge D-battery one - not the best idea for travel (as we discovered after carrying it for a month).

We did a review on the AA battery maglite for travellers on our podcast:

King David said...

what is this author talking about?
When I do my 'hardcore hiking through the backcountry,' it is critical to have the lightest load reasonably possible, to improve the hiking. If you're in deep woods, a little light goes a long way because there isn't any ambient light except star/moon light and your flashlight will light up the woods all you need, to get out of the tent to the nearest tree and back. Unless you're night hiking, which isn't the safest idea, a small light, like this one or other AAA mini-lights is perfect with a spare battery or two taking up almost no weight in your pack.

Tim said...

"there isn't any ambient light except star/moon light and your flashlight will light up the woods all you need"

You must do a lot of hiking in the desert if you always have plenty of ambient light. In most other places, if it's a cloudy night and there's no moon you'll be lucky to see the hand in front of your face. Some people insist on a headlamp because of this when they hit the woods.

JS Grame-Smith said...

Flashlight of the maglite torches are really very powerful. I like it's durability and robustness as well as look n feel too. They are unique.
-maglite torch