Headlamps aren’t perfect for everyone, however, and hunter Jim Manroe realized his was spoiling a number of his elk hunts. “There were missed opportunities from my headlamp illuminating the eyes of big game, or generally disturbing them with scattered light when I inadvertently flashed them,” Manroe writes. He needed the illumination of a headlamp to see where he was going, but also needed to be able to turn his head towards a sound without swiveling the light source.
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Manroe struck upon the idea of having the light source attached to his feet, and invented the Bootlamps, “a headlamp for your boot.”
“The lights operate using three AAA batteries and have three settings – white, for general hiking; red, for hiking with a soft light that will not spook animals; and green, which offers less eyestrain over time. You activate them by simply pushing the button on top – one click for white, two clicks for red, three clicks for green.
“The lid is rated as highly water resistant. They’re attached to your boot via an easy-to-use 18-inch long, 1-inch wide elastic cinch strap. The hook and loop strap is placed under your instep, and the two prongs on the front of the unit are slipped under your boot or shoelaces, resulting in a slip-proof attachment. The unit is made so that when it is mounted in the proper position, the light will shine where you’ll be walking.”
And if you’re walking through water or deep snow, the Bootlamps can be slid up to be worn around the knees. Just make sure you don’t take a knee, or you’ll be out 30 bucks (they retail for $60 a pair).
Here’s a video demonstrating their usage: