CygoLite MityCross 350 LED Headlight

Lately the only time I’ve been able to get out and ride the trails around my house is after dark. I have a cygolite HID system that I used for bike commuting in the past, I’ve used it for muni in the past and it works great, but the battery is a brick. So I decided to look around and see what new stuff is out since the LED revolution is taking off. There are some nice LED systems out there that are as bright as the HID lights and last a bunch longer with way smaller batteries.

I went with the CygoLite MityCross 350, it was a close call between that and the Cygolite TridenX, but decided I wanted the smaller of the two so I could have the light and battery on my helmet.

I took it out tonight after charging up the battery (only took 1.5 hrs as I don’t think it was empty, full charge is supposed to only take 4 hrs). It has 3 modes (well actually 6, but only 3 that I would use) High, Med and Low. As I left the driveway the road was wet from earlier rain, I had the light on low and could see everything on the roadway just fine. It runs something like 50 hrs on this setting. I got to the trail and fired it up to High (supposed to last 2.5 hrs on high). The trails are in a forested area and it was DARK! It was the perfect amount of light. I felt very comfortable riding the trails in pitch black with this thing. I road for about 40 minutes, got to a bench, took a rest and just for kicks turned it off to see what I could see… Nothing! It was creepy, I could hear critters stirring about all around me, and I could see nothing, except a bit of light from the clouds above from through the trees. I would have had a terrible time getting out with no light. Fired it back up and went home. The color of the light is pretty white, a good color, not the weird bluish HID or older LED color. It made everything look pretty natural and true to color.

So I’m really happy to be able to have a system where the whole thing can be on my helmet. I would say it was a wee bit heavy up there and I had to crank my helmet tighter so it wouldn’t move around. But I really didn’t notice it after awhile, and it certainly didn’t bother me to the point of saying I didn’t like it. It comes with an extension cord, so you can put the battery in a pack or pocket. After my hour of riding, the battery indicator said I still had over an hour of life left in it.

Yesterday I rode at night with a lesser LED light and had a hard time, not enough light for me to ride. Tonight the darkness had no ill effect on my riding, I would say I may have rode better than in the day. It’s cool to only see the part of the trail that matters, and have everything else blacked out.

The CygoLite LED lights are awesome. I use the DualCross (NiMH) with the stick-on beam diffuser to get a wider angle light. The beam diffuser is a stick on (as in sticky like a sticker) bit of diffused plastic. I don’t know if they have a version of the diffuser for the MityCross or if the DualCross diffuser can be cut down to fit the MityCross. I do like the wider beam for unicycling. I also use the DualCross on my bike.