This precise, super-bright, long-lasting and ultra-reliable Spot headlamp from Black Diamond Equipment ranks consistently high with hikers, backpackers, campers, cliff climbers and many others who need to keep their hands free while moving around in the dark.

The Spot has two beams: a spot beam, and a proximity beam for close activities. Combined, the two beams give out an amazing 300 lumens of adjustable light. The Spot is waterproof and has IPX8 protection with sealed electronics. It also has seven lighting modes — including red night vision — to allow for any situation you encounter, and its “brightness memory” turns the light on to your preferred brightness level (saving battery life). Sleek, with a low profile, the Spot runs on three AAA batteries for a total weight of 3.2 ounces. It will burn from 25 to 180 hours, depending on power setting, and comes in five colors. $39.95.

In Sonoma County, Black Diamond products are sold at Athleta in Petaluma and REI in Santa Rosa. To find dealers in other locations, go to

Do's And Don'ts Of Fire Retardant Cleaning


- Phos-Chek is designed to wash off in light rain, which is good news for many property owners this week. If there is any remaining, it can be rinsed off with running water. Wet the retardant down, wash it away, wait 15 minutes and repeat, and it should come off.

- If Phos-Chek sticks to surfaces like a roof, wood or sidewalk, a soft bristle brush, or a biodegradable cleaner can be used to help speed its removal.

- To remove it from your skin, wash with gentle soap and water.

If an animal appears sick from drinking from puddles or standing water, owners should seek immediate medical attention and advise the veterinarian that the animal may have ingested a detergent or fertilizer-based product. Up in the sky, a small band of firefighters fought to slow the wildfires’ advance and aid the crews on the ground.


- Don’t use a high pressure power-washer, which can push the product further into surfaces like stucco or concrete. If it’s deeply embedded, it may not come out.

- Don’t use hard brushes or stiff bristles to scrub it off, for the same reason.

- Don’t use bleach or harsh chemicals to clean decks, outdoor furniture or homes. Harmful fumes can result.

- Don’t leave Phos-Chek standing in puddles or pools, where pets or wildlife might drink it. After the rains, be particularly vigilant. Fill with sand, soil or other absorbent material that can be removed if necessary.


Read all of the PD's fire coverage here