Light & Motion Urban 850 Trail Bike Light Review

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Hidden within Light & Motion’s line of commuter bike lights you’ll find the Urban 850 Trail light. From the outside it looks like it might belong in an office worker’s messenger bag, but make no mistake: this light is designed with trail riding in mind. Over the past several weeks I (Jeff) have found it to be the perfect complement to my own night riding set-up.

The Light

The Urban 850 is an 850 lumen, single LED lamp with a rechargeable battery that lasts up to 1.5 hours on high. This light cuts a compact and lightweight profile, weighing just 120g (confirmed), including the built-in strap. With the strap, it’s easy to slap the Urban 850 onto your handlebars, and Light & Motion also includes a helmet mount and GoPro-compatible mount as well.

The light offers four modes (shown above): high (850 lumens), medium (375 lumens), low (185 lumens), and pulse. The pulse mode is really nice: instead of strobing like many lights do, it gently pulses brighter and darker, allowing your eyes to more easily adjust to this ultra-low power mode.

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As a part of Light & Motion’s commuter line, the Urban 850 Trail features side lights to improve visibility on either side of the light. Of course, on the trail side visibility isn’t as important as it is on the road, so the side lights on the Trail light are “darkened crimson” color, instead of the amber side lights used on other Urban models. Not only that, you can disable the lights entirely if you choose, saving battery life and potentially improving night vision on darkened paths.

Commuters will also be stoked about the fact that the Urban 850 Trail light is USB rechargeable. And everyone, even those who don’t stare at a computer all day, can appreciate the ubiquity of USB cables and chargers. No more looking for just the right power block for your bike lights–just grab any USB charger and juice it up!

Finally, it’s worth noting that the Urban 850 Trail light is the most powerful of all the Urban models at 850 lumens. This is way more light than a commuter will need, so clearly it’s designed with dark trail riding in mind.

Read on for two perspectives on this light: one from Helena, and one from myself (Jeff).