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REI Candle Lantern

photo: REI Candle Lantern fuel-burning lantern


Price MSRP: $19.95
Historic Range: $3.99-$27.95
Reviewers Paid: $1.00-$17.00


3 reviews
5-star:   1
4-star:   1
3-star:   1
2-star:   0
1-star:   0

The REI Candle Lantern is a lightweight candle lantern that utilizes a self feeding candle system which burns off all excess wax, providing up to 9 hours of burn time. The lantern itself is very light, consisting of mainly aluminum and glass weighing in at only a few ounces. The candle lantern's heat output makes it an excellent addition for a tent, reducing condensation and creating warmth and light. Note the bigger the tent the less effective it will be at reducing condensation. All in all the simple candle lantern is a must-have low tech gadget, and I would never get rid of mine.


  • Bright
  • Compact
  • Actually burns for 9 hours
  • Many accesories avalible
  • Windproof


  • Wax spills easily
  • Can get very hot
  • Rather delicate
  • Leftover wax chunk difficult to remove

I picked my candle lantern up about a year ago at the local Goodwill, as I do a lot of my gear. I found it new in the packaging with one unlit candle inside it, and at one dollar I was instantly excited. That night I lit the candle and set it on the kitchen table, it ended up lasting just over 10 hours. So that weekend I went to REI and picked up two packs of regular 9 hour candles

The candle lantern's first field use was at Lake Valhalla, Washington, in mid February. I lit the lantern at 10 p.m., woke up and blew it out at 6:30 a.m. with some candle to spare. The tent was bone dry and a nice 50 degrees Fahrenheit, despite the fact that we were camped on 10' of snow.

Candles come in three different types: the original paraffin wax 9 hour candle, the citronella 9 hour candle (Blue) colored one, and a beeswax 9 hour candle which produces less harmful gasses as well as gives off a pleasant scent. The lanterns and candles are all made by UCO corp.

Not only are there choices in candles, there are also choices in accessories.

At online stores such as eBay, Cabellas, and REI these accessories are available:

  • Downward reflector
  • Side reflector
  • Replacement glass chimneys
  • Parts rebuild kits
  • Neoprene travel case and LED conversion kits

I would highly recommend this lantern to anyone. Though this may not be a necessity, once you use it you won't want to camp without it.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $1 Goodwill

Works great but it is heavy.


  • Very bright
  • Dripless candle


  • Gets hot
  • Heavy

Bought this as a gift for my wife because she wanted an alternate source of light when in the tent. It is a great lantern, but when we started to go lightweight, it was too much weight. We still use it for short hikes. 

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $17

I bought this latern after my cousin brought it with him on a trip we had to Maine. What I use it for the most is a dinner table light. It gives a warm glow sitting on the table or I also bought the reflector (sold seperatly) and then hang it over the table. As the candles burns a spring pushes it up to the top of the latern. Candles are replaced by unscrewing the bottom and are sold seperatly in three packs ($2.50).

To put the candle out, I suggest just to push the top down rather then blow it out. I blew it out once and blew candle wax all over the glass, which can be replaced easily if broken or spattered with wax. I also bought the neopreme cocoon ($7.95) to protect it from damage.

This candle lantern won't replace my headlamp or latern for primary lumination, but it does compliment the camp with a nice romantic dinner atmosphere.

Price Paid: $15.95

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