Let’s be honest about it – even if you’re a hardcore survivalist, when camping, having just a compass and a map doesn’t cut it anymore. Whether it’s tracking your route with a hiking app, keeping track of your position using GPS or letting your loved ones know you’re safe, in the technologically driven world of today adventurers rarely leave their homes without at least one electronic device.
Tablets, smartphones, GoPros, and GPS devices all have rechargeable batteries. Even headlamps, headphones, water purification systems, and watches now need to be powered up regularly. But worry not – today there are smart ways to keep our precious gadgets charged up and running properly even when we’re away from home.
Battery pack (power bank)
We all know them as ‘power banks’ but a ‘battery pack’ is what they are called when it comes to camping equipment. Battery packs are the same thing as power banks except they have a rugged outer shell for better protection. Like power banks, they usually have a capacity of around 2000 or 3000 mAh but electronics of this sort can go up to 10,000 or even 15,000 mAh. Every portable electronic device has its own battery capacity and if you are bringing multiple ones make sure your battery pack covers the total capacity of these devices.
What about charging your charging device? I know this may seem complicated but there is one very cool and simple way of doing so. Solar panels aren’t only meant to be installed on a roof – today you can find small portable solar panels that you can carry either in or on your bag, which means that you can collect energy while on the go. Of course, these devices are smaller than what you would usually get for camping, but there are other bigger panels that you can lay out on the ground and charge your electronics directly or fill up your battery pack with juice for later.
Portable Battery Generator
If you are going to stay at a camp or go car camping for a longer period than you usually do, then I suggest you get a portable battery generator. These generators are not pocket-friendly as they not only charge devices with USB ports but TV sets and refrigerators can be powered too. Their capacity is not in the milliamp range and it is usually expressed in Wh (watt-hours). They also have a standard AC wall outlet and 12V power ports alongside the array of USB ports.
These chargers can fit in your pocket and are ideal for one-day trips as their maximum capacity ranges around the 2000 or 3000 marks. They usually come in the size of a Cuban cigar with one USB port and a light to show you how much juice you have left. Some even have a screen that shows you the battery percentage. They are very lightweight.