Packing Power

BioLiteCamping has come along way since the days of A-frame tarp tents and roasting hot dogs on a stick. We have ultralight tents made from ripstop nylon and camp stoves that can charge your smartphone as you cook your dinner. People no longer have to rely on campfires for light and stories for entertainment. We have headlamps and battery powered lanterns, and we can update our Facebook statuses with the help of a wireless hotspot. Technology has totally revolutionized the way that we go camping.

While camping used to be a primitive venture into the wilderness, that’s no longer the case. We’re taking our tech out into nature, and camping comfortable as you want it to be. However, the tech that’s finding its way tentside needs to be powered, and you can’t just plug your battery charger into a knot on a tree. If you’re camping with battery powered equipment, you need to come prepared.

Check your batteries. Before you head out, make sure your batteries are charged. It’s a good idea to invest in a battery tester so you can see just how much life your batteries have. You don’t want to run out of juice, but there’s no sense in replacing batteries that still have plenty of life left in them.

Bring backups. Even if your batteries are fully charged, it’s a good idea to bring extras. You won’t necessarily need to bring extras on an overnight trip, but if you’re out for multiple days, you definitely should. This is especially true for crucial items like headlamps, but maybe not as important for your radio.

Buy a solar charger.  Your phone and laptop can’t run on fresh air, but they can run on sunshine. Solar chargers are a great way to keep your electronics charged, and they’re a more environmentally friendly option than burning gas to run your car charger. However, if you’re relying solely on a solar charger, be prepared to go without power. Most solar chargers require direct sunlight, so if you catch a couple rainy days, you will run out of juice.

Conserve your energy. Instead of just relying on chargers or extra batteries, try to conserve the battery life of your gear. Turn off your phone if you’re not using it, or put it on airplane mode. Instead of leaving your lantern on the entire night, make a fire and enjoy a more natural light. Turn off your headlamp when you don’t need full visibility. It’s those little things that can make your batteries last longer and keep you from running out of power.

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