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17

Perhaps the most obvious and commercially available is solar, which has options ranging from small pocket-sized chargers to roll-out military grade flexible panels. I believe Brunton makes a consumer grade version of the latter (not as bullet-proof), and iGo has some nice versions of the former. I have used both with some success, the panel is probably ...


14

If the GPS is mostly off (i.e. you're only rarely using your GPS app), I think you will get ~2 days of battery life. To get that much battery life, you'd need to do these things: Keep the GPS off as much as possible (i.e. use it no more that 5-6 times a day) Turn it off at night completely keep brightness to a minimum Disable all cellular antennas (may ...


10

In my opinion, the single best feature would be low battery consumption. You only really need a gps and map, so having a low consumption version of these would win for me, possibly with local maps rather than trying to download each section.


8

Some back-of-the-envelope calculations: 12 volts * 4 amps = 48 watts * 8 hours = 384 watt-hours. That's the minimum battery capacity you'll need to power this for a night. The Goal Zero Sherpa 50 you propose to use will power it for about an hour, give or take efficiency losses. To power the blanket for the night, you're looking for something more along ...


6

Presuming you do not have Amateur Radio licenses, or similar qualifications, you are then limited to various unlicensed options. The answer will then vary by region, but as you mention Canada, your best bet will be to use the GMRS/FRS (General Mobile Radio Service / Family Radio Service) which as basically replaced the old CB and walkie-talkie bands for ...


6

My solution is to let the phone be a phone (and GPS and web browser and ...) and take a camera to be a camera. My camera uses AA batteries, it's simple enough to bring spares, and I have a solar recharger for them too. I can take hundreds of pictures before I need to recharge the batteries. I can turn the phone on once a day or so to use the GPS or whatever, ...


5

I've tried very hard to keep a charge on a smart phone while on backpacking trips. It was used primarily for recording GPS routes and photos to look at later rather than for anything important. I tried one of these Powerfilm AA Chargers on my pack and it worked very well for charging AA batteries, but didn't get enough power for the smart phone. For ...


5

Probably as expected, advice varies wildly depending on whether you're talking about relying on charging the batteries for a life / death situation or it'd just be a "nice to have" if such an option was available. If it's for emergency purposes then just bring a spare set of batteries - or more specifically, one more set than you calculate you'll ever need. ...


4

Battery consumption is determined by the software, too. Some stuff polls for new data, some takes GPS readings more often then others, etc. Honestly, I do not consider using a smartphone app for hiking or getting out into the backcountry. For too many of them you need network connectivity, battery life is a real issue (compared to dedicated GPS ...


3

As Rory says, low power consumption is vital, but that's likely not determined by the software, but rather by the hardware and - more importantly - how you use it. The three key things for me in Smartphone GPS map systems are these. Can download maps to the device, rather than stream. (And I wouldn't trust anything claiming to just 'cache' streamed maps, ...


3

Apart from the often mentioned possibility of bringing enough batteries or buying new ones along the way, I would like to list possibilities for recharging. As already mentioned by @LBell, there are the following two: Solar: Solar panels come in a great variety, allowing to find something for most uses. Some models might be able to charge during the hike ...


3

There's a lot of variation between radios. There's even a great deal of variation for a given set. I own a pair of radios advertised as "35-mile range." I don't believe that's false, but it's probably under ideal conditions - a clear day with two people on mountaintops 35 miles apart, with an unobstructed view, for example. I did a test with mine where I ...


3

You could consider looking into something like the PowerPot. They are currently accepting pre-orders on Kickstarter. It is described as follows: Simply put, the PowerPot transforms the heat from cooking into electricity (…) using a technology called thermoelectric power generation. I’m not sure how well it will work, but from their description ...


2

Take an external rechargeable powerpack like one of these:- http://www.amazon.com/PowerGen-External-Blackberry-Sensation-Thunderbolt/dp/B005VBNYDS/ref=dp_cp_ob_hpc_title_1 Choose the size of powerpack according to your trip length and needs, as these things are not lightweight. Obviously, these tend to be bigger and heavier than the device you're looking ...


1

The range mostly depends on the power of your radio. 500 mW is OK, 5 W is much better. You should study what frequency ranges and what maximum power are allowed in your country for public, and go for the max power. Ranges may include FRS, GMRS, LPD, PMR. E.g. in Russia FRS is prohibited and LPD is allowed, while e.g. in Kazakhstan it's vice versa (so we are ...


1

Family Radio Service, the most commonly available walkie talkies, operates on frequencies around 460 MHz. The power is limited to only 500 mW, and as such is very limited. Wikipedia reports that the average range is roughly a mile, which is quite reasonable, given the power levels and poor antennas. Of course, this may vary. If you are wanting more reliable ...


1

Have a look at these solar charger options. Solar charger solio, power traveller, brown dog, snow lizard, Bushnell Bear Grylls SolarWrap Freeloader pro / freeloader, links http://www.instructables.com/id/DYI-iPhone-5-Solar-Charger-with-CAD/ http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Solar-Charger-Reviews In the end I went with an option by a company called Portapow and ...



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