Fourteen 14ers – Solar Charge

I’ve used solar panels on the glaciers of Pakistan with great success. The Brunton 12 volt charges up AA batteries quickly. This trip requires a bit more portability since we will not be skiing or climbing from a base camp.

Tara and Herb took a moment from their consuming desert lifestyle to demonstrate the rig.

First I had to get my head around the electrical mysteries – the panel is rated for 12 volts. The phone (cigarette lighter plug-in) says it can handle from 4 – 20 volts into it and manage a steady stream of 5.5 volts out, or what I think my phone needs. All math aside, it worked.

Next I shortened the cord with my soldering iron and McGiver skills. String and elastic cord was used to fasten it to my pack in a way it could easily be removed.  Now I can ski, with my back to the sun, and charge my cell phone.

If you visit Moab you will most likely see one of Jesse And Kage’s stretch Coyote Shuttle VW vans. Jesse knows mechanical and electrical mysteries like Larry McMurtry knows westerns. When I walked into his shop he stopped working on his engine rebuild and helped me sort out the basic solar issues I couldn’t figure. There are numerous people that have shared their expertise – I just wanted to say thanks. Ellen for latest snow, Ken for best first aid, Brad for best skins, and Great White Mike for down filled fashion tips.


If you need a ride to Porcupine or the Whole Enchilada give Kage or Jesse a call – 435.260.2097 .

Our revised start ski date is this Thursday, April 8.

David Schipper


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