Do I love the backcountry? Yes I do, and for years I loved the peace that comes right along with it. On that note, I’ve tried to keep those experiences electronics free.
As years wore on, and with the advent of social media, I’ve found that this has changed. As I share these experiences with friends and family I find myself bringing along my camera. When I backcountry ski I now like to bring along an Action Cam. While camping for an extended period I may also bring along a tablet to do some photo editing or just to take a look at what I shot on a bigger screen.
Part of the problem bringing these devices along with me, especially on extended trips, is power management. These days however that no longer needs to be an issue. Thanks to companies like Goal Zero we now have several storage battery and solar options to cover us.
For me one of the standout devices in the Goal Zero line is the Sherpa 50. This device perfectly handles all of my power needs. Although the Sherpa 50 is not waterproof it definitely has a rugged build, and kitted up the right way it will provide all of the power essentials one might need.
The Sherpa 50 can be charged a few different ways. Charging the battery up from a wall socket and the car charger will complete a full charge in about 3 hours. For extended trips it can also be powered by solar panels. If I’m just on a day trip or overnighter all I need to do is fully charge the Sherpa 50 before I go. The device has plenty of reserve power to charge my camera, action cam and GPS watch, still leaving me with plenty of juice to keep the tablet I’m editing photos on fully charged as well. When staying out for a few nights car camping I’ll tote along the car charger, and in the backcountry the solar panel comes along to keep the battery charged up on a daily bases.
There are several ports to utilize on the front of the Sherpa 50. The USB port will charge any USB chargeable device. It also has Goal Zeros 6mm Green Port allowing you to use several pigtails (included) to charge various devices right along with Goal Zeros Light-A-Life, a beautiful 350 lumen LED lighting system that is scalable up to 8 lights. It also runs the Light-A-Life Mini, a USB driven light at 100 lumens allowing up to 4 lights chained together. The Laptop Port outputs 19V up to 5A, so most netbooks or smaller laptops to power directly from the Sherpa. A side port allows the addition of an inverter allowing you to use your standard wall plug charger as well. This port also allows you to chain two Sherpa 50’s together when additional power requirements are needed.
The device is relatively small at 4.5 x 1.5 x 5.25 inches and reasonably light at 1.2 lbs. This makes it a perfect backcountry charging device, especially considering the amount of power it holds. Another benefit of the Sherpa 50 is some power to use when your power goes out. Use it during outages to keep your phone charged up and to provide light with the Light-A-Life series of lighting.
Sherpa 50 Specifications
Number of Charges from Sherpa 50
Head Lamp = 12 Charges
Smartphone = 7 Charges
GoPro = 9 Charges
Digital Camera = 5 Charges
Tablet = 1-2 Charges
Netbook = 1 Charge
Wall Charger = 3 hours
Car Charger = 3 hours
Nomad 13 = 8-16 hours
Nomad 20 = 6-12 hours
Cell Type = Li-NMC
Capacity = 58 Wh
Life Cycles = hundreds of cycles
USB = 5V, up to 1.5A
6mm Green Port = 12V, up to 8A
Laptop Port = 19V, up to 5A
Sidecar Port = 9-13V, up to 10A
Inverter = US 110V, up to 0.7A
Weight = 1.2 lbs
Dimensions = 4.5 x 1.5 x 5.25 inches