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Portable battery packs

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
 
J

James R B

Guest
I'm planning my trip along the Camino in July.I recently bought a solar charger that I can hang on my pack.I let it sit out in the sun and so far it's getting the job done so it should be good to go on the road.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
I'm planning my trip along the Camino in July.I recently bought a solar charger that I can hang on my pack.I let it sit out in the sun and so far it's getting the job done so it should be good to go on the road.
James:

How much does it weigh?

Joe
 

Latecomer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
VDLP (Sept 2015)

CF SJPDP-SdC+
(Sept/Oct 2018)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight? Joe
I used this for my phone (on high camera and GPS usage days), and was happy with the performance but it was a little bulky (thick).
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DGJJNVO/?tag=camiforu-20 Poweradd Pilot X1 5200mAh Portable Charger Power Bank

External battery packs are sort of commoditys now - pick one on Amazon that has more than a 100 reviews or so which are generally good. I don't see the weight on this one but it seem slimmer and I but I am guessing it is about 5 ounces and is slim.
http://www.amazon.com/Portable-Charger-External-UNIVERSAL-Smartphones/product-reviews/B019FZV5F4/ Portable Charger: Stalion Saver E5 Power Bank External Battery Backup Travel Pack 5000mAh
Sometimes not enough outlets are convenient in an albergue and having a battery pack can reduce the need to charge your device every night.

For me, without a doubt the battery pack was worth the weight.
 

Waka

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Some but not all, and other routes too.
I have a 6000 mAh solar charger, it can also be charged from the mains. O did toy with the idea of taking it last year, but decided against it. I never really had a problem with charging my mobile phone, but I think if I was wanting to use other devices I think it would have come in very useful. On a full charge I can get 6 iPhone charges out of it.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
My son purchased an Anker powercore 2010 a 20000mAh portable charger. We have been playing with it since Christmas. It has been used to charge 4 cellphones and 2 Ipads. This seems like more than I would ever need. That said, using GPS on my Fitbit drains the battery every two days and that is for short walks. The main drawback is the weight 12 oz's. or 340 grams.

Joe
 
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
Why do walkers feel the need to use GPS - what's happened to all the perfectly good yellow arrows?
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
Why do walkers feel the need to use GPS - what's happened to all the perfectly good yellow arrows?
Spursfan:

I am not using the GPS as a directional. Just using the function to track my daily walk (ie: distance walked, steps, etc.) I still plan to just follow the arrows or my intuition when necessary.

Joe
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Why do walkers feel the need to use GPS - what's happened to all the perfectly good yellow arrows?
Years past signage on the Valcarlos alternative out of SJPdP was miniscule yellow arrows painted on popsicle-like sticks and rather randomly attached to trees, logs, etc. Eventually I sensed that I was going north within a dense wood where the correct path should be basically west. Backtracking to the last marker nailed to a moveable stake I spotted with RELIEF a distant farmer; he walked towards me as I walked towards him. When asked the way to Arneguy he simply quarter-turned the stake and replied "Oh those children they just love to confuse you pilgrims". ...Luckily the signage has VASTLY improved over recent years and there are no more moveable arrows, but a basic sense of direction is still most helpful.

MM
 

alipilgrim

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2005), Frances (2007), Madrid/Frances (2011), 1/2 VdP (2012),
I should think you'd be able to find an outlet to charge the GPS every night. Also, you could keep the cord handy and ask nicely in any bar you stop at if you could use their power. If you are purchasing a beverage or meal, they may not mind..
 
Spursfan:

I am not using the GPS as a directional. Just using the function to track my daily walk (ie: distance walked, steps, etc.) I still plan to just follow the arrows or my intuition when necessary.

Joe
Joe
Even so, why bother - the distance between all points is in all the guidebooks - and, as for the number of steps, I'd rather not know!
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
Joe
Even so, why bother - the distance between all points is in all the guidebooks - and, as for the number of steps, I'd rather not know!
Spursfan:

Just a personal preference on my part. Not much of a bother, it is tracked off my Fitbit.

Joe
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
I should think you'd be able to find an outlet to charge the GPS every night. Also, you could keep the cord handy and ask nicely in any bar you stop at if you could use their power. If you are purchasing a beverage or meal, they may not mind..
Alipilgrim:

The GPS is in my watch. What is needed is a USB port, not so readily available.

Joe
 

Kenknight

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Considering the Primitivio (2016)
As others have noted batteries are commodities these days. I've had good success with Anker and would go with them. I've never had much luck with solar. In anything but direct light they just don't seem to charge. Even in direct light they're slow.

By the way, whatever you pick I suggest taking two charging cables. I've had cables fail and it can be a chore to replace them. Don't cheap out buy decent cables. If you're getting Lightning cables for an Apple device do get MFI ones.
 

alipilgrim

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2005), Frances (2007), Madrid/Frances (2011), 1/2 VdP (2012),
Alipilgrim:

The GPS is in my watch. What is needed is a USB port, not so readily available.

Joe
Sure, I get it. One idea: would a little Apple power charger plug also work for your watch? It's tiny and a USB port. I'd think you'd just have to check the output amount.
 

MaidinBham

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances SJPP to Muxia, April (2014)
Camino Portuguese Lisbon>Santiago, April/May (2016)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
Hi Joe
Here is link for the one I have. Haven't used on Camino, and still trying to decide whether to pack for upcoming CP. RavPower looks like a quality company, and gets great reviews. They have different sizes and will give you the weight also. My 13000mAh battery weighs 9.7 ounces, but I have other packs by GoalZero. So figure out how much juice you will need and then buy pack accordingly for how much mAh you need. You likely will not need something as big as 13000 and the weight is significant. Also account for fact that recharging a pack will take several hours.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MPIGPUY/?tag=camiforu-20

Buen Camino,
Janice
 

Ahhhs

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago, May 2015
Porto to Santiago, April 2016
Muxia-Finisterre-Santiago, April 2016
Camino Del Norte, April 2017
I took a GoalZero charger and never used it. It's pretty easy to find a plug to recharge, especially at night. I sat near electrical outlets during lunch breaks when needed. Of course it's not always available and it depends on how many devices you need to charge. I just brought my iPhone which served me well as phone, camera, and computer.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid to Santiago (May 2016)
I'll be carrying my Garmin GPS, which tends to eat through batteries quite quickly. To save myself from having to either carry a whole load of spares, or else have to find replacements every few days, I've decided to go with rechargeable batteries and a charger. The clever thing is, though, that if the batteries are in the charger, it can also be used to charge anything with a micro-USB port.
 

MaidinBham

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances SJPP to Muxia, April (2014)
Camino Portuguese Lisbon>Santiago, April/May (2016)
Wish they would invent another Garminfone. Built by Asus and Garmin with stand alone GPS and free Garmin lifetime maps. Still use it for navigation in my car.
@Ahhhs, I dont think OP stated where his camino begins or ends, but if on CP, or using GPS several hours a day he will need portable battery pack.
Buen Camino,
Janice
 

MaidinBham

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances SJPP to Muxia, April (2014)
Camino Portuguese Lisbon>Santiago, April/May (2016)
I'll be carrying my Garmin GPS, which tends to eat through batteries quite quickly. To save myself from having to either carry a whole load of spares, or else have to find replacements every few days, I've decided to go with rechargeable batteries and a charger. The clever thing is, though, that if the batteries are in the charger, it can also be used to charge anything with a micro-USB port.
Yes, these are very useful, and rechargeable batteries have come a long way in the last few years. Have replaced all batteries with rechargeable Eneloop's or good quality Japanese rechargeable's, and a smart charger. And some satisfaction that I make my carbon footprint as small as possible.

Janice
 

BrienC

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés, July 2015
Via de la Plata/Camino Sanabrés, Oct/Nov 2016
An excerpt from my preparation handbook:
"The simple solution, and a huge weight saving measure, would be to purchase a European power adaptor from Amazon.com or other retailer. You can also wait until arriving in Europe to pick one up. These devices have the Europlug round pins and are designed to work with the 220-volt/50-hertz power found in Europe, thus saving the need for a travel adapter or transformer.
An optional piece of technology too is a battery pack. This item does add weight to your pack, but provides a couple advantages: Additional energy capacity for your phone or tablet and the ability to charge your phone overnight in your sleeping bag or somewhere else in your immediate control. Simply charge the battery pack on arrival at that night’s lodging while you are cleaning up and having dinner. Then, charge your phone while in your possession, rather than sitting out on a bench plugged into the power strip.
Look for a battery pack in the 2,500 to 5,000mAh (milliamp hour) range, larger for tablets. Also, make sure to take along the USB cable required to charge the battery pack from your Europlug adaptor, if the connector end (at the battery pack) is different from that of your phone or tablet."

Beyond the aforementioned, I learned there was no need of the solar panel I brought. I sent it home in Leon.

Buen Camino
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), CP(13), CN(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18), VdlP(19)
Wish they would invent another Garminfone. Built by Asus and Garmin with stand alone GPS and free Garmin lifetime maps. Still use it for navigation in my car.
@Ahhhs, I dont think OP stated where his camino begins or ends, but if on CP, or using GPS several hours a day he will need portable battery pack.
Buen Camino,
Janice
MaidinBham:

I will be walking a Madrid-Frances-Invierno Camino. Starting on March 31st. I believe using GPS to monitor my walk will require a portable charger. I have decided to go with the Anker 2010, 20000 mah charger. It should be more than enough. The only issue, imo, is it weighs 12 0z's.

Ultreya,
Joe
 

MaidinBham

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances SJPP to Muxia, April (2014)
Camino Portuguese Lisbon>Santiago, April/May (2016)
MaidinBham:

I will be walking a Madrid-Frances-Invierno Camino. Starting on March 31st. I believe using GPS to monitor my walk will require a portable charger. I have decided to go with the Anker 2010, 20000 mah charger. It should be more than enough. The only issue, imo, is it weighs 12 0z's.

Ultreya,
Joe
Hi Joe, your Camino sounds wonderful. Good luck with your planning. For me 20000 mAh would be overkill, but there again, I am a lightweight, only have compact camera and smartphone to charge, and will try to keep backpack weight to 16 lbs.

Buen Camino - Ultreya!
Janice
 

kusitb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SdC May-June 2016
I'll be carrying my Garmin GPS, which tends to eat through batteries quite quickly. To save myself from having to either carry a whole load of spares, or else have to find replacements every few days, I've decided to go with rechargeable batteries and a charger. The clever thing is, though, that if the batteries are in the charger, it can also be used to charge anything with a micro-USB port.
Hi Rob the Slob,

What Garmin unit do you have, and what type of battery does it take? Also, what charger do you have?

I have a Garmin 62stc and it takes AA batteries. I use a Powerex C9000 charger at home and I am extremely satisfied with it. However, it is too big for the Camino, so I am researching chargers.

If I understand your post above, your charger can charge the Garmin batteries (I'm assuming AA), and then, you can keep the charged AAs in the charger, take the charger out of the outlet and you can then use this to charge any device that uses micro-USB port?

If this is so, can you please let me know what charger you have?

Thanks in advance.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid to Santiago (May 2016)
Hi @kusitb, I have the Garmin Oregon 450t. It runs on two AA batteries.

The charger that I have is the Varta 57920 2-in-1 Power Pack. It takes four AA rechargeables, so I'll have two fully charged batteries in the Garmin, and four more in the charger. Yes, when it has four batteries it does indeed work as a micro-USB charger -- like most power packs, it's simply a matter of changing the USB cable from the IN port to the OUT port. I've tried it with just two batteries, but that doesn't work. I haven't seen one for just two batteries either, but even so, carrying four spares is much better than carrying loads of spare AAs *and* a micro-USB charger.
 

kusitb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SdC May-June 2016
Thanks @Rob the Slob - I will definitely investigate this. Do you happen to have a dedicated camera that takes non-AA batteries (usually, Li-on)? If so, how do you charge those?

I myself have a Digipower charger that can charge 2 AA, or 2AAA, or any size Li-on... BUT this is *just* a charger - it is not a powerbank. Of course, I could bring this one too, but I'm trying to find ways on how to cut weight.

BTW, do you know of any other brands or chargers similar to the one you mentioned? I can see similar chargers:

http://goo.gl/wbpSv8 (Powerex)
http://goo.gl/NMfmHS (Watson)

I'm in Canada, and unfortunately, these are not readily available here.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid to Santiago (May 2016)
Hi @kusitb, sorry, can't help you there. I just stumbled across this on Amazon and realised it was what I needed.

My camera is a Nikon Coolpix s9100, which takes Li-on batteries. I have a spare, and to charge I just hook up the camera to the Varta battery pack, same as any other device.
 

kusitb

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SdC May-June 2016
Hi @Rob the Slob, OK - so you charge your camera battery while it is inside the camera (as opposed to having a separate charger that you plug right into the wall outlet)? I usually use a walll charger, but I think my camera can do USB charging. However, my wife's camera is another matter altogether. I need to investigate this further. Thank you very much for your help.
 

Lady M

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
September - October (2019)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
I am planning on taking this external charger Anker PowerCore 5000, Ultra-Compact 5000mAh External Battery with High-Speed Charging Technology, Power Bank for iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy and More https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01CU1EC6Y/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_0ZGpCbG4RFHZW

While I agree with all the comments about the ease of finding an outlet to recharge your phone, from a security perspective if the outlet is not where I have a complete line of sight I don’t think my phone is safe. Replacing a stolen battery and a cable is a lot easier than replacing a stolen phone.
 

gerardcarey

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF x2, CPL
I take only a phone having a 4000 mAh battery and a good camera.
I need to accompany it with a small, therefore lightweight, charger capable of charging the phone only once. Once is enough.
On gaining access to a power point I plug the charger in first, then the phone to the charger with a 2 metre cord.
I can then lie in my bunk while both are recharged, and read at the same time if I want to.
A small EU double adapter is helpful in accessing power points already in use.
The charger detailed in the immediately preceding post appears to be eminently suitable.
Regards
Gerard
 
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Mugatu

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Finisterre, Muxia (2018)
Camino Frances or Norte (2019 , June 27-Aug 8)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01JIYWUBA/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o06__o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

This was my primary method of charging my iPhone 8plus, good compromise in weight(6.98oz), safety (would charge the battery rather than the phone at albergues), and time (quick charging & multiple charges depending on device and charged level).

The company also has excellent customer service, I had one that failed charging to full capacity, and they sent me a replacement within a couple of days.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP-Finisterre X 2 - 2016 & 2017, El Norte - Irun to Vilalba 2018
I find that a 10 foot/3 meter charging cable allows me to charge my phone in my bunk in most albergues. I also always carry a 4 ounce portable battery that charges my phone 1-2 times. As a woman walking alone I think that it's important to always be able to use my phone in an emergency.
 

jeffnd

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
March/April 2014
GPS. Not for navigation, but to keep track of actual distances, times, etc. I used a free app on my tablet when I walked and I'm glad I did, the information has come in very handy.

Battery packs. We all know that theft happens on the Camino and it can happen quickly. I'd rather lose a $40 battery pack than a camera or phone.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
Battery packs: My son brought one when we walked together in 2016, which he found pretty essential and I used on occasion. I took one with me in 2018. Going forward, if I were heading out by myself, I probably wouldn't take one. If I was going with one or two other people, I'd take one for the group.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
I didn't use on on my camino but now I use the iWALK Duo. It is rectangular and thin and so it is easy to hold both it and the phone in one hand while it charges the phone. It has two short built-in cables for charging with either a Lightning connection for iPhones or micro-USB for Androids (maybe your friend with the wrong phone needs an emergency charge.) It is a 3000mAh battery and weighs 80 grams (less than 3 oz.)

Shown on Amazon at: https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias=mobile&field-keywords=iwalk+ubo3000

The manual is at: https://manuals.coolblue.be/b6/iwalk-duo-powerbank-3000-mah-zwart.pdf
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2018
I have used portable battery banks in the past and found them to be heavy, clunky and found it is more parts to lose. Using an iPhone, I learned that the Apple produced piggyback silicone cases with battery and pass through charging as a good way to go.

They are relatively heavy but add double to triple the time between needed charges. They are expensive, but combine a protective silicone case with the contoured battery. WIth the Apple piggyback battery on my old i6s iPhone, I could go a minimum of three full days on Camino, using GPS constantly, before I had to recharge.

Also, and just FYI, earlier today, I read that Apple has just released these cases for the iPhone X, XS, and XR models. I now have an XR, so this is of interest. I presently get 2 full and long days between charging. According to the specifications, the new case should double my time to 3 - 4 days. I am thinking on it...

IMHO, a battery case that doubles as a protective case is the way to go. Several makers produce these for Android phones, and for Apple products. But, as far as I know, only Apple makes the contoured silicone case with the pass-through charging capability for iPhones.

Hope this helps.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Portugues (2017)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
Last year I debated taking a GPS device but in the end, did not. I didn’t need it.
 

tomnorth

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015); February/March (2020)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
I got the Anker Powercore 13000 for my next Camino. It weighs 240g/8.5oz. I thought it was a good compromise size.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
I got the Anker Powercore 13000 for my next Camino. It weighs 240g/8.5oz. I thought it was a good compromise size.
I used an Anker with near the same Mah rating. I used it to power my GoPro continuously for 10+ hours for the video from SJPdP to Roncesvalles. I still had about 25% of its capacity remaining at the end. :)

I did mail it, and the other video gear stuff home the next day when the project was finished, though.
 

tomnorth

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015); February/March (2020)
I used an Anker with near the same Mah rating. I used it to power my GoPro continuously for 10+ hours for the video from SJPdP to Roncesvalles. I still had about 25% of its capacity remaining at the end. :)

I did mail it, and the other video gear stuff home the next day when the project was finished, though.
Good to know. Here is my thinking on bringing this next Camino. I sleep way better if I can listen to white noise through earbuds. Many albergues don’t have power outlets near beds. So, I’m thinking that I could use the Anker unit for extra power to make it through the night and not wake with a near dead iPhone. I’ve tried ear plugs but I just can’t sleep with them. I wind up hearing my blood pulsing through my veins.
 

Jarin

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
4-5/2019, Camino Primitivo + Fisterra
Keep in mind that there is restrictions on airplanes for batteries over 10'000 mAh in capacity...
I think there is restriction in "Wh" not in "mAh". And this limit is 100Wh max.
So for Li-ion (3,7V): 100Wh = 27 000mAh.
I plan to take 20 000mAh power bank (400 g) for my phone with battery 5 000mAh
 

Jarin

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
4-5/2019, Camino Primitivo + Fisterra
Yes, thanks, it´s really a good idea. And also 2 cables :)
 

tomnorth

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015); February/March (2020)
This is my essential Camino sleep kit. The buff holds the earbuds in at night. I use the White Noise app on my iPhone to sleep. I’m not a fan of earplugs. The Belkin adapter allows my to listen to the earbuds while charging my iPhone. The Anker power pack is for the nights when I have no outlet near me. Finally, the power adapter provides three USB ports for charging and an electrical outlet. Not shown is the ten-foot long Anker Lightning cable.51731
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP-Finisterre X 2 - 2016 & 2017, El Norte - Irun to Vilalba 2018
This is my essential Camino sleep kit. The buff holds the earbuds in at night. I use the White Noise app on my iPhone to sleep. I’m not a fan of earplugs. The Belkin adapter allows my to listen to the earbuds while charging my iPhone. The Anker power pack is for the nights when I have no outlet near me. Finally, the power adapter provides three USB ports for charging and an electrical outlet. Not shown is the ten-foot long Anker Lightning cable.
That's pretty much what I bring, except that my earbuds stay in without a Buff.
Did you plan to post a picture here?
 

LesR

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2017)
Since I am planning to use GPS on this walk, I am leaning towards a portable battery charger. For those who have done this or plan too, which battery do you use or plan to use? Are thay worth the extra weight?

Joe
I too bought a solar powered charger/battery pack for CF2018.

Battery pack was good (kept my mobile phone (running between albergues when the battery was failing) and when fully charged had enough power to run the phone for two to three days but the solar charger was next to useless - its charging capacity was insufficient to make a difference to the level of charge in the battery pack.

In the end I simply recharged the battery pack at night in the albergues and didn't even bother putting it n the sun as I was walking.

Theory of carrying a solar powered battery pack is good but in this case, the practice was another story - at least the solar cells weighed practically nothing...
 

Ian L

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances summer 2017 (SJPP to Fromista)
Plan on returning in 2019 (Fromista to Santiago)
I just got this Goal Zero Flip 10 battery pack that weighs 2.7oz. Its only 2600mAh, but the USB port will still charge your phone when the battery pack is charging.
 

Prentiss Riddle

Aprendiz de todo, maestro de nada
Camino(s) past & future
Poco a poco: we're nibbling away at the Francés. (2015, 2016 & 2017)
For what it's worth, here are Wirecutter's recommendations. I'm a big Wirecutter fan and they've never steered me wrong. Note that they didn't prioritize weight as highly as a backpacker might, though.


I'm a big believer in having a battery pack you can charge at the communal outlet, and keeping your phone with you in your bunk...

Also, for phone purposes I'd rather carry two 3000 mAh chargers than one 6000 mAh charger, when the cost and weight are about the same, so I prefer the Jackery Mini over the Jackery Bolt.
 
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MikeJS

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francis (2011), Norte (2012), VdlP (Apr 2016). Sureste/Invierno (Apr/May 2017).
Joe
Even so, why bother - the distance between all points is in all the guidebooks - and, as for the number of steps, I'd rather not know!
Some routes are still not that well marked and it can be easy to go adrift. The GPS adds certainty.
 

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