So this whole thing is a colossal learning experience. Isn’t everything? Ok, well point being, I am learning a lot about the extent to which equipment in the backcountry is a delicate balance of pro and con. Usually the “pro” is a certain amount of function and/or comfort while the main “con” is usually the weight and space that is taken up.
Little things add up, so when you get ready to shoulder your pack after adopting the “oh what the hell, it doesn’t weigh that much” mentality, you will be in for a surprise… but learning the hard way about packing too much does help you really appreciate the essential items you have with you.
Every day that we spend climbing during Project 365 is of critical importance since we are telling a story–and a long, intricate one at that. This means that recording the details of every day is paramount. Being in the back country of Joshua Tree National Park proved the value of our solar gear from Goal Zero since we were powering ALL of our cameras, phones and computers off of one 150 watt battery and two 15 watt panels shown above. We also had a smaller lightweight panel too that we used on the go for charging smaller devices when we were away from camp (see picture below)
We were shooting a lot of nighttime, long-exposure shots with two DSLRs–these eat the battery life in a BIG way. We were also shooting a lot of timelapse and in-camp photo timelapses and video with a Go Pro. Lastly, we had to keep Stef’s computer charged up so we could dump our footage at the end of each day and use her phone to update our facebook page! The Goal Zero Escape 150 power pack kept us going with no problems–not once did we have to pass up a shot because we were backed up waiting for a charge.
It’s not easy climbing every day. It’s not easy filming every day. Its straight up hard work doing both together every day–with so much on the line for us we literally depend on having this equipment. Next time we head out into the backcountry, I am going to try and do without as much as I can to save my back and knees…but I will grind down every spare bit of cartilage in my body to make sure I can pack out my Goal Zero gear because without it…we are powerless. The dichotomy of being in the wild but being fully powered is simply amazing. Keep watching our project to see more solar gear in action–or better yet, get outside and try it for yourself!