By Eric Jackson
I wanted to give a heads up that my “EJ’s Rolling and Bracing” book is at the printer and will be available this spring. It teaches the rolling and bracing basics, the mental side, bomproofing your roll, and even helping to teach others. I think you’ll find it a worthy read. My second edition of Strokes and Concepts will be finished editing soon, and off to the printer. Stackpole Publishers will be distributing the books again this time. It has been 18 years since I wrote my last book- “Playboating”.
When do I have time to write books, you might wonder? In Africa at training camps, of course. The only issue is that there is no electricity. Writing for hours each day, taking photos, etc. burns a lot of power. This year I had a Goal Zero Nomad 20 solar panel and the Goal Zero Sherpa 100 power storage unit- A/C converter to keep my laptop charged and my GoPro cameras. It worked wonders. I put my panels out after breakfast when the sun came up and they charged my Sherpa 100, my phone, and typically 1 GoPro. I went on the water with my other GoPro and trained, took photos, etc.. When I got back, I would write until my laptop died (3 hours) and then plug it into my Sherpa 100. It was normally time for my next paddling session, so I went out with my other GoPro and trained, took photos, etc.. When I got back I would write some more on my laptop, and as the sun got low, I would take my solar panels back to my band, and continue to write using my battery, and sometimes plugged into my Sherpa 100. Before bed I typically plugged my GoPro cameras into the USB ports of my Sherpa and got them charged up. My Sherpa 100 typically got fully charged by late afternoon and was usually at 1/3 by morning as I used it to charge a phone, 2 GoPro cameras, and top off my laptop. It found that it was worth changing the angle of the solar panels to aim at the sun every so often. Also, remembering to turn off the A/C converter if you aren’t using it keeps the Sherpa from burning up valuable energy that you don’t use. I used the MacBook Air which has great battery life and low energy consumption. With the Nomad 20 I could keep using it as much as I wanted everyday. I just got a Nomad 100 which has 5 times the energy production for the same situation as the 20 and will be ridiculous!
Having ample power storage is really the key to always having energy when using the Goal Zero systems (or any others). It is easy to plug energy storage units into the solar panels and leave them until you want them. I have since gotten some venture 30s which store lots of power for my phone or GoPros. They also have LED lights for when you forget your headlamp!
I recommend buying:
Venture 10 flip
These will keep you going when camping, or going anywhere where you can’t plug in!