Beginning the Trip for Real Now
I have been sidelined away from my trip for the last month, in large part due to the urgency of preparing for the upcoming financial collapse which could happen anytime, most likely within the next 2-5 years. I suggest that you try to understand what is going on as well since the implications of these events will be catastrophic for the whole world. Blogs I recommend are FOFOA, Chris Martenson’s Crash Course, Jim Sinclairs’ Mineset, GoldSubject, Harvey Organ, King World News, and the Youtube videos “Money as Debt” parts I and II.
The weather has also now finally improved. I will be leaving very soon, like this Sunday or Monday. I will try to update the blog every couple weeks. I’ll also have to cut the trip short as well since I am a month and a half late in getting started. I am now only aiming for Prince Rupert, and instead of going down the Taku (which would be in October), I’ll go down the Stikine River from Telegraph Creek to Wrangell, Alaska.
You can follow my progress online through this map. I will try to update my GPS Spot tramsmitter daily. If I am bushwhacking through forest for a few days then I won’t be able to.
Mark, may I ask you for an advice? You’ve had trouble charging electronics via solar while in wilderness (noted in one of your posts I can’t locate), and now, that you are experienced at it, would you know of a reliable device? It appears that MEC’s solar chargers have numerous drawbacks… I would chiefly require to keep an iPhone functional – without frying its innards, but keeping a DSLR and a pocket P&S humming along would be a bonus.
Wonderful adventures you describe, thanks for an illustrated story.
February 22, 2012 at 9:24 pm
Hi Just Nine,
I was able to charge my DSLR and GoPro batteries no problem. But my Canon camcorder batteries have smart electronics inside that prevent the third party charger from working. My AA charger required more current than my solar panel could produce even though the voltage was right (it is designed to plug into a low voltage adapter in the wall). My computer required too much current.
It will be easy to charge your phone, you just get a cheap cigarette lighter charger with USB port (5 V) and plug your cable right into it. You will have to figure out how to connect the 12 contacts to the solar panel which will depend on what solar panel you get.
To charge your DSLR you will need a special low voltage charger and the only ones I have found are the Pearstone ones at BH Photo in New York. I have ordered from them several times and they are good. In the search bar punch in “pearstone” and your battery name and you will find it. They will also likely have one for your P&S battery. You can also buy extra batteries form them. Again you may have to do some soldering to get the connections right (so a multitester will be required to see what the polarity of the wires is.)
For a solar panel I use a rollup one from Modern Outpost in Courtenay. You can choose which works best for you. I have also seen AA chargers there designed for solar panels so I will also be picking up one of those. They have lots of other interesting outdoor electronics.
If you order from BH Photo and you like audio you might consider a Roland audio recorder. It is amazing what that can do. It isn’t cheap at $200 but it produces amazing audio which you can substitute over the poor audio from your video cameras. I haven’t figured out how to do that yet, but it must be possible. I’ll update when I find out how.
I’ll also update on my new equipment I get for this year’s trip.
February 24, 2012 at 6:52 am
Thank-you! To say that was a thorough answer would be an understatement – I’ll investigate your links.
You should know that your knowledge of flora and fauna of places you visit inspired me to learn and study the great diversity of life that I come across when outdoors.
Come to think of it, should you be interested to investigate rivers and lakes further east sometime, drop me an email – like you, I paddle an inflatable as well (for long enough to have worn out my first one)… And I can hold a conversation that pertains to such people as Ken Rockwell, Lord Kelvin, Tom Murphy, Ugo Bardi et al.
Thanks again for your reply.
February 24, 2012 at 8:10 am