The connected outdoorsman's best friend
Wenger Portable Solar Chargers
A guy used to make it out of the wilderness alive with nothing but his wits and a sharp knife. These days, a stranded Average Joe sans cell phone might not make it to his next birthday, let alone his next Twitter feed update. Wenger has always made tools for the traditionalist survivorman; the master knife maker is getting into the tech-in-the-middle-of-nowhere business with its new line of Portable Solar Chargers ($180-$340). These photovoltaic failsafes charge an included lithium battery via a retractable micro USB cable and come with 5 device adapters. No more excuses not to jam on your iPod in the woods. Ahem.
There’s one for every tech appetite: the Standard 2.25W unit with a smaller-capacity battery charges in about 6 hours; the Top 4.5W model charges its larger battery in 7 hours; the Pro 6.75W reaches full capacity in 6 hours. Truly portable, each charger folds up for storage, and when in use, built-in buckles make securing it to your daypack, bike or tent a breeze. Depending on the model, the chargers fully juice up a smartphone in anywhere from 1.5 to 4 hours. According to Wenger’s specs, supplementing an MP3 player or your GPS unit’s battery with the solar-powered device extends playback and navigation time by up to 70 hours. Of course, these chargers work anywhere there’s a sun — which is everywhere — so even Georges of the urban Jungle can put one to use.