Campground Review: I stayed at site 3 at the Cowboy camp North or Moab off 313 toward Dead Horse State Park. Overall, I really liked this campground. It is small (only 7 spots) and rustic which I appreciate. The access road is right off the highway but is not maintained so there are large rocks and not a spot for trailers. There is no water and the toilets are three sided pit toilets (no roof) which may not be for everyone. The camp host (and dumpster services) are located down the road at the Horsethief campground. It was really windy when I visited so be prepared for a fine dust over everything and to put out additional guy wires to stabilize your tent. It has the basic amenities: metal fire pit and picnic table. Despite the wind, the scenery was beautiful and you had privacy since the spots were not close to each other at all. You see your neighbors but weren’t in their business. Overall, I really enjoyed this campground and since I am mountain biking a lot more, it will be my go to spot for my biking weekends.
*Small and intimate
*Close to Arches, Canyonlands, Dead Horse State Park, amazing mountain bike trail systems
*In open range so watch out for cows. There was a nice old cow patty in my camp site area. Not a deal breaker but be aware of it.
*There was a large ant hill in my campsite but someone had put a ring of rocks around it so it was easy to spot.
*20-30 minutes from Moab. This is both good and bad depending on how frequently you need supplies in town.
Gear Review: Renogy Solar Backpack
As a Ranger for the Dyrt, I get the opportunity to test out gear from our partners once in a while. I have been testing out the Renogy Solar Backpack. My overall impressions of this backpack is it is awesome and it will turn into my car camping and computer/electronics backpack for everyday use. The straps are super comfortable, it has tons of pockets to store and organize your electronics stuff and the main pocket is huge to safely accommodate a laptop as well as lots of other stuff. I think the multiple pockets is a double edge sword. I love them but I also lose things in them/forget what pocket I put stuff in. The only pockets I wasn’t a huge fan of was the side zippered pockets meant for a water bottle or coffee mug. They were just a bit too short and loose for me to feel comfortable using them routinely without my mug falling out. But that is a totally minor thing that does not detract from the overall usage of the backpack.
Now the best part of the pack is the solar panel! The front has approximately a 9in x 11in solar panel with plug in cord that is amazing. You can have the panel facing out or if not in use you can flip it over and protect it. This adds a lot of zippers to the pack, which can be a minor inconvenience when you are trying to grab something quickly but overall it is just getting used to what zippers access what pockets or features. We have used this backpack in multiple locations, not just Cowboy Camp, and it has worked great every time. It will charge a small lipstick sized external battery (approximately one full cell phone charge) in just a few hours when the panel is in direct sun. We also hooked up other electronics like our GoPro or phone or headlamp directly to the power source and it charged in the same amount of time (approximately 2.5-3 hours). Obviously, full sun allows the panels to work better but it will work in cloudy conditions, just not as efficiently.
Overall impression: This backpack is a great addition to my pack arsenal. The solar panel will be a great addition to our normal camping gear and we will be able to utilize our electronics (like a GoPro or digital camera) more when we are camping for extended periods of time. Finally the pack itself is quite large (20L) and will be able to keep all our stuff organized and used as a computer/office bag when not camping.