Campground
Jenny R.
Reviewed May. 13, 2018

Ranger Review: Renogy Solar Backpack at Cowboy Camp near Moab, UT

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.

Pros:

*Small and intimate

*Close to Arches, Canyonlands, Dead Horse State Park, amazing mountain bike trail systems

*Scenery

Cons:

*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.

  • The Renogy Solar Backpack in full sun charging away.  The front panel is removable and has a pocket so your charging electronic doesn't have to be in the sun as well.
  • The pocket right behind the solar panel.  It comes with a USB plug in so you can pretty much charge anything.  Currently I am charging a large external battery brick.
  • Another view of the panel pocket.  Lots of space to keep your stuff organized.
  • View of site 3 from the back corner.  Picnic table is behind the tent and the open spot in the top left corner is another campsite.
  • Charging my headlamp while I am waiting for water to boil for my dessert.  It was a little windy (hence why the chair is tipped over)
  • Cowboy Camp pay station.  I liked the pay stubs in yellow being visible here so you can easily see what is available and what is not without driving around the campground.
  • 360 degree view of Cowboy Camp taken from the road right outside site 3.
  • Charging my stuff while there is sun.  The clouds came and went while I was there so I made sure to get the panel out in the full sun for maximum efficiency.
  • Site 3 with the bathroom in the background.  Site 3 was tucked amongst the trees, provided a lot of privacy, and had a long rocky driveway.  A higher clearance vehicle could pull further up.  This campground is not for trailers.
  • There was a large rock outcropping behind the site so this photo is taken from those rocks to include all the amenities--fire pit, table, tent site, parking spot.
  • Open air pit toilet.  Not for everyone but going under the stars in privacy can be refreshing.
  • Outside of the open air pit toilet.  Smell was not an issue at all.
  • Demo/description of the Renogy Solar Backpack.  Due to the wind, I had to do this from inside my tent.
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