ProView – Goal Zero Nomad 5
When traveling to remote fire lookouts we often take our own solar chargers with us to power the weekend. From charging phones to creating a cozy vibe with a string of lights the Sherpa Nomad 5 Solar Panel powers it all!
Goal Zero Nomad 5
Product Description: A lightweight solution for on-the-go power from the sun, the Nomad 5 features 5-watts of monocrystalline in a rugged enclosure with an easy-to-use kickstand and USB output.
Offer price: MSRP: $59.95
Friendliness to the Earth
The Sherpa Nomad 5 Solar Panel was true to size and as the name suggests, is lightweight enough to easily carry around during outdoor activities.
- User-friendly setup
- Perfect for charging phones on the go
- The built-in kickstand isn’t as sturdy as expected when used in inclement weather.
Truth be told, we’re a Goal Zero family using many of their products to sustainably power our daily life and weekend activities so when we got the opportunity to test the new Sherpa Nomad 5 Solar Panel, we jumped! One of our favorite weekend activities is staying in one of the many fire lookouts across the state. These lookouts are structures from the 1940’s built atop high peaks in the remote wilderness and used for scouting fires throughout the summer. Because of their remote location, we always bring our own source of power to ensure we can charge our phones, power lights, etc. During our most recent trip, we arrived at Drake Peak Lookout just in time to charge up the Sherpa Nomad before sunset. Weather is often variable atop exposed peaks so we were curious to see how the Nomad would handle 65+ mph winds and extreme cold temperatures.
Overall, the Nomad’s sleek and lightweight design makes it perfect for traveling in the backcountry. It doesn’t take up too much space and at 12.7oz it doesn’t add too much weight to your pack either. The feature we use most often is the built-in charging dock paired with our Flip (power stick) that plugs into the back and easily charges our phones or headlamps at the end of the day. We rarely choose to power our electronics directly from the panel but rather carry multiple power banks with us to charge over the course of the day.
We used the kickstand to set it up on the outdoor picnic table next to the lookout but soon discovered it had blown over. There isn’t a great way to stabilize the panel outside of the kickstand so that was a bit frustrating as we were on a super windy peak all weekend. We used a cooler to protect it from the wind but it cast shadows on the panel which isn’t optimal for solar collection. If leaving the panel free standing is not an option, it is easy enough to secure to the outside of your pack and take with you throughout the day. While the Nomad didn’t stand up to the high winds, it did fare well in extremely cold weather. We hit temps in the lower teens and when we checked on the Nomad it was still charging!
The best part about Goal Zero and all of their products is, as long as the sun shines we can use it to power our daily lives and weekend adventures without polluting the planet. For example, we used the Nomad to power a string of lights in the lookout each night which allowed us to turn off the propane lights, opting for a cleaner energy source.
The high quality, user-friendly and sleek design of the Sherpa Nomad 5 Solar Panel makes it the perfect backcountry companion to power play throughout the weekend. The lightweight, compact nature of the solar panel makes it a clear favorite for throwing on the back of a pack during a hike or ski tour in the backcountry. The Nomad can easily charge a phone, headlamp or string of lights for the cabin. While the kickstand is great for stable placement, it needs to be in a wind-protected area to avoid blowing over. It comes as no surprise that this Goal Zero loving family fell in love with the Sherpa Nomad 5 Solar Panel.
Dani Reese is a social media guru at Ruffwear, an outdoor performance dog gear company based in Bend, Oregon. She grew up competing in running and eventually earned a scholarship to Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina where her love for the outdoors and mountains grew. After competing in Division 1 athletics for four years she moved across the country to Portland, Oregon and has called the Pacific Northwest home for the last eight years (excluding a short stint managing a hostel in Slovakia complete with a hostel dog!). These days you can find her trail running, backpacking, and skiing with her pinecone obsessed dog, Vilas, who accompanies her to work every day. You can follow their adventures on Instagram at @danioutdoors.