While these gadgets aren’t essential items for an off-road trek, they will save time and add a little luxury to your next four-wheel driving adventure. Here’s the best doodads and gizmos for your upcoming winter off-road journey!
Trip navigation and planning
Sygic GPS Navigation software is probably the most comprehensive travel app available. There is a free version, which is useful, but for a one-off cost, the paid subscription does pretty much everything you could ask of a navigation app and more. For remote touring, it calculates the best route for your size of carriage, and determines accurate trip times (some apps underestimate the impact that a 20-foot caravan can have on travel times, and will land you in the middle of nowhere at inopportune hours). You can use the app offline, too, so there’s no worrying about connectivity in remote areas. It also hooks up to a desktop app, so you can plan your route on a home computer or laptop, and it will sync with the phone app.
Portable coffee brewer and press
There’s no need to settle for instant coffee on the road, nor do you have to pack the home coffee machine and the 12-volt adapter. There are several brands of portable coffee presses that are lightweight, take up next to no space and can take a pounding. An AeroPress, for example, uses a simple and effective design, and is not overly expensive. It has an airtight plunger that, when paired with good coffee beans, gives you cafe-quality coffee in the middle of nowhere. Pair it with a hand-powered coffee grinder and your next cup is made totally off-grid.
Portable solar panels
If you’re willing to splurge a little, a Bluetti EB70 weighs under 20 kilograms, includes foldable solar panels and a power station with multiple outlets, and is robust and portable. The power station itself, when fully charged, will run a small powered cooler (with a capacity of around 50 litres) for at least 12 hours. It’s also powerful enough to run a projector and sound system for outback cinema sessions. In full light, the panels should recharge the power station in about four hours – and this isn’t even their most powerful model!
To read more about off-road must-haves, check out the Winter 2023 edition of Caravanning Australia.
Image courtesy of iStock