I've hiked on many trails, however never on the AT. I'm planning on a thru-hike starting in mid-March of 2012, and one thing I'd like to have with me is a cell phone. However, calling back to base on a semi-regular basis will run the battery down well before I finish.
I was wondering if anyone has any positive experiences with solar-powered USB chargers while hiking? Strapping one to the outside of my backpack seems (to me) like the easiest way of keeping my phone charged while on the trail.
I'm not very electronics-savvy, but also if it's realistic to expect one that puts out enough power to run an iPod (i.e., with a surplus of power so that when plugged in it doesn't die).
Thanks in advance!