Can one device keep you warm, light up the night, AND recharge your phone in the middle of nowhere? Yes!
by Mike Disario, HuntDaily
Darkness and cold are two things we have always had to overcome during hunting season. Nowadays there is another obstacle most of us have to deal with as well—running out of electrical power.
Let’s face it. Few of us ever head into the field without our cell phones. They keep us in contact in case of an emergency, they’re ideal for recording our adventures, and during those long stretches of seeing nothing but blue jays and squirrels, they offer the occasional mental diversion. Unfortunately, by the end of the day our mobile devices are pretty much run down.
Recently, we came across a new line of products that take care of all three of these issues. Made by Celestron, the Elements line expertly combines charging technology with heat and lighting solutions that seem custom-made for the modern hunter.
Here are the three Elements products we tested and want to tell you about now that the cold weather is finally here…
As you probably know, portable cell phone chargers are nothing new. There are also electric hand warmers on the market. The Celestron ThermoCharge 6, however, is the only device that combines charging capabilities and a hand warmer function.
The ThermoCharge 6 is basically a hand-sized, 6000 mAh rechargeable Lithium Ion battery with an integrated heating element in the chassis. When fully charged, the unit can warm to a toasty 104 to 113 degrees for up to eight hours. With the shortened daylight hours we now have, that pretty much covers us for a full day in the stand. While that may not seem like an exceptionally high temperature, it’s a lot warmer than it sounds. Touch your cold, bare hands to the ergonomically curved case and we found it to be almost uncomfortably warm. Hold it in your gloved hands or place it in your hand muff and you’re perfectly comfortable. When your fingers are frozen, that extra shot of heat makes a HUGE difference in comfort and allows you to stay focused on the hunt. Operation is simple: press the button on the case to turn it on and the unit reaches peak output in just minutes.
In addition to its heating capability, the ThermoCharge 6 can also recharge your electronic devices, such as your cell phone, tablet, MP3 player, or Sports CAM. Simply unscrew the water-resistant and dust-proof cover to expose the USB in/out charging ports. The included charging cable comes with a standard 2.0 USB connector on one end and a Mini USB connector on the opposite end. The latter is the USB Mini-B style connector. Our phone (a Samsung Galaxy) and most of the portable devices we use in the field take a Micro USB B style connector, so we just take our OE cable with us to recharge our devices and use the Elements cable to charge the ThermoCharge 6 while we’re in camp or back at the truck.
FireCel Mega 6
Taking the ThermoCharge 6 concept one step farther is the FireCel Mega 6. This unit features the same battery, heat output, and operation time as the ThermoCharge 6, but incorporates a bright, four-mode LED light array on one end. You can turn on the two white LEDs, the two red LEDs, both the white and red LEDs, and flashing white and red LEDs for emergency location. We really like this multi-function capability because we can use the white light to get to and from our stand or to trail after dark, while the red LED is perfect for rooting around in our pack and getting setup in the morning without spooking game.
As with the ThermoCharge 6, the FireCel Mega 6 operates via a single pushbutton. Both models also come with a carabiner and 550 cord strap that secures to the lid. Hang it inside your pack, on your belt, or anywhere convenient.
While the FireCel Mega 6 delivers ample light for trailing and navigating after dark, most hunters feel more comfortable with a light that will really penetrate the brush. Oh, and if it can also warm your hands and recharge your portable device, so much the better. That’s what you get with the ThermoTorch 5.
The ThermoTorch 5 utilizes a 5000 mHa rechargeable Lithium Ion battery that can deliver up to six hours of continuous heat at 113 degrees. It comes with a black canvas holster so you can wear it on your belt, and like the other Elements products we tested, it can charge your portable devices.
Most of us have, at one time or another, been on a long nighttime tracking job or became “orientation challenged” and had to find our way out of the woods with a dying flashlight. One of the cool features of all Elements products is what Celestron calls the “C-link.” This simply means that all Elements units are charge-compatible, so one unit can recharge the other. Thus, if your ThermoTorch 5 begins to run out of juice and you’re still a long way from the truck, simply connect another Elements power bank to the light and keep on going. We don’t know of any other flashlight that you can recharge in the field and on the go. Pretty slick.
Let’s be honest…the fundamentals of hunting haven’t really changed since men ran around with pointy sticks, but the conveniences we expect while in the field certainly have. Thanks to multi-tasking devices like the Elements products reviewed here, we can now enjoy a whole lot of convenience packed into tiny packages. Check them out for yourself and we think you’ll agree.
article copyright © 2016 by HuntDaily.com; promoted by Celestron, LLC