January 2021 – the weather was warm, so how about a few days camping in Barrington Tops?
The afternoon before we left, we filled the fridge with goodies and disconnected the mains. You can see the voltage dropping suddenly when power to the charger was cut, then it drifted lower overnight, dipping every time the fridge came on.
Early next morning we headed away from Sydney, our car charging the batteries nicely as we drove.
After stopping for morning tea (no battery charging while the engine is off, so the voltage fell back for a while…), we drove for a few more hours, arriving with the batteries fully charged.
We arrived from the western end. We’d been a bit concerned about the “no caravans” signs, but we navigated the twisty turns with our trusty camper trailer in tow – no problem at all, and well worth the amazing views!
Just had to get through the gate before driving on to the Polblue campground…
The batteries were already pretty well charged from the drive, but we setup our solar panels anyway – ready for the next morning.
The trees gave a lot of shade, so not much charging happened – as you can see from the very minor rise in voltage in the afternoon.
I’d thought it might get colder (that was yet to come!) when camping 1500m up, but the night wasn’t too bad: dropping to 10.5°C just before dawn.
Mind you, that was measured in the battery compartment – it would have been a touch lower outside!
It was a reasonably sunny day.
The dappled shade of the trees around our campsite didn’t make for great battery charging, but we nevertheless got in some good charging during the morning, before it clouded over – enough to keep the batteries topped up.
The next day was cold.
How cold? It maxed out at 12.3°C… and this was the middle of summer!
You can clearly see the three days thus far in the temperature graph. Plenty warm during our drive through the lowlands, then warm enough for our first full day up the mountain – and then the mist and damp came in the day, and it just never really warmed up that day…
Ever hopeful, we angled the solar panels toward where the sun seemed to be, trying to catch a ray or two…
And, amazingly, despite the gloom – there was enough sunlight to get in a bit of useful charging in the morning, before the weather really closed in.
Ok, it wasn’t much, but it was enough to keep the batteries topped up!
The morning of our last day at Barrington Tops was nice and sunny, and our batteries were able to get in one last solar charge before we packed up and headed for home – charging (as usual!) along the way.
All in all a great short trip – even if freezing cold at times!