SubscribeAvailable Now
The EnerPlex Kickr IV solar charger. —Photo by Sarah Boyum

Powered by the Sun

This is part of a weekly series published fresh on Thursday mornings.


On a recent camping trip, I had the unique and spectacular experience of a wildlife encounter. In the early morning, a family of moose walked within mere feet of our tent, only to be chased away by a friend’s dog. We retreated to our cars, and the family came back, slowly lumbering toward the nearby stream. I hurriedly took out my phone, hoping to capture the incredible moment—and then promptly the screen went black. Its battery had died.

It’s a problem we’ve all experienced: The woes and limits of technology at the most inopportune moments. Enter the Kickr IV, a lightweight solar charger from Thornton-based EnerPlex that’s durable enough to take on a backpacking trek and small enough to fit in a day pack. The tool is valuable for anyone who enjoys disconnecting, away from power outlets. EnerPlex IV advertises having a similar charging speed to a wall charger. While we didn’t necessarily find the speed up to that caliber, it worked well in direct, strong sunlight. And lucky for us, Colorado has no shortage of sun.


5280 Longreads

Newsletter Signup

Keep me up to date on the latest trends and happenings around Denver. 5280 has a newsletter for everyone. Sign Up