How Much mAh Do I Need for Backpacking?

By Michael Ferguson

Backpacking is an outdoor activity that always requires a certain amount of planning and forethought before setting out. One of the most important considerations for any backpacking trip is the power you are bringing with you. Your power sources, such as batteries and solar panels, will determine how long your trip will last, so it is essential to know exactly how much mAh (milliamp-hour) you need.

The amount of mAh required for a backpacking trip depends largely on the type of equipment you are bringing and how much power it requires. For example, if you plan to use a GPS device, you may need more power than if you did not. Similarly, if you plan to bring a laptop or other electronic device that consumes more energy than usual, then your mAh requirements will be higher.

Another factor to consider is the type of battery that you are using. Rechargeable batteries come in different sizes and capacities; some have higher mAh ratings than others. To determine what size battery would be best for your trip, calculate the total amp-hours required for all your devices combined and then choose the highest rated battery that meets your needs.

If you are using solar panels as your power source then the amount of mAh needed depends on two factors: how much energy each panel produces and how much energy is being consumed by all devices combined. To figure out how much power your solar panels will produce, look up the wattage rating of each panel and add them together. Then divide this number by 12 volts to get amp-hours produced per hour.

Finally, remember that when choosing an appropriate battery size for a backpacking trip it’s important to consider both energy consumption and weight. Rechargeable batteries can be quite heavy when fully charged; therefore it’s important to factor in their weight when making your selection.


In summary, how much mAh do I need for backpacking? It depends on what devices or equipment you plan to bring along with you as well as their individual wattage requirements.

Additionally, if using solar panels as a power source then consider their wattage rating in order to calculate total amp-hours produced per hour. Finally, factor in battery weight when selecting an appropriate size rechargeable battery for your trip.