The First Project
Step3 has power!
We are ecstatic to have completed our first project at the Larsen Ridge Backcountry Cabin. As I was away for most of the summer fighting fires, it came down to Dan, Clint and Dean with Complete Electric and Hartman Electric to do most of the planning and make sure things were all ready to go once the materials had been purchased. Fortunately the BC government works on a strict schedule so I knew the exact date I would be back in town which allowed me to book the helicopter with Canadian and ask Dean and Dan to make sure that everything was ready to go for Saturday, August 18. They did a phenomenal job! Absolutely no hiccups.
We all showed up at the helicopter base at 0930 that morning, loaded up the helicopter with all our gear and supplies and flew the short 10 minute ride to Larsen Ridge and the cabin. Our pilot Tony had other work to do so he had to leave but stayed long enough to help us unload and swat a few of the huge horseflies that like to hang around up there. The next 6 hours consisted of wiring, soldering, mounting and enjoying the view as we turned Larsen Ridge into an electrically powered paradise.
First, myself and Dean mounted the solar panels on their rails and brought them up onto the side of the building. Dan was inside getting all of the wiring done for the lights and charger which is a lot more work than you would think! After the panels were up, we brought the batteries- provided by Prevost RV- into the crawl space, where the wire was fed into the building and connected to a charge controller and then the batteries themselves. Once that was done it was basically wiring the rest of the inside which was way over my head, so I decided to make myself useful by doing the only thing I was really qualified for on this project - digging a trench. We had to do this to bury the wire coming from the main building to the outhouse in order to protect it from animals and other possible damage. A couple more hours of wiring and Dean and Dan had the Kitchen, Dining Room, Loft, Crawlspace and Outhouse all lit up. They even included a USB charging port so you don't have to worry about extra batteries or portable chargers anymore.
It was a great day to be up there and we are incredibly happy that there was so much willingness from the community to volunteer their time and services. Complete Electric, Hartman Electric, Canadian Helicopters and Prevost RV all played a huge part and we can't thank them enough.
Finally, this couldn't be done without the support of everyone who Reps the Step and the 67 of you who have funded the 200 Watts of continual solar charging that are now powering Larsen Ridge Backcountry Cabin.