Report from 42.7degrees N - We've got 220w of solar on board- 3 x 40 w rigid panels on the bimini, and 100 w semi-rigid panel mounted on the foredeck. The bimini bank and foredeck bank feed through separate charge controllers to a 230 amp hr house bank. Engine alternator also feeds housebank. Start battery is charged via xantrex echo charger from house bank. we run led strip lighting, a waeco/dometic icebox conversion reefer (4 amps/ 40% duty cycle in real world use) , chart plotter, fish finder, incandescent nav lights and, at any given time are charging 2 smart phones, 2 laptops and a netbook or two.
We aren't conservation-focused- we're not charging only during the highest panel output hours, we're not living with lukewarm beer by keeping the reefer turned down...
....and most days we generate more power than we can use.
I am contemplating installing a 3 gallon water tank with a 60w water heater element to act as a dump load. YMMV and all that.