Use a sunglasses case to store cords and cables in your bag. I love using my old eyeglass cases. I use them all the time fo keep my jewelery in when I travel. and also for those cords for your iphone ipod, etc.
Determine remaining daylight on your hand. Use this simple trick to measure the remaining daylight without a watch. Count the finger widths between the sun and the horizon. Each finger is equivalent to 15 minutes, with each hand totaling an hour.