May 29, 2014

Camp stoves

Alright kids, I'm planning a short solo camping/backpacking trip in the near future, and starting to acquire the gear I need - most of what I own is more suited to car-camping than backpacking. I'll make do with my two-man Eureka! tent instead of coughing up for a one-man bivy for now. I've ordered a new North Face "Wasatch" 30-degree bag and a Thermarest pad. Lights? I've got those covered. Knives, guns, radios? Yep, those too.

I've ordered an area-specific map from MyTopo - who I have ordered from before. Instead of buying (and carrying) four USGS quads for the area I'm going to be in, I ordered a custom map at USGS scale (1:24,000) centered on the area I need. It's printed on water- and tear-resistant "paper" - kind of plasticky stuff - at a convenient 24x36 size. $22 to my door in a week or so. (They have other options available, including satellite imagery, at varying prices.)

I've got water purification covered, in the form of a Katadyn pump and a MiOx pen.

I still need to pick up a decent compass... and a stove.

There are two major contenders right now:

The Kelly Kettle "Trekker" kit, and the MSR Whisperlite. They're both solid choices, and each has advantages and disadvantages. I'm hoping for direct input from people who have actually used them in the field/on the trail and not just on their back stoop. I've read plenty of reviews from various places... but I want to know what YOU think.

Please chime in.

(I'll be posting a complete gear list with weights sometime around my trip.)


On a Wing and a Whim said...

I used the Whisperlite when flying the plane down from Alaska, and splitting the nights between camping under-wing and on FBO couches.

It worked well, had no problem, boiled up water for tea and ramen and mac n' cheese right quick with no fuss. I wanted something that could burn fuel from the tanks as well, but the burn time on the canister and its compact space sold me.

(Pilots on long trips with spotty fuel availability can be as fussy about weight as through-hikers; every gram and square cm you save can be used to carry extra fuel and get extra range.)

Geodkyt said...

Sorry, I swear by a Svea 123. Obsolete, heavy (by comparison), and definately not sexy. But a freaking powerhouse of output.

Old NFO said...

NO help here... sorry.

jon spencer said...

I have a older Coleman that takes white gas or coleman fuel. It works.
But both of your choices are very good, I would have to try both before deciding.
Is there any place to try them out near you?