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Backpacking Stove and Cook Gear Recommendations and cook

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Ok I did something stupid a few years back, or nice depending upon how you look at it. I started a new troop that had little resources, so I gave away a bunch of my stuff that I no longer needed, as at the time I was a DE and enjoyed the cushy side of camping in that role ;) My thinking was to give it to folks who could use it.


So fast forward to today and the wife says we need to start camping as a family. :) While some car camping elements are there :( the wife wants to gradually get the kids use to going light and then backpacking.


So what type of stoves do you folks recommend. Also what type of cook gear you recommend. Things to factor in.

1) Affordability, got to be a good buy.

2) Durability, got to last a long time.

3) Weight, I'm gonna start out as the pack mule adn then eventually

turn the kids into mules ;)

4)Usability, got to be effecient and effective.


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We have a saying in the software business - you can have it good, cheap, or fast, pick any two.

Similiar saying in backpacking equipment - you can have it afforable, durable, or lightweight, pick any two.

if its durable and lightweight, then you lose 'affordable'.

if its lightweight and affordable, then you lose 'durable'.

if its affordable and durable, then you lose 'lightweight'.

Stoves we use are the Coleman Xpedition/powermax. These are relatively inexpensive but you can't manhandle these as I've seen one where the tab that seats the bottle broke off. Ours have lasted ok though. We chose these because they have a low profile and are less likely to tip than some of those other canister type models.

I personally use MSR Whisperlite and Simmerlite, but not cheap stoves.

We get inexpensive teflon lined aluminum 4 qt pots from REI, about $15, they last a coupla years. I wouldn't purchase an expensive pot set for kids, they tend to burn a lot of food.

... and if you register your troop with REI ( call their 800# ), you can get 10% off all your purchases, even sale items...

Edited by RememberSchiff
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if your end goal is to go lite, then don't buy any heavy car-camping stuff except for the ice chest & a few chairs. the lite stuff can be used with car camping.

a cheap discount store tent will last a year (just) of car camping, by then you should be ready to go lite

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I have a Wal-Mart peak, mixed butane, backpack stove. I have been using it in our Troop outings (mostly to show the Scouts you don't need to lug the big stoves all the time). I do my own meals (diabetic).

It comes apart from the small fuel canister, fit's inside the mess kit pots I use and is reliable so far. $25

I picked up a 2 man backpack tent $40.

I bought my son a used internal frame pack for $50. I don't hike (Mobility issues).

2-man tents are cheap.....

Probably the best $ spent is on a sleeping bag. If you can't stay warm & get sleep, then even the best trip is hard. Course 2 wool blankets and a ground tarp is usually good enough.

Edited by RememberSchiff
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  • 9 years later...

Hi, I know this thread is died out as dinosaurs but I'd like to tell you a little bit about my own experience.

My wife and I use a Snowpeak canister stove, Evernew 1.9l pot with a cozy, an MLD 850ml mug and two titanium sporks: https://www.amazon.com/Snow-Peak-Giga-Power-Stove/dp/B002T4ODGM

When the kids (5&6) come along we add two additional sporks, two titanium bowls (https://getawaychief.com/backpacking-mess-kit/) and two titanium double wall mugs.

We have lightened the load a few ounces by only taking the MLD mug to heat water and drink tea, but neither of us like eating out of freezer bags and the bigger pot allows us to cook everything for two people in one container and is great for boiling water to wash up at night.

With the kids, the bigger pot is a necessity: https://youtu.be/_wuzCggioeY

Dinner and breakfast usually work something like this: Boil water in the pot, then add in food and set aside in the cozy. Boil water in the mug to make tea.

When the tea is done and cooled enough to drink, the food is usually ready to eat.

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