Camp Stoves


The outdoor accoutrements that made the cut for our second annual celebration of the best in design and technology.

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I pretty filiar with the Outback Oven, in which you have to bake in a pot or a frying pan. But I recently saw the new Backpacker Oven and wondering if you have used this or if you think this might be something to look into. Dave Lancaster, California

I bought a batch of white gas about three years ago. Will using this dage my stove? Also, given how flmable the fuel is, is there a safe and recommended method of disposal other than burning it in a stove? Skot Vancouver, British Columbia

Are there any reliable and easy-to-use wood-burning stoves on the market? Most of them on the Internet look like Do-It-Yourself types. And how well do these things work compared to liquid-fuel stoves? Jeremy Moscow, Idaho

I’m looking for a stove that simmers well and is quiet. I’ve considered three: MSR’s DragonFly, Brunton’s Optimus NOVA, and Primus’ OmniFuel. Any other ideas? Richard Venice, California

I have Coleman's excellent double-burner Xpedition stove, and I’m addicted. But I’m packing for a motorcycle trip to Yosemite National Park and questioning the wisdom of my investment. The gas is virtually impossible to get in Canada, and difficult to get in the U.S. REI seems to have it, but every time I travel I'm paranoid. Is there any official word on how long it's going to be manufactured? Skot Vancouver, British Columbia

Do backpackers make lifetime investments? I'm 21 and just got into backpacking last year. I didn't have any gear, so I bought the cheapest of everything, which was a mistake! In my second round of purchases, can I realistically expect that boots, tents, packs, and sleeping bags will last a lifetime if I buy good quality? What about proper gear maintenance? Kate Wooster, Ohio

I'm looking for a backpacking stove for a two-person, ten-day trip, so weight and fuel are the big issues. We will have only one stove and will use it to boil water only for oatmeal and dehydrated foods. Can you help? Brady Pleasant Grove, Utah

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I'm off trekking in the Italian Dolomites and want to know which stove to take. Self-sealing butane/propane canisters are convenient and light but can be difficult to buy in some areas, and guidebooks never give much advice about which fuel type is most easily available. Ashley Falmouth, United Kingdom

The gear world's global Big Tent returns to Salt Lake, and things get dirty. The Gear Guy reports.

I'm considering getting the Outback Oven for baking on the trail this summer, but other folks have the Bakepacker. Have you had an opportunity to check both out? What is your opinion? I know the Bakepacker basically "stes" the food, instead of baking, but what other differences are there? Gigi Concord, California

Can you give me some insight on the Jetboil stove, plus on the pros and cons of boiling water versus water-purification tablets? Should I use both methods? How much iodine/water mix should you ingest? Liver failure on a camping trip would most righteously suck! Scott Lexington, Kentucky

This summer I'm taking my family of five to Alaska for three weeks of mostly car camping. Is there any way I can sufficiently clean my Coleman two-burner Powermax stove to fly with it? Is it easier to clean/travel with a propane canister stove? Is it worth trying to cook for the family with my two-burner expedition Powermax backpacking stove? Rayne Metairie, Louisiana

What is the best camping stove to take while trekking in Patagonia? I'm thinking in particular about size, fuel, and reliability. Glenn Melbourne, Australia

On a recent backpacking trip, the igniter on my otherwise trusty Snow Peak GigaPower stove stopped working. Luckily I had a lighter as a backup, but I thought that the igniter was essentially a mechanical device and shouldn't be affected by altitude (we were cped around 10,000 feet). What gives? Bill Columbus, Ohio

The Gear Guy Reports from Outdoor Retailer 2004

Four highly mobile gas grills fire up a moveable feast wherever you go

My friend and I plan to tour Nova Scotia by motorcycle this summer, and we're looking for the best lantern/backpacking stove. Whatever we end up buying will need to be compact and stable, powerful enough for easy cooking, and able to run off the se type of fuel canister. I've looked at a Primus multi-fuel stove, but will that run on any type of canister? Nedim New York City