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[Yosemite]

Backpack stoves

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in Yosemite National Park

Moderators: Wickett, dan

Backpack stoves

Postby Cindy Majewski » Fri Jun 20, 2008 7:39 am

Any advice on which type of stove/fuel performs better at the higher elevations? I'm flying in from the east coast (where I normally use alcohol stoves) and will purchase a stove on arrival for a 5 day 2 person backpack loop of the Sunrise/Clouds Rest/Merced/Vogelsang regions.
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Postby Grzldvt » Sun Jun 22, 2008 10:50 pm

I have always used stoves that use isobutane/propane, GAZ and MSR and never had any problems, even in areas higher than Vogelsang. I like the simplicity of the fuel/stove combination. Depending on where you land and the availability of stores to purchase the equipment, you may be forced into what ever you can find.
My brother-in-law had trouble getting a white gas stove through the airlines, even though it was brand new and never used. They pulled his luggage and took the stove out. Didn't even know it until he opened it up and found a note. As a guess they spotted it during X-Ray and saw it had a tank.

He bought an MSR propane and had no issues, again no tank so it was fine.
He did not try to transport any fuel, just the stove.
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Postby Cindy Majewski » Mon Jun 23, 2008 5:17 am

Thanks Steve,

I've heard a few bad stories about flying even with a brand new stove. I figure it's worry enough even if all's well that the airline is going to get your bag to your destination. I hate to give them any reason to pull it aside for special treatment!

Thanks for the assuance about the isobutane stoves. I've had some advice that white gas is the only reliable fuel above 10,000', but have read contrary accounts of folks using isobutane or even alcohol. I appreiceiate your first-hand advice. Since I'll be giving this stove away before heading home I'd rather not spend more on it than necessary!

Happy trails!
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Postby Grzldvt » Mon Jun 23, 2008 11:59 pm

When are you coming in and to where? You can PM me, or email me at grzldvt@pacbell.net.
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Postby bill-e-g » Tue Jun 24, 2008 6:16 am

Since it's only 2 people I would recommend the
MSR Pocket Rocket ... 40 bucks
Each carry one 8oz cannister and you should be fine for 5 days.
You should have no problem bringing it home.
No need to buy more expensive one unless you really need simmer.
Almost all the backpacking stoves will perform well at high elevation.
If you want a bomb proof stove ... MSR Dragonfly. Have had that
stove since it came out new ... 100% reliable in all conditions.
It's heavy though.... so I go with the Pcket Rocket.
One complaint you may have is you need to be careful not to
knock your pot off of the stove itself.
Anyway, have fun.
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Postby Cindy Majewski » Tue Jun 24, 2008 6:38 am

I like the way you think! All good advice. After functionality it is definately an economy of weight vs. cost.

I would be more inclined to risk traveling back home with a stove (obviously no fuel). If my bag were misdirected and didn't arrive with me it would only be a nuisance, not a logistical mess! Maybe I will try it.
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Ship it.

Postby adrianhoff » Tue Jun 24, 2008 1:00 pm

My last year’s Yosemite trek started all wrong when my stove (no fuel), knife and other odd-looking items caught TSA’s attention. I landed in San Jose on time. The duffel containing my backpack arrived eight hours later. I found six separate TSA inspection slips in my pack — including one inside my bear canister. Extra inspection time had caused it to miss my connecting flight out of Atlanta.

This year I’ll ship my pack and other problem items via UPS to the Mariposa Shipping Company in downtown Mariposa. I talked to them last year. They said they would hold it for pick-up. Since Delta now charges $80.00 for “oversized bags” (more than 50 pounds, or exceeds 62 inches when you total length plus width plus height) it will probably be cheaper than carrying it. I’ll dig out the Shipping Company's phone number and post it tomorrow. If you are not going through Mariposa, but are spending a night in a hotel before going into the park, you could probably arrange to ship it there.
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Postby jms703 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:16 am

I've been looking to buy a stove also. On the white gas vs canister debate, the primary differences I've learned is that white gas will never give you trouble, but requires priming the stove (not easy until you practice), pumping air (who wants to do that when you are hungry), and REGULAR cleaning. Whereas the canisters don't require any maintenance, very simple to use, but have trouble when the outside ambient temperature is very low. Since I'm a fair weather backpacker, I'll never have that problem. I'm going to purchase the MSR WindPro. I rented it from REI and used it on a recent 4 day trip and it worked GREAT. I like stoves where the canister is not under the burner. This prevents me accidentally knocking the whole set over. Also, this stove simmers nicely.
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Postby bill-e-g » Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:08 pm

Never had any issues with Canister Stoves below freezing.
Or for that matter MSR Dragonfly.

Have had the MSR Dragonfly for nearly 8 years. Had to clean it out
once. And that is using it regularly easily over 30 times a year.
It is bombproof in my mind. Priming is trivial. Pump it up.
Turn it on for a couple seconds. Turn it off. Light. Wait... turn it back on.
Good to go.
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Stoves

Postby holz » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:19 am

Hi,

I would agree that low temperatures don't cause problems for canister stoves. Now, I'm talking freezing or just below which is all one will encounter anywhere in Yosemite.

I do have to give a plug for the JetBoil. Since all the cooking I do consists of either spreading peanut butter on something or boiling water for my freeze dried meal, the JetBoil works like a champ. It also has a French Press attachment that weighs about an ounce so I often have fresh starbucks coffee while backpacking! Yummy!
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Re: Stoves

Postby beerguy » Sat Aug 02, 2008 1:59 pm

holz wrote:I do have to give a plug for the JetBoil. Since all the cooking I do consists of either spreading peanut butter on something or boiling water for my freeze dried meal, the JetBoil works like a champ. It also has a French Press attachment that weighs about an ounce so I often have fresh starbucks coffee while backpacking! Yummy!


+1 I've had really good luck with mine.
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Re: Stoves

Postby Wickett » Tue Aug 19, 2008 9:19 pm

holz wrote:Hi,

I would agree that low temperatures don't cause problems for canister stoves. Now, I'm talking freezing or just below which is all one will encounter anywhere in Yosemite.

I do have to give a plug for the JetBoil. Since all the cooking I do consists of either spreading peanut butter on something or boiling water for my freeze dried meal, the JetBoil works like a champ. It also has a French Press attachment that weighs about an ounce so I often have fresh starbucks coffee while backpacking! Yummy!


I have to agree. On most of my trips I bring my jet boil, while others bring their MSR's. The MSR's sit in the packs and we use the jet boil. Super fast, easy to clean, and the french press is great (with a little bailey's :) ). My only complaint is that all my friends keep "borrowing" it from me.
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snow peak giga

Postby go bears » Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:15 am

cindy,
i use a snow peak giga with a piezo lighter. i've never had a problem at elevation with it at all, although i've never attempted to use it above 7500'. i used to own a primus techo-trail and had it when i hiked thru sunrise HSC about five years ago. i think that place is at about 9,000 and i had no problems at all. i just bought a wind guard, which should help the efficiency greatly.
hope you have a great time!
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