Timber Wolf, Lake Superior, Ontario

A lone timber wolf greets
paddlers along the north shore
of Lake Superior, Canada
(Photo by Michael Neiger)


It's rare to have
people complain
about eating seconds,
but watch their
patience disappear
when there isn't
enough for firsts.
  -- Bill Mason


Keep your utensils
as few
and as simple
as you can,
consistent with
your personal
requirements of
weight, comfort,
and obscure
inner satisfaction.
  -- Collin Fletcher
     New Complete Walker


Courts and camps
are the only places
to learn the world in.
  -- Philip D. Stanhope,
     Earl of Chesterfield
     Letter to his son,
     October, 1747


For humans,
food has almost
as much social utility
as metabolic necessity.
Carefully prepared
meals are a lubricant
for conversations,
the formation
of friendships,
and are also
  -- Colorado Outward
     Bound School


I'll get her to give me
a small skillet and
some salt and pepper
and some bacon
and some shortening
and some corn meal.
I'll get her to give me
a sack to put
everything in and
I'll get some
dried apricots
and some prunes
and some tea
and plenty of matches
and a hatchet...
  -- Ernest Hemingway
     The Last Good Country


So we went over
to where the canoe was,
and while he built a fire
in a grassy open place
amongst the trees,
I fetched
meal and bacon
and coffee,
and coffee-pot
and frying pan,
and sugar and tin cups...
I catched
a good, big catfish, too,
and Jim cleaned him
with his knife
and fried him.

When breakfast
was ready,
we lolled on the grass
and eat it smoking hot.
  -- Mark Twain
     Huckleberry Finn


Willi and I attacked
the problem of eating
with a stubborn

As long as there
was food, we ate.
We would neatly clean
the leftovers of those
whose appetites
were jading, and we
competed even in this.

In due course
we would stagger
distended to our tents
and sit dazed
and breathless
on our sleeping bags,
barely able to bend over
and untie our boots.
  --Thomas E. Hornbein
    Everest: The West Ridge


I think of
a Cree friend
with whom I traveled
early in the century.
I wonder what
he would think
about the
modern day luxury
of this food budget.
We had a canoe,
fish line, rifle,
two rabbit skin blankets,
flour, tea, and a
bag of salt.
We slept
under the canoe,
and lived largely
off the country--
on fish, game,
and berries.
  -- Sirgurd Olson



The Rucksack Masthead
By Michael A. Neiger (aka: LandNavMan), Marquette, Michigan
Wilderness tripper: backpacking, winter camping, swift-water canoeing
Web site URL: http://therucksack.tripod.com • E-mail: mneiger@hotmail.com
Contents copyright © 1984-2007 by Michael A. Neiger • All rights reserved.

Bush skills

By Michael A. Neiger
Copyright 2002

Last updated on July 7, 2009

Backpacker's Pantry Food Package

A freeze-dried meal
from Backpacker's Panty
(Photo by Michael Neiger)

Contents of page

MSR stove maintenance & use

Lightweight rations
      Wilderness ration cookbooks
      Military MRE Cookbooks
      Food drying
      Wilderness nutrition
      Other outdoor cookbooks
      Freeze-dried rations
      Military MREs
Sample wilderness menus
   Gail Staisil
Lightweight stove links
   Homemade stoves
   Commercial alcohol stove vendors
   Solid fuel stoves and heat tab vendors
   Manufacturers of conventional stoves

Looking for
wilderness tripping
equipment and
For 100's of sources for wilderness tripping equipment and supplies, visit the sources for gear page on this Web site.

Need help
finding a book?
Trying to buy a new or used copy of a book, but can't locate one? Want to find a library somewhere in the country that will lend you the book at no cost? Then visit the handy book finder page on this Web site.

a book, catalog,
or Web site.
If you know of a useful outdoor-related book, catalog, or Web site not listed on this Web site, e-mail the book's title, subtitle, author, publisher, date of publication, and short description; or the catalog's address and phone number; or the Web site's URL to Michael Neiger at mneiger@hotmail.com.

** Recommended




[ ] Instruction manual--read it thoroughly

The first step in preparing your stove for trouble-free operation on a extreme, cold-weather expedition is to read the instruction manual from start to finish, twice.

In it, you will find many tips on how to maintain it, how to operate it properly and safely, and how to repair it when it malfunctions.

"Reading the instructions is the single most important step for smooth operation of any stove....If people read their instructions, I'd probably be out of a job."

--Mike Ridout, MSR's tech lord and repair specialist, on the importance of reading a stove's instruction manual before a wilderness trip, as quoted on page 101 of Anne Getchell's The Essential Outdoor Gear Manual: Equipment Care and Repair for Outdoorspeople (Ragged Mountain Press, 1995)


[ ] Fuel cells--wash them out

Using a long-handled, bottle-washing brush and hot, soapy water, scrub the interior of each fuel bottle to remove any gunk or foreign matter.

Next, rinse each fuel bottle with hot water several times to completely flush out any impurities or particulate matter. Once rinsed, set each bottle aside, upside down with the caps removed, to allow any remaining water to drain out or evaporate. At some point, it may be necessary to turn the bottle right-side-up to complete the evaporation process.


[ ] Fuel cells--store empty, with cap loose

When not in use, fuel bottles should be emptied of fuel to prevent the accumulation of degraded fuel deposits that may eventually affect stove operation. Once emptied, fuel bottles should be stored with their caps in place, but loose, to prevent debris from entering the bottle and to prevent the fuel cap O-ring from taking a set, which could lead to leakage later.


[ ] Fuel pump--inspect large Fuel Bottle O-ring near threads on pump housing

Make sure the large Fuel Bottle O-ring on the outside of the pump housing--at the top of the threads, where the pump seals against the lip of the opening in the fuel bottle--is flexible and soft. If it is hard, flattened, pitted, cracked, torn, or otherwise damaged, replace it so the pump housing and fuel bottle will seal properly at subzero temperatures and allow the fuel bottle to be pressurized.

Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure you have a spare Fuel Bottle O-ring.


[ ] Fuel Pump--install a filter on the fuel pump's Dip Tube

If the fuel pump's plastic output fuel line--called the Dip Tube (not to be confused with the Air Hose, through which air is pumped into the fuel bottle when the pump plunger is pumped)--does not have a small filter attached to the end of it, install an MSR Dragonfly Pump Filter on it to prevent condensation, particulate matter such as sand or bits of metal, and other contaminants in the fuel tank from entering the stove and gunking or plugging it up.

The 1/4- by 1-inch, white, Dragonfly Pump Filter--MSR item no. 418706--is sold in a package of 10 for $3.00 and can be ordered through your local MSR dealer, which you can locate by visiting MSR's "dealer search" Web page at http://www.msrcorp.com/dealer_locator/. Some stoves, such as the Dragonfly, may come equipped with this filter.


[ ] Fuel pump--lubricate Leather Pump Cup on fuel pump plunger

Remove the pump plunger from the fuel pump and lubricate the Leather Pump Cup with MSR Pump Cup Oil, 3-in-1 oil, or light motor oil so it will form an airtight seal and allow the plunger to pressurize the fuel tank. If necessary, spread or stretch out the Leather Pump Cup with your fingers and work the oil into the leather a bit.

Function-test pump to make sure it works properly. When the Pump Plunger is pushed down into the pump housing, air should be forced out of the Air Hose. Install the pump in an empty fuel bottle and make sure the pump is able to pressurize the bottle.

It the pump pressurizing mechanism fails in the bush, just stretching out the pump leather with your fingers may be enough to get it to seal. In a pinch, saliva, lip balm, sunscreen, petroleum jelly, or margarine can be used to lubricate the Leather Pump Cup and help it create a seal.

Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure you have a spare Leather Pump Cup.


[ ] Fuel pump--inspect & clean Check Valve Ball & Check Valve Spring

Remove the Check Valve Plug from the fuel pump housing and inspect and clean the Check Valve Ball and Check Valve Spring. Clean the check valve chamber in the fuel pump housing before reinstallation.

Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure you have a spare Check Valve Ball and Spring.


[ ] Fuel pump--inspect Fuel Tube O-ring

Remove the Fuel Tube Bushing from the fuel pump housing and inspect the Fuel Tube O-ring to make sure it is still flexible and undamaged. If it is hard, flattened, pitted, cracked, torn, or otherwise damaged, replace it so the stove fuel line will seal properly when it is inserted in the fuel pump housing.

This particular O-ring is a weak point in the MSR stove on long-range, subzero expeditions, especially at temperatures below minus-20 degrees Fahrenheit. Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure you have spare Fuel Tube O-rings. As mentioned below, it is highly recommended that you order several extra Fuel Tube O-rings from your local MSR dealer.


[ ] Stove--clean out Fuel Line

Thoroughly clean the interior the Fuel Line to remove accumulated carbon deposits and other particulate matter. First, remove the Jet--unscrew it in a counterclockwise manner--from the Fuel Line. Next, clean the interior of the Fuel Line and the exterior of the Fuel Line Cable by repeatedly working the cable in and out of the full length of the Fuel Line. Use the cable to scour out the Fuel Line much like you would use a pipe cleaner in a pipe.

To remove and reinstall the Fuel Line Cable, insert one end of the cable in the small hole in the jet-and-cable tool. If you opt to use pliers for this task, clamp down on the small, round weld at the end of the cable. Do not grip the cable itself as it may fray the tiny wires, the sharp ends of which could later damage the delicate Fuel Tube O-ring.

As you work the cable in and out of the Fuel Line, wet the cable down with solvent. From time to time, wipe the cable off with a clean rag or paper towel and rinse the Fuel Line out with solvent. Continue this reaming process--focusing on the generator tube where most of the carbon deposits tend to build up--until the fuel line cable no longer deposits black residue on a piece of paper towel drawn along its length.

Especially-stubborn carbon deposits in the generator tube can sometimes be dislodged by heating the generator tube over a flame and then quickly cooling the tube with water.

With the Fuel Line Cable reinstalled in the Fuel Line--sans Jet--flush the interior of the assembly with four ounces (half a cup) of pressured fuel by attaching it to the fuel pump, which should be installed in a fuel bottle containing fresh, filtered fuel.


[ ] Stove--clean Jet orifice

Once the fuel line is scoured and rinsed out, clean the stove's all-important jet assembly. With the jet removed from the fuel line, scrub any carbon deposits from the exterior of the jet and then carefully ream out the jet orifice using the wire jet cleaning tool. Once reamed out and rinsed, hold the jet up to a light and peer through it, making sure it is free of obstructions. The edges of the round hole should be readily apparent and clearly defined, and the center of the hole should be very clear and crisp. If you are unsure of how it should appear, compare and contrast it with the spare jet included in the repair kit.

Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure you have a spare Jet for use with white-gas fuel. In a pinch, a toothbrush bristle might be able to fill in for a missing wire jet cleaning tool.


[ ] Stove--check Shaker Jet for proper operation

On stoves with shaker-jet-type Jets, make sure the shaker-jet mechanism functions properly. You should be able to hear the shaker jet clicking back and forth as the stove is repeatedly tipped upside-down and then back up. Memorize this sound so you can identify when the weighted wire reamer inside the Jet is functioning and when it is not. If the Jet mechanism is functioning properly, inverting the stove will force the weighted wire reamer inside the Jet to ream the Jet orifice out, forcing any obstructions out. If the weighted wire reamer is stuck, or if the orifice in the Jet is heavily obstructed, you may have use the wire jet cleaning tool in your repair kit to clear the orifice. In some cases, you may have to remove the Jet and clean it from the inside out since the wire jet cleaning tool may just be forcing the obstruction back into the Fuel Line, only to be carried back into the jet when the fuel is turned on.


[ ] Stove operation--burn-test stove

Once the stove is reassembled, test fire it for several minutes to make sure it operates properly.


[ ] Stove storage--cover exposed nipple end of Fuel Line with a plastic bag

To prevent any debris from entering the open, nipple end of the Fuel Line during storage, cover it with a small, narrow, clean plastic bag secured with a rubber band.

An excellent plastic bag for this purpose is a tough, 8-ounce-size baby bottle liner such as the "Playtex Nurser System Soft Bottle Liner." Avoid using a larger plastic bag since its wide mouth will collect more debris, which will eventually work its way down into the bag and into the Fuel Line.


[ ] Fuel pump storage--store fuel pump loosely in an empty fuel bottle; cover pump with plastic bag

To prevent the Fuel Pump O-ring from taking a set and later leaking, always store the fuel pump loosely--not tightened down--in an empty fuel bottle.

To prevent debris from entering the fuel pump via the exposed Fuel Tube Bushing opening during storage, cover the pump housing with a small, narrow, clean plastic bag secured with a rubber band.

An excellent plastic bag for this purpose is a tough, 8-ounce-size baby bottle liner such as the "Playtex Nurser System Soft Bottle Liner." Avoid using a larger plastic bag since its wide mouth will collect more debris, which will eventually work its way down into the bag and into the Fuel Tube Bushing opening.


[ ] Fuel--use only white gas

To minimize stove problems in cold weather, always use a stove that is capable of burning white gas--the fuel of choice for subzero expeditioning. White gas--a highly-refined, extremely-volatile naphtha--is essentially nothing more than automobile gasoline without tetraethyl lead and other additives. Sometimes referred to as Pressure Appliance Fuel, white gas is commonly sold under such trade names as Coleman Fuel, Blazo, Camplite, and MSR White Gas.

Stoves dependent on compressed gases, or less-refined fuels such as paraffin-based kerosene and additive-laden automobile gasoline, are poor choices for cold-weather environments.

When filling fuel bottles or tanks, leave enough air space--an inch or two if the fuel bottle or tank does not have a maximum fill line marked on its exterior--in the vessel so the pump can pressurize it (air compresses, liquid fuel does not).


[ ] Fuel--use only recently-purchased fuel

Always use fresh, recently purchased fuel. Old, degraded fuel is one of the most common reasons backpacking stoves malfunction. This is especially true at subzero temperatures when solvents, detergents, and moisture in degraded or contaminated fuel turn to sludge or freeze in the fuel pump, fuel line, generator tube, or the intricate jet assembly.


[ ] Fuel--always filter fuel when filling fuel bottles

When filling your fuel bottles, always pour the fuel--even fuel advertised as pre-filtered--through a felt filter so that any contaminants--like particulate matter (bits of metal from the manufacturing process), dirt and dust from atop the can, and moisture (condensation in the can)--are not admitted to the fuel bottle, the interior of which should be spotless from having been previously scrubbed out, as mentioned.

A combined felt filter and funnel designed for this purpose is often available at stores that sell Coleman-brand fuel, stoves, and lanterns. Once such funnel--called the Coghlan's Filter Funnel, item no. 87964--is available from Campmor at http://www.campmor.com 1-888-226-7667.


[ ] Fuel pump--carry pump installed in fuel bottle

To prevent damage to the fuel pump housing as well as prevent debris and other contaminants from getting inside the fuel bottle during the repeated installation and removal of the fuel pump, leave the fuel pump installed in the fuel bottle for the duration of a trip.

To reduce the chance of leakage while underway, bleed off any pressure by holding bottle vertically--with the fuel pump up--and loosing pump. Retighten the pump once the tank is depressurized.


Fuel pump--cover fuel pump with a plastic bag

To prevent debris from entering the fuel pump via the exposed Fuel Tube Bushing during a trip, cover the pump housing with a small, clean plastic bag secured with a rubber band.

An excellent plastic bag for this purpose is a tough, 8-ounce-size baby bottle liner such as the "Playtex Nurser System Soft Bottle Liner." Avoid using a larger plastic bag since its wide mouth will collect more debris, which will eventually work its way down into the bag and into the Fuel Tube Bushing opening.


[ ] Stove--cover exposed nipple end of fuel line with a plastic bag

To prevent debris from entering the open end of the stove Fuel Line during transport, cover the open nipple end of the fuel line with a small, clean plastic bag secured with a rubber band.

An excellent plastic bag for this purpose is a tough, 8-ounce-size baby bottle liner such as the "Playtex Nurser System Soft Bottle Liner." Avoid using a larger plastic bag since its wide mouth will collect more debris, which will eventually work its way down into the bag and into the Fuel Line.


[ ] Repair manual--waterproof it

Always carry an instruction/repair manual for your stove. To make sure your MSR repair manual is intact and legible when you need it most, waterproof it as you do your field maps and carry it folded up in a tiny plastic bag with your repair kit. To learn more about waterproofing paper products, visit the Land Navigation Web page on this Web site at and read the map waterproofing section.

Replacement instruction/repair manuals for MSR stoves can be viewed or downloaded in a PDF-type file format by visiting MSR's Web site at http://www.msrcorp.com and going to their "support" and "stove" Web page at http://www.msrcorp.com/support/stoves.asp.


[ ] Repair kit--carry a well-stocked one

Always carry a fully-stocked repair kit for your MSR stove. Inventory the contents of your repair kit to make sure it is not missing any critical items.

MSR stove repair kits can be obtained from Recreational Equipment Inc., (REI) at http://www.rei.com, 1-800-426-4840, Campmor at http://www.campmor.com, 1-800-230-2153, or from your local MSR dealer, which you can locate by visiting MSR's "dealer search" Web page at http://www.msrcorp.com/dealer_locator/.


[ ] Repair kit--beef up kit with 6 extra Fuel Tube O-Rings

The Fuel Tube O-Ring--which is held in place in the Fuel Bottle Pump by the Fuel Tube Bushing--is easily damaged (torn or broken) when inserting the nipple of the metal fuel line into the pump, especially in extremely cold weather when it is hard and inflexible.

While MSR points this out in its stove manuals--"Below about -10 F O-rings may become inflexible and may leak or break--few owners know about this inherent problem or prepare for it. Once damaged, not only will precious fuel be lost during operation, a fire or explosion may occur. Since this part--the Fuel Tube O-Ring--is so easily damaged in cold weather and so critical to the operation of the stove, you should add several more, perhaps a half dozen, to your stove repair kit.

The Fuel Tube O-ring--MSR item no. 429134--is sold in a package of 10 for about $6.00 and can be ordered through your local MSR dealer, which you can locate by visiting MSR's "dealer search" Web page at http://www.msrcorp.com/dealer_locator/.


[ ] Stove--lubricate nipple of Fuel Line each and every time you assemble stove

Every time you insert the nipple end of the stove fuel line into the fuel pump, make sure you lubricate the nipple to prevent tearing the Fuel Tube O-ring in the fuel pump. If you lubricate the fuel line nipple with a light coating of MSR Pump Cup Oil, saliva, nose grease, margarine, lip balm, sunscreen, first-aid cream, or other non-petroleum-based oil, and you gently work (rotate) the fuel line into the pump housing, you should be able to avoid tearing this O-ring--which is especially easy to do in subzero weather--as mentioned above.


[ ] Stove--carry a stove base

Carry a small metal cookie sheet, which must be large enough to support the heat shield, to keep your stove from sinking into the snow. The cookie sheet will also serve as fire pan for a small, Indian-style, cooking fire if your stove conks out.


[ ] Stove efficiency--carry a heat & wind shield

A full-coverage, 360-degree, reflective heat/wind shield, placed vertically around the pot (within one-half-inch of side of pot), and a second horizontal one placed just below the burner (but above any tank on a stove with an integral tank, like Coleman-brand Peak 1 stoves), can dramatically improve stove efficiency, reducing both boil times and fuel consumption.


[ ] Stove efficiency--use a wide, blackened pot with a tight-fitting lid

A wide-based pot with a blackened exterior (a dark surface absorbs more heat than a shiny, reflective surface, so blacken the pot over a fire or by coating it flat-black, heat-resistant stove paint) and a tight-fitting lid can dramatically improve stove efficiency, reducing both boil times and fuel consumption.


[ ] Stove safety--prime & preheat your stove safely & properly

To properly pre-heat your MSR stove, follow the manufacturers instructions. On many MSR stoves, this involves opening the fuel valve until liquid gas is visible in the priming cup--sometimes called the spirit cup--beneath the stove (gas should wet priming cup, not fill it to the rim). After shutting off the fuel valve, light the fuel--or the fuel-laden priming wick or pad on some models--in the priming cup. In extremely cold weather, it may be necessary to relight the fuel once or twice before it will stay lit.

Once lit, make sure the priming flame rising from the priming cup makes near-continuous contact with the generator tube--the curved fuel line protruding through the top of the stove, just above the burner--for several minutes. The generator tube is designed to absorb heat from the priming flame--and the burner when it is lit--in order to vaporize the liquid fuel flowing through it.

To identify a stove's generator tube--or fuel vaporizing chamber--follow the stove line from the pump to its terminus beneath the jet assembly. The generator tube will be that portion of the fuel line that lies closest to the stove burner.

If the priming flame from the priming cup is not licking the generator tube, possibly because a slight breeze is pushing the priming flame to one side, rotate the stove and adjust the heat shield until the flame engulfs the generator tube. If the flame does not preheat the generator tube to a sufficient temperature, the stove will not operate properly: you'll see dangerous, uncontrolled yellow or orange flames leaping a foot or two above the stove when the fuel is turned on instead of very low, concentrated blue flames.

Improper priming and preheating is typically one of the most problematic and dangerous issues for wilderness trippers using MSR stoves, even longtime owners. As mentioned above, the solution is simple: know where the generator tube is situated on your stove and then make sure the priming flame engulfs it.

Another priming option--especially for stoves without a priming cup, such as the Coleman-brand Peak 1 stove--is to apply a priming paste (or fire-starting paste) just below the generator tube and light it. Once the generator tube is preheated, the stove can then be lit.

Priming or fire-starting paste--packaged in a tube like toothpaste--can be found at many sporting goods stores. Marketed as both a fire-starting paste and a stove priming paste, "Coghlan's Fire Paste" can be ordered (item no. 626906) from Recreational Equipment Inc., (REI) at http://www.rei.com, 1-800-426-4840.


[ ] Stove--blow flame out after shutting stove off

After you turn your stove off, blow out the flame instead of letting the flame burn out on its own. This will reduce carbon buildup in the jet and the escaping gas may help clean the jet a bit too.


Flare-ups while priming & preheating, or relighting

Use caution when priming and preheating a stove, or when relighting a hot stove. If the generator tub on a cold stove has not been heated enough, or if the generator tube on a just extinguished stove has cooled too much, an extremely dangerous flare-up--sometimes up to three feet in height--can occur almost instantaneously when lit. This is especially hazardous in an enclosed space.


Explosion of overheated fuel tank

If you are using a stove that does not have a remote fuel cell--such as a Coleman-brand Peak 1 stove that has an integral fuel tank below the burner, or one of the blended-fuel, compressed-gas canister stoves--be extra careful to avoid overheating the fuel tank. Always monitor the fuel tank to make sure no fuel is running down the outside of it and that it is not getting hot, especially if you are using a wide pot, which will reflect heat back onto the stove. Be careful to never fully enclose or surround such a stove--a stove with a fuel tank located beneath the burner--with a heat shield as this will overheat the tank. Never open the fuel tank cap to vent the tank or refuel the tank when the stove is lit or hot.


Severe frostbite from spilled, super-cooled fuel

While water freezes at temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, fuel does not. Instead, it assumes the ambient air temperature and becomes a super-cooled liquid, which at 40 below will instantly cause severe frostbite if the fuel comes in contact with exposed skin.


Enclosed-area hazard no. 1--death by carbon monoxide poisoning

Never operate a stove in a tent, snow shelter, or other less-than-well-ventilated area as carbon monoxide poisoning--a deadly, colorless, odorless, and silent killer--is a real hazard.


Enclosed-area hazard no. 2--death by asphyxiation

Never operate a stove in a tent, snow shelter, or other less-than-well-ventilated area as asphyxiation--a lack of oxygen--is a real hazard since stoves consume a tremendous amount of oxygen.


Enclosed-area hazard no. 3--death by fire or explosion

Never operate a stove in a tent, snow shelter, or other confined space as unexpected flare-ups during the priming and preheating process, flare-ups during the relighting process, and explosions from malfunctions and leaking fuel can quickly ignite flammable materials--especially synthetics--such as tent fabric, sleeping bags, clothing, hair, etc.

Warning: Accidental fires, asphyxiation, and carbon monoxide poisoning from improper stove use or malfunctioning stoves are the leading causes of death for Arctic explorers.

Sierra Club accident: On a 2004 CUPG Michigan Sierra Club trip gone bad, a flare-up from an MSR stove burned holes in the roof of a North Face tent and came close to seriously injuring or killing its sweat-soaked and exhausted occupant who was taking shortcuts during a blizzard along the south shore of Lake Superior. Be careful and avoid taking shortcuts, especially when you are wet, cold, and exhausted.


To learn more about stove preparation, maintenance, operation, repair, and safety, read your stove's manual, consult an authoritative book on the subject, search the Internet for information on your stove, or contact the manufacturer of the stove.


Stove manuals

MSR stove manuals and detailed drawings of MSR stoves can be viewed on-line at MSR's Web site at http://www.msrcorp.com by going to their stove manual page at http://www.msrcorp.com/support/stoves.asp.



In-depth discussions of the maintenance, use, and repair of backpacking stoves can be found in the following two books:

The Backpacker's Field Manual--A Comprehensive Guide to Mastering Backcountry Skills, by Rich Curtis (Random House, 1998)

The Essential Outdoor Gear Manual: Equipment Care and Repair for Outdoorspeople, by Anne Getchell (Ragged Mountain Press, 1995)



To learn more about your stove, query an Internet search engine such as Google at http://www.google.com.


Stove manufacturer's contact info

Mountain Safety Research (MSR):
4000 1st Ave S
Seattle, Washington 98134
Fax 1-800-583-7583
Web site: http://www.msrcorp.com
MSR dealer locator page: http://www.msrcorp.com/dealer_locator/.
Stove manual page: http://www.msrcorp.com/support/stoves.asp.
FAQ's page: http://www.msrcorp.com/support/stoves.asp.


Other stove manufacturers:

Contact information for additional stove manufacturers is listed on this Web site on the Stoves and Rations page.




About Camping
Select "outdoor cooking"

Adventure Alan's Backpacking Food page

Backpacking Light
   Go to "Lightweight Backpacking 101 Outline" select "Part 5, Trail Food"

   Select "technique" followed by "nutrition"


Camp Recipes

Go to "go learn" and select "meals"

Gorp--Adventure Travel
   Select "community," "interests," and "food"

Great Lakes Lightweight Backpacking
Select "trail food"

House of Nutrition
   Select "nutrition" to get to a page to calculate your daily caloric requirements

Jugglebutton's World--Hiking Food

Light Trail Food
   Lots of useful information

Outdoor Cooking and Recipes

Pack Light, Eat Right
Select "Pack Light, Eat Right"

Pemmican--Recipes, Stories, and Stores

Trail Food Recipes
   Select "trailfood"

Ultralight-Hiking Recipes

University of Georgia's So Easy To Preserve Guide to Drying

USDA Nutrient Database
This handy, searchable database will help you determine the nutrition values and makeup--such as water, kcal, protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals--of different foods.




101 Ways to Make Ramen Noodles, by Toni Patrick (C & G Publishing, 1993)

4-H Hiking and Backpacking--Snacks Along the Trail, by Mary A. Spruill-Pollock (North Carolina Agricultural Extension Service, 1986)

Appalachian Trail Food Planner, by Lou Adsmond (Appalachian Trail Conference, 2000)

AYH Outdoor Food Book, by Chris Redi, editor (Pittsburgh Council of American Youth Hostels, 1977)

Backcountry Cooking, by J. Wayne Fears (East Woods Press, 1980)

Backcountry Cooking--Feasts for Hikers, Hoofers, and Floaters, by Sierra Adare (Tamarack Books, 1996)

Backcountry Cooking--From Pack to Plate in 10 Minutes, by Dorcas S. Miller (The Mountaineers, 1998)

Back-Country Kitchen--Camp Cooking for Canoeists, Hikers, and Anglers, by Teresa Marrone (Adventure Publications, 1996)

Backpack Cookery, by Ruth Dyar Mendenhall (La Siesta Press, 1974)

Backpack Cookery--Instructor Manual, by Jan Phillips (Missouri Department of Conservation, 1982)

Backpack Trail Cooking, by Thomas H. Griffin (Sentinel Publications, 1972)

Backpacker's Budget Food Book--How to Select and Prepare Your Provisions From Supermarket Shelves, by Fred Powledge (D. McKay Co., 1977)

Backpacker's Cookbook, by Dave Coustick (Neil Wilson, 1996)

Backpackers' Cookbook, by Margaret Fiske and Jean Fiske (Ten Speed Press, 1973)

Backpacker's Cookbook--A Complete Manual and Handbook for Cooking Freeze-Dried and Wild Foods on the Trail and in the Wilderness, by Harvey MacKlin (Pagurian Press, 1978)

Backpacker's Food Book, by Hasse Brunnelle (Simon & Schuster, 1981)

Backpacker's Recipe Book--Inexpensive, Gourmet Cooking for the Backpacker, by Steve Antell (Pruett Pub., Co., 1980)

Backpacking--A Hedonist's Guide, by Rich Greenspan and Hal Kahn (Moon Publications, 1985)

Backpacking and Camping Cookbook, by Rob Hunter (State Mutual Books, 1981)

Backpacking Food From the Grocery Store, revised, by Alice McKay (D & S Publications, 1981)

Backpacking Foods, by Rose A. Millette and Ginny Soberg (North Dakota State University, 1970)

Backpacking Menus, by Terry M. Mandeville (Price Guide Publishers, 1980)

Basic Essentails of Cooking in the Outdoors, by Cliff Jacobson (ICS Books, Inc., 1989)

Camp Cooking--A Backpacker's Pocket Guide, by Bill McMorris and Jo McMorris (Globe Pequot Press, 1989)

Complete Book of Outdoor Cookery, by Mel Marshall (Outdoor Life Books, 1983)

Complete Guide to Trail Food Use, by William W. Forgey (Indiana Camp Supply, 1977)

Complete Light-Pack Camping and Trail-Foods Cookbook, by Edwin P. Drew (McGraw-Hill, 1977)

Complete Pack Provisioning Book, by Nancy Jack (Contemporary Books, 1978)

Cooking (Boy Scouts of America, 1980)

Cooking for Camp and Trail, by Hasse Bunnelle and Shirley Savirs (Sierra, 1972)

Cooking for Campers & Backpackers, by Frank Logue and Victoria Logue (Menasha Ridge Press, Inc., 1995)

Cooking in the Outdoors--The Basic Essentials, by Cliff Jacobson (ICS Books, Inc., 1989)

Cooking Out-of-Doors--Fire Building, Outdoor Kitchens, Cookout Hikes, Food Planning, Recipes (Girl Scouts National Organization, 1946)

Cooking the One Burner Way--Gourmet Cuisine for the Backcountry Chef, by Melissa Gray and Buck Tilton (ICS Books, Inc. 1994)

Eating Hearty in the Wilderness With Absolutely No Clean Up--A Backpacker's Guide to Good Food and "Leave No Trace Camping," by Bern Kreissman (Bear Claw Press, 1994)

Expedition Cookbook, by Carolyn Gunn (Chockstone Press, 1988)

Food for Backpacking and Camping, by Charlotte Dunn (University of Wisconsin, 1978)

Food for Knapsackers and Other Trail Travelers, by Hasse Bunnelle (Sierra Club Books, 1971)

Food Safety While Hiking, Camping, and Boating (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1999) http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OA/pubs/hcb.htm

For Campers Only--Sewing and Cooking, by Cameron Yerian and Margaret Yerian (Children's Press, 1975)

Good Food for Camp and Trail--All-Natural Recipes for Delicious Meals Outdoors, by Dorcas S. Miller (Pruett Pub., 1993). Includes meal planning, nutrition, and recipes.

Gorp, Glop, and Glue Stew--Favorite Foods from 165 Outdoor Experts, by Yvonne Prater and Ruth D. Mendenhall (The Mountaineers, 1982)

Gourmet Camping--A Menu Cookbook and Travel Guide for Campers, Canoeists, Cyclists, and Skiers, by Joan W. Osborne (Quail Ridge Press, 1992)

High Country Cooking in Colorado, by B. Cogswell (Wimmer Brothers Fine Printing and Lithography, 1981)

High Trail Cookery, by Linda Yaffe (Chicago Review Press, 1989)

Hungry Hiker's Book of Good Cooking, by Gretchen McHugh (Alfred A. Knopf, 1982)

Joy of Cooking--The Complete Four-Seasons Guide, Five Seasons Practical Guide to Enjoying the Great Outdoors (Without Destroying it) (Saturday Review Press, 1973)

Just Jerky--The Complete Guide to Making it, by Bell (Dry Store Publishing, 1996)

Kayak Cookery--A Handbook of Provisions and Recipes, by Linda Daniel (Pacific Search Press, 1986)

Lipsmackin' Backpackin'--Lightweight, Trail-Tested Recipes for Backcountry Trips, by Tim Conners and Christine Conners (Three Forks, 2000)

Movable Feasts--The Backpacker Magazine Cookbook, by Hasse R. Bunnelle (Simon and Schuster, 1981)

New Healthy Trail Food Book, revised, by Dorcas S. Miller (East Woods, 1980)

** NOLS Cookery--Experience the Art of Outdoor Cooking, 2nd edition, edited by Sukey Richard, Donna Orr, and Claudia Lindholm (Stackpole, 1991)

One-Burner Gourmet, by Harriett Barker (Contemporary, 1981)

One Pan Gourmet Cooks Lite--A Low-Fat Cooking Guide for the Outdoors, by Don Jacobson and Don Mauer (ICS, 1999)

One Pan Gourmet--Fresh Food on the Trail, by Donald Jacobson (Ragged Mountain Press, 1993). Includes 150 recipes.

Outdoor Cooking--From Backyard to Backpack, by Louise DeWald (Arizona Highways, 1991)

Outdoor Epicure--An R.E.I Cookbook (Recreational Equipment, Inc., 1979)

Outdoor Skills Instruction--Cooking (Boy Scouts of American, 1993)

Pack to Nature, by Frank Ford (Harvest Press, 1974)

Packrat Papers No. 2--Tips for Trail Meals and Cooking Gathered From the Pages of "The Signpost," a Newsletter for Hikers and Backpackers (Signpost Publications, 1973)

Pioneer Wilderness Food, by Edward Doan (Rodas, 1978)

Portable Baker--Baking on Boat or Trail, by Jean Spangenberg (Ragged Mountain Press, 1997).

River Runner's Recipes, by Pat McCairen (Menasha Ridge Press, 1994)

River Runner's Recipes, by Patricia Chambers (Pacific Search Press 1984)

Roughing it Easy, by Dian Thomas (Warner Books, 1975)

Safe Food to Go--A Guide to Packing Lunches, Picnicking, and Camping Out, by Mary Ann Parmiley (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1988)

** Simple Foods for the Pack--the Sierra Club Guide to Delicious Natural foods for the Trail, by Claudia Axcell, Diana Cooke, and Vikki Kinmont (Sierra Club Books, 1986)

Spur Backpacking and Camping Cook Book, by Rob Hunter (Spurbooks, 1978)

Supermarket Backpacker, by Harriet Barker (Contemporary Books, Inc., 1977)

Trail Cooking, by John Weiss (Reinhold, 1981)

Trail Food--Drying and Cooking Food for Backpacking and Paddling, by Alan Kesselheim (McGraw Hill, 1998)

Trail Foods--Easy, Healthy, and Delicious, by Carolyn Gunn and John Viehman (Rodale Press, 1989)

Trailside Cooking, by Russ Mohney (Stackpole, 1976)

Trailside Gourmet--Backpacker's Selected Recipes, by Carol Munson (Rodale Press, 1988)

Trailside's Trail Food, by John Veihman (Rodale Press, 1993). A rather small book; includes time-tested recipes, preparation tips, nutrition, drying, drinking water safety, and environmentally-safe cooking.

Trekking Chef--Gourmet Recipes for the Great Outdoors, by Claudine Martin (Lyons and Burford, 1989)

Upscale Outdoor Cookbook--Simple Recipes for Campers, Backpackers, and Short-Order Cooks, by Cari Taylor-Carison (Serendipity Ink, 1992

Wanapitei Canoe Trippers' Cookbook II--Wilderness Cooking, The Environment and You, by Carol Hodgins (Highway Bookshop, 1999)

Wanapitei Canoe Trippers' Cookbook, by Carol Hodgins (Highway Bookshop, 1982)

Well-Fed Backpacker, by June Fleming (Vintage Books, 1981). Delicious, trail-tested recipes along with useful tips.

Wild Foods Field Guide and Cookbook, second edition, by Billy J. Tatum (Workman, 1985)

Wilderness Cookbook and Guide for Outdoor Enthusiasts, by Berndt Berglund and Clare E. Bolsby (Scribner, 1973)

Wilderness Cookbook--A Guide to Good Food on the Trail, by Bonnie McTaggart and Jill Bryant (Second Story Press, 1999)

Wilderness Cookery, by Bradford Angier (Stackpole Books, 1963)

Wilderness Cuisine--How to Prepare and Enjoy Fine Food on the Trail and in Camp, by Carole Latimer (Wilderness Press, 1991)

Wilderness Notebook--Practical, Time-Saving, Work-Saving Hints for Campers, Hikers, and Canoeists, by Herb Gordon (Burford Books, Inc., 1999)

Wilderness Ranger Cookbook (Falcon Press, 1990)




MRExcellence Cookbook--Your Guide to Making Ordinary Military MRE's Extraordinary, by Vicki Waters (Western Reserve Foods, 1997)

Unofficial MRE Recipe Booklet--How to Have Fun Eatin' on the Run, by Walters S. McIlhenny and Mort Walker (McIlhenny Co., 1985)




Dry it--You'll Like It, by Gen MacManiman (MacManiman, Inc., 1983)

Dehydrator Gourmet, by Herschel L. Scott (Poverty Hill Press, 1983)

Food Drying with an Attitude: A Fun and Fabulous Guide to Creating Snacks, Meals, and Crafts, by Mary T. Bell (Skyhorse Publishing, Inc., 2008)

High Trail Cookery--All-Natural, Home-Dried, Palate-Pleasing Meals for the Backpacker, by Linda F. Yaffe (Chicago Review Press, 1989)

Jerky, by A.D. Livingston (The Lyons Press)

Just Jerky--The Complete Guide to Making it, by Mary Bell (Dry Store Publishing Co.) http://www.drystore.com

Lightweight Gourmet--Drying and Cooking for the Outdoor Life, by Alan S. Kesselheim (Ragged Mountain Press, 1994). Covers dehydrating food of wilderness trips.

Mary Bell's Complete Dehydrator Cookbook, by Mary Bell (_______________) (www.drystore.com)

Trail Food--Drying and Cooking Food for Backpacking and Paddling, by Alan S. Kesselheim (Ragged Mountain Press, 1998)




Complete Guide to Sports Nutrition, by Ryan

Composition of Foods, by Bernice Watt and Annabel Merrill (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1975)

High Performance Bicycling Nutrition, by Rofoth

High-Performance Nutrition--The Total Eating Plan to Maximize Your Workout, by Susan M. Kleiner and Maggie Greenwood-Robinson (John Wiley & Sons, 1996). Good info on how diet and nutrition affect fat loss, muscular development, strength, stamina, and disease prevention. Covers nutritional supplements too.

Let's Eat Right to Keep Fit, by Adelle Davis (New American Library, 1988)

Nutrition Almanac, by John D. Kirschmann (McGraw-Hill Paperbacks, 1979)



Brown Bagging It--A Guide to Fresh Food Cooking in the Wilderness, by Jean Nagy (The Marty/Nagy Bookworks, 1976)

Camper's Cookbook, by Ruth L. Schubert (Little, Brown, 1974)

Campers Guide to Outdoor Cooking Tips, Techniques, and Delicious Eats, by John Ragsdale (Lone Star Books, 1999)

Camping-on-the-go Cookery, by Bradford Angier (Stackpole Books, 1983)

Cast-Iron Cooking, by A. D. Livingston (Lyons Press)

Cee Dub's Dutch Oven and Other Camp Cookin'--A Back Country Guide to Outdoor Cooking Spiced with Tall Tales, by C. W. Welsh (Back Country Press, 1999)

Cooking the Dutch Oven Way, 3rd edition, by Woody Woodruff (Globe Pequot Press, 2000)

Complete Book of High Altitude Baking, by D.M. Hamilton and B.A. Nemiro (Sage Books, 1970)

Complete Outdoor Cookbook, by Dan Morris and Inez Morris (Hawthorn, 1970)

Cookin' Good Grub in Camp--The Camping Book for Everyone (Russ Harris, 1997)

Cooking Out-of-Doors, by Alice S. Rivoire and Gloria Gentile (Girl Scouts of the U.S.A., 1960)

Cooking Over the Campfire, by Marie F. Heisley (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1940)

Dutch Oven Cooking, by Ragsdale

More Cee Dub's Dutch Oven and Other Camp Cookin', by C. W. Welsh

Outdoor Chef--A Guide to Campfire and Fireplace Cookery, by Paul W. Handel (Harper, 1950)

Outdoor Cooking, by Ora Rose and Bob Brown

Outdoor Dutch Oven Cookbook, by Sheila Mills (Ragged Mountain Press, 1997)

Outdoor Dutch Oven Cooking, by Sheila Mills (McGraw Hill, 1997)

Outdoorsman's Cookbook, by Arthur H. Carhart (MacMillan Co., 1944)

Pocket Guide to Cooking in the Great Outdoors, by Shelsby

Roughing It Easy--A Unique Ideabook for Camping and Cooking, by Dian Thomas (Rigby, 1977)

Spicy Camp Cookbook, by O'Keefe

Wilderness Cooking for Fun and Nutrition, by Carol Hodgins (Highway Bookshop, 1982)

Wilderness Kingdom Cook Book--Over 90 Wild-Game Recipes (Prairie Crafts, 1984)




Abbeys Best (10-06)

Adventure Foods
   Meals; staples: beans, cheese, fruit, meat, vegetables

AlpineAire Foods
   Meals; staples: beans, fruit, meat, vegetables

   Select "camp/hike" and "food"

Backpackers Pantry
   Meals; staples: beans, cheese, fruit, vegetables

Backwoods Grocery

Cabin Cuisine (10-06)

Cache Lake Camping Foods

   Meals from several companies

Caribou Cry
   Wide selection of meals and staples (meat, vegetables, fruit, cheese) from a number of companies

**Enertia Trail Foods
   Meals; staples: beans, vegetables

Harvest Foodworks
   Meals; staples: fruit

Just Tomatoes
   Stapes: fruit, vegetables

L.D.P. Camping Foods
   Meals from several companies

Mountain House
   Meals; staples: fruit, vegetables

MSR Mountain Gourmet Foods

Packit Gourmet

Pack Lite Foods

Recreational Equipment, Inc., (REI)
   Meals from several companies

Richmor/Natural High

Soft Path Cuisine
   Staples: beans

The Spice Hunter (10-06)

Trail Gourmet, Inc.

Walton Feed (10-06)


For additional lightweight ration sources, see

Chet Fromm's Backpacker Guide--Grub Sources

See backpacking resources page on this Web site for additional outdoor gear vendors which may also sell lightweight rations for field use.



Jerky Review: See "Taste Test: Beef Jerky" in the September 2005 issue of Backpacker Magazine



Bartlett Boys (12-05)

Beef Jerky Emporium (12-05)
   Note: distributes 28 brands

Buffalo Bills Beef Jerky (12-05)

Fesperman's Beef Jerky (12-05)


Jerky 'N' Nutz

Just Smoked Salmon (12-05)

Little Man Jerky

Mingua Brothers Beef Jerky (12-05)

Michigan Brand Meats

Mountain America Jerky

Omaha Steaks Beef Jerky

Papa Dan's

Texas Best

The Jerky Guy

Toxic Tommy's

Vermont Beef Jerky

Wild Bill's Foods

Yorkshire Farms


Backpacker magazine ratings of jerky

The top two beef jerky companies were Bartlett Boys and Papa Dan's. The top two turkey jerky companies were Michigan Brand Jerky and Mountain America Jerky. To learn more, read "Chew on This," by David Petersen and Michele J. Moris in the June 2002 issue of Backpacker magazine, pp. 29-33.

Make your own jerky

To learn how to make your own jerky, see the food drying section of this Web page.




Armed Forces Merchandise Outlet

Brigade Quartermasters

Cheaper Than Dirt

Ken Nolan, Inc.

Major Surplus & Survival

Ranger Joe's

Sportsman's Guide

U.S. Cavalry



Gail Bosio

Tripper: Gail Staisil
E-mail: woodswoman2001@yahoo.com
Hometown: Marquette, Michigan
Particulars: 5'9" 140 pounds
Stove: 3 ounce Esbit Pocket Stove (Campmor)
Stove fuel: 5 1/2-ounce Hexamine fuel tabs (Campmor)
    per day, generally consuming only about 3
Cook pot: 4 ounce .85-liter MSR titanium pot with cover
   and zip-lock boil-bag for food preparation
   and as an eating container
Heat shield and base: homemade from aluminum
Cup: plastic
Spoon: plastic
Water purification: Aqua Mira drops

Shelter: 9 by 9 Oware silicon tarp with either an
   Integral Designs bivy sack or a Hennessy hammock

Menu: for multi-day, 3-season solo backpacking trip


Food Item--Food Brand Quantity


Calories Weight
Breakfast Granola bars--Nature Valley 2 bars 6-4-29 180 42g
  Walnuts--Diamond 1/4 cup 20-5-3 210 30g
  Banana chips 1/4 cup 9-13-1 130 25g
  Tea--Republic Ginger Peach 1 cup 0-0-0 0 2g
                                                                        Breakfast total 35-22-33 grams 520 cals

99 grams
3.47 ounces

AM Snack Energy bar--Power Harvest Bar 1 bar 5-7-45 260 65g
  Energy drink--Gookinaid 1 quart 0-0-48 184 50g
                                                                 Morning snack total 5-7-93 grams 444 cals 115 grams
4.03 ounces
Lunch String cheese--Frigo 2 pieces 12-14-0 160 56g
  Beef jerky--Pemmincan 2 ounces 2-24-6 140 56g
  Crackers--Wasa Sesame Wheat 3 pieces 22-44-39 495 167
  Ice tea--Crystal Light 2 cups 0-0-0 10 5g
  Candy--Snickers snack size 1 bar 5-3-12 95 20g
                                                                             Lunch total 22-44-39 grams 495 cals 167 grams
5.85 ounces
PM Snack Candy--M&M's 1/4 cup 9-2-30 210 42g
  Almonds--Diamond 1/4 cup 18-8-6 218 30g
  Dried cherries--Traverse Bay 1/3 cup 0-1-34 140 43g
  Candy--Snickers snack size 1 bar 5-3-12 95 20g
                                                              Afternoon snack total 32-14-82 grams 663 cals 135 grams
4.73 ounces
Dinner Soup--Fantastic Vegetable Barley 1 cup 0.5-5-33 150 43g
  Cous Cous--Enertia Foods: "Blue Mountain Bear Mush" 2 cups 7-9-80 430 106g
  Cookie--Bahlsen "Hit" Biscuits 1 biscuit 4-0.5-9 70 15g
  Tea--Republic Blackberry 1 cup 0-0-0 0 2
                                                                           Dinner total 12-15-122 grams 650 cals 166 grams
5.81 ounces

                                                                               Daily total 106-102-369
682 grams
23.87 ounces




Homemade Stove Plans

Danger--Dinking around with matches, flammable liquids, flammable solids, and vessels (e.g. homemade stoves) containing or restricting flammable substances can be dangerous or deadly. Be careful. Do it outside. Have a fire extinguisher handy.

Efficiency of alcohol vis-a-vis conventional fuels: Alcohol burning stoves use fuel twice as fast as conventional backpacking stoves using white gas or propane. Alcohol-burning stoves become less weight-efficient on longer trips. (Source: "Hot, Light, and Cheap," by Steve Howe, Backpacker, June 2002, page 94)


Cooking Equipment--Making Heat

Cat Food Can Stove by Roy Robinson

Cat Stove Modifications by Sgt. Rock

Esbit Stove Option

Fuzzy's Lil' Stover

Homemade Alcohol Burning Stove

Linguini's Alcohol Stove

Pepsi Can Stove by Scott Henderson

Photon Stove by Don Johnston

Photon Stove II

Shane Graber's Stove Instructions
   A must-read for any alcohol stove builder

Soda Can Stove by LaMar Kirby

Solid Fuel Stove Info

Three-Fuel Stove by Michael Connick

Titanium Wingstove

Two-Ounce Stove by Ron Moak
   Stove runs on either alcohol or hexamine/trioxane fuel tabs

Wings--The Homemade Stove Archives
   Over two dozen alcohol and solid fuel stove plans

Zen Stoves
   Tons of info on alternative fuel stoves


Backpacker Magazine Stove Plans
"Hot Tuna Stove," August 2001, pages 110-111


Vendors of
simple commercial alcohol stoves

   Used Swedish Trangia stove and mess kit

Boundary Waters Catalog
   Trangia stoves

   Hike N' Light Alcohol Stove--this two-ounce stove was designed by an AT hiker

Cheaper Than Dirt
   Swedish alcohol stoves

Major Surplus & Survival
   Used Swedish Trangia stove and mess kit

Recreational Equipment, Inc., (REI)
   Trangia Mini stove


Trangia Info

Trangia Stove--Manufacturer's Web site

Trangia Stove--Modification to Lighten

Trangia Stove--Retailer
   Tritan Mountain Sports
   Check out the very affordable and stripped-down Trangia Mini-28 and Westwind models.

Trangia Stove--Retailer
Outdoor Sportz

Trangia Stove--U.S. Distributor


Commercial Solid Fuel Tabs & Stoves

Hexamine solid fuel tabs, along with the Esbit Pocket Stove, are the choice of NATO troops, generally white in color, advertised as non-toxic, slow to light, advertised as legal to transport on airplanes, and packaged in clear plastic. These are the tabs that are popular among Michigan Sierra Club wilderness trippers.

Trioxane solid fuel tabs are U.S. Military Vietnam-era ration heating tabs that are generally blue in color, are considered toxic (nasty fumes, but hotter than hell), often packaged in thick olive-drab-colored aluminum packets (pin holes turn tablets to useless powder; not a big problem), fast lighting, and were designed to be used with aluminum canteen cup heaters.

To learn more about using the Esbit Pocket Stove, visit

To learn more about solid fuel and solid fuel stoves, visit

Esbit Pocket Stove & Hexamine Fuel Tabs--Manufacturer
   The NATO standard and popular with wilderness trippers in the Michigan Sierra Club. A simple, German-quality, functional favorite.   No retail sales of stove or fuel tabs.


Armed Forces Merchandise Outlet
   Folding wing stove; hexamine and trioxane fuel tabs

Boy Scouts of America
   Heatab stove and hexamine Heatabs

Brigade Quartermasters
   Trioxane fuel tabs, Tommy Cooker folding stove, canteen cup stove

   Esbit pocket stove; Esbit hexamine fuel tabs

Cheaper Than Dirt
   Used German Esbits stoves; Trioxane fuel tabs; Swiss Ranger Volcano stove for use with solid fuel tabs.

International Military Sales Plus (IMS-PLUS)
   Hexamine & trioxane fuel tabs

Ken Nolan, Inc.
   Special Forces Stove, hexamine & trioxane fuel tabs

Light Weight Gear
   Coghlan's hexamine fuel tabs

Major Surplus & Survival
   Oversze version of German Esbit

Ranger Joe's
   Esbit hexamine fuel tabs; aluminum-alloy folding stove

Recreational Equipment, Inc., (REI)
   Esbit pocket stove; Esbit hexamine fuel tabs

Search Gear
   Butt-Pack stove; fuel tabs

   Esbit Pocket Stove; Esbit hexamine fuel tabs  

Sportsman's Guide
   Trioxane fuel tabs

   Hexamine fuel tabs

Vector 1
   Hexamine and trioxane fuel tabs


Manufacturers of
conventional backpacking stoves

Avid Outdoor

Camping Gaz

Coleman Exponent

Light is Right

MSR (Mountain Safety Research)

Optimus (Brunton)

Primus (Sunnto)

Snow Peak USA, Inc.

Vaude Sports, Inc.

ZZ Manufacturing, Inc.



**Speaking of stoves, check out this guy's massive stove collection


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In God's wilderness lies the hope of the world,
the great, fresh, unblighted, unredeemed wilderness.
— John Muir 1838-1914, Alaska Wilderness, 1890

Content Copyright © by Michael A. Neiger
All rights reserved.
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