Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

Balsam Cap, Breath, Cornell, Cross, East Wildcat, Friday, Garfield, Giant Ledge, Hanover, Lone, Panther, Peekamoose, Pleasant, Rocky, Romer, Samuals Point, Slide, Table, Terrace, Van Wyck, Wittenberg, Wildcat, Woodhull

Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby kennykb » Tue Oct 14, 2014 3:42 pm

Jon's advice about water treatment is good. So is mine. Both result in safe water. It comes down at that point to hiking style. I've hiked with Jon before, and gladly would again, but our style is different in a lot of things.

Unfortunately, that sort of difference makes it difficult to give advice to a beginner about what method is 'best.' When you're just getting started, you really have no idea what your hiking style is, much less what gear might fit it. There are lots of things on the market that are junk for any style, and we can steer you away from them, but we all wind up going through a few versions of most of our gear as we're getting it dialed in. That's why we've all got closets of gear that we don't use, and why you can sometimes find great gear going for a song at Salvation Army or Goodwill.

Aside to Jon: One reason I like my alky burner, despite the obvious disadvantages, is that it can actually simmer and steam. That ability let me enjoy fresh-baked blueberry muffins at Ouluska lean-to in the Adirondacks a few days ago, twenty miles from anywhere. I'm not up to much more than 12-mile days in that sort of country - at least in the weather we've been getting this autumn! - so I'm willing to sit and putter around in camp a little bit, and the extra time doesn't really cost me much if anything in terms of how far I can walk. If my days are going to be that short anyway, I might as well enjoy some home cooking, which I can't quite manage with a Jetboil or Pocket Rocket. Then again, I've never cooked for you, have I?
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby mikek » Sun Oct 19, 2014 6:58 am

You are probably right. I never thought to trust those filters believing they would tend to clog. I like the MIOX because you can treat everyone's water with little effort. I carry micropour tablets as a back up, but never tried them. I'm always the one setting the goals and when going somewhere new water is always my biggest concern. I have a spread sheet with the weights of all my and my wife's equipment, food and clothing so as to compare carry options.

I've tried the gadgets, boiolite, solar, etc. In the end, a propane stove (with a back-up that someone is carrying) and battery conservation seem to be the lightest, combination that gets you out and back. I made a giant mistake cleaning my stove thinking it would not be allowed on a plane, only to find it clogged after a day hiking into the wilderness.
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby mike » Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:24 am

I have used all 3 types of water purification. Filter is very popular right now, and a good solution. Right now I am using UV light (Camel bak). Very happy with it. With any method you have to understand the pros and cons to ensure that the water is safe.

In the summer I use alcohol stove (Brasslite). The stoves are very light and compact. Fuel is very easy to purchase just about anywhere. The problem with alcohol is that they work poorly in Winter conditions. In the summer they will boil water in about 60-90 seconds. I have seen some home made aluminium can stoves. Ingenious, I it is too fragile for me. I use aluminium flashing as a wind guard. I have a special cloth case to put it in. I prefer light weight and compact. I do like the JetBoil units, but they take up too much space for me to use it in the summer. But, in the Winter it would probably be my choice. As with anything there are personal preferences to them.

BTW: You can bring a stove on a plane as check-in luggage. But, you cannot bring fuel or lighters in your check-in or carry-on luggage.
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby kennykb » Mon Oct 20, 2014 11:37 pm

Mike, you'd be astonished how strong two soda can bottoms, swaged together, are. I can't step on my stove and get away with it, quite, but it's seen a lot of abuse and keeps on burning. With a primer dish underneath it, I can run it into the low 20s F, or at almost any temperature if I've kept the fuel bottle in my jacket. I certainly had no trouble making my morning coffee on it on Sunday on the shore of Rock Lake (west of Northville in the Adirondacks). Temp was 33 degrees, and it was blowing a gale and snowing lightly.

In winter, though, you really need a white gas stove like a Whisperlite for fuel economy - you burn a heck of a lot of fuel melting your drinking water. White gas stoves are cantankerous enough that I don't want to use them in warmer weather.

I wonder - how much fuel does your Brasslite consume, boiling that fast? Usually the best fuel efficiency for alcohol comes at about a 4-5 minute boil time. You can make them burn hotter, but then they start drinking alcohol like an old lush.
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby mike » Tue Oct 21, 2014 11:09 am

After thinking about it for a moment, you've got a point with two bottoms of an aluminium can. They would be very strong. Light and compact too. I've read how to make them. Novel and nifty idea for sure.

My Brasslite doesn't use that much fuel. But, I usually use it in warmer weather. I also use an aluminium flashing skirt to keep the wind away from the stove. That helps a lot. If it gets colder I will put the stove and fuel in a pocket. The Brasslite also has an open port hole, instead of drilled holes. I can control the flame, but I am usually just boiling water for freeze-dried food.

I have a titanium cup, which is very light. But, the handles are not insulated, which I don't like.
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby kennykb » Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:40 pm

I cook in an aluminum grease strainer from K-Mart. My pot stand is made of aluminum rod stock, because I burnt through two coat-hanger ones. The stand is one area that I could definitely improve on. The windscreen is cut from a dollar-store cookie sheet. I also made a steamer rack from the same material so that I can steam-cook eggs or bake muffins in foil cups and not have a grimy pot to wash. The whole kit, including a GSI insulated cup and an old-fashioned Melitta coffee filter, fits inside the cookpot. The stove stand doubles as a lid (which helps keep the penny from going missing).

I did a photo set a while back, just on my porch, showing how to use the setup to steam-bake muffins. I did that one morning on the trail a week ago. It made a nice breakfast, and after three nights on the trail I needed a treat. The water under the steamer rack was just enough for a second cup of coffee.

One of these times we'll get out on a trip again and I'll make you a hot lunch. :)
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby mtnclimber » Sat Oct 25, 2014 12:25 pm

Steam baking muffins in the backwoods...nice!
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Re: Giant Ledge and Panther Mountain on 08/15/2014

New postby kennykb » Sat Oct 25, 2014 1:26 pm

Steam baking muffins in the backwoods...nice!

Life is too short not to eat good food. :D
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