The 10 Lightest Hiking Stoves available in the UK June 2015
When youre buying a stove, the weight of the actual stove is the least of your problems, unless its your grandmas AGA. In all of the products Ive listed below the heaviest cooking related item is always the fuel, so it seems pointless just to concentrate on the stove weight when the real issue is the cooking system weight.
In the list Ive include the weight of the stove, the pot (MSR Titan Kettle in these examples), the windshield (if required) and the fuel for a three day hike. This gives you the total weight you need to carry to either cook something or brew up a cuppa a few times a day. I like to cook stuff. After a day of eating nuts, energy bars and sunflower seeds my taste buds are on their knees pleading give us something to taste, yer cruel git. So I do.
If your taste buds are more understanding you could reduce the weight considerably by only cooking once a day but thats abuse if you ask me.
The stoves Ive listed use three different types of fuel: solid fuel tablets, methylated spirit and butane/propane canisters. In general, the lighter the stove the longer it takes to boil a litre of water. The solid fuel stoves could take ten minutes, maybe longer, depending on the wind and rain. The meths usually slightly better, especially the caldera systems which are quite efficient. The canister systems can boil it up in three minutes, but you have to carry a canister.
The problem with canisters is that you always have to buy a new one because you dont know exactly how much is left in the bottom and you dont want to risk it. A quarter of a canister is useless. With the tablet and meths stoves, you always know exactly what youve got and you can be more accurate with what you carry.
The issue of how long it takes to boil has never really been an issue for me. The modern world has really got to you if youre sitting on High Seat in The Lake District, with Thirlmere on one side and Borrowdale on the other, raging about that 7 minutes youve lost because you didnt bring your Pocket Rocket.
Here's the top ten lightest cooking systems: