I have in mind to cook my meals most of the way along the TA trail when I converse it next summer considering I enjoy making a nice meal for myself and so my question would be-We found isobutane canisters to be very hard to find across the middle of the country. I was surprised that we had trouble on our tour in the Sierras too. I think some of these are a butane propane mix. It that what you mean? If so I think you will be disappointed with availability.
1. What is a camping stove that you guys have had good success with (lightweight, ease of use, maximum efficiency)?
2. How common are fill stations where I can access a gas such as propane to power my burner?
Im making a trip to REI by Philly this upcoming week so I want to have a base for what to look at.
If you mean the heavy steel canisters that hold a pound of propane. You will find them just about anywhere in the US. They are too heavy to suit me though.
If you go with a cartridge stove like the Pocket Rocket (great stove if fuel is available) I'd take a pop can stove too as a backup. That has worked well for me. The stove and pot stand combined weighs less than an ounce and uses the same windscreen and pot as the Pocket Rocket. Google "pepsi can stove".
If I were doing the TA again I think I'd start with both stoves. I might mail the Pocket Rocket home in the middle of the country if I didn't find fuel. We had good luck finding isobutane fuel from Oregon to Pueblo CO and didn't see it again until Virginia. There was one place in Carbondale IL that had it but they were closed when we rode by.