Author Topic: stove or no?  (Read 2009 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Serx

stove or no?
« on: April 15, 2010, 09:53:01 am »
We are planning to ride the transam.  Many of the journals indicate that people end up sending their stoves home, and eating most meals in cafes, etc.  I am thinking of just my pocket rocket and a kettle to boil h2o.  Or should I be prepared with something to make real dinners with?  We plan on camping 2/3 of the time.
Thanks, Keith

Offline tonythomson

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2010, 10:17:28 am »
I think if you are camping as much as that then always good to have a stove along.  Can't beat that coffee/tea brewing while you pack up your camping gear.  One of life's little pleasures.


Just starting to record my trips  www.tonystravels.com

Offline indyfabz

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2010, 10:42:25 am »
It depends entirely on how you want to do it. Personally, I carry an extensive kitchen and try to cook dinner as much as possible.  And when I say cook, I don't mean heating up a can of soup or chili, unless that's all that's available. Highlights from last summer in MT, BC and AB were pasta with linguica, onions, garlic and fresh spinach, pasta with asparagus, onions and garlic and chicken stir fry with broccoli.  On an overnight trip this Easter past it was spaghettine with asparagus, portobello mushrooms, garlic and shaved parmasean cheese. And coffee in the morning is a must for me.


If you don't see yourself making regular use of a more extensive kitchen set up, probably best not to bring one. But not having one could limit your options.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/davez2007/4491662400/


Offline rvklassen

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2010, 11:03:57 am »
Go for a two day to a week-long pre-trip.  See what works for you.   You can save quite a bit of money if you cook for yourself, but that assumes you really do cook.   If you're not cooking, you save time and weight - time shopping for ingredients, weight from them and utensils.  You might shorten the trip by a day.  Then again, depending on where you eat, it can be faster to cook for yourself...

Offline bikeflu

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2010, 12:04:54 pm »
It really is one of those "it's up to you" kind of things. It depends how much you think you will use it, and what your budget is. Eating out for every meal can get expensive. Not to mention, there might not always be restaurants near where you're camping, but I suppose you could plan around that.

I took an MSR Whisperlite with me last summer when i did the Underground Rail Road route and I used it almost every day. I even used it some days when i stayed in a hotel. I would not do a long tour without a stove, but it is a matter of personal preference.

Online staehpj1

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2010, 03:16:04 pm »
We are planning to ride the transam.  Many of the journals indicate that people end up sending their stoves home, and eating most meals in cafes, etc.  I am thinking of just my pocket rocket and a kettle to boil h2o.  Or should I be prepared with something to make real dinners with?  We plan on camping 2/3 of the time.
Thanks, Keith
We camped most of the time and generally cooked at least one meal a day.  We took only one pot and still managed some fairly elaborate meals even if one part of the meal may have gotten cool while the other cooked.  Sometimes we did one pot meals and sometimes we just cooked three different courses separately and hoped they didn't get too cold.  When we had a fire we sometimes heated one thing in a can, cooked another in a pot, and roasted a third on sticks over the fire.

I'll warn you that you will not find fuel for the pocket rocket very much between Pueblo and Virginia.  We tried sporting goods stores, walmarts, and just about everywhere with no luck.  That was 2007, but I doubt it has changed much.  If you are going to use the pocket rocket you might arrange to have someone mail fuel to you care of general delivery.  You can mail isobutane fuel via ground mail (domestic mail only and a limit of three cartridges). The package must have the following label attached on the address side of the package:
"Surface Mail Only
Consumer commodity
ORM-D"

General delivery is so handy as long as someone at home is willing to mail you stuff.  We also when given a lot of dried food split it into lots and mailed them to ourselves down the road.  If we went through the town before we needed it or when the post office was closed we just stopped at some other post office and arranged for it to be forwarded further down the road (no extra charge).  Sometimes we forwarded stuff several times.

Offline johnsondasw

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2010, 10:07:42 pm »
I cook great one pot meals at a fraction of the cost of eating in restuarants.  Bringing and using a stove is a no-brainer for me, unless it's a 2 or 3 day ride.  Then I'll splurge and spend the $ for meals out.
May the wind be at your back!

Offline tpejoe

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2010, 08:09:38 am »
Great question that every bike tourer must answer.
When I leave the stove at home, invariably I wish I had it. When I carry the stove with me, I use it all the time.

Light weight stove that uses coleman fuel does the trick as long as there are at least two in your party. One to carry the cooking gear, the other to carry the food. One to cook, the other to clean.

On my recent tour last summer, I found that I cooked oatmeal in the a.m., tea at lunch, and then noodles, at dinner.

Eating in cafes became uninsping and the camp ground was our preferred dining spot. That being said, occasionally when you came across a great diner, with terrific food, we just strapped it on and ate our faces off.

I am planning on biking the Natchez Trace with my 10 year old son this summer and I can't wait.

Offline velo

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2010, 09:19:29 am »
Do you like to cook? I like to cook and do cook while I'm on the road so that makes a stove a no brainer for me. If you don't like to cook and have the money to hit cafes then do that. Being able to at least boil water is good so you can make food when you aren't near a town.  Personal preference I guess. On the Northern Tier I probably ate out twice a week and that felt about right right to me. Food that you cook is also often lighter then food that you don't so that is something to consider too.

Offline paddleboy17

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2010, 10:22:42 am »
I would like to put a plug in for alcohol stoves.  You can get fuel (Yellow Heat Gas Line Antifreeze) at any gas station you see along the way.  I have had no problems using mine at temps above freezing.  If you want to know more, there are existing threads on alcohol stoves.
Danno

Offline John Nelson

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2010, 11:43:37 am »
You said "we", so we can infer that your group is larger than one. I would say that the larger the group, the more sense it makes to have a stove, due to economy of scale factors, division of weight factors, and division of effort factors. But for a group of one, eating in cafes may provide much-needed human interaction.

Offline Serx

Re: stove or no?
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2010, 09:42:55 am »
Thank you to all who chimed in.  Excellent advice, each and every one!