Hello, I registered to get some help with my decision. i never backpacked before, always had a drive up site and had access to grills and such, but I am planning on getting a pack stove.
i was debating between the MSR dragonfly or XGK. i wanted the dragonfly because of the good temp control but i think im gonna go with the XGK for the size and it looks more durable. i figure if im gonna be backpacking where i dont have access to a regular stove/grill i wont be making fancy meals anyways.
the other advice i needed was on cookware. i would like one possibly with nonstick, but i read a review of the XGK and someone said they burned a hole through their aluminum pan... is this something i should be worried about? i was thinkin of going with one of those sets that just has a pot and a lit that doubles as a pan, or multiple pots/pans that close in on each other, but i would also like to carry the XGK inside of them.
Unless you are going in winter, why do you want white gas stoves? Or do you need the multi-fuel feature?
A canister stove or alcohol stove will boil water and do some basic cooking without all the weight of the white gas. There are some wider burner canister stoves like the Windpro that would work just as well as the dragonfly or XGK.
I tend to boil only, or steam bake, but not fry. I didn't care for the fry pan lid sets because they fit together so loosely. So I use hard anodized aluminum and uncoated titanium for boiling water or for steam baking with silicon cups, and were I to cave in and get a frypan I'd probably pick up a separate one to carry. YMMV.
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki
I agree with Lori - a MSR Windpro remote canister stove is a good investment for those who like to cook beyond just boiling water. It isn't the fastest stove for water boiling but it is highly tuneable, is light for the type of stove it is and it works well with large pots as well.
As for pots - you have to ask what you will do most. Buy good the first time - doesn't mean pricey though. GSI, MSR, some REI, etc are good buys. Hard anodized aluminum is a good choice price wise - it heats evenly as well. Whether or not you get a non stick finish is up to you. A fry pan can be a tricky one. A few fry pan lids are good, but most blow. You definitely have to be careful while cooking in them - so you don't fry the middle while the outside is raw. Getting say a $25 MSR 9" Flex System fry pan is a good choice - you can actually cook in it!
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond: www.trailcooking.com
thanks guys, and I wanted white fuel because although I havent yet, i do want to camp this winter. I live in Duluth, MN and I wanted a good one for winter and high altitude, although im not really sure how high it really means. ive been camping in colorado, montana, and alberta in the mountains but I guess i never put the effort to see how high of altitude regular gas stoves work.
i ended up going with the dragonfly and a msr stainless steel pot/pan set. im not the greatest cook but hopefully i can keep them from getting messed up from getting burnt stuff stuck haha. some people recommended just keeping a little olive oil with you.
if i dont like the stuff, not a big deal, my parents love camping too and im sure they wouldnt mind getting "hand me downs" from me if i ever bought newer better quality stuff.
I used a whisperlight and MSR stainless cook set for years. The pots work great but watch out with the fry pan. It is really easy to overheat and warp. If you are looking to go lighter, just pick the pan size you need and leave the other one at home. Most of the time, I have no need for more than one pot. Only when I'm going really gourmet or melting snow is a second necessary.
By the way, I'm in MN too and the MSR white gas stovew work great in winter!
If I wouldn't eat it at home, why would I want to eat it on the trail?
For summer I now use a Brunton Flex canister stove.
For winter I use my MSR Dragonfly. Best simmering white gas stove EVER made. Also MSR's heaviest stove but dead reliable.
My pot is a JetBoil 1.5 L. W/ the handles removed and handle bracket cut off. This is an extemely eficient pot with its heat exchanger bottom and cozy sides. I did cut the center out of the heat exchanger plastic protective cover. All the cutting and removing to save weight.
"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."