Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 
BCG Holiday Sale

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
BackcountryGear.com
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance


Stay Healthy--Eat Well

MARY JANES FARM ORGANIC MEALS

Mary Janes Farm Organic Backcountry Meals

NATURAL HIGH GOURMET MEALS

Natural High

 

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#148539 - 03/28/11 01:44 PM Extended SAR Cookware
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
I'm new to the forum- I am currently a medic with an SAR service and I am in the process of refitting my pack. I'm in the market for a new mess kit and I wanted some opinions on my selection.

Here are my specs: This mess kit will be in both my SAR pack and my own personal pack. I'm not an ultralight kind of guy. I also don't like the standard compact mess kits that hikers seem to like- I don't feel like they provide adequate enough surface area (or even volume for that matter) for cooking. I can't fry a freshly caught fish/squirrel/rabbit in a cup. I like to be able to operate, theoretically, for an extended period of time without resupply- this means a lot of hunting/fishing/gathering. However, since I am the medic, a large portion of my bag is taken up with medical supplies (NS/LR/colloid solutions take up a lot of room and add a lot of weight), so my mess kit cannot be excessively heavy or bulky.

I am also not particularly fond of nonstick pans- they're too easily scratched or burned and while Teflon works great in catheters, I would rather not be ingesting it. Same goes with aluminum except that the jury is still out on the level required for amyloidosis (I'm also currently a medical student and while I think the exposure levels are fine, my preference is still not to chance it).

So with all of these restrictions, this is what I am currently planning on:
Texsport Stainless Steel 2-Person Cookset
Or possibly: Texsport Stainless Steel Mess Kit

What do you think? All of your comments/opinions/input would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance,
WSARmedic

Top
#148553 - 03/28/11 08:33 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Not to ignore the real topic of the thread, but what SAR are you with? I can't imagine being left to forage by my team!

I use anodized aluminum, mostly, but have one titanium pot. I also note that Primus has cookware with a multilayer titanium nonstick - since they are ceasing Teflon production next year, I am wondering if this is the replacement tech for it.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#148558 - 03/28/11 11:47 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: lori]
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
Originally Posted By lori
Not to ignore the real topic of the thread, but what SAR are you with? I can't imagine being left to forage by my team!

I use anodized aluminum, mostly, but have one titanium pot. I also note that Primus has cookware with a multilayer titanium nonstick - since they are ceasing Teflon production next year, I am wondering if this is the replacement tech for it.


We cover a fairly large, rural mountainous region. With the terrain and span of our call-out area (especially when you consider mutual aid calls that we handle), we like to, at least in theory, be able to operate for up to a week independently. In practice, we train for that, though in reality, we rarely reach that point and typically max out at 3-4 days in the field.

Top
#148562 - 03/29/11 10:19 AM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
oldranger Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
I would like to chime in here. About fifteen years extensive SAR experience operating in Arizona mountains, deserts, and caves. I always carried a minimal cookset in my pack - Trangia alcohol stove and aluminum cookset almost always, grading up to a liquid fueled stove for winter conditions. I always liked the alcohol setup for absolute ease and dependability of operation. I could start the stove, begin boiling water, and then attend to the victim or some other critical task. With the medical and technical climbing gear we carried, light weight was a definite consideration.

I noticed in another post that you stated you were issued MREs. They do have their place, but I much preferred my own cuisine - typical lightweight backpacker's fare, adjusted for my own taste. The total weight was much less than MREs.

I can't imagine a realistic combination of SAR and foraging - tracking game when your primary mission is tracking the victim? I can recall times when we passed up the opportunity to scarf up berries or go fishing in order to deal with the business at hand. If I did have to eat a squirrel or fish, I would simply put them on a spit or throw them on the coals - no gear needed.

Gear for personal use probably should vary somewhat from the dead simple requirements for SAR. In any event, the stainless steel is simply needlessly heavy. I would go with either coated aluminum or titanium - either material will last forever.

Top
#148566 - 03/29/11 11:46 AM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: oldranger]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
My SAR cookset is a GSI minimalist with an alcohol setup in it. Flip the lid over and it's a mug. Very simple and light.

My thought paralleled oldranger's. My setup is a GSI minimalist - sturdy enough to protect the alcohol setup I use with it, small enough to be a mug. We have radios and the sheriff has two helicopters. We work in teams of 5-8 people. We are never expected to forage...
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#148567 - 03/29/11 12:04 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: oldranger]
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
The foraging/hunting thing was more of a side preference for my own personal gear. Sorry if I didn't communicate that clearly. Nevertheless, our requirements are that we can operate independently for up to a week. Unreasonable maybe, but that's the mandate.

Weight isn't too much of a problem, we're used to being heavily equipped- most of us have professional fire/EMS backgrounds, not volunteer- we have fitness for duty test requirements. The consensus among our team is that comfort and having all of the tools on hand is more important.

Thanks for the input,
WSAR

Top
#148569 - 03/29/11 12:26 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6400
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Just to note that this is a lightweight backpacking site. I doubt that the majority of our more experienced members carry more than a single pot of titanium or aluminum. Most of us either cook a one-pot meal or just boil water to hydrate a dehydrated or freeze-dried meal. Maybe a few will take a frying pan (also aluminum or titanium) on some occasions. I've been hauling a small titanium (ceramic coated) fry pan when I take fishing tackle, on the off chance that I might actually catch something. laugh
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#148570 - 03/29/11 01:46 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: OregonMouse]
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
Originally Posted By OregonMouse
Just to note that this is a lightweight backpacking site. I doubt that the majority of our more experienced members carry more than a single pot of titanium or aluminum. Most of us either cook a one-pot meal or just boil water to hydrate a dehydrated or freeze-dried meal. Maybe a few will take a frying pan (also aluminum or titanium) on some occasions. I've been hauling a small titanium (ceramic coated) fry pan when I take fishing tackle, on the off chance that I might actually catch something. laugh


Thanks, I was realizing that as I read more and more of the posts here (and also the top heading banner's slogan). I figured I would still take advantage of the the knowledge and expertise here.

I once tried lightweight fishing using a small kit that was very similar to the one outlined on this site- it did not turn out well for me, but I blame that more on the user and not the gear. grin

Top
#148577 - 03/29/11 03:44 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
Oh and to give an idea, this is the kind of pack I have (it looks like they have changed the style a bit and this one is slightly smaller):

Voodoo Tactical Tobago Pack
http://sap075.channeladvisor.com/p-748-large-molle-tobago-pack-in-multicam.aspx


My camera's batteries are dead, so I tried to find similar pictures online of my medical loadout. The loadout is similar in volume to this guy's here (though there are quite a few differences due to his bag being BLS only and that site in general is more than a bit odd):
http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=43&t=42589

-WSAR


Edited by WSARmedic (03/29/11 03:45 PM)

Top
#148580 - 03/29/11 05:34 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2751
Loc: California
This post may get more replies if it were moved. This long distance topic does not get much traffic. By "long distance" we usually mean months- like the Pacific Crest Trail. One week really is not considered "extended" backpacking.

It does not matter how strong or tough you are- lighten the load and you will hike faster, go farther and have more energy for other essential tasks. The point is not that are you able to carry 60 pounds, why would you want to?

You do not need lots of pots to cook nice meals. One pot and maybe one fry pan is enough. Be sure the pot has a tight fitting lid. Size the pot to fit the number of people you will feed. I use the Snow-Peak titanium nesting set. To feed myself I use a different "solo pot" - looks like an oversized cup. To feed two I use the smallest of the nesting set. To feed three I use medium pot, to feed four, the largest pot. I suspect with two big guys, you may choose the medium pot. I boil a full pot of water and use about half for pre-dinner soup. I then add a little more water, bring to a boil, add food, cook and stir a bit, put on lid, turn off stove, let sit 5-minutes, eat. The small "wait" saves fuel because food will still hydrate in hot water even after you turn off the stove. Some people bring a little "pot blanket" called a "cozy" to keep the food warmer. After we eat, I clean out the pot with cold water, and we boil up some more water for hot drinks, like coca. For desert we eat non-cook stuff like dark chcolate, cookies or gormet cheese. We only take a frying pan if we are fishing.

You really do not need individual plates or bowls. We simply spoon our food out of the communal pot. My husband eats faster than I do, so I get the short end of that stick! One communal pot for 4 people is a bit more awkward. For 4, I prefer to break the group into two cook groups of two.

So here's our set-up: 1 pot with lid, 1 spoon per person, 1 small cup per person + one small frying pan with lid if we fish. That's it. I have used this set-up for 30 days straight.

Top
#148581 - 03/29/11 05:47 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: wandering_daisy]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2751
Loc: California
By the way, it is the food you bring not the pots that make for good eating! There are a lot of easy no-cook or little-cook options. Gormet cheese. Summer sausage. I find some of the freeze-dried omlets pretty good. Canadian bacon. Pepperoni. One clove of real garlic really adds to any meal. Add these goodies to the "Lipton sides" and you have a hearty meal. And deserts! Go to a gormet candy store.

I think the goals of your SAR trips and personal trips are quite different and need different cook gear. On SAR your focus is lots of walking, long hours, easy cooking, light gear. On personal trips, it seems you prefer luxury. I suggest you get a nice titanium nesting set of pots and take one on SAR trips and then use all three on personal trips. Add a fry pan with folding handle on your personal trips. A cup and spoon is needed for both. Add a few bowls for personal trips.

Top
#148600 - 03/29/11 09:39 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: wandering_daisy]
WSARmedic Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 9
Thanks for the replies everyone! That's exactly the info I was looking for. A pack weight of 60-75 lbs is not unheard of for our packs- unfortunately, the medic usually gets stuck with one of the heavier packs. Same with the technical rescue pack mule. The commo tech has it a lot better than he used to thanks in large part to satellite phones (though that still hasn't solved everything- line of sight is still largely required for reception which is a problem in heavy foliage cover). Currently I am thinking about going with a small titanium cook set of just a small frying pan and a small pot.

Top
#148679 - 03/31/11 04:51 PM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
thecook Offline


Registered: 10/03/08
Posts: 541
Loc: Minnesota
Check out the Trangia site. Not the super small 28 but the solo kit might be what you are looking for. It isn't light by the standards many use here, but it has a pot and fry pan (with multiple material and coating options) and is dependable and easy to use. The anodized aluminum version may take care of your concerns about both aluminum and coatings. Aluminum will also conduct heat more evenly than titanium i.e. few hot spots and less burned food.
_________________________
If I wouldn't eat it at home, why would I want to eat it on the trail?

Top
#148864 - 04/04/11 11:53 AM Re: Extended SAR Cookware [Re: WSARmedic]
gorge_medic Offline
member

Registered: 08/06/08
Posts: 131
Loc: Kentucky
Again, not to distract from the main topic, but I sympathize with the SAR medic pack, I do much the same thing in the SE US. PM me and let's swap some horror stories...maybe we can find some other ways for you to pare down your pack weight without sacrificing the medicine too smile

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Knife, Fire Starter, Ignition Source
by Jim M
Yesterday at 07:34 PM
Bivvy bag with wired peak
by Petro1234
12/10/17 01:06 PM
How cheap can you go?
by EMT Dave
12/05/17 07:07 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Greetings - and a question
by valongi
Yesterday at 11:35 AM
Just found out about UCO candles
by toddfw2003
11/30/17 08:41 AM
Hitting the eagle rock loop, Ark in 3 days
by toddfw2003
11/19/17 11:31 AM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Plant based insulation...
by billstephenson
11/18/17 02:58 PM
lightest grommets to use
by toddfw2003
10/22/17 06:13 PM
avalibility of thin ti rod
by the-gr8t-waldo
01/26/17 04:45 PM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 29 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
valongi, Atkinson J, Dcarpenter, Woodland, ultralight
12469 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
HOME
Backpacking.net
Family Hiking
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Outdoor Gear Daily Deals
Outlets, Sales, Bargains

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum.com