Hi all. I am new here, but not necessarily new to hiking. I've done many weekend trips all across the south and east coast. This time, I am venturing to the Lost Creek Wilderness in Colorado. I'm absolutely excited about hitting the mountains and the opportunity to see the fall colors.
Here's my question... Given that the forecast is calling for temperatures in the 20's at night and we will be between 9,000-12,000 ft... should I take my Jetboil (isobutane), MSR Windpro (isobutane with windscreen and invert-able canister), or my MSR Dragonfly (white gas)? I really want to take the Jetboil, but I am concerned that it will be too cold and the altitude is too high.
Loc: Marina del Rey,CA
Canister stoves work better at alititude in cold weather. You see pictures of high altitude climbers using them all the time. At lower elevations and cold weather, the gas will not evaporate. My canister stove (Primus Micron) worked at Yosemite at 7K at 15F-20F.
Markill makes a canister pad that heats up the canister. Not sure how it generates the heat. The description says you heat it up first, so kind of a Catch -22; how do you heat it up if your stove isn't working to begin with? It looks like a mini frisbee or coaster. Saw it on a UK camping gear site.
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Your armpit under your jacket will warm up the canister nicely in about 10-15 minutes. Guaranteed to wake you up in a hurry on a cold morning!
While windscreens enclosing the canister are normally not recommended due to the danger of overheating the canister (BOOM!), they do keep the canister warm during cold weather use. (Remember that the fuel inside vaporizing cools down the canister.) Just keep feeling the canister to make sure it doesn't get hot! I use a windscreen that doesn't quite go all the way around the canister.
A piece of insulation under the canister to protect it from snow or frozen ground helps, too.
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey