I have to eat. More honestly: I love to eat. Most of the food I will be consuming will be the ready-to-eat type like trail bars, gorp and other snacks. Some will need simple steps in preparing, such as Peanut Butter or other spreads on bread or tortillas. I will keep a couple of plastic knives on hand for spreading things; Easy and safe to use, light and easy to replace.
For other meals I will be using a compressed canister stove with a small 850ml pot. Size, lightness and easy of use are critical with this choice. Canister stoves are also required by fire code over other types due to the ability to shut them off.
The simplicity and lightness of the Soto Windmaster won me over. It works with any 4oz or 8oz canister and does well without a windscreen in moderate conditions.
Most freeze dried food for backpackers rehydrates in 10-15 minutes in near boiling water. I have a cozy for the food to help this along by keeping the food hot longer.
Some people try going stoveless and add water an hour or two beforehand and allow it to rehydrate slowly. This is my plan-B in case I run out of fuel and this may actually happen! There are SO MANY people hiking the PCT this year that some predict the smaller stores may sell out of some common items like fuel.
The pot I chose is a 850ml Titanium one from Mountain Laurel Designs (MLD). Very light, strong and both the stove and a 4oz canister fit inside. With the net bag it makes a very convenient package.
The long handled Titanium spoon is a silly luxury item that I really like. Weighing maybe 0.1oz less than an aluminum one, it is functional and the length makes wonderful to use when preparing freeze dried meals where you have to stir the bottom.
While I have no plans to actually “Cook”, there may be times when the only food available may require it. Unlike some backpacking stoves the Soto seems to handle simmering well.
I will not take any separate cup as the “Pot” will serve just fine.
Total weight: 7.0oz.