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Which pot to choose for two?
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Tony Fleming
(TonyFleming) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Which pot to choose for two? on 06/05/2008 22:44:36 MDT Print View

I'm looking for ideas on a two person set up to include cooking in the pot and not just boiling water.

Anyone have a recomendation on the Vargo 1.3 L nonstick pot or the REI 1.3 L nonstick pot?

I really like using a handle or MSR lite lifter.

I will probably combine it with a Caldera cone and alcohol stove. But when cooking in the pot, I'm currently using a Snowpeak canister stove.

We have been cooking for 3-4 in a 2L blacklight. But the kids are older now, and I should learn to boil in the bag for just the two of us.

Any comments would be helpful.


Joe Kuster
(slacklinejoe) - MLife

Locale: Flatirons
Which pot to choose for two on 06/05/2008 23:06:29 MDT Print View

The REI/Evernew .9L is usually plenty for me and my wife. It's non-stick titanium which actually works pretty well. The fold out handles have silicon grips which remove the need to have a pot lifter or even a bandana handy.

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Which pot to choose for two? on 06/06/2008 04:12:05 MDT Print View

My wife and I use a Vargo titanium 0.9 liter pot with the Caldera Cone and pot lifter. It's been plenty for us.

BTW, I love the Caldera. When using the Caldera, I prefer a pot without built-in handles even though the pot lifter adds an ounce. When I lift my pot, the cone usually comes with it, which is no problem. I simply pour the contents into bags or cups and then set the pot with cone still attached, over the stove.

As always, others may prefer to do it differently. :)

P.S. We use a larger pot and inverted canister stove in winter to melt snow.

Tony Fleming
(TonyFleming) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Thanks for the input on 06/06/2008 23:11:19 MDT Print View

Sounds like the 900L size is the way to go, instead of 1300L. I had heard the Evernew handles can get pretty hot and melt the insulation back when using it with the caldera cone. I also read that a pot lifter can dent and damage the sides of the vargo pot so that the lid doesn't fit properly. But, I take it neither of you have had these problems and either pot would be fine.


Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
Which pot to choose for two on 06/07/2008 03:02:15 MDT Print View

For one , I dislike trying my "bush" meals at home, it just feels weird having fresh food around and cooking (well, hydrating) cremated stuff. But... the only way you are going to know what size you need is to cook a few of the meals you intend to have on the trail using a similar sized pot and see how it works out. Note that some think of a 550/600ml pot as too small for one, but others recommend a 900ml for two....

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Thanks for the input on 06/07/2008 08:09:03 MDT Print View

When camping with my wife we use the Vargo 1.3L non-stick.
[ The 1300L is a little big for us ;-) ]

We also use the MSR gripper, without problems. I just checked the pot and there aren't any dents, dings or even bright spots.

We do freezer-bag style cooking, sometimes with 2-part dinners, soups, or hot drinks. With the 1.3 all the water can go in, and as it gets hot, but not boiling, we pour it off for soup or drinks, then for main course, without having to start over. (We use a Caldera system for cooking.)

For ease of mind, if the stove isn't level, or my hand isn't steady, the extra depth is nice.

We use the Ziplok 3 cup storage bowls covered with Reflectix as cozies and one fits in a 1.3 perfectly, along with a stove, gripper, lighter, etc., making that part of our kitchen very compact.

I will note that the non-stick surface, although silicon, is not bomproof. A Scotch green scrubbie took it off, along with the well burnt oatmeal. I like it and would definitely go with it again as it makes non-charred clean up very easy. I'd just be a little more careful.

Edited by greg23 on 06/07/2008 08:12:22 MDT.

Ryan Hutchins
(ryan_hutchins) - F

Locale: Somewhere out there
which pot to choose for two on 06/07/2008 10:53:15 MDT Print View

I have used both the vargo .9 and the 1.3 for 2 people w/ caldera cones. I think it ultimately depends on what your food system is and the qty. that you will be hydrating. I find the .9 good for quicker add water and hydrate in my mug/bowl meals and the 1.3 a little better for longer trips where I am eating more and hydrating in the pot. Keep in mind that you really only use about .5 and 1L of each pot respectively unless you fill all the way to the top. The efficiency of the caldera seems to decrease slightly w/ the larger pot.

Edit - just noticed that you are going to do boil in the bag. This should make it an easy choice, just look at a few BITB meals and see how much water they call for, then you will know which pot to use. FWIW, MSR sells a couple dual pot sets, though I can't recall what sizes they come in.

Edited by ryan_hutchins on 06/07/2008 10:55:49 MDT.

Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
Re:"Which pot to choose for two?" on 06/07/2008 21:24:27 MDT Print View

I have the Snowpeak 900 and 1.4L. For boiling pasta the extra water volume is nice as the pasta expands. For two full size adults I would recommend the 1.4. There are Caldera cones for both, so you can have a simple and wind-resistant setup.

Denis Hazlewood
(redleader) - MLife

Locale: Luxury-Light Luke on the Llano Azul
Re: Re:"Which pot to choose for two?" on 06/07/2008 23:16:56 MDT Print View

For us, the BPL FireLite SUL-1100 works very well for two. We often boil two pots full, to provide additional PTA "wash-up" water. We used to carry an REI 2 liter Titanium pot but, though we're willing to carry the extra weight, the more packable shape of the 1100 works better for our packing method.

Edited by redleader on 06/07/2008 23:20:51 MDT.

Adam Kilpatrick
(oysters) - MLife

Locale: South Australia
Re:Which pot to choose for two on 06/08/2008 16:33:22 MDT Print View

I recently found that 1300mL (BPL Firelite 1300) works fine for boil in the bag for 3 people. Well, I knew it would work fine and was right. Mind you, 600 would have been fine aswell-we just would have reheated water.

Rod Lawlor
(Rod_Lawlor) - MLife

Locale: Australia
Man you South Australians are hard core. on 06/10/2008 03:53:21 MDT Print View

Do you wait until it comes out again before you reheat it?

Me, I would have just heated up some MORE water, but I guess when you're in the desert, you do what you have to, huh? :>)


Adam Kilpatrick
(oysters) - MLife

Locale: South Australia
Reheating vs adding more water on 06/10/2008 19:07:13 MDT Print View

Yes Rod, sometimes I just spit it all out and use it again

Nice pick up...I should proof read my posts more carefully so that I dont give you Vics any more ammo (esp after that shocking origin match earlier this year).

I am enjoying the desert atm...its been raining a little on and off for the past week! Great fun walking around, looking at puddles in claypans, little green sprouting things (I'll identify them once they survive to a reasonable height...), birds calling like mad.

Back on topic more though, I'd be interested to know if anyone has worked out whether its more fuel efficient to use a smaller pot and heat multiple pots of water, or to heat it all in one big pot? Could it be more weight efficient if we take into account a slightly smaller pot, stove, windscreen, etc?

I should get back to work


Jake Calabrese
(trekmore) - F

Locale: Colorado
Evernew 1300 Caldera Cone on 06/11/2008 00:29:33 MDT Print View

We just bought the Cone, Enew 1300 and kitchen (awesome).

It really does come down to what you are cooking. Using the KILLER potatoes/chicken/gravy/craisen dinner (freezerbagcooking), I needed 3 cups of water (said 2, but I think I used different spuds). And then had a cup left for 1 drink. Breakfast was the same, oatmeal (in freezer bags) and 2 cups coffee.

With the Caldera Cone, it is so darn simple to boil another pot it is amazing... since we have a toddler - being able to boil everything we need for food in one pass means it is simpler to me! Also- we did not get the non-stick (which I think is heavier). On my scale the Evernew 1300 is 4.93oz, and that is with handles/lid. No melting issues or anything like that.

I think, based on my tests, that boiling 1000 once is faster than 500 twice, based on the below data. (Caveat- in my tests I was trying to duplicate a "from scratch" boil, so prior to each test, I ensured that everything was completely cooled --- so if you boiled 500ml and after using it, immediately added 500ml more it may cut time down. But the differences are still small, IMO.)

Also - I did find that having some extra space was nice when using it on slightly uneven ground and not having to filling "to the brim".

Locn: 5300' (my backyard); water= from fridge (cold); temp outside was 60?

I tested the stove pre-trip and boiled 500ml (2 cups) in 8m with 18-20ml of fuel. (first attempt using 15ml did not produce a boil).

I then tested 1000ml (4 cups) of water with 30ml (1 oz) of fuel and got fisheyes at 12m and boiling at 14m - out of fuel at 15-16m.

At camp (past weekend) - I needed 35ml to boil 1000ml - 7500'.

- Jake

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
1.5 L. JetBoil on 06/11/2008 01:42:28 MDT Print View

I camp solo and always take my 1.5 L. JetBoil because it's so efficient, more so than the smaller J-B pot or my own smaller .8 L. pot. (I don't own the J-B stove.) I removed the steel handles from the J-B pot & use a lighter aluminum pot gripper.

That's my best recommendation. In tests with my other identically shaped 1.5 L. pot the J-B pot is always a minute or three faster, depending on whether I'm boiling one or more cups of water. The reason the J-B pot is so efficient is the corrugated "Flux Ring" around the bottom and the neoprene "cozy" on the sides. The pots are really the heart of the JetBoil stoves' efficiency.

Edited by Danepacker on 06/11/2008 01:52:07 MDT.