Philmont cooking
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John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Philmont Pocket Rockets on 05/22/2012 12:19:25 MDT Print View

Dan, we tried pocket rockets with 4 qt pots and they seemed too unstable for us so we went to Wind Pro's.

T minus 17 days and counting for our departure.

John

Dan Lee
(scoutbuff) - M

Locale: Colorado
MSR POCKET ROCKETS... on 05/23/2012 11:29:02 MDT Print View

John-
Thanks for the warning... We did have a pot of water fall over during a practice event. Even with that the boys opted for the PRs vs. whisperlites (We have a mixture in the troop)... I think the boys learned a lesson and will be more careful. If you aren't cooking, stay away...

BTW we hit the trail in 24 days! Safe travels...

Jeff S
(jds43) - F
Philmont JetBoil on 05/24/2012 22:46:09 MDT Print View

In our 84 mile trek in 2009, we carried two JetBoils.

Our dinner process:
Boil Water in both stoves.
Have all boys uses hand sanitizer.
Rinse all bowls/sporks with boiling water.
Add water to each two-person dinner bag (sometimes we split it in the bowls,
but usually mixed in the bags then split after sitting..)
Lick all bowls clean.
Rinse with boiling water to sanitize bowls when done.
Cleanup was surprizingling easy.
Easy to consolidate the cooking under the dining fly (take a siltarp for the dining fly!)
Gives everyone something to do during dinner.

We'll do it the same way when we go back!

Peter Griffith
(petergriffith) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Re: Philmont JetBoil on 05/25/2012 10:52:06 MDT Print View

Jeff,
Could you explain "rinse all bowls/sporks with boiling water". Did you just pour boiling water over them with the water falling on to the ground? Did you have an extra pot and you poured water over them with the water falling in to the pot?

Brian Legare
(blegare) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Historical Perspective on 06/04/2012 21:22:52 MDT Print View

I went to Philmont as a scout in 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1990 (Raydo) and am returning for the first time in 22 years. Since then I have done a number of high adventure trips using Freezer bag cooking with alcohol stoves and the Antigravity Gear caldera cones(AGG 2Q titanium pots). I use cozies made out of Reflectix and aluminum tape.

I recently found my Philmont Guide book from 1984. The Philmont issued gear list has not changed in 28 years! It is almost word-for-word identical with the only real difference being that they now issue one set of tongs now instead of two. There is absolutely no reason to cook the "Philmont" way. I remember lugging those huge cook kits and Peak One stoves around. My days of having a 50+ lb pack are long gone.

Our crew of 11 will be using the freezer bag cooking method. We have tried out a few meals and it works great. I have used Freezer Bag cooking quite successfuly on a number of other Scouting high adventure trips (off BSA property). We usually make our own meals but this time we will use the food Philmont gives us. We have been rehydrating meals in the original bag and then dumping half of it into a quart size freezer bag. We need five bags per meal fore a crew of 11. A couple people have found that they prefer to have a collapsible bowl to hold the freezer bag in. I have found that the food grade plastic storage container for my AGG caldera cone and stove also works great for this. It screws apart and splits into two usable containers (each half is 1.5 oz). Because we will not be doing dishes we will not even take the Philmont sump system, unless they make us.

We tried three stove options. Two MSR whisper lights with my 2Q pots (4.5 oz each), two Jet Boils, and two alcohol stoves (same pots but hanging in a caldera cone. Hands down the Jet Boils won. I will admit that I was skeptical of them before seeing them in action. I have loved my alcohol stoves for too long. We used slightly more fuel with the Jet Boils but in the end we save on weight because we were going to carry two bottles of white gas anyway. We calculated that we can easily do the whole trip on three 7.5 oz canisters for the Jet Boils (13oz actual weight). We will purchase additional fuel in the back country if needed.

The Jet Boils have the following benefits over the other stove options:
1) Built in measuring marks. We will heat the amount of water needed to rehyrdrate one food bag in each Jet Boil. We will do six Jet Boils of water at each meal and then a seventh to sanatize spoons at the end. No need to carry a measuring cup, scoop water, etc. Just pour the water out of the Jet Boil pot.
2) You can grab the outside of the pot when it's hot. No need for gingerly handling a hot 2L pot of water. Just grab the pot when it's done and pour it into a meal bag.
3) Built in boil indicator (changes color on the side)
4) Incredibly stable compared to the Whisper Lights. The pot locks on to the stove.
5) Incredibly simple to start...just turn on the fuel and push a button.
6) Incredibly fast. We pitted two teams against each other: one with the two Jet Boils and one with the two MSRs. The Jet Boils team was happily enjoying their meal a few minutes before the MSR team.

The only thing I dislike about the whole setup is the amount of trash generated. I love my alcohol stoves because there is no canister to dispose of at the end of a trip. My conscience also gnaws at me for generating at least 50 quart size freezer bags of trash, especially given that they take about 1,000 years to decompose. For this reason alone I am still on the fence about just using five bowls for our trip and "swishing" them out at the end of a meal.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: MSR POCKET ROCKETS... on 06/05/2012 09:20:45 MDT Print View

We did have a pot of water fall over during a practice event. ... be more careful. If you aren't cooking, stay away...

That cannot be emphasized enough!

I can tell you from personal experience that 2 qts of boiling water dumped on a foot wearing socks and "camp shoes" results in a world of hurt followed by 4 weeks with the foot elevated most of the time.

On the plus side ... I can now bandage a foot to hospital standards with my eyes closed;-)

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Historical Perspective on 06/05/2012 09:29:23 MDT Print View

My conscience also gnaws at me for generating at least 50 quart size freezer bags of trash, especially given that they take about 1,000 years to decompose. For this reason alone I am still on the fence about just using five bowls for our trip and "swishing" them out at the end of a meal.

Also consider the weight aspect of carrying some leftover food inside each bag because it's difficult to get them completely cleaned out.

There's a thread (circa 2009) about rehydrating PhilFood in the bags it comes in ... I don't recall much of the details.

All academic for me ... haven't been able to sell the FBC method to our scouts.

John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Using the PhilFood bags on 06/05/2012 09:35:43 MDT Print View

a thread (circa 2009) about rehydrating PhilFood in the bags it comes in ... I don't recall much of the details

That's what we did last trek and it worked fine. No extra bags. But watch out for the little holes that sometimes get punched in the bags from hauling them around for days. :)

Edited by dallas on 06/25/2012 11:21:27 MDT.

John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Ouch - stove safety on 06/05/2012 09:42:53 MDT Print View

"I can tell you from personal experience that 2 qts of boiling water dumped on a foot wearing socks and "camp shoes" results in a world of hurt followed by 4 weeks with the foot elevated most of the time.

On the plus side ... I can now bandage a foot to hospital standards with my eyes closed;-)"

Ouch!
I clearly remember talking to a Ranger last trek about a scout who's cooking pot dumped over on his foot. They pulled his boot off and then pulled his sock off. All the skin on his foot came off with the sock. Needless to say, he was in extreme discomfort. The ranger called for help but the staff couldn't get there quick enough so he fireman carried the scout 4 miles to the next staffed camp for a medical evacuation.

They were lucky to have a Ranger that had served in the Gulf war and wanted to spend his summer staffing at Philmnot. I'm pretty sure our ranger couldn't have done that.

It's none of my business, but there is no way I'd take a pocket rocket for a stove to Philmont.

John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Philmont - turkey bag method update on 06/25/2012 11:20:08 MDT Print View

3 - Turkey bag method -

Pro - Simple, Measure cold water (safe), Everyone eats the same meal (could also be a con), Large pot w/cozy (for rehydrating) is on ground (not on small stove), Water pot used to heat cleanup water while eating, No pot to clean

Con - Large crew needs large pot (heavy), Careful stirring required (don’t break turkey bag), 2 pots needed, Extra trash (turkey bag), Crew bowls need to be cleaned


One more con, it is really helpful to have something to hold the turkey bag open when you are dishing out the meal. It tends to collapse and gets pretty messy dishing out the food.

Next time we will take some clips to hold it open in the cozy we made.