If you enjoy being one with nature and camping in the great outdoors, but do not want to go completely caveman and build your own fire from flint and steel or a wooden fire bow, a camping stove is the ideal solution. A camping stove allows you to quickly get yourself a hot drink or a hot meal, without having to build a fire from scratch. Whether you camp, hike, or just want a cuppa on the allotment after a hard day's digging, a camping stove is a great choice. Consider the different types of camping stoves to select the one most appropriate for your needs.
Canister Camping Stoves
Canister camping stoves are among the most common stove types. Running on pre-pressurised gas in cylinder form, this type of camping stove offers a range of options, from a lightweight single burner which screws directly into the top of a self-sealing gas canister, to a large model which connects to a big gas cylinder via a gas hose. A canister camping stove requires no priming and provides instant use and heat. However, the performance suffers in cold weather, unless you keep it warm. Many experienced campers choose to place their stoves in the very bottom of their sleeping bags overnight to ensure good performance first thing in the morning
Liquid Camping Stoves
Liquid camping stoves use white gas or naphtha. These stoves perform very well in cold temperatures, unlike pressurised canister stoves. Liquid camping stoves burn hot and provide a high level of user control. The cylinder in a liquid camping stove is usually clear, offering an effective way of assessing how much fuel you have remaining and when you need to replace the cylinder. However, this fluid does not store well, so if you go for long periods without using your stove, always switch to fresh liquid fuel. Because of the liquid nature of the fuel, it spills easily, so keep it upright. Liquid camping stoves generally require priming in order to burn properly.
Alternative-Fuel Camping Stoves
Very popular, an alternative-fuel camping stove generally allows you to burn wood, twigs, and dry grasses that you find in your immediate environment. This makes it a particularly good choice when weight and space are at a premium. Ghillie kettles are popular examples of alternative-fuel camping stoves. These stoves take some time to warm up enough to heat water or cook meals. A ghillie kettle is safe, quick, and easy, and you can even use one in wet, windy conditions and in very low temperatures. For techie campers, alternative-fuel camping stoves are available which generate electricity as they burn fuel, and come with USB ports to allow users to charge tablets, smartphones, or other devices.