The first time I bought a propane camping stove, it was completely out of necessity.
It was the summer of 2020, and my roommate and I were days away from fleeing our apartment, where we were sequestered and told to stay for most of the spring. 48 hours after it was en route to Lake Irvine in Crested Butte, Governor Jared Polis issued a statewide ban on open fires in the form of four separate wildfires in different parts of the state.
Admittedly, we weren’t the most high-tech campers and we were planning on cooking all our meals over a wood-fuelled campfire. To be honest, we never did anything differently. So we called every sporting goods store near Denver for suggestions and ended up buying a Coleman double burner propane stove.
Fire restrictions in Colorado can change all at once and vary by county across the state. But if one thing has become clear over the past several years, it is that fire restrictions are inevitable and increasing in frequency. As a result, entertainers should be ready to comply at a moment’s notice. This means that by having the right gear, you are not breaking the law and endangering the state’s natural features.
Grand Mesa, Uncompagre and Gunnison National Forest spokeswoman Kimberly Phillips said local, state and federal agencies are continuously evaluating fire risk, weather outlook, human risk factors and preparedness as they decide whether to fire. When and how to implement Sanctions.
Fire bans are issued in phases, with phase one being the least prohibitive and phase three being the most prohibitive. On federal land, phase one prohibits the burning of wood or charcoal anywhere but Forest Service-developed campgrounds and picnic areas, as well as anything other than a fire pit or grill built and maintained by the Forest Service, Phillips said. Told. Under phase two restrictions, no fire of any kind is permitted. (Under phase three, the Forest Service will likely close the forest, although this is rare, she said.)
There is one important exception: flames produced by propane are permitted under both phase one and two fire restrictions. Another safe bet is anything solar powered that doesn’t require a flame at all.
“Anything with a gas-fuel, on and off switch is allowed,” Phillips said. “So small portable fire pits, petroleum-filled stoves or lanterns, any pressurized liquid fuel, are allowed, as long as it has a shut-off valve.”
related: no fire? No problem. Recipe for Camp-Dinner Magic from a Single Burner
The moral of this story is that it pays to be prepared. So be sure to check out online resources like coemergency.com to understand fire risk and consider purchasing these essentials that will help make sure a fire ban doesn’t ruin your camping trip.
There are myriad gas camping stoves on the market with a variety of sizes and capacities to suit specific needs.
If you’re backpacking or have limited storage space, experts recommend a single burner that’s lighter and energy efficient, since you’ll need to carry gas. Something like the MSR Pocket Rocket 2 ($49.95) is just 3 inches tall, connects directly to the gas canister and has the ability to boil 1 liter of water in under 4 minutes.
If you’re camping next to your car or have more storage flexibility, the above Coleman Double-Burner Stove ($74.99) is suitable for cooking larger meals. The brand, an outdoors giant, has additional sizes and designs, such as a hybrid grill and stove setup ($149.99).
And if you want to avoid the fire altogether, consider a solar grill. GoSun makes several different products that use the sun’s reflection to cook food that can easily be described as an air-tight, metal drawer. The smallest is the Go model ($129), which weighs two pounds and feeds one person and the most popular is the Sport ($249), which feeds two people. The company also sells solar kitchen setups that include its other products such as a sun-powered cooler that makes ice.
RELATED: What Do Colorado’s Top Chefs Cook When They Go Camping?
For the heat and atmosphere
Any propane fire pit is technically permitted under step one and two fire restrictions, so when choosing one to bring camping, you should consider the type of site you’ll be living in and how many people in your party. Huh.
If you want to shop locally, LavaBox makes pits out of military-style ammo boxes that are both durable and waterproof. The company’s tabletop Volume-Can-Know ($195) is said to provide heat for up to six people, while its Krakatoa Firebreather ($345) can heat up to 10.
Other popular, camping-specific brands are Camp Chef and Ignik.
Courtesy of LavaBox via BusinessDen
Courtesy of LavaBox via BusinessDen
Conventional wisdom suggests that it’s safe to roast s’mores on a propane fire pit—it’s like a propane grill but different, right? Although many factors can affect the taste with respect to the pit. Otherwise, chafing gels and sternos have long enabled restaurant patrons to roast marshmallows without having to go out and are perfect and portable to take with them on the go.
Elevate the experience with confections like the Chef’n S’mores Roaster ($49.95) from Crate & Barrel, which includes a tray that will hold your chocolate and graham crackers while you achieve that perfect golden brown.
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