• DIY Stove Heatsink and Windscreen

    Some hand-formed heavy duty aluminum foil gives big gains

    I like using tall/skinny titanium pot for solo camping but find this shape doesn’t capture the heat from stove particularly well. I hand formed a corrugated heatsink and outer windscreen from .005" aluminum foil. It makes a big difference in my initial tests. I do need to test the pot with just a plain windscreen of foil (I expect this configuration to perform somewhere between the poor performance of the bare pot, and the great performance of the heatsink)

    I know that running the burner full throttle is wasteful with fuel - you aren’t transferring that heat to the pot, but I figured it was at least consistent between the tests. I plan on repeating the test at different settings to dial in the best most efficient use of fuel. I don’t really care if heating the water takes 2 minutes or 5. In the end I am more concerned with efficient use of the fuel (weight) I carry.


    • Air temp = 79F
    • Wind = very light breeze, 5 mph or less.
    • Fuel = MSR Iso Butane, Full 500gram bottle
    • Stove = Snowpeak Gigapower - throttled up until no increase in sound was heard (full throttle)
    • Initial water temp = 62F +/-.1F
    • Water volume = 600ml

    Without Heatsink:

    • Time to 100F = 1:05
    • Time to 192F = 5:15
    • Additional temp rise after shutoff = 3F (final temp = 195F)

    With Heatsink/shield

    • Time to 100F = 55s
    • Time to 192F = 2:30
    • Additional temp rise after shutoff = 12F (Final temp 204F)
  • Useful Stuff #1

    What began as an email to a friend got way too long, so I’m putting it here…

    I revisited a blog I had had bookmarked for a long time and came across this good post on the versatility of Voile straps. I carry a pair of the 25” ones pretty much always: www.alpinesavvy.com/blog/the-… Voile Strap

    Alpine Savvy has many other good posts, so check it out if you haven’t. I spent some money because of him (although not much): These gloves look great for those in cold/wet climates. Turns out the place that sells them is up in Bellingham, WA. Totally worth it. I think they run a bit small in the finger length. By the palm size I was between M and L, so I bought both. The large fits me, and my wife gets the mediums. No room for a liner, but the fleece is comfy.

    • Gives realtime flow compared to historical flow for the same day: USGS Waterwatch
    • “Streamer” allows you to trace a reach upstream or downstream: USGS Streamer

    Emergency services - Text to 911:

    The entire state of WA now has “Text to 911” enabled. I only found this out by Googling. It is basic (no images, etc.), It may be slightly delayed. Most importantly, unless you include your location they only know the cell tower your message was relayed from.

    If you haven’t looked into this it might be a good idea. With weak signal a text is more likely to work. I saw that the city of Homer has it enabled, but didn’t get a “statewide” answer for AK when Googling it. Might be worth a call/email to the state 911 coordinator: dps.alaska.gov/Statewide…

    Continuing on… with cellphone to satellite SOS:

    Apple has a good support document on the satellite emergencies services on the Iphone 14 pro: support.apple.com/en-us/HT2…

    This is valuable because it describes the “Test” function, and that even if you have no service dialing 911 may still work, and if it doesn’t it will give you the option to text 911 via satellite. Unlike “regular” text to 911 the satellite relay will include your location (and altitude).

    I don’t rely on the iphone sat SOS, I consider it a backup to the InReach. I almost always have the phone with me since the camera is so good and the device is highly water resistant. I just tuck it in my pfd with or without a lanyard which I contrived by using a “pop socket” and some skinny dyneema cord. Why Apple doesn’t include a lanyard hole in their basic phone case I can’t fathom.

    IMG 0305