Paring it Down to the Essentials: A Guide’s Gear for a Three-Day Mountaineering Trip

Story and photos by Shelby Carpenter As a guide with the American Alpine Institute on Mt. Baker, I often end up working with clients who try to bring all the appropriate gear but end up bringing just a tad more than necessary. In this post, I will talk about the gear I bring with me on a 3-Day Baker Skills and Climb trip and how I pared it down to its current amount. I hope this will help you on your fast-and-light adventures! 

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Canister Stoves vs. Liquid Fuel

Photo Credit: Emily Polar Canister Stoves vs. Liquid Fuel Stoves – Which is Right for You? There’s no easy answer to this question – a lot of it comes down to the trips you’re planning and your own personal preference. Canister stoves have significant advantages in some situations and new, more efficient designs have made the performance differences less clear than they once were. Liquid fuel stoves remain the leaders on long trips, full winter conditions and travel where canisters may not be available. Stove Weight Canister stoves are the clear winner in this category – they’re almost always lighter and more compact than their liquid fuel counterparts. The numbers are easy to compare and they’re often the determining factor in a purchase decision. Unfortunately, these numbers don’t tell the…

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Reactor Stove System—Behind the Gear:

MSR Product Manager Steve Grind answers a few questions about the design and performance of the Reactor Stove System. Who was the Reactor Stove System engineered for? The Reactor is designed for folks who are heading outside into real and often challenging mountain conditions. That means cold, windy, and often space-constrained. Whether you’re tucked into a port-a-ledge on Baffin Island, or doing an ultralight traverse of the Sierras, this is a stove that performs when most other canister stoves will not. It is certainly an elite piece of gear, but it’s also amazingly versatile for people doing more moderate activities where the weather conditions might not always cooperate. How is the Reactor different from other stove systems on the market? One of our favorite anecdotes is a story we’ve heard…

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