The rain has begun the leaves are turning color and fall is here. We enjoy many fall colors here in the PNW and as you drive around the foliage changes and so do the colors.
We took the new Jeep out for a road test in Capitol forest to see how she would do. We aired the tires down to 25 lbs as we were mostly on gravel roads and wanted to have a smother ride.
Here we had reached our goal Capitol Peak just below the radio towers.
Since we were at the top and it was lunch time we parked and had a sandwich and enjoyed the fresh air and views.
This is truly what a tree farm looks like yes clear cuts replanting and harvesting a needed resource and trails for hiking, four wheeling, horse back riding,Trail bikes and really just about any means of transportation you want!
Sadly all fun events end and this is the way back out to one of the main highways and back home. Near the end of this power line right of way is parking and restrooms for those that trailer their four wheeler’s or trail bikes. Maps for this area can be had at the DNR website or any DNR headquarters!
We went to Mount Rainier, Randal, Packwood Morton and surrounding areas on a one day trip. We packed a lunch and ate it in a rest area just out of Packwood. The new Jeep did well and was averaging almost 19 miles per gallon. We only saw one deer and a few birds but the scenery was great as usual with the fall colors just starting. This was a shakedown trip preparing for a longer trip to Beaver Utah and surrounding areas.
So I ordered a Trangia gas burner that works in my new Firebox Gen 2 multi fuel stove to try out. I wanted to have a gas burner that was adjustable for cooking things that require low heat and the ability to sear and fry meat in one unit.
Let me say now I am very happy with the burner and the stove. The burner fit properly and the little stove as you will see is very sturdy. I first fried the pork chop in a little butter with a rub my wife makes for spices. I was able to control the heat and did not burn the meat but it was cooked to perfection. I then cut the pork chop up into bite sized pieces and added my home dehydrated vegetables, onions and a couple of jalapeno pepper rings along with four cups of water to make my soup. So below are four images from starting the pork chop to simmering the soup in my camping pot. It made three lunches for me.
The pork chop in the skillet ready for frying
The Trangia burner not at full flame but just right to brown and fry the pork chop.
The finished pork chop ready to be cut up and added to the Pork Chop Soup. I tasted a piece from the skillet and it was done and not dry, very tasty!!
And the camping kettle with all of the ingredients simmering away. This was the real test as I could really control the heat to my needs and also I did not have to worry about running out of fuel.
The Gen 2 Firebox nano is now capable of using four different kinds of fuel to cook with and boil water to make it safe to drink. One is of course scrap wood and branches, two is an Esbit Alcohol burner, three is fuel tablets and the last but not the least is the Trangia Gas Burner.
Side note: The Trangia gas burner uses the same fuel canisters as my Jet Boil so in essence I have the ability to have two gas burner stoves with the same fuel supply (one container per stove).
Today I tried a theory of mine for using my Jetboil stove and my REI cook set and a cooling rack my wife ordered for me and the final item parchment paper. While I did scorch the paper the bread came out fine and now I will work on a heat diffuser so nothing gets too hot before the bread is done. Added some chopped up dates and walnuts to the batter for flavor. The bread after the bottom was lightly scraped was delicious it would go well with any meal in the back country.
The Firebox Nano on it’s first test run making soup with less than 2 ounces of Alcohol and simmered for over thirty minutes with the Esbit stove. The soup was comprised of my own dehydrated vegetables and Beef Jerky and the stove combination worked as advertised and had a lot of fuel left when the soup was finished.
Yes I used the simmer ring after the soup came to a boil, the liquid was over 3 cups and the vegetables and water were direct from the refrigerator.
I personally will use the stove with the Alcohol burner only and not wood as I see it as a quick hot drink or soup type meal stove at this time.
I know it would burn wood just fine but I have a larger Emberlit that can also use the alcohol stove or smaller pieces of wood so now I have a wood burner and an alcohol burner for emergency use along with a Jet Boil that I plan to use for actual cooking.
But to have a fire box stove that will fit in my shirt pocket is very nice!
The Jet boil is by far the easiest to use and the ability to control the heat for cooking is what made me start with this one first. Also the igniter eliminates the need for a lighter, matches or striker rod! I have made bannock bread, soup and fried meat for lunch all of which turned out great. It is more than a device to boil water for drinking.
The Emberlit multi fuel stove caught my attention and it does live up to it’s name. I can and have used wood scraps, Coughlin’s stove heat and the Esbit alcohol burner all to boil water so far in my tests.
This is my adapter for using the two alcohol burners and it is quit simple. A Myntz can, four bolts and eight (8) NUTS. I drilled four holes (one in each corner) for the bolts then I carefully used JB Weld on the four nuts inside of the can to keep them in place. The other four nuts are tightened up on the outside of the can for stability. I simply remove the outside bolts with the nuts and store them in the canister when not in use. I can adjust the height this way to meet my needs.
This is the Coughlin’s camp heat canister and even though it has a wick like a candle it will boil two measured cups of water in under three minutes.
This is the Esbit alcohol burner installed and ready to cook anything I would want cooked. I works with or without the cross bars depending on the base size of your pot!!
Here is the Esbit stand alone burner with the alcohol fuel. It really does work and for those times when there is no dry wood in the PNW where I live it completes usage of the multi fuel stove. The newer Emberlit stove does have slots in the sides now that will hold this burner in place for cooking but since I had the older model I made the simple adapter above for next to nothing!
So we decided to make our own bacon this last week and found a method on the following site:
The process takes a week most of which is brining the meat to cure it for safe storage. A daily massage of the pork in zip lock bags to insure complete curing which makes it bacon not pork belly. It is tasty not salty and much better than store bought bacon.
First was the brine, then the smoking and then trimming up the slabs for freezing, (of course a little taste test on the way!!