Imagine that your wonderful day of skiing, snowshoeing, or walking has ended and you walk into your tent that is pitched in the snow gums (Eucalyptus pauciflora. the ubiquitous and iconic gum tree of the Australian snow country). You are ready to retreat to your tent for some protection from the wind and snow and enjoy the warmth from a backpacking wood stove and the company of friends. This micro snow stove has very little thermal mass and is a finely tuned stove that produces wood gas (smoke) and then burns it very efficiently and quickly. It will not work well or at all unless the fuel for it is appropriately prepared and fed into the burner. By contrast, bigger stoves can easily burn wet wood once there is a big enough blaze going and a good bed of hot coals. The snow stove is a bit more delicate, but a good burn can be achieved with damp dead snow gum and the strategy for preparing and maintaining a good burn is critical to success.
To demonstrate the distinct nature of the burning process in the micro snow stove, I can establish an adequate burn that will give a cook-top temperature of 752ºF (400ºC). Then I interrupt the burn with the addition of one or two pieces of inappropriately wet wood or a piece of snow. The flame will go out, and the stove will become a smoke generator. It may just keep going like this for a long time and may not spontaneously ignite again. “…[I]t may be good for bee smoking but not much good for warmth…” The simple solution to this problem is covered below in the section entitled "Flame-out Recovery."
What follows is pretty boring mundane stuff, but most of it is crucial to a safe, light and happy experience with a micro snow stove. I apologize to any of you experienced bushmen if I am telling you how to suck eggs.
- Tool List
- Fuel Supply
- Stove/Stove Pipe Location in Tent
- Safety temperature test
- Stove Container for Backpacking
- Stove Unpacking and Setup
- Burner Start-Up
- Burning Damp Wood
- The Floppy Fuel Tube
- Snuffer Can Uses
- Flame-Out Recovery
- Stove Ash Management
- Cooking on a Micro Snow Stove
# of photos: 16; Word Count: 5600