I wasn’t happy with the under-powered cooktop that came standard with my camper. Standing around waiting for water to boil on cool camp mornings when coffee can’t come quick enough wasn’t going to cut it.
The compact Camp Chef Ranger II was able to drop right into place and give me more than double the power per burner – 17,000 BTU – and weighs in at just 17 pounds. From frying eggs to searing steaks in cast iron, the Ranger II lights it up.
Camp Chef certainly has more ambitious and expansive models, but the table top design with easy clean-up and stowing capabilities will be just right for most campsites or tailgates. And the coffee will be piping hot in a blink – $76.
SHOP THE STORY
Yes, I know, everyone and their brother has a roto-molded, armageddon-proof cooler that costs more than their actual freezer. There are umpteen companies now competing in the space, basically making the same heavy cooler with thick walls leaving minimal room for actual cooler contents.
But, I had a space problem. I needed a cooler that fit a very specific space and needed room for more than two sandwiches and a can of soda.
I went old school. The Coleman Steel-Belted 54 Quart has been around since the dinosaurs. Your grandad is probably still rocking this cooler. And there’s reason for that…….. it’s rock solid gear.
I’m not sure if it will withstand a grizzly attack. But I am certain that this cooler will hold ice for 5-days or longer in cool weather. And if a bear happens to attack and destroy my Coleman cooler, I can buy five more to replace it for the price of one similar-sized insanely heavy Abominable Snowman. I went with the red version, though the stainless steel might feature the requisite stickers better – $65.
SHOP THE STORY
Hunting in Alaska this year I went 20 days without a shower. Never again. NEMO makes the Helio Pressure Shower ($99) specifically for these backcountry adventures. It’s also a great solution for hosing off bird dogs that have rolled in mystery stench. Honestly, in Alaska I may have smelled worse than the dogs. The Helio packs up small and tucks away in a corner until needed.
The Brute Cooler is appropriately named — hard core, roto-molded, large handles, rubber latches — it’s got it all. Made in America by Brute, a family run company with excellent customer service. The 50 qt. ($319) will keep your birds chilled for at least five days, but go with the 75 qt. ($369) if you want to throw lunch and drinks on board too.
Small and portable, the Camp Chef Rainier Campers Combo Stove ($153) is complete with a one-burner stove, and a non-stick griddle and grill. The griddle and grill are easily switched for making pancakes in the morning, to grilling venison for dinner. Complete with a matchless ignition for ease of use, the Camper’s Combo is the perfect stove for hunting and camping adventures. I was fortunate enough to use the Rainier Camper’s Combo in North Dakota during my 3-day wild bird hunt camp. The stove performed flawlessly while cooking antelope over the grill, and even in tight quarters as my fellow hunters and I squeezed into a smaller camper to avoid freezing rain. Venison was grilled to medium-rare perfection, while noodles were boiling on the burner. Click here for the latest pricing.
A human can survive without food for three weeks. Hypothermia and exposure are the real killers in the wild. I’ve added the UST WetFire™ Tinder ($7) to my vest as part of my mobile first aid and survival gear. In the event I can’t make it back to the truck due to weather, injury or poor navigation skills I will now always be able to start a fire and stay warm.
SHOP THE STORY