Backcountry camping or car camping is an opportunity to experience the wild sections of America. It also provides an opportunity to live in the wilderness. One of the crucial components of camping is cooking. For backpackers, a stove setup must be lightweight and functional. For car campers, weight is not as much of a consideration. However, in both cases, there are several ways to stabilize a camp stove.
Car campers can use virtually any nonflammable material to hold up a camp stove. One common car camping stove is the Coleman double burning stove. This is a self-contained unit and only needs flat ground to work effectively. If you are using a butane stove, milk cartons lashed together--creating a flat surface--will work well. Also, a tree stump always works well to stabilize a butane stove. Keep a piece of aluminum foil under the stove to catch any embers.
Most backcountry stoves require a more complicated setup. One common backcountry stove uses denatured alcohol. The stove is usually made of a soda can. To stabilize this setup, you'll need heavy duty aluminum foil to serve as a windscreen. Set up the foil on its side in a ring around the stove and carve four notches in the top. Make sure the two sets of notches are across from one another. Then set two tent stakes in the carved notches. The stove can then be lit and the pot can be placed on the tent stakes. It's now ready for cooking.
If you do not have a stove and decide to cook over an open campfire, you can use a similar strategy as described above. However, instead of foil, use two equal sized rocks. Place these into the fire--usually not directly in the flames, but near the heat--and place the two tent stakes across the rocks. You many need to fiddle with the rocks to make sure they're level. Once the system is stable, place a pot across the stakes and begin cooking. Be careful as both the rocks and stakes will heat up quickly.
Article Written By Duncan Jenkins
Based in Eugene, Ore., Duncan Jenkins has been writing finance-related articles since 2008. His specialties include personal finance advice, mortgage/equity loans and credit management. Jenkins obtained his bachelor's degree in English from Clark University.