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Perfect Pot...

So yeah, the perfect pot exists, if only for you. For me, it's a 660ml titanium Evernew with a slightly under-square shape and a set of long wire handles coated in grey silicone, spot welded directly to the wall of the pot, which is to say without rivets breaking the wall.

It is light as all get out, and holds enough for a big freezer-bag meal. It is uncoated, so I can clean it with a rinse and a pinch of sand. It fits a small gas can perfectly, with room for my stove on top. The folks over at Ruta Locura make a perfect molded carbon-fiber lid for it.

What's your perfect pot?

I am still in search for my perfect pot...a couple of favorites are my thirty year old aluminum 1 liter with the old loop handle to hang over a fire...lots of memories associated with that one until I had to retire it...too many bumps and divots to clean easily. It holds a place on my equipment shelf though as I can't bring myself to get rid of it yet. Current favorite is a 1.3 L Vargo titanium. Folding handles with no rivets inside the pot, and a good lid with holes for straining pasta. A little large for some but for me it fits the bill for trips with my wife but also has that extra room to accommodate my bubbling and simmering dinners over the wood stove. My entire kitchen including stove fit inside which helps a lot on longer trips. 

I prefer aluminum.  Ti is does not distribute heat well, amplifying the hot spot problem with backpacking stoves.  And those hi tech pots with silicone walls - well call me old fashion, I don't trust plastic around flames.  As for dimensional considerations, I like a pot whose height is about equal the diameter.  It makes for a stable pot as well as efficient fuel use.  Lids or some type of cover are absolutely required!

Pot configuration must consider use.  My camp cooking is varied; some frying, some boiling, some simmering and some snow melting.  There is not ideal solution that accommodates all these considerations.  My typical set up is two billies: a three cup pot for coffee and tea, and a six cup pot for preparing boil bags and simmering them.  I also bring a fry pan, mainly for breakfast items, but also when trout or fresh groceries are on the menu.  Larger group trips up-sizes the billies.  Snow camping sees me bringing a customized pot and stove that make up a highly efficient system for melting/boiling large volumes of water.

Equally important is matching a stove for one's intended practices.  I have a MSR WindPro that is a great simmer canister stove for real cooking; and MSR Pocket Rocket for hard core UL trips (or back up stove on most excursions) and the aforementioned old MSR Firefly white gas stove that I have customized for snow camping.


When solo biking or hiking, the mini-Trangia cookset, usually paired with a Pocket Rocket.

I'm a kettle guy.  I love my GSI kettle.

I hate bringing things I have to simmer.

I either bring fresh food or freeze dried.  Doing dishes involves wiping/washing my spoon and throwing away/burning wrappers for food.  Usually I am someplace where fires aren't allowed so I just pack the trash out.

In fact, I'm beginning to think that the perfect pot is the one I can leave at home.  Cold coffee is almost as good and cold food is still fuel. I have a black bag I can use to melt snow but if it weren't for melting snow, I think I could cold soak and go without.

If it's not that pot it's a MLD 475ml titanium cup/pot, over a Vargo Jet-Ti canister stove.

I also have an aluminum pot, a 1L Primus model with a flux ring, and that sits nicely on the Vargo. I like aluminum pots, besides the tendency for rivets securing any handles towards corrosion from all the heat/cool cycles with storage inbetween. I've noticed it anyway.

I like the aluminum Olicamp pots, as they can be had uncoated. A few brands make such pots.

I like my Imusa grease pot from Walmart. It holds enough to feed me and my two boys. It’s thin and cheap 

This is basically what I used on my 1981 solo JMT trip, only with much smaller, 3-stone "thumbwood" fires. Completely recyclable at the end of the trip. Those were the days, my friends.



I could be mistaken, but I don't believe that pot is titanium....

Big Red has the right idea.  I still use aluminum pots from 1961 and some from the 1970s.  They are like old friends. 

For years I used a army surplus mountain cookset made in 1951.  worked as well or better than anything since.

I am glad to be beyond the Boy Scout days of one pot glop in #10 cans.  I do like my aluminum Teflon fry pan, but otherwise prefer the lightest aluminum stockpots I can find.  My cook set dates from the late 1970s.


Big Red when you did that HIke I was in 7th grade LOL ITs interesting that most of you older hikers have kept and still use your aluminum...I unfortunantly didnt realize when I was a teen to grab and hold onto a cookset from back then. Mind you at times I still will carry in cast iron pans to a local shelter and cook for a group...

I offered up some photos of my 1970 vintage Sigg aluminum pot in this thread from way back in 2012. Like the billy can far from perfect, but it did the job.

I have been using the same anodized aluminum Primus pots for years. I should probably replace with BPA-free nonstick, but the old set has been treated well and has performed outstandingly. No handles, you need a pot-grabber.  

Well my passion for cooking is as strong as my passion for the great outdoors..  I have several mess kits that i switch between depending how many people i am cooking for  (  i always seem to be the designated cook )

But when i solo camp I usually have my Coleman aluminum mess kit or my military canteen combo ( canteen, large cup / lid) . If i am going with just a friend then the  Snow peak Titanium compact cook set. 

For larger groups it would be my MSR titanium cook set

But if campsite camping  ie  driving to campsite  i will always have my cast iron Dutch Oven ( have a few diff sizes so which size depends how many people i cam cooking for )

"The perfect pot" exists only for a preset situation  ie  just 1 person or just for a couple, just for the family  etc

Like you are not going to use  your favorite 1 quart pot for making coffee for 10 people... 

But to me the perfect pot for a particular adventure does exist and it is a matter of size, weight , packability , durability amd whether it is going to fit right on your means of heating ie  stove firepit etc

the lighter the better says the guy with the bad back


May 16, 2022
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