We're already big fans of the WhisperLite and use it on all of our camping trips, and wanted to learn more about the new Reactor 1L stove. On the tried and true WhisperLite and DragonFly stoves, ordinarily you would release a bit of fuel, light it, let it burn down (to heat the fuel line), then open the fuel again and hope that the flame takes. This whole procedure might not be for everyone, and when the ease of lighting the stove is combined with ease of packability... the Reactor looks to be a great choice.
Although the Reactor is up for the job of any cooking job, it would be perfect for day-hikes or weekend trips. The Reactor has about four hours of cooking time from a canister of vaporized fuel, and when it only takes a minute and a half to boil 1L of water... that's a lot of cups of coffee and tea. There is a hanging kit for the Reactor stove (handy for suspending in your cooking shelter) which was lit and ready to boil water within seconds and since it doesn't have an open flame, it can't be blown out.
Krista showed us the MicroRocket as well, which also uses fuel canisters and size had to be seen to be believed. When the average amount of water needed for a two person meal is 1L, this is perfect to throw in a sling for a day-hike. The PocketRocket is just as efficient and is about an inch higher.
Handy tip: Don't forget the aluminum heat shields. They aren't necessarily only to keep winds at bay or prevent areas from burning, but also help you get better fuel regulation. Bouncing the heat inside aims it towards your cooking gear.
Krista also showed us the Platypus GravityWorks water filter which is excellent for family camping or for larger groups that don't want to be continuously pumping water. Scoop the water into one bladder and gravity does the rest (1.75 L/minute).
MSR will be touring Ontario to show that stoves and water filters don't have to be scary things. We will keep you up to date on locations as we find out and don't forget to bring in your current MSR stove or water filter for a cleaning.
Update - June 5th 2012: MSR will be at...
- Lefebvre's Source For Adventure in North Bay this Friday (June 7th) from 4 to 8 p.m.
- Ramakko's in Sudbury this Saturday (June 8th) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
So bring in your stove to be cleaned and try the gear hands-on. Krista will be happy to answer any of your questions.