Tag Archives: Lightweight Backpacking

Testing the Alpkit Kraku stove with the Alpkit MytiMug 400 @Alpkit @OctagonT

Alpkit MytiMug 400

Before another busy week at Octagon Technology I thought I would get out and try out my new Alpkit MitiMug 400 mug with my trusty Alpkit Kraku stove.

Testing the Alpkit Kraku stove with the Alpkit MytiMug 400 @Alpkit

The wind shield, in the photo, is homemade from heavy duty aluminium foil cut from a serving tray bought “two for a pound” from a pound shop. The wind shield is really practical as I can bend it to give maximum protection from the drafts and wind and it weighs only a few grams.

This new Alpkit MitiMug 400 mug/pot fits really well on the Alpkit Kraku burner and is very stable when in use – the stability is essential if I am going to safely use this combination in the porch of my lightweight tent. The lid is a good fit – it is much improved over the lid supplied on the original MitiMug – purchased before there were 400 or 650 models. I am really pleased the lid has changed.

Another change, for the better, with this Alpkit MitiMug 400 is that it has a flat bottom – the original MitiMug had a ridge in the base, which when I cooked in the mug always allowed food to burnt there and that also made it difficult to clean. I cooked (well reheated) baked beans in this new Alpkit MitiMug 400 and the beans did not burn. You do however have to take care when using any titanium or thin walled cooking pot on a stove like the Alpkit Kraku stove which concentrates its heat in a small spot on the pot base:

  • Do not turn the stove up to “flame thrower mode” keep the flame very low and heat the food slowly
  • Stir continuously and thoroughly, getting right into the corners
  • Hang onto the handles or the pot can skip off the burner
  • I also, continuously, gently move the pot over the flame so the heat moves around smoothing out the hot spots

Afterwards it was easy to wash up the pot – this base design is another well thought out improvement.

My thoughts:

  • Overall this mug/cooking pot is a great piece of gear for the solo traveller, camper or backpacker who just needs to cook for themselves.
  • The size saves space in anyone’s pack. Titanium saves weight.
  • Even if you do not plan to use the mug for cooking the lid makes the mug a useful storage container and keeps the flies out of your drinks when outdoors.
  • Alpkit is a great UK company producing excellent gear – we should support them.

I think the next thing to add to this mug/pot, stove set is an Alpkit SnapWire Spoon. The folding spoon, stove, tea bags and milk powder will all then pack neatly inside the Alpkit MitiMug 400, inside the supplied netting draw string bag for easy packing when travelling. I am going to add this to my Christmas list.

My lightweight gear list

New Alpkit MytiMug 400 titanium mug @Alpkit

Jeremy has bought me a new lightweight titanium mug from Alpkit a MytiMug 400.

Llightweight titanium mug

Llightweight titanium mug

At last a company is supplying a “mug sized” mug with a lightweight lid for the solo camper and backpacker. When I combine this with Alpkit’s Kraku stove it will make a very compact lightweight cooking kit. I was lucky enough to have a friend who was able to make me an aluminium lid for my other titanium mug, so I had a solo pot/mug, I can now replace that with Alpkit’s lighter solo pot/mug.

Water treatment methods and their effectiveness

Whilst browsing Pinterest this morning I found a excellent document published by the USA government organisation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about water treatment methods. This is a particularly useful, one page pdf description about the ways to treat water when wild camping and their effectiveness against various water borne pathogens.

Water treatment methods

CDC A Guide to Drinking Water Treatment Methods and Sanitation for Backcountry & Travel Use click here to go to the CDC page

a guide for individuals intending to use untreated or poorly treated water as a drinking source

Link to the CDC page – A Guide to Drinking Water Treatment and Sanitation for Backcountry & Travel Use.

More about water – Backpacking water,  bottles and bladders

Notes from my Woodhall Spa weekend

Woodhall Spa Camping and Caravan Club site

First thing at Woodhall Spa – I had early morning coffee at this camp instead of tea

Menu for the weekend

Weight 750g

Tinned Mackerel in Teriyaki sauce
Cereal bar

Arrival at Woodhall Spa Camping and Caravan Club site
Milicano coffee stick and cakes (the warden gave me some milk as they had sold out of 1 pints – otherwise I would have bought some)

Sesame flavoured Japanese noodles
I let the noodles cool down then I added a small packet of mixed pitted olives in herb oil and a salad dressing sachet that Mum had left over from her dinner on Friday
Chinese sesame dessert
Peach tea (cold)
Milicano coffee

Early morning
Tea and breakfast biscuits

Apple Pop Tarts
Dried fruit
Fresh coffee and more tea

Nescafe 2 in 1 coffee
Nutrigrain breakfast bar

2x decaf coffee sticks
Nutrigrain bar
Hot chocolate drink

I also had my Backpacking Brew Kit, packet of glucose tablet and some SiS Go Hydro tablets.

Water Rail Way

lunch in the pouring rain – getting a little shelter under the trees

Chinese sesame dessert

I got this from a local Asian supermarket – there is no other way to describe it, it is black custard. It is very sweet and tastes strongly of sesame. I like it as an alternative to instant custard.

Sesame dessert

Sesame dessert


It was a warm humid weekend so I carried 2.5l of water and used nearly all of it. I carried a pack of SiS Go Hydro tablets, which I made up in my 500ml bottle, which I refilled as required from one of my other bottle – I had three bottles of the electrolyte drink. I made tea at lunch and drank nearly all the rest of the water – and it was probably just enough for the conditions.

Once I was at the camp site I was aware how much fluid I had lost during the day so I made sure I had plenty to drink – stoping to make a drink before I even put my tent up.

I walked until about 1pm on Sunday I carried 1.5l of water. I used one of my electrolyte drinks, made hot chocolate whilst I waited for Diana to arrive and drank most of the rest.

Water bottles

Read about my water choices here.

HTC Wildfire – MP3 player and ePub reader

This is the first full weekend away using this “retired” mobile phone as an MP3 player to replace my iPod Nano. It worked really well. I listened to an audio book all day Saturday and Sunday morning whilst I was walking and at the campsite I read for an estimated four to five hours. The 2.5Ah battery gave out about 20 minutes before Diana picked me up on Sunday, so it lasted the weekend. I had the original 1.2Ah battery with me so I swapped them and carried on reading. If I am away for any longer I will need to take my 20Ah Power Pack with me to charge the HTC. (Read my Backpacking Geek.)

I still used my iphone for my photos, photo editing, blogging, navigation etc, but not using it to read my books on meant that I only used one of my 2Ah emergency iphone batteries. I have used both of them on previous weekend trips.

The weather at lunch time

I took the opportunity to walk to Woodhall Spa today and camp overnight even though the weather forecast was predicting interesting weather.

I walked through three thunder storms of which this one, during my break for lunch, was the most intense. It was close with the thunder rolling on sounding like a jet engine and plenty of rain. But it only lasted twenty minutes and by the time I reached the camp site at least I had dried out.

The wardens at the Camping and Caravan Club site at Woodhall Spa were as welcoming as ever. The site was full – there is a WWII event on in the village this weekend – but they still had space down by the lake for my one man backpacking tent. They even gave me enough milk for a couple of mugs of tea as they had sold out of 1pint bottles.

lunch spot on Memory Map