Safe Cooking and Warmth in the Backcountry using Wood Burning Camp Stoves from Outfitters Supply™

Camping just isn’t camping without the smell of food cooking on a wood stove or over an open flame. Or how about stretching your cold, tired feet out toward a warm, toasty camping stove inside your tent? However, we all need to be extra careful when working with fire in the backcountry, especially in late summer or times of drought. One small stray spark from a camping stove or campfire can be blown far enough away that we don’t notice that it has started a wildfire. And that little wildfire can quickly get out of our control and potentially burn thousands of acres, costing millions of dollars in resources and damages. Consequently, we need to bear in mind a few basic fire safety tips.

Spark Prevention in Wood Burning Stoves

It is only in the highest fire danger times that you cannot build a fire in a stove, as it is generally a pretty safe thing to do, especially if you take precautions. The most important safety feature on your stove is a spark arrestor. Spark arrestors come in a number of designs, which work with varying degrees of success. Spark arrestors will also protect your tent roof from that same stray spark that may start a wildfire, thus preserving your expensive equipment.

We believe the best design for most purposes is the spark box/stack robber. A spark arrestor should be not only effective when preventing sparks from escaping, but should also be easy to clean, preferably with a removable screen. A clogged spark arrestor will cause the smoke from your camping stove to back up into your tent. Our spark box arrestor works well with all of the stoves we sell, including Kni-Co, Riley and Cylinder Stoves. Because Cylinder Stove packages include nesting stovepipe, which gets larger as it goes up, the spark arrestor will need to be installed between the stove and the first piece of stovepipe. Another alternative is to place an extra piece of straight pipe in the stove, insert the spark arrestor, and then insert the nesting stove pipe in the top of the spark arrestor.

Another option is the Kni-Co Rain Cover with Spark Arrestor. While normal rain and snowfall making it to the stove is not usually an issue, if you expect there to be a lot of precipitation this will minimize the amount of moisture that can get into your stovepipe. It is more difficult to reach for cleaning as it goes into the very top piece of stovepipe, but does have the added benefit of being very lightweight and compact. Unfold it for use, and then just fold it back into itself for storage.

Make Sure You Have the Correct Tent

It is extremely important to have a tent made from fire retardant material and specifically designed to have a wood stove. We only sell wall tents that have met or surpassed California Fire Marshall regulations. There doesn't seem to be much point to being careful building a fire if you put it inside a meltable or flammable tent! You should also have a fireproof stove jack installed in the tent. The stove pipe can get extremely hot, and it is vital that it only touches material that can withstand the extreme temperatures. There are a few different stove jacks on the market, made of various materials ranging from fiberglass to stainless steel. We chose to carry one that we've used ourselves for year. It is made of silicone-coated fiberglass with a high-temp resistant rubber gasket, and it is not only extremely functional, but it is also easy to install and is not noticeable when you roll or fold up your tent for packing or storage. If you are replacing or installing a new stove jack yourself, we offer it in three different configurations. The simplest is the plain stove jack, which you can sew into any fire-resistant tent material. Then we also offer a canvas edged stove jack, which you can very easily glue into a canvas tent. Finally, we offer our stove jack with an integrated canvas and velcro weather flap. This can be sewn on any fire retardant fabric or glued into a canvas tent.

Would you like more information on the stoves we sell?
Riley Stoves
Cylinder Stoves

Outfitters Supply, Inc
7373 US Highway 2 East
Columbia Falls, Montana, 59912

Business Hours:
Mon - Fri, 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Toll Free (USA): 888-467-2256
Office: 406-892-3650
Fax: 406-892-4234