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REPOST: Bushbuddy Ultra OR - Dan Feldman

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  • Dan Feldman
    Thanks Pam. I made the changes you suggested and tightened up the language a bit. I also added an additional disadvantage at the end of the report. Dan
    Message 1 of 4 , Apr 2 1:05 PM
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      Thanks Pam. I made the changes you suggested and tightened up the language a bit. I
      also added an additional "disadvantage" at the end of the report.

      Dan


      BUSHBUDDY ULTRA
      Owner Review
      March 15, 2008

      Name: Dan Feldman
      Age: 30
      Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
      Weight: 175 lb (79 kg)
      email: podin04@...
      Residence: Washington, DC

      I completed a southbound thru-hike of the AT in 2002 and a northbound thru-hike of the
      PCT in 2007. I am a lightweight backpacker. My base pack weight (no food or water)
      ranges 15-20 lb (7-9 kg) . I typically hike in the Eastern USA during the summer,
      primarily in the Shenandoah Mountains and George Washington National Forest.

      Product Specs:
      Manufacturer: F.H. Enterprises/Fritz Handel
      Year of Purchase: 2007
      Warranty: None
      Manufacturer URL: http://www.bushbuddy.ca
      Listed Weight: 5.1oz (145g)
      Actual Weight: 5.0oz (142g)
      Circumference: 13.4in (34cm)
      Collapsed Height: 3.7in (9.5cm)
      Expanded Height: 5.7in (14.5cm)
      Stove Material: stainless steel (18% chrome, 8% nickel)
      MSRP: $115 Canadian

      TESTING CONDITIONS
      I used the Bushbuddy Ultra during the Northern California, Oregon, and Washington
      sections of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in the United States over the summer and early fall
      of 2007. Conditions ranged from very dry to several days (2) of rain. I did not use the
      stove in snowy or windy conditions. Elevation ranged from approximately 0-6000 ft (0-
      1829m.)

      WHY BUSHBUDDY ULTRA?
      I'm a skeptic of wood-burning stoves for backpacking, as many seem to lack wilderness
      utility. Some are equipped with spinning fans and batteries, rendering the devices clumsy,
      heavy, and bulky. Others give off black smoke and make a racket, giving the impression of
      operating a locomotive instead of preparing a hearty camp meal. My quest for a new
      stove began while hiking the California section of the PCT in 2007. I had been using a
      homemade soda can alcohol stove for several years and was frankly getting tired of
      smelling gas every time I cooked and being dependent on towns for fuel supplies. A fellow
      backpacker introduced me to his Bushbuddy Ultra while we were both passing through the
      Sierra Nevada. On first impression I was impressed by the speed at which he had water
      boiling and the cleverness of the design. After walking with him for a week and
      witnessing the stove in action, I decided to purchase.

      DESIGN
      After I made my purchase, by internet, the Bushbuddy Ultra shipped from Canada with an
      email confirmation from the manufacturer himself. The stove arrived in good shape,
      packaged in a pine box with user instructions enclosed. "Bushbuddy Ultra" was written on
      the bottom of the stove in permanent marker. The stove's design is simple and one look
      at my shiny new Bushbuddy Ultra made me wonder why no-one had ever thought of it
      before. The stove is shaped like a cylinder with an open top. Looking into the cylinder, a
      wire screen crosses the stove about halfway down. A flip up/detachable pot stand fits
      snugly into the stove for travel. The Bushbuddy Ultra features a thin, stainless steel
      double wall with holes at the top and bottom. This causes a secondary combustion which
      burns off smoke, allowing the stove to burn cleanly. The stove is hand made and fits
      nicely into a Snow Peak 900 Titanium Pot (or similar model). That's all there is to it!

      USE
      Using the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice. Unlike most modern camp stoves that can be
      started with the flick of a lighter, with the Bushbuddy Ultra you're actually building a mini-
      fire. It took me many nights of frustrating fire-starting before I mastered the Bushbuddy
      Ultra.
      There's a lot of good information on the Bushbuddy website, but essentially the steps are
      as follows:
      1) Set up the Bushbuddy Ultra in a wind-sheilded area and place the pot stand on top.
      Wind, even a light wind, will make starting the stove exponentially more difficult.
      2) Gather dry twigs. The wood that is chosen for starting the fire (tinder) is the most
      important. It should be very thin, light, and dry. I like going to blowdowns and peeling off
      scraps of wood or taking very light wood duff. If I'm expecting rain, I'll snag some tinder
      on the trail and put it in a ziploc baggie. I also usually carry some extra dry wood for
      emergencies. The largest wood need not be any thicker than a finger or longer than 5in
      (12.7cm). Finding useable wood after a few days of rain can be a challenge, but, as my
      friend Thomas says, "there's always dry wood to be found." I like looking under evergreen
      branches and logs. Also, manmade structures such as shelters often harbor an extensive
      amount of dry wood.
      3) Place tinder on the screen and light with lighter. I usually augment my tinder with
      scraps of paper or dry leaves, but an expert Bushbuddy-user can light a fire with tinder
      alone. Paper from books is surprisingly moisture-laden, so I tear it up into tiny scraps if
      I'm using paper.
      4) As the fire catches, I add wood in larger and larger sizes, ultimately filling the stove
      with wood.
      5) At this point, I put whatever I'm cooking on the pot stand, warm my hands, and enjoy
      the fire
      6) I dump my coals after using the stove, stomp them out, and scatter them before bed,
      leaving no trace.

      BURN TIME
      In optimal conditions, per the manufacturer's website, the Bushbuddy Ultra will boil a liter
      of water in 8-10 minutes (elevation is unknown). In the field, this is more or less accurate,
      but time for setup and gathering fuel should be factored in. Boil time increases
      significantly in windy conditions or if poor quality (wet) wood is used.

      ADVANTAGES
      1) Weight: At 5.0 oz (142g), Bushbuddy Ultra rivals the tiniest alcohol stove if the weight
      of of denatured alcohol or fuel canisters is considered.
      2) Portability and Adaptability: Bushbuddy fits into a Snow Peak 900 Titanium Pot or
      similar model and thus takes up zero space. As it does not require oil-based fuel, it can
      be carried on planes, and taken to places where there is not a handy supply of denatured
      alcohol or fuel canisters.
      3) Aesthetic, Comfort, and Source of Warmth: Bushbuddy Ultra makes camp cooking an
      enjoyable experience rather than a chore. It will burn as long as wood is fed to the fire
      and is great for warming up chilly toes and feet, providing company for the solo hiker, and
      inviting socialization when other hikers are around.
      4) Durable and Maintenance free: I've bumped and banged Bushbuddy Ultra quite a bit
      and so far not even a dent. The stove is made by hand and well-constructed.
      5) The only noise it makes is the crackle pop of wood burning and there's no alcohol smell.

      DISADVANTAGES
      1) If there's not a lot of dry wood or a windbreak available, getting a hot meal going on
      Bushbuddy Ultra can take some time. This disadvantage can be mitigated by carrying a
      little emergency tinder in a ziploc baggie and looking for a campsite with a windbreak.
      2) Bushbuddy Ultra does not boil water ultra-fast. Canister stoves are faster. Mastering
      the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice, but if sufficient skill is acquired, boil times are
      comparable to homemade alcohol stoves.
      3) Above treeline, Bushbuddy Ultra fuel will be hard to find. However, the amount of wood
      needed to cook a meal for one or two people is easily carried in a pack.
      4) The stove will blacken the bottom of a pot.
      5) It is unclear whether Bushbuddy Ultra violates the "no campfire" rules that the U.S.
      Forest Service has in place across much of Southern California.

      OVERALL IMPRESSIONS
      I love this stove and will probably never go back to stoves that use oil-based fuels unless
      I'm in an area without trees. From a self-sufficiency standpoint, I like the idea of using
      what is naturally available instead of being reliant on what towns stock. I have found the
      Bushbuddy Ultra to take a little more time and effort to use, but believe the benefits are
      well worth the extra effort. My fire-starting skills have improved markedly. One question
      that often comes up with Bushbuddy is whether or not it's the right choice in rainy
      climates where dry wood can be hard to come by. I successfully used the Bushbuddy Ultra
      hiking through the Cascade Range in the Western United States and experienced difficulty
      a few times, but always got a fire going. In the instances where I had a few days of rain, I
      found that having emergency tinder on hand was invaluable. For people who mostly
      backpack in the wetter Eastern United States, this is a tough call. I have yet to take the
      Bushbuddy Ultra out in the Eastern United States where I live. While I'm not expecting to
      have too much trouble, I'll be certain to carry emergency tinder and a few dry twigs.
    • pamwyant
      BUSHBUDDY ULTRA Owner Review - Dan Feldman Hi Dan, Thanks for working on cleaning up your report. I do have several edits for you, and several things for you
      Message 2 of 4 , Apr 8 11:02 PM
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        BUSHBUDDY ULTRA Owner Review - Dan Feldman

        Hi Dan,

        Thanks for working on cleaning up your report. I do have several
        edits for you, and several things for you to think about adding. We
        have a convention for editing here, which goes like this:

        EDIT: Must do (more or less exactly as spelled out)
        Edit: Something needs done, but you have discretion in how to do it
        Comment: A recommendation for improvement, or it might be merely a
        comment on something that strikes us as we read the report.

        You will need to make the necessary corrections based on the
        EDIT/Edit/Comments below, and then repost the report again to this
        list, using the title "Repost BushBuddy Ultra OR – Dan Feldman".
        We'll work from there, but you can usually expect at least a couple
        of tries before we get everything sorted out on a first review.

        I completed a southbound thru-hike of the AT in 2002 and a northbound
        thru-hike
        of the
        PCT in 2007. I am a lightweight backpacker. My base pack weight (no
        food or
        water)
        ranges 15-20 lb (7-9 kg) . I typically hike in the Eastern USA during
        the
        summer,
        primarily in the Shenandoah Mountains and George Washington National
        Forest.

        Edit/comment: Typically we like to see your background have some
        sort of title, such as "Backpacking background", "Tester Biography",
        or something similar. Also, you might provide just a bit more
        information. You have only used about 58 words out of the 100
        allowed. You might add the type of shelter you typically use, and/or
        some information on how long you have been backpacking. Did you just
        start in 2002, or were you backpacking before that?



        TESTING CONDITIONS
        I used the Bushbuddy Ultra during the Northern California, Oregon, and
        Washington sections of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in the United
        States over the summer
        and early fall of 2007. Conditions ranged from very dry to several
        days (2) of rain.

        ### EDIT: I'm not sure why you have the (2) after several. Several
        would be more than two. Can you please clarify or correct this?


        I did not use the stove in snowy or windy conditions. Elevation
        ranged from approximately 0-6000
        ft (0-1829m.)

        ### Edit: In general, we request that you round conversions in a
        consistent manner with the original number. I.E. Since you use 6000
        ft, which is not an exact figure, you should round the meters to
        1800. If you were stating a precise measurement, then you would use
        a precise conversion.


        The stove arrived in good shape, packaged in a pine box with user
        instructions enclosed.

        ### EDIT: We request that you not include packaging information
        unless it is pertinent to the product somehow, such as mentioning a
        hang card that has information on it. Therefore, please remove the
        information about the stove arriving packaged in a pine box. You
        might mention whether you found the instructions helpful and
        adequate, or not.

        USE
        Using the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice. Unlike most modern camp
        stoves that
        can be started with the flick of a lighter, with the Bushbuddy Ultra
        you're actually
        building a mini- fire.

        ### EDIT: Re-word to avoid using the word "you're". You can
        use "the user is actually"

        1) Set up the Bushbuddy Ultra in a wind-sheilded area and place
        the pot stand
        on top.

        ### EDIT: spelling "wind-shielded"

        ### Edit: What type of areas did you find were best to set up in?
        Did you ever catch nearby leaves, twigs, etc. on fire? Did it ever
        scar the earth with a burn mark? Did you have to put something under
        it to catch falling coals?

        If I'm expecting rain, I'll snag some tinder on the trail and put it
        in a ziploc baggie.

        ### EDIT: If you are using the brand "Ziploc", it needs
        capitalized. If it is not the brand, you should use "zipper lock"
        baggie.

        I also usually carry some extra dry wood for emergencies. The largest
        wood need not be any thicker than a finger or longer than 5in
        (12.7cm).

        ### EDIT: You need a space between "5" and "in" (5 in)

        ### Edit: You need more information on your actual use of the stove
        in this section. While you've told us "how" to use the stove, you
        haven't told us a lot about actual situations. Did you always just
        boil water, or did you actually cook over it? If you cooked, what
        types of food? Did you have trouble with anything burning, or
        cooking unevenly? Did you have trouble learning what types and sizes
        of fuel to use? How much fuel was needed to boil the proverbial two
        cups of water? How much tinder versus larger fuel sticks? Were
        there areas of the trail you had trouble finding tinder or fuel? Did
        you notice a difference in performance at different elevations or
        with different fuels? Did it usually require adding fuel to obtain a
        full boil, or could you `load it and forget it'? How much/how large
        of coals were usually left that did not burn? How did you store it
        in your pack? Did you put it in a stuff sack, or plastic bag? Did
        you get soot on other items from it? If you stored it in your cup,
        did the inside of your cup get sooty, or how did you deal with that?
        Have you always used it with the same cup/pot, or have you tried
        different ones? Does the pot holder keep the pot securely in place,
        or was it easy for the pot to slide around? Did the stove have to be
        perfectly level or was there some leeway with that? Was it easy to
        light the stove? Did you do that from the top or bottom?

        ADVANTAGES
        1) Weight: At 5.0 oz (142g), Bushbuddy Ultra rivals the tiniest
        alcohol stove
        if the weight of of denatured alcohol or fuel canisters is considered.

        ### EDIT: Remove extra word "of".

        3) Aesthetic, Comfort, and Source of Warmth: Bushbuddy Ultra makes
        camp cooking
        an enjoyable experience rather than a chore. It will burn as long as
        wood is fed
        to the fire and is great for warming up chilly toes and feet,
        providing company for the solo
        hiker, and inviting socialization when other hikers are around.

        ### Comment: Did you use it for `socialization' or is this just a
        general theory? Tell us a little about `your' experience.

        DISADVANTAGES
        1) If there's not a lot of dry wood or a windbreak available, getting
        a hot meal
        going on Bushbuddy Ultra can take some time. This disadvantage can be
        mitigated by
        carrying a little emergency tinder in a ziploc baggie and looking for
        a campsite with a
        windbreak.

        ### EDIT: Either "Ziploc" or "zipper lock".

        2) Bushbuddy Ultra does not boil water ultra-fast. Canister stoves
        are faster.
        Mastering the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice, but if sufficient skill
        is acquired, boil
        times are comparable to homemade alcohol stoves.

        ### Comment: This sounds general. Did you specifically find it
        boiled as fast as your alcohol stove?

        3) Above treeline, Bushbuddy Ultra fuel will be hard to find.
        However, the
        amount of wood needed to cook a meal for one or two people is easily
        carried in a pack.

        ### Comment: Again, this sounds more general than from experience.
        Did "you" have trouble finding fuel above treeline? If so, what were
        you finally able to find that you could use?

        4) The stove will blacken the bottom of a pot.

        ### Comment: Tell us a little about how you personally felt about
        this? What did you do to cope with it?

        5) It is unclear whether Bushbuddy Ultra violates the "no campfire"
        rules that
        the U.S. Forest Service has in place across much of Southern
        California.

        ### Comment: Did you check a website or call someone to find if wood
        fires in stoves were allowed? This type of information can usually
        be found out.

        For people who mostly backpack in the wetter Eastern United States,
        this is a tough call.

        ### EDIT: You need to change this, since it projects what other
        people might feel. Make the emphasis on how *you* feel about it.

        I have yet to take the Bushbuddy Ultra out in the Eastern United
        States where I live. While I'm not
        expecting to
        have too much trouble, I'll be certain to carry emergency tinder and
        a few dry
        twigs.
      • Dan Feldman
        Pam, Changes made. I moved overall impressions ahead of advantages and disadvantages. I also added a few categories in the advantages and disadvantages
        Message 3 of 4 , Apr 24 7:32 PM
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          Pam, Changes made. I moved "overall impressions" ahead of advantages and
          disadvantages. I also added a few "categories" in the advantages and disadvantages
          section to reflect what the HTML version is going to look like. Speaking of which, I didn't
          see a link to upload my html stuff on backpackgeartest.org. Do I have a link yet? Thanks
          for helping me make this review something to be proud of!
          Dan


          BUSHBUDDY ULTRA
          Owner Review
          April 24, 2008

          Name: Dan Feldman
          Age: 31
          Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
          Weight: 175 lb (79 kg)
          email: podin04@...
          Residence: Washington, DC

          BACKPACKING BACKGROUND
          I have been a long distance hiker for six years, completing a southbound thru-hike of the
          AT in 2002 and a northbound thru-hike of the PCT in 2007, both solo trips. I am a
          lightweight backpacker. My base pack weight (no food or water) ranges 15-20 lb (7-9
          kg). I mostly hike in the eastern USA during the summer, primarily in the Shenandoah
          Mountains and George Washington National Forest.

          Product Specs:
          Manufacturer: F.H. Enterprises/Fritz Handel
          Year of Purchase: 2007
          Warranty: None
          Manufacturer URL: http://www.bushbuddy.ca
          Listed Weight: 5.1oz (145g)
          Actual Weight: 5.0oz (142g)
          Circumference: 13.4in (34cm)
          Collapsed Height: 3.7in (9.5cm)
          Expanded Height: 5.7in (14.5cm)
          Stove Material: stainless steel (18% chrome, 8% nickel)
          MSRP: $115 Canadian

          FIELD CONDITIONS
          I used the Bushbuddy Ultra during the Northern California, Oregon, and Washington
          sections of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in the United States in the summer and early fall of
          2007. Conditions ranged from very dry to two continuous days of rain. I did not use the
          stove in snowy or windy conditions. Elevation ranged from approximately 0-6000 ft (0-
          1800m.)

          WHY BUSHBUDDY ULTRA?
          I'm a skeptic of wood-burning stoves for backpacking, as many seem to lack wilderness
          utility. Some are equipped with spinning fans and batteries, rendering the devices clumsy,
          heavy, and bulky. Others give off black smoke and make a racket, giving the impression of
          operating a locomotive instead of preparing a hearty camp meal. My quest for a new
          stove began while hiking the California section of the PCT in 2007. I had been using a
          homemade soda can alcohol stove for several years and was frankly getting tired of
          smelling gas every time I cooked and being dependent on towns for fuel supplies. A fellow
          backpacker introduced me to his Bushbuddy Ultra while we were both passing through the
          Sierra Nevada. On first impression I was impressed by the speed at which he had water
          boiling and the cleverness of the design. After walking with him for a week and
          witnessing the stove in action, I decided to purchase.

          DESIGN
          After I made my purchase, by internet, the Bushbuddy Ultra shipped from Canada with an
          email confirmation from the manufacturer himself. The stove arrived in good shape with
          user instructions enclosed. "Bushbuddy Ultra" was written on the bottom of the stove in
          permanent marker. The stove's design is simple and one look at my shiny new Bushbuddy
          Ultra made me wonder why no-one had ever thought of it before. The stove is shaped like
          a cylinder with an open top. Looking into the cylinder, a wire screen crosses the stove
          about halfway down. A flip up/detachable pot stand fits snugly into the stove for travel.
          The Bushbuddy Ultra features a thin, stainless steel double wall with holes at the top and
          bottom. This causes a secondary combustion which burns off smoke, allowing the stove
          to burn cleanly. The stove is hand made and fits nicely into a Snow Peak 900 Titanium Pot
          (or similar model). That's all there is to it!

          USE
          Using the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice. Unlike most modern camp stoves that can be
          started with the flick of a lighter, with the Bushbuddy Ultra a small fire is built. It took me
          many nights of failed fire-starting before I could reliably ignite a fire in the Bushbuddy
          Ultra. Reading the enclosed instructions carefully was a good start in terms of knowing
          how the stove worked and what kind of wood to look for. I learned the most, however, by
          trial and error. I initially attempted to light the stove using scrap pages from my trail
          guide, pine needles, and twigs. The fire was sluggish and failed to catch. Over the next
          several weeks on the trail, I would sometimes get the Bushbuddy Ultra lit on the first
          attempt and other times would spend nearly an hour hunched over it with my lighter
          before a successful fire was lit. I learned quickly what made good fire-starting material
          and what did not. At campsites, I started to look for thin, papery scraps of wood that had
          been out in the sun or very thin, light, spongy wood from decomposing blowdowns. This
          type of wood caught fire reliably and soon I had developed a technique which worked well:

          1) I set up the Bushbuddy Ultra in a wind-shielded area and place the pot stand on top.
          Wind, even a light wind, will make starting the stove exponentially more difficult.

          2) Gather fuel. The wood that is chosen for starting the fire (tinder) is the most important.
          It should be paper-thin, light, and dry. If I'm expecting rain, I'll snag some tinder on the
          trail and put it in a waterproof baggie. I also usually carry some extra dry wood for
          emergencies. The largest wood need not be any thicker than a finger or longer than 5 in
          (12.7cm). Finding useable wood after a few days of rain can be a challenge, but, as my
          friend Thomas says, "there's always dry wood to be found." I like looking under evergreen
          branches and logs. Also, manmade structures such as shelters often harbor an extensive
          amount of dry wood. I like to have a small pile (maybe a few handfuls) of wood in front of
          me before I start a fire so that I don't have to scramble around looking for wood when I
          need more.

          3) I place the tinder on the screen and light it with a lighter. I stack the tinder vertically in
          a small bunch on one side of the stove. I usually augment my tinder with scraps of paper
          or dry leaves, but an expert Bushbuddy-user can light a fire with tinder alone. Paper from
          books is surprisingly moisture-laden, so I tear it up into very tiny scraps. I select the
          driest piece of tinder, hold it in my hand, and light one end of it. Once it catches fire, I
          slowly lower it into the stove and let it light the other pieces of tinder from the bottom up.

          4) Once the tinder is burning steadily, I'll add a few more tinder pieces and then start
          adding slightly larger pieces, being careful to still use dry wood. These are usually very
          small twigs or wider strips of paper-thin wood. I then add wood in larger and larger sizes
          until the stove is 3/4 full. At this point, there is a good pile of coals at the bottom of the
          stove and it doesn't matter as much if the wood is damp.

          5) I put whatever I'm cooking on the pot stand. I usually boil water for dinner and use a
          small GSI outdoors pot, which the Bushbuddy Ultra nestles into for travel. Bushbuddy will
          reportedly hold very large pots, but I have not tried anything larger than my pot. Once the
          pot is on the pot stand, I fill the stove with as much wood as I can fit into it. To boil water
          quickly, I wait until the wood in the stove drops to 3/4 full and then add more wood. I
          normally stay close to the stove while it's cooking my food, adding fuel on a semi-regular
          basis. It's important that the Bushbuddy Ultra is on a firm, level surface. The pot sits well
          on Bushbuddy's pot stand, but it can be easily knocked over if bumped. If Bushbuddy is
          sitting on a soft, uneven surface this compounds the chances of a spill. I have knocked
          over a pot of boiling water several times because I did not set the Bushbuddy Ultra on a
          firm, level surface. If the stove needs to be moved while lit, the pot should be removed
          first. Bushbuddy can then be grasped by its base and carried to where it needs to go. The
          air chamber between Bushbuddy's outer and inner walls ensures the base of the stove
          stays cool to the touch when the stove is lit. As a result, the stove does not leave a burn
          scar or any evidence of its presence on the ground.

          6) After cooking, I often continue to feed the fire until bedtime to warm my hands and feet
          or simply enjoy an evening fire. When the fire gets down to coals (which are no bigger
          than half a finger length), I extinguish them by dumping them onto the dirt, stomping on
          them, and sometimes adding a little water. I scatter the coals and go to sleep. No trace of
          my presence can be seen.

          BURN TIME
          In optimal conditions, per the manufacturer's website, the Bushbuddy Ultra will boil a liter
          of water in 8-10 minutes (elevation is unknown). In the field, this is more or less accurate,
          but time for setup and gathering fuel should be factored in. Boil time increases
          significantly in windy conditions or if poor quality (wet) wood is used.

          OVERALL IMPRESSIONS
          I love this stove and will probably never go back to stoves that use oil-based fuels unless
          I'm in an area without trees. From a self-sufficiency standpoint, I like the idea of using
          what is naturally available instead of being reliant on what towns stock. I have found the
          Bushbuddy Ultra to take a little more time and effort to use, but believe the benefits are
          well worth the extra effort. My fire-starting skills have improved markedly. One question
          that often comes up with Bushbuddy is whether or not it's the right choice in rainy
          climates where dry wood can be hard to come by. I successfully used the Bushbuddy Ultra
          hiking through the Cascade Range in the western United States and experienced difficulty
          a few times, but always got a fire going. In the instances where I had a few days of rain, I
          found that having emergency tinder on hand was invaluable. I have yet to take the
          Bushbuddy Ultra out in the eastern United States where I live. The eastern USA tends to be
          wetter than the western USA. While I'm not expecting to have too much trouble, I'll be
          certain to carry emergency tinder and a few dry twigs.

          ADVANTAGES
          1) Weight: At 5.0 oz (142g), Bushbuddy Ultra rivals the tiniest alcohol stove if the weight
          of denatured alcohol or fuel canisters is considered.

          2) Portability and Adaptability: Bushbuddy fits into a Snow Peak 900 Titanium Pot or
          similar model and thus takes up zero space. As it does not require oil-based fuel, it can
          be carried on planes, and taken to places where there is not a handy supply of denatured
          alcohol or fuel canisters.

          3) Aesthetic, Comfort, and Source of Warmth: Bushbuddy Ultra makes camp cooking an
          enjoyable experience rather than a chore. It will burn as long as wood is fed to the fire
          and is great for warming up chilly toes and feet, providing company for the solo hiker, and
          inviting socialization when other hikers are around. Indeed, I have found that when I have
          the Bushbuddy Ultra going, other hikers wander over and chat. Long distance hikers like
          to use my stove to burn their old maps!

          4) Durable and Maintenance Free: I've bumped and banged Bushbuddy Ultra quite a bit
          and so far not even a dent. The stove is made by hand and well-constructed.

          5) Quiet: The only noise it makes is the crackle pop of wood burning and there's no alcohol
          smell.

          DISADVANTAGES
          1) Performance in Wind and Wet Weather: If there's not a lot of dry wood or a windbreak
          available, getting a hot meal going on Bushbuddy Ultra can take some time. This
          disadvantage can be mitigated by carrying a little emergency tinder in a waterproof baggie
          and looking for a campsite with a windbreak.

          2) Speed: Bushbuddy Ultra does not boil water ultra-fast. Canister stoves are faster.
          Mastering the Bushbuddy Ultra takes practice, but if sufficient skill is acquired, boil times
          are comparable to homemade alcohol stoves. On the last day of my Pacific Crest Trail
          thru-hike, I had water boiling as fast as the person I was camping with, who was using a
          homemade soda can alcohol stove. This was after I had gathered fuel.

          3) Fuel Availability Above Treeline: Above treeline, Bushbuddy Ultra fuel will be hard to
          find. However, the amount of wood needed to cook a meal for one or two people is easily
          carried in a pack.

          4) Creosote: The stove will blacken the bottom of a pot with creosote. For me, this is a
          minor annoyance at the worst and keeping the pot in a plastic grocery baggie prevents the
          pot from getting the rest of my gear dirty.

          5) Restricted Use: Bushbuddy Ultra is not permitted in U.S. National Forests in California
          when fire restrictions are in place. According to the Forest Service:

          "When in effect, fire restrictions mean campfires, stove fires and smoking are not
          permitted in the restricted area. Charcoal, wood and coal stoves outside of dwellings are
          classified as campfires. Campfires do not include any cooking or heating device using
          kerosene or gasoline."

          This information was taken from the Frequently Asked Questions section of the US Forest
          Service Pacific Southwest Region's website on April 19, 2008. While the California
          regulations are quite clear, other states may have different or more vague definitions of
          whether a contained woodstove like Bushbuddy Ultra may or may not be used during a
          fire restriction. It's important to check with the state Forest Service before hiking with
          Bushbuddy Ultra in the USA.
        • pamwyant
          Hi Dan, The link to upload your report to the permanent folder won t be created until final approval. I have no more edits for you on your text version, so
          Message 4 of 4 , Apr 26 9:45 PM
          • 0 Attachment
            Hi Dan,

            The link to upload your report to the permanent folder won't be
            created until final approval.
            I have no more edits for you on your text version, so what you do
            need to do for final approval is upload the HTML copy to the Test
            Folder under the category Owner Reviews, here:

            http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/OWNER%20REVIEWS/

            You will need to log into the site in order to upload the report.
            Without a direct link, you need to be logged in to even see this
            category, since we don't want it available to the general public to
            browse reviews that aren't approved yet.

            Once you've posted the HTML, post a note to that effect here, with a
            link to your report. Many testers also create a tinyurl or snipurl
            to make it easy for editors or monitors to click on a link to the
            report, since the longer links often break in yahoo. You can access
            tinyurl here:

            http://tinyurl.com/

            Snipurl here:

            http://snipurl.com/

            While we take a more casual approach with a first owner review, for
            your future reviews and test reports we do require that you post the
            HTML version in the appropriate test folder (Tests for test series or
            Owner Reviews for – you guessed it – owner reviews), and post a link
            to the HTML version in your text version on the appropriate yahoo
            group.

            Details are available here:

            http://www.backpackgeartest.org/lesson.php?lesson=Bylaws&page=70

            If you have trouble uploading your HTML version, help is available
            here:

            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/BGTFileUploadHelp/

            which is monitored by a cadre of HTML savvy volunteers.

            Once posted, I will look over your HTML version to make sure links to
            the manufacturer work and there are not any formatting problems and
            then I'll create the permanent folder for your review and post an
            approved notice here for you to upload the final version.

            Pam
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