Reactor in Sheep Camp

A while back I posted an article on stoves.   Since then my buddy and I have been able to really test out the MSR Reactor.   Jerry and I have been using a Jetboil stove for years and it always seemed to work when we needed it. I read quite a bit about the MSR Reactor stove and had to get one to test out.   Between Jerry and I we have been able to use it in a wide variety of settings and weather conditions over the past two season.

Reactor_Stove_System1.7The reactor stove came with a 1.7L pot, the perfect size for a party of two. What impressed us the most was that the reactor stove boiled water almost twice as fast as the Jetboil. Even better, the pot was large enough to take care of two meals in one boil, vs. two boils in our old Jetboil. While we did not do timed, side by tests, we both concurred it boiled water darn fast!   With the Jetboil going we are glassing the area or prepping our packs waiting for water to boil for coffee and mountain house breakfasts. However, with the reactor stove we didn’t need too. Water boiled extremely fast and breakfast got taken care of really quick.

The Reactor pot came with a handle and this handle makes it easier to pour the water without making a mess. The Jetboil is a little trickier as the handle is built into the neoprene outer cover and flexes making it harder not to spill. Additionally the lid design of the reactor seems more solid. After a few uses the Jetboil lid has trouble fitting on the pot securely.   Another key benefit is the fuel control valve is easier to use. Jetboil’s is small and if your hands are cold, it’s harder to use.

ReactorThe one negative Jerry pointed out with the reactor stove, is that it doesn’t have the option of a frying pan. You can get different pots for it but no frying pan. Jetboil has a frying pan that we sometime use when we get an animal down. Jerry’s moose camp tradition is to fry up the tenderloins in the field. We are debating options on how to perhaps jury rig up a solution. Overall we are both impressed with the stove and amazed how fast it boils water.  It’s a durable, efficient, boiler and we highly recommend for those looking for a back-country stove. We are satisfied enough with the Reactor we will be leaving the backup stove home this year.  Can’t figure out why it took us this long to find it! 🙂