Photo by Mark Andrew Boyer
Next, I hooked up the grill attachment and cooked up some veggies, a sausage, and a veggie burger. The grill is very easy to attach to the stove; it has two small legs that support it, and there is an opening that enables you to add fuel to the fire without interrupting the grilling process. Cooking on a wood-burning stove is a little different than using a traditional grill — for one thing, it tends to produce more smoke, and it leaves your food a bit blacker than charcoal would. But on the whole, I found the grill to be very easy to use, and it produced great results. And in the course of my grilling, which took about an hour total, I was able to add ten percentage points to my cellphone battery.
The BioLite Campstove is marketed as a backpacking stove, and it would be great for backpacking because it doesn’t require you to bring any fuel (provided that you’re hiking in a place with plenty of wood). And, as the company points out, using a renewable resource (wood) is preferable to burning gas. But at just a little over 2 lbs it’s a little on the heavy side for many backpackers. It’s also a bit bigger than many campstoves (when packed down, it’s about the size of a 1-liter Nalgene bottle), which makes cooking easier, but it might be a bit too bulky to bring on an extended backpacking trip.
However, the stove could have more applications than just camping. In the event of a power outage or natural disaster, the stove would come in handy, both as a power source for communication devices, and also as a way to boil water and cook food without having to worry about running out of gas.