Gear Review – Esbit Emergency Stove

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A few months ago I picked up the Esbit emergency stove while at the NOC in Gatlinburg.  I really wasn’t in the market for another stove, but this one was only $5, so I thought it might be worth playing around with.

Constructed from electrolytic galvanized steel
Lightweight, 1.1oz
Pliable (uses 25-30 times)
Includes three 14g solid fuel cubes (0.5 oz each)

Total weight with fuel cubes – 2.6 oz

This was a perfect time for me to try out the Wise Company Cheesy Lasagna!  This was the first time that I’ve tried the Wise Company dehydrated meals, but I got to say, this is one of my new favorites!


Check out the short video below.

Even though I didn’t have a rolling boil, the water was plenty hot enough to re-hydrate the meal and provide a hot lunch.  I believe I could have saved fuel and got a rolling boil by using a windshield, so in the future that’s definitely what I’ll do.  I question the 25-30 uses claimed on the label.  With the bending of the material your uses may vary, so I wouldn’t want to depend on this on a multi-day trip, but would definitely give it a try on an overnighter.

Thanks for tuning in!



Upcoming hike – Mt. Leconte

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Me and the other guys have had a Mt. Leconte trip in the works for months now with a date tentatively set for the morning of October 26th.  We were concerned that the National Parks would be closed during this time because of the partial Government Shutdown, but now that they are back open for business, we’ll be able to head out next week for our trip!

Since we’ve all been to Leconte before via the Alum Cave trail, we’ve decided to take a couple different routes this time.  We’ll be summiting Leconte via the Rainbow Falls trailhead and returning via the Bullhead trail.  This trip will be the longest mile wise that I’ve done in one day at approximately 16 miles!  I’ll be sure and get a trip report together afterwards.

Great Smoky Mountains – Andrew’s Bald/Ramsey Cascades

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Our latest adventure led us to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park a couple of weekends ago.  Darrin, Tommy and I hiked Andrew’s bald on Friday following up with Ramsey Cascades Saturday morning.

Andrew’s Bald trailhead is located next to the Clingman’s Dome parking lot.  The trail is about 3.5 miles round trip in length and it’s rated as moderate.

The trail has had some work done and is in good shape.  It descends for the most part all the way out to Andrew’s Bald leaving you with a few views of the mountains on your right as you hike along the way.  There are minor water run offs along the trail and in a pinch you could probably filter water from these areas if need be, but considering the distance of the trail, that shouldn’t be necessary.

Here are some pic’s along the way.






After an easy descent, we arrived at our destination!  We lucked up and had a fantastic 180 degree view of the surrounding mountains with the clouds lying around like an open sea below us.








After exploring around the area and taking pics it was time to relax and have some snacks.



The area wasn’t too busy with us passing by or meeting only around 20 people during the trip (a lot less people than the Clingman’s Dome area for sure), that makes this a good get away if you happen to be up in the area.

After lunch, it was time for us to head back out.  The trail is super easy coming down but clearly gets its moderate difficulty rating from the climb back out.

Here’s the Runkeeper information of the hike.

Ramsey Cascades

We woke up early saturday morning, checked out of our cabin grabbed a quick breakfast and headed to Gatlinburg to the Ramsey Cascades trailhead.

The trail head is located six miles east of Gatlinburg on Hwy 321.  Tommy and Darrin have been on the trail before, but this was my first time.  The trail gains 2375 feet over its 4 mile course and the 8 mile round trip is considered strenuous in difficulty.


The Crew sets out!


Foot bridge along the way.


The last couple of miles you’ll enter a section of the woods with some old trees.  These are some of the oldest trees in the park.



Finally arrived!  Ramsey Cascades is the tallest waterfall in the park at 100 feet.





Ramsey’s was a great trip and definitely a good payoff.  Be sure to bring your jacket with you because it gets cold around the waterfall this time of year.  Runkeeper of the trip.