Are Alcohol Stoves Good for Backpacking?

By Anna Duncan

Alcohol stoves are becoming increasingly popular among backpackers and hikers. Their light weight, low cost and simplicity make them a great choice for those who want to save money and reduce their pack weight. But are they really good for backpacking?

To answer this question, let’s first look at the advantages of alcohol stoves.

They are extremely lightweight, often weighing less than an ounce. This makes them ideal for ultralight backpackers who want to shave every ounce of weight off their packs. Moreover, they are easy to use and require no maintenance other than refilling the fuel tank. They also tend to be very cheap and can cost as little as a few dollars each.

On the other hand, alcohol stoves have some drawbacks that should be considered before using them for backpacking. One major drawback is that they can be slow to boil water, especially in cold temperatures.

They also burn relatively cleanly, but not as cleanly as some other types of stoves like white gas or canister stoves. Finally, because they require liquid fuel, they can be dangerous in areas with high fire danger.


Overall, alcohol stoves are a good choice for backpackers who want to reduce their pack weight and save money. However, it is important to consider their drawbacks before using them in areas with high fire danger or cold temperatures.