My campground neighbors must have enjoyed the show, watching the idiot, yours truly, wander over to a small coffee pot sitting on the ground, lift the lid, and peer into it every couple of minutes. They were probably somewhat bewildered as I poured steaming water into two cups, brewing some Starbucks instant coffee for my wife and myself. What they couldn’t see was that the pot sat on a tiny denatured alcohol stove about the size of a hockey puck. Made of titanium, the stove had been irresistible when I saw it clearance-priced at $15. It featured two heat settings, flamethrower and off, and promised a burn time of about 15 minutes per fueling. Did it live up to its promise? Sort of, as long as the moon was in the proper phase and the correct sacrifices were made prior to using it. Actually, it boiled one cup of water pretty well, but two cups was a toss of the dice. The stove was yet another step in my quest to assemble the ultimate collection of compact gear for motorcycle camping.
Flashlights and lanterns are other items that need a serious diet before motorcycle-camping duty. My current favorite is a small Coleman LED lantern, which features two light intensities and a flash setting for emergency use. I recently saw another interesting LED flashlight/lantern combination that I may not be able to resist. It is the “Joey” model by Outback Flashlights and features a flashlight, red flashing emergency light, and rows of LED bulbs down the side of the handle for use as a lantern. While not packing the punch of larger lights, the compact size and versatility of these relatively new lighting products are a perfect match for motorcyclists.