Mike asked for a storm kettle for Christmas
I must admit I didn’t know what one was. I did a little homework and found out it is a kettle small and handy enough to be taken on hikes. You light a fire at the bottom of a small metal chimney which is double-walled to contain the water to be boiled.
Walking on the South Downs Way
As an excuse to test the kettle, Mike planned a walk for the four of us across the fields between Seaford and Alfriston, crossing the South Downs Way. We left at midday in the cold winter sunshine, and had a leisurely stroll up into the hills above the Rathfinny wine estate.
Our first use of the storm kettle
Mike had brought plenty of water, a little wood, matches and scrap paper for the kettle. He started a small fire in the base, then placed the chimney filled with water on top. It wasn’t long before the water was boiling, and he was able to make us a pot noodle and hot drink each for our picnic lunch, by keeping the fire topped up and the water reservoir filled. I’ve never been one for pot noodles, but that one tasted good in the fresh air!
The long walk back
Mike being Mike, he soon realised the circular walk he had planned was far too long, considering it was one of the shortest days of the year. Luckily we had a map with us and he chose a new route home, but we were still racing the sun. We had already seen it go down over the sea as we briskly marched back to the car at 4.30pm.
More about storm kettles
I did a little homework before choosing a Kelly Trekker Kettle. It only holds 0.57litres (19oz) water and is about 30cm tall. Initially I thought the capacity might be a problem for a family of four, but soon found out that it can be easily refilled in use. You can get bigger ones, but they are consequently heavier to carry. The trick in refilling it is to keep it on the base at all times. I looked into whether I should buy stainless steel or aluminium, but opted for steel because aluminium ones were said to dent easily.
My next purchase will be the little cooking attachment that fits in the top!
Happy New Year,