Gear update: MSR Whisperlite universal

Woo hoo! So this is exciting news in the world of light weight hiking! MSR has announced the next iteration of the whisperlite, which is scheduled for release in early 2012, and they have really out-done themselves this time! The new MSR will be capable of burning Gas in addition to the liquid fuels that they have previously burned by cleverly adding a different burner (Same as the way the current one works between different liquid fuels).

Due to the fact that its not out yet, clearly I don’t have a big review for you just yet, I am not so lucky as to be invited to review this kind of thing! However; Jim over at did get the opportunity to test this new version out, and WOW it looks very impressive. He recently wrote an article for the Seattle backpackers magazine which you can find here: MSR Universal Review!

Happy reading and stop by again soon.








7 Responses to Gear update: MSR Whisperlite universal

  1. MSR makes good hiking gear.

    So far I’ve been more than impressed with my MSR Pocket Rocket. I think it’s the smallest hiking stove they have, designed for rock climbing and mountaineering. Have been all over the world with that little thing. I have receiving complaints from traveling companions that it’s too small.

    Yes, it is too small for a group. However I enjoy backpacking where everyone carries their own gear, so we share the adventure and the experience, but have independence of movement and activities.

    The MSR Pocket Rocket is too small for a group stove, however for an individual I think its hard to beat considering the size (its tiny!) and weight (its very light, made of titanium).

    • Hi Cam,

      First of all, thanks for a few really good comments, its always nice to see that somebody has spent some time on the site having a good read!

      A couple of questions, Do you have the newer version with what is basically a wire gauss over the burner? – I am curious to hear from somebody who has used one to see how much better (if at all) it is than the non-wind-shield version.

      Do you ever have trouble with those style burners in the snow? I know a few people who have had the propane and butane separate when they have put them on snow or even on rocks in alpine areas, causing the canister to feel much fuller than it actually is and run out much faster? The most popular way to get around this is usually a hanging stove, which gives me the willies, or a bit of closed cell foam matt; which again isn’t much better.

      Typically because its just Liz and I we don’t mind carrying the slightly larger simmerlite stove and Trangia, and we always stick together so there isn’t great need for individual cooking.

  2. Hi Ben,

    First question, I don’t know about a wire gauss, if you type in MSR Pocket Rocket into google images, mine looks identical to the first image. That is, the windbreak has three pieces of metal which meet in the center.

    I have used this stove in the snow both in Canada and the southern tip of Chile, and hopefully New Zealand at some point soon!

    It doesn’t do great in high-wind environment. The ‘wind break’ on it is almost useless for anything over a slight breeze. In snow I don’t notice a difference except for longer times to bring water to a boil. Didn’t have those issues with the tank.

    To be frank, I only use it to boil water. For coffee, and for freeze-dried meals. In Chile, the folks I was with brought stuff that required serious cooking. That is not what the Pocket Rocket is for. In my opinion, it is fantastic at bringing water to a boil, and thats it. Its precarious to cook with it, as the pot becomes quite hot and is balanced atop the fuel tank and stove. If I was inclined to spend time cooking in the bush, I would not use a Pocket Rocket. There are sturdier stoves for that.

    Again, for my purpose of boiling water to apply to coffee or pre-made dried meals, its amazing and very time efficient. However, for someone who wants to cook rice/pasta/mash out in the bush, its the wrong stove.

    I was going to type a story about an experience in Chile, however I’ll leave it at this …

    The MSR Pocket Rocket is fantastic for boiling water. For anything beyond boiling water, its not a great stove.

    • Interesting to hear regarding the wind-break, I find the one on the MSR simmerlite and the Whisperlite are really quite good. (for what they are!)

      With regard to the gauss, its actually the MSR “reactor” a slightly different stove, but that answers my question anyway!!

  3. The Reactor looks very cool. Our local outdoors store here has one and its caught my eye a few times. Maybe when this little Pocket Rocket meets its demise, I’ll have a look at the Reactor. Looks to have better wind protection.

    One thing I find universal with these MSR mini stoves is that they’re top heavy and thus always at risk of tipping over, especially when the pot is filled with liquid. Compounded when you consider how hot the pots get, making it hard to keep the things steady with your hand. I use a little Leatherman tool (Juice S2) to grip the pot handle with one hand, and stir with the other … Not something I’d want to do on a long-term basis though, the risk of tipping is quite high with water sloshing around.

    I think you chose the right stove for bush cooking.

    A little off-topic, do you have a list of what you bring when out bush for a couple nights?

    • Hi Cam,

      Thanks for the info on the Mini; I am hoping to acquire one for a time over the next two weeks; so hopefully I’ll be able to give all my readers a comparison based on my experiences.
      With regards to having a food list, I do actually; Im not sure if its on my Laptop, I can post it as a new blog post this afternoon. Ill see what I can find!

  4. Thanks for having a look at my site and my review of the Whisperlite Universal.
    I’m now running a series on the new MSR MicroRocket. Come have a look if you like:


Leave a Response

8 − = four