7 January 2022
Being a military guy, sea-going man, and outdoor enthusiast- I can’t state in strong enough terms how important coffee is to me. Coffee is my one life constant. It’s literally as strategically vital to my day as remembering to wear pants. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit, but not by much… Battles have been won by soldiers and sailors with coffee on their backs. So, our entire free civilization may owe the filtered concoction a tremendous debt of gratitude, in my opinion…
If you are a coffee drinker, it’s particularly important on an overland adventure or a base camp expedition. Packing up what you need (and we have already established this is a NEED) and being prepared with the right equipment and tools is key to camping success, and brewed success. I was reminded of this one recent morning when waking up to winter desert temperatures in the 20’s and desperately wanting that hot cup of joe. I have a system to make coffee while on the overland trail and with it I was soon warming-up to not only a brew that sufficed my caffeine boost, but also suited my inner coffee snob. It literally brightened the day just as the sun peaked over a nearby mountain ridge to warm what my coffee could not.
It all starts with my Jet Boil. The first time I ever laid eyes on one my trail buddy, Terry, was warming water for his coffee at the back of his overland trailer. Right then the envy began. As I stood there over a camp stove boiling water for what seemed like days, Terry was fired-up and drinking his coffee before my water had even gotten hot. “Terry, what is that?”, I proclaimed! A quick tour of the push-button start and 60-90 seconds later there was boiling water! My camp stove and pot were still working it ou
As soon as I regained internet connectivity, I ordered a Jet Boil and have never looked back. I opted for the Jet Boil Java Kit Camping and Backpacking model that included a made-to-fit coffee press. It works remarkably. A can of commonly available isobutane camping gas, my ground coffee of choice and a bottle of water, and I immediately stepped-up my coffee game! The Jet Boil has markings on the inside to easily display how much water to fill, and the well-engineered screw-on design attaches the cooking flame and reservoir right to the gas can. A small flow control valve allows a controlled jet-flame. Some models require a separate ignition source, but I would strongly recommend purchase of a Jet Boil model with a push-button start. It typically lights on the first push and 60-90 seconds later (based on your elevation) you have hot water for anything from making coffee to heating dehydrated foods. It is easily packable with components that store inside the Jet Boil carafe, and solidly constructed for outdoor environments. It is now a “must have” in my gear pack.
Several months after purchasing the Jet Boil Java I was visiting my favorite coffee shop dive on a trip to San Diego, CA, when I watched the barista make the pour-over coffee I had ordered. An idea surfaced. Why couldn’t I do the same at camp using my Jet Boil? I did a little research and landed on an inexpensive Melitta One-cup Pour-Over Coffee Brew Cone (64007). Compact and only requiring small #2 cone shaped filters, it seemed a legit idea and a purchase was made. Soon I was back outdoors with my new brewing system.
I simply place the Melitta pour-over cone on my favorite stainless steel camp mug, add a filter and coffee and a minute later I am pouring the hot water from the Jet Boil over the coffee grinds and watching the life-blood drip straight into my cup! All I do for clean-up is remove the compostable filter, discard appropriately and wipe-out the cone. I have fast barista quality pour-over coffee at camp!
With that match-up my overland adventure days, and free civilization, continue.
My coffee brew-station helping fuel the team as we explored the Swansea Mine Ghost Town.