Snow Peak LiteMax Ti Stove + An Ultra-race Cook Kit

When optimizing your gear list for a quick bikepacking trip, an ITT (individual time trial), or an ultra-race, the kitchen is one area you can fine tune for weight and speed.

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Even when pace is a priority, it’s hard to subsist on bars and goo. And more remote routes don’t always offer consistent resupply points. A simple cook kit paired with lightweight dehydrated meals can provide a hot and hearty menu, with little weight penalty. Just need to boil water for a Mountain House Lasagna, Backpacker’s Pantry Red Beans and Rice, some mashed potatoes, or a quick cup of joe? This is about as light and fast as it gets.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

The LiteMax is little bigger than a lighter.

The Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove

At less than 2 ounces (54 grams) and 3 inches long when folded (7.6 cm), the LiteMax stove is about the size of a Twix candy bar. This is a seriously light and compact stove. The only thing lighter would be a beer can stove, but with that there may be a weight penalty for alcohol, not to mention the added bulk… and several more minutes of time to boil water.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

The stove is made of titanium and aluminum and runs on isobutane/propane canisters, such as the GigaPower 110, also from Snow Peak. The LiteMax easily screws in to the GigaPower canister and lights with the turn of the 1.5-inch-long wire flame adjuster, which is easy to reach even under a large pot. Mounted to the canister, the stove is fairly stable with three folding titanium braces.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

The LiteMax is stable when paired with the GigaPower canister.

The GigaPower 110 fuel canister weighs 200 grams (7 ounces) and is about 3.5” in diameter by 3” tall (8.9 x 7.6 cm). Based on my usage and calculations (at lower altitudes), the 110 paired with the LiteMax will boil 500ml of water over 10 times. This amounts to a five day lifespan when only boiling for a dehydrated meal at dinner, and coffee with oatmeal for breakfast.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

Boiling water on the TNGA.

The best thing about a canister stove is the speed. It takes all of a few seconds to set up, and at lower altitudes will boil 16 ounces (500ml) of water in less than 2 minutes (in zero wind). If you are in it for quickness and just need to boil for a dehydrated meal, or a cup of morning coffee, the LiteMax is perfect.

The LiteMax stove retails for $60 and the GigaPower 110 runs anywhere between $5 to $15.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

The LiteMax cones in a small cloth bag.

An Ultra-bikepacker’s Cook Kit

Here is the cook kit that was packed for a recent trip on the TNGA. This trip was hardly an ITT, but time and pace were factors. A few things that were left out from my usual setup include an alcohol stove, titanium wood stove (which doubles as a pot stand), 2 bottles of alcohol, a titanium cup, salt/pepper, and an additional rag. The total kit (with a full GigaPower fuel canister) weighs 365 grams (12.9 ounces) and is nicely contained in the Vargo BOT. It could be made slightly lighter by replacing the BOT with a 750ml titanium mug, but it would lose the ability to be self contained.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove, Vargo BOT- Bikepacking

The full cook kit, save rag and tinfoil windscreen.
  • Pot/container/lid: Vargo BOT
  • Stove: Snow Peak LiteMax
  • Utensil: Vargo Titanium Spork
  • Fuel: Snow Peak GigaPower 110
  • Pot lifter: Vargo Titanium
  • Other: Lighter and small rag
  • Windscreen: Tinfoil (not shown)

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove, Vargo BOT- Bikepacking

I was glad to find out that the GigaPower canister fit almost perfectly in my beloved BOT.
  • A.J.

    I had seen your review of the BOT, but this post has convinced me that the LiteMax and BOT are a worthy pair. When nesting the fuel canister in the BOT, are you still able to fit the pot lifter in there or does it need to be stowed separately? By the way, it looks like the LiteMax is produced by Kovea (and rebranded), who also makes a version with Piezo ignition.

  • Hi AJ. Yes, everything shown fits… With room to spare. Interesting about the rebranding.

  • Christophe Noel

    I was just about to submit a little write-up of my own, but you beat me to it! This is a great stove and one I have been using on my last few outings. It won the editor’s choice award for the review I completed for Overland Journal’s upcoming Winter issue. For all the reasons you stated, this is a great stove to add to any kit. Nice review.

  • Thanks Christophe! It’s definitely a nice, easy, and quick reprieve from my typical Trangia set up. How was the Alpine Loop, by the way?

  • Christophe Noel

    The Alpine Loop was really great. The full writeup hits tomorrow. I went slow, took scads of images, stopped for naps and literally smelled flowers. I even did a 4 mile hike beyond the wilderness boundary just to get a better view. I realized I rush too much, try to cram in too many miles, and need to slow down and enjoy each view as I discovver it.

  • KT

    I like my caldera cone — it is much cheaper to just buy a big can of denatured alcohol and use the small lightweight alcohol bottle it came with. It works great.

  • Ant

    I really like this write-up and have been looking at a setup just like this but maybe with the 700ml mug to reduce the size even more. Using just a single pot how do you make coffee? Just boil water and put in some instant coffee? I’ve been trying to find the best way to make a good cup of coffee with just a single mug/pot.

  • Yeah, I just made instant coffee (Via) with this one. Add another titanium mug and an msr filter, or a pour over …

  • Andrew Wade

    Great stove, worked just fine on my gdmbr tour. I looked into alcohol options and the weight of extra alcohol and longer boil times made adding this stove to my kit a solid decision. I prefer to use a wide and shallow pot like the Evernew 900ml Ti pot. It’s got a tight fitting lid, handles, and a pour spot which makes pour over coffee making in the mornings easy. Also very easy to clean if you’re eating out of it and not just using it for boiling water. Paired with a 450ml Ti mug and a long handle spoon it makes a nice and lightweight cookset for one person. Cheers!

  • Yeah, I’ve thought about getting a wide/shallow pan for an upcoming longer trip… where actual cooking comes in to play… I’ll look at the EN .9L … sounds like a good size for two people as well.

  • frangster

    It gets even lighter and more compact, if you use the Snow Peak 600 Titanium Pot: Put the LiteMax and a BIC Lighter in the pot (wrapped in an ultralight packtowl against rattling), then put the canister upside down on top.

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