For most of my life I’ve believed there’s no better overall camp stove than the MSR XGK. However, I recently began using the MSR Dragonfly Stove and I’m not so sure anymore. I was surprised to learn the Dragonfly is capable of burning multiple types of fuel. While I have only burned white gas in mine, this option really increases the stove’s versatility for trips to places where white gas is not available. It’ll take about 130 minutes for the Dragonfly to get through a 20-ounce bottle of white gas in temperatures above freezing. Fuels like unleaded gas and diesel really gunk up a stove, but the Dragonfly is easy to clean. It burns almost as hot as the XGK, but it offers more cooking opportunities with its extra wide support and, most importantly, with a flame you can lower to a simmer for cooking foods like pancakes or a pot of rice. I’ve made Thai curries and other gourmet foods with much more ease than with other camp stoves. 

There are no shortage of opinions on the best camping stoves on the market. A lot of it boils down to personal preference and what sort of trip you want to use a stove for. I’ve used and destroyed a lot of different models over the years. Most had pros and cons. To me, one of the most important factors is a stove’s reliability and longevity. While convenient, I have not found most canister-burning stoves capable of holding up to sustained, and often brutal, use. My XGK has. While I have not used the Dragonfly for very long, it’s of a similar, though more refined, ilk. The reviews I’ve read on it include numerous people who’ve been happily using the same Dragonfly stove for decades. If you’re looking for a high-quality, long-term, versatile camp stove, the Dragonfly is worth checking out. 

msrgear.com; $190


Bjorn Dihle is Alaska magazine's gear editor and a lifelong resident of southeast Alaska. You can follow him at instagram.com/bjorndihle or facebook.com/BjornDihleauthor.

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