Whether it is camping, hiking, backpacking, or even part of a survival kit or bug out bag I have found the GSI Dualist to be my go to mess kit. This kit is large enough to accommodate two people very comfortably with room to add on more gear. For a cooking system, this one is one of the best I have used in a long time. I took it in terms of size, weight, versatility, and function. First off, I like something that will allow me to lighten my load a little bit while I am in the field. This kit will allow me to carry my fire starting tools, a stove, and even a small propane cylinder if needed. I can also carry some seasonings and other food items inside as well.
The only drawback I found with the entire kit was I could not fit it in my cargo pocket. However, I didn’t see this as an issue, at times I will carry a small pack with me into the field to carry my camera equipment. It fits nicely in any pack I choose to carry. For colder times of the year I cannot see being without this item. The amount of work this kit will save is exponential. I say this because in most cases I will make tools when needed in the field, this includes chopsticks and even my bowl. Let’s face it, as we get older we like a little ease on our outdoor experiences. In the cold being able to just cook and eat a warm meal when you want one is awesome. I find it give me a lot more time to enjoy the sounds around me; and the overall experience I have while in the field.
While testing this kit I took my son and his friend along on a camping trip. The object was to get some knife videos done as well as some photos for articles. This turned out to be a great weekend and we got a lot done. The next morning it came time for breakfast, I stoked the fire and place the pot on two pieces of wood to begin the water boiling. Once it began boiling, I pulled out a package of chili mac and dumped it in the pot. After a few minutes, the food was ready. I ate from one bowl, my son another, and his friend finished off the pot. Once we were done the clean up wasn’t too bad either, the supplied bag made this easy work.
Lets look at the packaging it comes in and the components. The entire kit fits into a black pouch that can easily double as a wash basin or a rain catch. In fact once it was time to put out the fire we used it as a bucket to carry water from the creek. This alone I found to be a very handy feature to have. The stainless steel pot fits neatly inside the bag, and the bowls and sporks nesting inside the pot. These stack on top of each other making this a space saving item. Each of the bowls will come apart to allow the outer section to be used as a cup if needed. The bowls have a neoprene sleeve that fits over the outside allowing you to eat hot meals without getting burned and each lid will aid in preventing spills. Each of the sporks telescope making them very compact for storage.
The way this kit is put together makes this one of the best on the market in my opinion. That says quite a bit because I pride myself on never saying anything is the best, I always allow the item to speak for itself. In this case I found it be so light weight and space saving I had to say something more about it. Most items I have used like this are lacking in some aspect or another. Even the lid on this kit is well thought out with the strainer built in. The ring on the lid I found to be a huge asset, it is made to stand up while in use. This makes it so much easier to lift the lid with a lid lifter or a multi tool without having to fight to lift the ring on a hot pot. I found this to be a safety feature well deserving of mention. The handle on this stainless steel pot folds and unfolds very easily and while removing the pot from the fire it feels very stable. That is because of the location of the handle. It isn’t too high on the pot making it feel heavy and awkward and it isn’t too low making the pot feel unbalanced. I found this to be a great addition to any outdoor activity and will be taken along especially on family camping trips.