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Reviews > Cook and Food Storage Gear > Cook Sets > MSR Titan Kettle > Owner Review by Marjorie Woodruff

MSR Titanium Titan Kettle

Owner review by Slim Woodruff

Tester bio
Name: Slim Woodruff
Age: 60
Gender: Female
Height: 6'  (1.83 m)
Weight: 160 pounds  (73kg)
Email address: canyongoddess1948@yahooDOTcom
City, State, Country: Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA
Date: August 20, 2009

Backpacking background: I have been backpacking for 42 years, a little in every western state. I have worked in outdoor education/recreation for over 30 years, including 14 years as a professional guide. I hike mostly in the desert, and I like as light a pack as possible while still being prepared for emergencies.  I think a 30-pound (14 kg)  pack is heavy.  I do quite a lot of day hikes (three miles (4.8 km) to 15 miles (24 km)).  Overnights are usually four to six days long and cover 8 to 10 miles per day (12.8 km to 16 km). 

Product information:
Manufacturer: MSR
Current MSRP $59.95 US
Year of manufacture: 2009
URL of website:
Listed weight : 4.2 oz (118 gm)
Measured weight 4.4 oz (125 gm)
Capacity 28 fluid ounces (.85 liter)
Days used: 10

Field Information:
Locations: Grand Canyon, Colorado
Description of location: Desert river
Weather conditions: Hot and dry (90 to 120 degrees F, 32-49 C).

When I am leading hikes I carry all my own gear. So even though I am with a group, my equipment only needs to provide for one person. I don't cook elaborate meals on the trail: I rely on add-hot-water only entrees. So I only need a small cooking pot.

The MSR Titan kettle is designed to be pot, mug, or bowl. It is made of titanium. A true weight conscious hiker can carry this alone and use it as his/her sole kitchen set. A Titan cup will nest inside, if I really want to drink my cocoa while heating more water. My small Giga stove also fits inside the cup, so the entire cook set fits easily into my pack. An isobutane canister fits inside, but not at the same time as the stove. According to the MSR web site, this received the Alpinist Magazine Mountain Standards pick 2005 for "the best gear available today".

The kettle has a tightly fitting lid and a pour spout. There is a small hole in the lid so the liquid pours easily. It has fold-out wire handles so it is compact to carry in the pack. The lid has a rubber (?) coated handle so I can lift the lid and see if the water is boiling.

The first time I used this, I was impressed at it fits perfectly on my small Giga stove. The water boiled very quickly. I only had one cup of water on at the time. However, when I tried to lift the lid to see if the water was indeed at a boil, it was stuck in so tightly I couldn't get it off. I grabbed the handle, thinking that it would dissipate the heat, and promptly burned my fingers. To be fair, none of the product descriptions stated that the wire handles would dissipate heat: I made that assumption on my own. I folded up a bandana and used it as a hot pad.

On the next trip, I cut a hot pad out of an old camp towel. I still can't get the lid off easily, so I wait until steam starts to rise from the pouring spout.

Water pours out of the pot very easily. I can't manage to burn myself at all while pouring boiling water. I can boil enough water to rehydrate my dinner entree and still make a cup of tea.

This would be marginal for two people. I could boil enough water for a two-person entree, and then would have to add more water for drinks. I don't think I'd like to cook a two-person entree in this kettle: I'd have to keep an eye on it to be sure it didn't boil over. But I never cook on the trail anyway, so the point is moot.

It would be nice if this pot had a one cup mark inside so I wouldn't have to measure water.

Things I like:
1. Light and compact
2. Boils water quickly
3. Pours easily

Things I don't like:
1. Need a pot holder
2. Lid fits a little too tightly


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Read more gear reviews by Marjorie Woodruff

Reviews > Cook and Food Storage Gear > Cook Sets > MSR Titan Kettle > Owner Review by Marjorie Woodruff

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