The Claim: The Jetboil Sol stove is an old Swami standby: The integrated burner base maintains gas pressure and stove heat at temps below freezing. Jetboil claims the new Sumo easily feeds large groups in varied backcountry conditions by pairing the Sol burner with a 1.8 liter cooking cup.
The Trial: Through spring and summer, I used the Sumo on car-camping and backpacking trips of two to six people around Colorado.
The Verdict: I first fired up the Sumo on a chilly, windy April morning at southern Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park. A simple push on the igniter button brought the gas flame to life, and water for two cups of coffee boiled in less than two minutes. An insulating cozy and gas flow toggle switch enabled precision cooking of four poached eggs. More recently, I arrived at Heart Lake below Rollins Pass after dark on a Friday night with a group of six tired backpackers. We quickly boiled water for dehydrated meals, heated leftovers from home, and boiled up pasta, all on the Sumo. The cranky group was happy and fed within 20 minutes. Thoughtful design accompanies superior performance: Three nesting bowls (each with insulating sleeves), a measuring cup that protects the burner when it's not in use, and a lid with pour spout and strainer makes quick work of group meals. The Sumo weighs in at 16 oz; a 7 oz fuel canister fits into the cooking cup with accessories for a lightweight, easily packed backcountry kitchen. $130; jetboil.com —Olivia Dwyer