Anyone planning a camping trip knows that one of the absolute must-have items is a good quality wood burning tent stove, and this is even more important if you intend to make your trip during the cold months and seasons. Nothing beats the feeling of being in a warm, cozy tent while it is freezing outside.
In this article we guide you through everything you need to consider before buying such a product, and list the features you need to look out for.
But what are the best wood burning tent stoves?
For speed and efficiency the below products form a list of what we consider to be some of the best wood burning tent stoves currently available:
Best Overall Winner: Winnerwell Nomad Medium Wood Burning Tent Stove
Best Backpackers: Winnerwell Fastfold Titanium Wood Burning Tent Stove
Runner Up: Winnerwell Woodlander Large Wood Burning Tent Stove
Best For Longer Stays: Guide Gear Outdoor Wood Burning Tent Stove
Best For Cooking: Camp Chef Alpine Heavy Duty Cylinder Wood Burning Tent Stove
01 – Winnerwell Nomad Medium Wood Burning Tent Stove
Product Dimensions – 15” x 8” x 8” Packed, 15” x 20” x 90” Assembled- 90” indicates the total height of stove + chimney, 800 cubic inch firebox | Weight – 20.7lb (9.4kg) | Material – 304 stainless steel | Collapsible – Yes | Portable – Yes | Warranty – Yes | Accessories – Winnerwell Water Tank Medium, Stainless Steel Stove Accessory, Winnerwell Fastfold Oven | Stovepipe diameter – 2.5-inches | Glass Viewing Window – Yes |Side Shelves For Cooking – Yes | Dual Dampers – Yes
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The Nomad is made of 304 stainless steel that does not rust or corrode, making it ideal for harsh outdoor environments. Furthermore, its compact size makes it ideal for small recreational spaces.
It comes with 1 stove body, 5 sections of 2.5-inch diameter chimney pipe, 1 spark arrestor, and 1 ash scraper. The chimney pipe sections also tuck inside the stove body, allowing the side shelves to then double as a carry handle to help you move it more easily.
- It is lightweight and extremely portable
- It is easy to set up and use
- It has been constructed with durable materials that make it last a long time
- It is a good compact size, perfect for quick excursions
- It has a large cooktop area
- It is a little on the high end of the price range
- It has a narrow pipe, which makes it take a longer time to heat up any space
02 – Winnerwell Fastfold Titanium Wood Burning Tent Stove
Product Dimensions – 15” x 9” x 2” Packed; 15” x 9” x 7” Assembled, 9-foot length, rolls into 12” x 1” x 1” tube for storage; 900 cubic inch firebox |Weight – 40 pounds | Material – Ultralight titanium | Collapsible – Yes | Portable – Yes | Warranty – Yes | Accessories – Spark Arrestor, Carry bag, Tent protector| Stove pipe diameter – 3-inches | Glass Viewing Window – No | Side Shelves For Cooking – Yes |Dual Dampers – Yes
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Best for backcountry hunters, hikers and skiers in winter weather, this ultralightweight wood burrning tent stove comes packed with every feature you will need to make your outdoor lifestyle memorable, no matter what the weather is like.
Besides being extremely lightweight and portable, it also comes with its innovative fast-fold design that makes it easy to fold up after use and store away.
- It is very easy to set up and easy to use
- It comes in a nice package size that makes it backpack portable
- It is well constructed with durable materials, so it will last a long time
- Its extremely light weight
- It is not meant to be used in a large tent space
03 – Winnerwell Woodlander Large Wood Burning Tent Stove
Product Dimensions – 18” x 10” x 9.5” Packed; 25” x 25.5” x 109” Assembled- 109” indicates total height of stove + chimney; 1500 cubic inch firebox | Weight – 30 pounds | Material – 304 stainless steel | Collapsible – Yes | Portable – Yes | Warranty – Yes | Accessories –Winnerwell Water Tank Medium, Stainless Steel Stove Accessory, Winnerwell Fastfold Oven |Stove Pipe Diameter – 3.5 inches | Glass Viewing Window – Yes |Side Shelves For Cooking – Yes | Dual Dampers – Yes
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When you buy this stove, you will get 1 stove body, 5 sections of 3.5-inch diameter chimney pipe (each pipe section is 17 inches long), 1 spark arrestor, and 1 ash scraper. It is very easy to assemble and set up and will provide enough heat to warm up a large tent.
At only about 30 pounds, it is one of the more portable good quality large wood burning tent stoves.
- It comes with a large cooktop
- It is constructed with 304 stainless steel that makes it last a long time
- It comes packed with quality features and accessories that give you more value for money
- It is a bit heavy when compared to other stoves on this list
- It does not come with a carry bag
04 – Guide Gear Outdoor Wood Burning Tent Stove
Product Dimensions – 12.5 x 19 in (32 x 48 cm) | Weight – 43 lb (19.5 kg) | Material – Steel | Collapsible – Yes | Portable – Yes | Warranty – Yes | Accessories – 2 pc Guide Gear Extra Outdoor Stove Pipe Connections | Stove pipe diameter – 3 inches | Glass Viewing Window – No | Side shelves for cooking – No | Dual dampers – Yes
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This stove got a massive upgrade recently, improving its functionality and the features it comes with. The best part is that it still has a pretty good price tag despite all the added features.
It is made entirely of high-grade steel and has a cast iron door with two adjustable vents. The stove now comes with four removable legs that make it easy to store and transport.
- It has a large cooktop that broadens its functionality
- It has a large firebox.
- Considering all the features it has, it comes at a great price.
- It has no side racks.
- It has no carry handle.
- It does not have a grate.
- It is quite heavy.
05 – Camp Chef Alpine Heavy Duty Cylinder Wood Burning Tent Stove
Product Dimensions – 24 x 20 x 22.5 inches | Weight – 74 lbs. / 33.5 kgs | Material – Heavy duty steel | Collapsible – Yes | Portable – No | Warranty – Yes | Accessories – Internal log crate, spark arrestor, accessory shelves, Water tank brackets (tank sold separately) | Stove pipe diameter – 5 inches | Glass Viewing Window – No | Side Shelves For Cooking – Yes | Dual Dampers – Yes
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This cylinder stove is extremely well built and comes with lots of extra features to give you a lot of value for money. Everything has been carefully designed to fit inside the stove, which means when you disassemble it, it becomes really easy to carry.
It has a large cooktop that makes it very functional and reliable. Plus, when you consider the fact that it has been on the market for many years now, you realize that this is a stove that has been tried, tested, and loved by many.
- It is comes packed with lots of features and has extra accessories that improve its functionality even more
- It is very well built and will last you a long time
- It has a very large cooktop
- It is rather heavy
- It lacks a glass viewing window
The Winnerwell Nomad Medium Tent Stove is hands down the best wood burning tent stove on this list. Weighing in at only about 20 pounds, it is quite easy to carry. Plus, it also comes with an impressive list of accessories, including the Winnerwell Water Tank Medium and the Winnerwell Fastfold Oven that add to the comfort and convenience of your tent.
The cherry on top is that it is built using 304 stainless steel, which means this wood burning tent stove will last for a long time.
When all is said and done, though, all the stoves in this list are really good options. They cater to different needs and budgets. As you go stove shopping, try to think about what your biggest need is. The answer to that question should be the main influence for what you eventually end up with.
Finally, remember the old camping saying; it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. Happy camping!
Why would you need a wood burning tent stove?
Wood burning tent stoves are important for three main reasons:
Larger tents will get even colder, and you will need an extra source of heat to keep warm and comfortable.
Most wood burning tent stoves have a flat cooktop surface and have racks you can attach to them. They give you the convenience of both heating and cooking within your tent.
Drying wet stuff
Never underestimate the need for dry clothes when camping in wet conditions. Some wood burning tent stoves come with a folding rack that you can use to dry gloves, socks, and other knick-knacks.
If you want to dry larger clothing items, you can create a makeshift cloth line inside your tent. This will allow your clothes to dry overnight. The heat will also dry out your shoes.
Choosing a wood burning tent stove
So, what should you look out for when choosing a wood burning tent stove? Well, the main things to consider are the size of your tent or the space to be heated, the travel distance with the stove, the weight of the stove, the price, the material used in its construction, and the size of the stove.
Size of the tent
The size of the tent will determine the type of stove you need. The bigger the tent, the larger the type of stove you will need to heat it, and vice versa.
The general rule of thumb is this: stoves need 1/3 of the space area of the tent to safely operate. This means adding a stove to a 2-person shelter will essentially turn the tent to a 1-person shelter.
Travel distance with the stove
How far do you need to travel with your stove? If the distance is pretty far, choose a lightweight stove. If you are only heading somewhere close by, you can go for a heavier stove.
Weight of the stove
This is a very important factor to keep in mind because it will always come into play no matter what type of stove you go for. The weight of the stove will be determined by the materials, size, and design of the stove.
Lightweight stoves are ideal for long-distance traveling. Unfortunately, they do not retain heat for long. On the other hand, heavier stoves retain heat but require very detailed logistics when traveling with them over long distances.
The design, materials, and size of the stove will determine its price. High-quality wood burning tent stoves have a higher price tag compared to those of lower quality.
However, this does not mean you need to buy the top of the range wood stove. There is a stove for every budget out there that will still serve you well on your camping trip.
The material used will determine the durability of your wood-burning tent stove. Heavy steel stoves are heavier and more durable. Galvanized steel ones are lighter and not as durable.
Smaller stoves are best for heating smaller tents while larger stoves are suited for bigger tents. Therefore, while shopping, consider the size of the stove compared to the tent you need to heat up.
Types and features of wood burning tent stoves
Now that you know what to look out for when buying your stove, the next thing you need to understand is the type of stove to get and the features that these wood-burning tent stoves usually come with:
Steel tent wood stoves
These stoves are made from thick rolled steel. Consequently, they are heavier and can hold heat better, meaning they can provide heat for longer.
Being that they are made from thick rolled steel they have thicker walls that resist warping. Warping is the bending of metal when it cools, a phenomenon that is common in lightweight metals.
Since it does not warp, the doors of the stove seal better and keep smoke from leaking into the tent.
Another handy feature is that steel tent wood stoves have a cold-air inlet and stove pipe damper. This facilitates good airflow and has longer burn times.
Unfortunately, they tend to weigh a lot and are more expensive. However, you will definitely get more value for money when you get one of these.
Lightweight tent wood stoves
If you need to travel for long distances to get to your destination, a lightweight tent stove is the more sensible option. These stoves are made of lightweight galvanized steel. Compared to the steel tent wood stove, this is half its weight.
However, you will have to make a sacrifice when it comes to durability. Also, they often lose heat much faster than steel stoves.
The trade-off is that it is cheaper and a better fit for temporary use.
Collapsible tent wood stoves
Just like the name suggests, this stove is designed to fold and disassemble. This makes them very convenient to pack and travel with.
They are made of galvanized steel and work pretty much the same way as the lightweight stoves. However, they are much more ideal when space is an important factor to consider, for example on aircrafts and boats.
They are pricier than the stand-alone lightweight tent wood stoves. This mainly because of the engineering involved in its construction.
Accessories for wood burning tent stoves
Most standard wood-burning tent stoves comes with some core accessories. These include:
This is a structure that elevates the fire from touching the base of the stove. The grate makes it easier to start a fire and remove ashes. Additionally, airflow increases and makes the wood burn better.
Overall, the wood grate extends the life of your wood-burning tent stove by the protection it from direct heat damage.
Every stove comes with a stovepipe to carry away the smoke. It is part of the venting system of the stove which is the most important element in a wood-burning stove.
The stove pipe carries away smoke and insulates the stove, preventing it from losing heat, and distributes that heat throughout the tent. Overall, it maximizes the heat transfer. If you want to go all out, there are some stove pipes that come with a chimney oven for that ultimate luxury camping experience.
This element protects your tent from leaking. The stove jack creates a tight seal between your tent and the stovepipe from outside, protecting you from the elements.
Some stove pipes come with a spark arrestor integrated into the design while others do not have it and you need to make your own. A spark arrestor catches fire sparks which may otherwise damage or burn your tent, keeping your tent fire safe.
It is also designed to stay cool on the outside and give a hot draft on the inside. It also boosts the efficiency of the stove.
Accessories that are nice to have
The pipe damper controls the draft in your wood stove and ensures efficient fuel consumption. When there is fast airflow, wood burns faster and you lose heat quickly. The pipe damper counters this. It is simple, low maintenance and a great addition for your wood-burning stove.
Hot water tank
It is usually nice to have some hot water in cold chilly weather. You can get this by installing a hot water tank on the side of your stove.
Most of them come with a brass spigot that dispenses the hot water. The tank also has a lid through which you refill the water. To make your water tank last longer, be sure to always refill it with cold water every time you take out some hot water.
It is also a great way of melting snow for drinking water.
Imagine having the luxury of some freshly baked goodies in the middle of nowhere.
Some stove pipes come with a chimney oven which uses the dry heat emitted from the stove to bake. This increases the efficiency of your stove even more because more heat is retained in your tent before it is carried away to through the stock pipe.
They add additional space on top of your stove. They are very handy since there is never enough space in a tent.
Wood burning tent stove safety
Needless to say, you need to keep safe when using a wood-burning tent stove. It is extremely important to maintain your stove well and ensure it is well ventilated to the outside. To keep safe, you need to:
Avoid inhaling carbon monoxide
Burning any fuel produces carbon monoxide and other dangerous combustion gases. When inhaled, these toxic gases can cause dizziness, nausea, vomiting, respiratory issues and in unfortunate instances, death.
Inspect your stove pipe regularly
Always inspect your stove pipe regularly. This way, you will be able to spot any wear and tear early enough and be able to repair them.
Ensure connections are tight
Double-check to make sure your connections are tight. When correctly set up no smoke should escape into your tent.
Check your spark arrestor
You need to check your spark arrestor daily and clean it every 1-2 days. If you are using softwood and low-temperature stove burns, the spark arrestor will clog sooner than that.
A clogged spark arrestor will cause smoke to escape the stove door intake and in extreme cases, it can cause a fire.
Never use a flammable liquid to start your stove fire
Instead, face your stove in the direction of the prevailing winds. For example, if the winds are blowing from the east, position your stove jack on the west side of the tent. This way the wind will blow the smoke away from the tent. This reduces the number of sparks landing on the roof of your tent.
Heat safety distance
Always keep a 2-foot parameter around the stove where there are no flammables. This is particularly important because sometimes sparks may pop off the stove openings. If a flammable material is close by, it may catch fire. Also, be careful when opening your stove door because sparks may pop out towards you or a small piece of burning wood may drop off the stove.
Types of tents that are suitable for a wood-burning stove
It is important to note that not all tents are designed to be heated. This is why you need to make sure that the tent you buy is tent-stove safe.
Tents that have mesh ceilings are not suitable for heating. Also, tents made of nylon or polyester cannot be heated. They will melt like butter.
What about the floor? Well, if the floor is made of synthetic material you will need a fireproof mat. However, some tents come already with an area of the floor that is zipped out and/or made from special fire-retardant material.
The fireproof mat should extend 6 inches from the stove side legs and stove back legs. It should also extend 18 inches from the front of your stove. This will protect you in case a log falls out or a spark pops out when you open the door.
Also, ensure the stove size is compatible with the size of the tent. For a small tent, you will need a small wood stove, and vice versa.
The tent should also have breathable walls for good ventilation. Consider getting a tent with all-round ventilation.
What is hot tenting?
A hot tent is a large fire-resistant tent that has a wood burning tent stove installed. The tents used for hot tenting are basically portable cabins that are designed for winter nights and for use with wood burning stoves.
Most hot tents come with removable floors, which makes them flexible enough to be used both in winter and summer. They are usually made of high-grade canvas, although there are some types that are constructed with lighter weight fabrics.