The Hanging Wonder – Cooking on the Road Reinvented


My preferred spot for cooking from the beginning of our trip has been on the winch. It is always there and we don’t have to hang up the aluminum shelf. If there is a strong side wind I can hang up this shelf on either side of the Land Cruiser so that we’ll be cooking out of the wind.

Read More: Cooking Equipment

Our first encounter with an overlander that used a kitchen in the back was up in the Himalayas of India. We were instantly smitten by the simplicity and sturdy solution these Swiss had made on the rear door of their 6×6 Pinzgauer.

The Coleman Stove (find it here)  folds nicely inside a sleeve and stays attached to the rear door. However, the Pinzgauer door is a wide, one-piece door so it has plenty of space to stick a kitchen to it.

On the other hand, the ambulance doors of our Land Cruiser are narrow and have limited space behind them.

Read More: The Land Cruiser’s Ins & Outs

We like Rob’s solution for storing and using the Coleman stove.

Swiss 6x6 Pinzgauer cooking [©photocoen]
Swiss 6×6 Pinzgauer cooking
We met Rob at the Overland Reunion and look what he built on the rear door of his 70 series. Still a bit too big for our narrow doors, but this is close to what we had in mind.

Recently, when camping in Peru, on a hill overlooking Mancor at Kontiki Hostel. The wind was blowing full force around the Land Cruiser and I could neither cook on the winch nor the sides. The only option was to turn around the car or to cook at the back somehow.

Fortunately, I spotted an apparently forgotten workmate a few meters away and placed it directly under the left rear door. A perfect fit and a good work height for the Coleman stove (find it here).

Read More: The Overland Reunion in Photos

Workmate solution [©photocoen]

Lost World Expedition's kitchen [©LostWorldExpedition]
Lost World Expedition’s kitchen
It reminded me to a similar setup Luis and Lacey of Lost World Expedition used at the back of their 60 series and how convenient all that looked. [image below by Lost World Expedition]

After a few days Juerg, the owner of Kontiki Hostel, came looking for his workmate and I got stuck with the wind blowing all over the place again. I started thinking in earnest on how to make a hinging platform of some sorts on the left rear ambulance door.

I didn’t start sketching as I normally do but lifted the Coleman stove and placed it with one edge on the Spare Tire Carrier Cushion while holding it with one hand on the opposite top end. Then the gears in my brain started working and everything fell into place.

Low and behold, my simple Hanging Kitchen solution was in place!

Two simple hooks that had been lying around for the last eight years finally came in handy.

Read More: Why we Cook on Gasoline – Our Coleman Stove

The Coleman suspended in mid air [©photocoen]

Two simple hooks and a paracord [©photocoen]

Here is a view from the bottom where you can clearly see its hanging. I connected two hooks with a piece of cord that I run through the rear door handle and voilà. I hope you find this simple solution easy to incorporate in your vehicle.

Let me know in the comment section below what your solution is.

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3 thoughts on “The Hanging Wonder – Cooking on the Road Reinvented”

  1. The hanging stove idea is perfectly valid, and is used by sport climbers. I would suggest to you, tho, that anything you use to hang your flaming stove from your precious vehicle with should be melt-proof. People who use hanging stoves prefer small diameter braided cables (couple millimeters in diameter), with crimped swedges to form loops and join different lines.
    More car campers need to discover self leveling hanging stoves, in my opinion.

  2. Just another safety tip: If you need the extinguisher, because the stove felt or something is burning on it, the flames could be too close to grab it.
    As you’re using it without any concern since a while, it might just be an overwaning about this (occupational hazard, sorry 😉 ), but if it would be possible to find a place on the opposite side, grabbing it would be even easier 😉
    Nothing to say about the vacuum bottle ^^

    • You’re totally right about this. We meanwhile changed the system. Smaller extinguishers, but one on the other side and another one in the front of the car.

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