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Thread: Food - when space is critical

  1. #1
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    Default Food - when space is critical

    I started a thread about two weeks ago and got many responses however I forgot to mention that I would be on the water for 5 weeks and space is a big issue. Although all that food sounded nice it will not be very practical. Sorry for the lack of info!
    So if anyone could suggest their favorite cookup when out on a long paddle or hike that would be great. I find hikers are the most ingenious because they hump the stuff on their back but I am sure there are plenty of paddlers out there that have had to do it on the bare minimum.
    And a few fish recipes would also be much appreciated
    Hesh

  2. #2
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default

    The reply I gave in the other thread is fairly light by most standards for float trips. We routinely do 10-13 day floats. But as you mention 5 weeks, you certainly do have lots to think about and weight/bulk of food is at the very top of the list. My suggestion is to get a 6 wt fly rod and learn how to use it. Learn to love cous cous, a grain that cooks super fast. Stove fuel will be of course a huge issue for you as well and cous cous cooks in a fraction of the time rice and other pasta takes. Just boil water, dump in cous cous, and let sit covered for about 5 minutes (with stove off). That is it. I would take a good supply of cous cous and let some fishing here and there augment my stash. Of course, other items, just pointing out something easy to take, quick to prepare, and well, light. Taking a good supply of various spices would be a good idea if you will be eating cous cous or another grain each day. Mixing up the flavors a bit would be nice. For example, you could put some dried cranberries and chopped walnuts in the cous cous and make a tasty breakfast. Also, raisons and apple pie spice would be good for breakfast perhaps. Simple additions like that would make it better I think.

    Also, visit the Backpacker Magazine forum, and check out the "Backcountry Cooking" board. As you suspect, you will get lots of lightweight ideas from the backpacking community. This is a great forum as well and I suspect you could post this question there and get some good insights. At any rate, be sure to visit that forum and read over the numerous old threads there....

    http://www.backpacker.com/cgi-bin/forums/ikonboard.cgi


    -Dan



    My post to the other thread is below for future reference. Folks will be reading this stuff for years so I thought I would attach the info here also....

    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post


    On remote fly in float trips, weight/volume are always obstacles when planning meals. Also, if you are not carrying a cooler, you have more to factor in. While there are many ways to do things, some work better than others. Each float trip, we revise our food choices, holding on to what worked last time, and improving on food choices we were not so happy. Below is a brief run down of how I do things. Perhaps some of this information will generate some thought to help you better plan food on your next float trip.

    For breakfast, we like bagels with the precooked bacon packs. The Boars Head comes in two seperate pouches which is convenient. Oscar Meyer comes in one bigger pack. We like block cheese and Harvest Food eggs (see their website for all kinds of great products). I use their powdered oil/shortening in my dutch oven. Works just like regular oil but without the weight/mess. We also take hot oatmeal and recently discovered Richmoor cold cereal. Just add water type. It comes in granola with strawberries and granola with raspberries. Both are delicious. I am 6' 6" and weigh 300 lbs. So I will buy 4 packs of the cereal and vacuum seal. 2.5 for me and 1.5 for my wife. If you eat a 2,000 calorie a day diet normally, perhaps one pack would be enough for breakfast. They taste great. I buy mine from www.wildernessdining.com This site sells lots of other great food items. Check out their website for all kinds of food related items. Great selection of hard to find items. I get the peanut butter and jelly individual packs there too. Great for putting on flour tortilla wraps or bagels for snacks/lunches. Very convenient. Comes with strawberry or grape jelly. These are larger packs and have plenty to make a sandwich or bagel. They also sell cheese in packs like this. That with some pilot bread would make a great snack/lunch.

    For lunch we take Mountain House Pro Paks. Vacuum sealed and slightly smaller portions than the regular Mtn House meals, they pack small and light yet are plenty for lunch. They come in about 10 different types. Chilli-Mac, spaghetti, and Lasagna are my favorites. Go to the Mountain House website and order there. One nice thing about having these meals for lunch everyday is that it makes things simple. No meal planning. Save that for the dinners. Keep it simple. Just boil some water riverside and have lunch. This route also saves weight compared to many other food ideas.

    For dinner, we go through more trouble. For the purpose of good morale perhaps. We take Darn Good (brand) dried chilli bags and make Jiffy cornbread in the dutch oven. We also make grayling gumbo. We take Zatarains Gumbo (dry mix) and slivers of about 2 lbs of grayling. Cook slow while the Bisquick garlic biscuits cook in the aluminum GSI 10" dutch oven. It only weighs 4 lbs and can be found on the wilderness dining website above. Also at Campmor.com. If weight/space allows, a few small bags of charcoal will make your life alot easier. We cook fish for about 3/7 meals too. Usually dolly vardon (arctic char). We get Idaho instant potatoes (garlic is our favorite). We will make garlic bisuits in the dutch oven to go with. We also make mac and cheese to go with fish. Simple things like that. Some of the easy to make Suddenly Salad brands are nice too. They have a ranch and italian cold pasta salad. Great sides for a fish meal. We have also packed the 10" pita pizza deals. Take the pizza sauce in the bags and some block cheese to grate. Two per person may be enough. And of course the pepperoni. In a pinch, we will just have one of the extra Mtn House Pro Paks. Maybe too tired to cook or got into camp late. Bad weather and such. I always carry 2-3 extra Mtn House Pro Paks. One tip, tape a disposable plastic spoon to the lasagna packs. The cheese in them is nearly impossible to get off your standard Lexan spoon. We burn the disposable spoon with the bag the meal was in. Dishes done.

    Save the clean lexan spoon for stirring the 100 proof peppermint schnapps into the hot chocolate. Also, Captain Morgans rum and hot apple cider is a good camp fire drink. For other times of the day, we take Crystal Light sticks and perhaps one gatorade packet per person/per day.

    For deserts, we take the Backpackers Pantry (brand) cheese cake and cream pie (same things). I love lemon, but chocolate mousse, strawberry, banana, and dark chocolate are great. Just add and stir some cold water into the bag, then sprinkle the graham cracker crumbs on top (included in the pack) and then let it sit and think for about 10 minutes. This desert must be tried. Amazing stuff.

    For snacks, the normal fare. Dried fruit and beef jerky vacuum seals to very small packs. Leave out the mango and apricots as it makes everything sticky. We love Cliff bars as they can get squished and are not effected by heat. Comes in about 20 flavors. And of course some home made gorp with the larger size M&M's.

    For coffee, only Peet's arabian mocha java or major dickisons blend will do. Order online from Peet's and specify that you want press pot grind. You do this when finalizing the order. Get a french press to take on the trip. I have a stainless model that I got from Campmor. I think they quit carrying that model, but REI and others carry it. GSI also makes some lexan french presses. They work fine, I just preferred the stainless model. Point is, this makes great coffee and it is the perfect way to start a day on a float trip. We get small 16,8,4 ounce nalgene bottles (campmor) and put the coffee, powdered creamer, and sweetener in them. Good stuff man.




    -Dan
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  3. #3
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Different strokes...

    and some don't care for freeze dried or Mtn House, but I like Mtn House Pro Paks, (http://www.mtnhse.com/mm5/merchant.m...ory_Code=MHPRO) similar to the usual Mtn House freeze dried meals, but vacuum sealed and so take up less room.

    Another MH option we're trying this year is to buy MH in bulk (10 servings per can) then divy it up as we like. This can be cheaper (approx $27-35 per can) and reduces bulk/space.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Food for river trip-

    Hesh,

    Some things to consider with this...

    If possible I would arrange an air drop at the mid-point of the trip. Just have a duffel bag with some fresh stuff in it, plus resupply of your dry goods of course. Toss in a few surprises that your partner doesn't know about too. It will give you something to anticipate.

    I would advise planning meals that don't depend on catching fish or game. You don't know how that's going to turn out and there's no sense starving yourself!

    Dan has some great ideas... You might consider bringing along some of those foil pouches with chicken or tuna, to augment your freeze-drieds or noodle dishes. A little meat makes a huge difference! Same goes for raisins or other dried berries in your oatmeal in the morning. There's also pre-cooked bacon you could bring along and it doesn't require much refrigeration. A bit on the heavy / bulky side perhaps, but you might consider a pre-cooked spiral-cut ham. It lasts a long time in the field and you'll get a lot of meals from it.

    Hope it helps!

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
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  5. #5
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default A great book for canoe trip menus

    Hesh,

    We are constantly adding new titles to the Outdoors Directory Bookstore, and we just placed one that would be ideal for your canoe trip. It's called "The Paddling Chef", and it deals with exactly the issues you mentioned. Might be the best 20 bucks you spend on your trip!

    Hope it helps!

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  6. #6
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    for breakfast I almost exclusively eat dried hashbrowns with ketchup or salsa. sometimes with eggs. and ham.

    tortillas. tillamook cheese. dehydrated refried black beans (and regular refried beans). cashews. dried fruit. chocolate. more tortillas. more cheese. eggs in a small nalgene (pre frozen can keep 4-7 days). smoked ham.

    these accompany me on virtually every overnighttrip and are the bulk of my lunch and dinner food items. Tortillas, tortillas, tortillas. all you need is boiling water and a boil to mix up the powdered bean mix add chunks of cheese to each burrito and salsa (can get small cans with a pull-pop top). best trail/river meal on earth. can make a hot lunch/dinner in about 5 minutes. fresh caught grayling helps but takes more time. gotta have onions and garlic. and cheese.

    i'll stop. getting deliriously hungry here.

    personally I am not much for books and preplanned cuisine. make it as you go. don't run out of hashbrowns, tortillas, cheese, salsa, dry flies, chocolate, and I am one happy eater.

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