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[pct-l] Trail Food
In a message dated 11/2/01 1:52:57 PM Pacific Standard Time, email@example.com
<< We are preparing for a thruhike
and are pondering what changes to make in our trail food. Our conclusion was
almost exactly the same as that expressed by Jim Owen.
The only issue is calories vs weight (and secondarily food volume). Right
now Pop Tarts and Snickers are running 1 and 2 on our list. Calories,
Figure out how many calories a day you are burning, then try to pack that
many calories per day. It is easily more than 1 serving per meal of any
packaged food. I even have trouble with the size of those servings when I am
One other comment - The first 2 or 3 weeks of a hike don't really require
the same number of calories. The body seems to be using up its supply of
stored energy during that timeframe. >>
Good points! The PopTarts and Snickers are certainly high on the list, but
the winners in the "calories per ounce" race have to be 1. Olive oil, and 2.
Nuts. Fat always beats sugar in this kind of competition.
Tip: Olive oil is a great stand-in for butter or margarine but, if it leaks
it will be only slightly less of a disaster than white gas getting loose in
your pack. The answer is to carry it in a disposable water bottle with a
screw-on cap. They NEVER leak.
Finally, thruhiking is not the same as backpacking. I suspect a person could
backpack for three or four days without food, living off the surplus we tend
to store away internally, with no ill effect. The "big hunger" doesn't show
up for a week or two. Something to remember when you're trying to ramp up on
a long hike. You won't be hungry for the first few days. Carry less food.