When you are out hiking for days, weeks, even months on end, thoughts of food occupy your mind day and night. So it was on our adventure on the Appalachian Trail. Knowing you are burning upwards of 4-6,000 calories per day hiking, it's nearly impossible to carry that much food to satisfy your need for nutrition. And eating meals trailside, day after day, one looks for creative ways to get the calories you need and still eat a good meal. Check out this blog also for hiker food kinds of stuff.
Here is a typical day on the trail. We cooked over a tiny stove called a pocket rocket that ran on a canister. We made one pot meals to share. Since our pot came with a lid, I gave Paul Bunyan food in the lid and I ate out of the pot. The pot it made out of titanium, a great lightweight option for cooking. We liked the pocket rocket canister stove to cook our meals. A simple lexan spoon or a titanium spork ( a combo spoon with fork tines, my fav) works great as a utensil.
Lobster trailside? Not quite, but I was invited to a hiker's home for the evening while I hiked the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The invite came as a total surprise, hence the name "trail magic." The hiker (or in this case, trail angel) rolled out the red carpet for me, including a dinner of lobster and wine. Wow, I was really living it up on the trail! Towns are a great place to resupply food needs and to get a good meal, especially if a hiker can nail an AYCE restaurant (all-you-can-eat).
Ready for a THANKSGIVING recipe? Yes, you can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner on the trail with this which Paul Bunyan and I enjoyed many times on the trail. It feeds two.
(This recipe is adapted from the The Appalachian Trail Food Planner by Lu Adsmond, published by the ATC)
1 can chicken, dehydrated (canned chicken dehydrates really well, believe it or not. Don't use real chicken, it's too tough to rehydrate).
1/2 packet chicken gravy mix (I like the organic variety without msg)
1/4 tsp salt (carry more for taste)
dash of pepper
1/4 tsp poultry seasoning
(put these ingredients in one snack size ziploc bag)
1 cup stuffing mix (I like Pepperidge Farm)
1 cup unseasoned potato flakes
(put these ingredients into another Ziploc bag)
When you get to camp, let pkg 1 sit in your pot filled with approx 3 cups of water to rehydrate as you make camp. Let it come to a boil, boil for 10 minutes. Put the pot in a pot cozy to keep warm. Add package number 2. Let stand a few minutes. Adjust seasoning and liquid to taste and consistency,
Wa la, Thanksgiving dinner on the trail!
Check out my 4,000 mile Appalachian Trail Adventure on Kindle and in paperback! Find out what a teen thinks about hiking with Mom and what it's like to be a solo adventurer! Makes a GREAT gift, too.