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Need menu help
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Alvie Morton
(rootball) - F

Locale: West Port
Need menu help on 07/06/2008 19:12:13 MDT Print View

My food is now the weight that I have the hardest time reducing.
Is there a menu or gear list where a lot of light choices are listed?
Thnks Alvie

JR Redding
(GrinchMT) - F
Re: Need menu help on 07/06/2008 23:59:29 MDT Print View

My opinion will only be one of thousands but I found the key points to reducing the weight of your food ultimately depends on these:

#1 - Reduce packaging
#2 - Use dehydrated when possible
#3 - What is dehydrated, should be high calorie content

I don't think there is a one size fits all food list for anyone. However, you may find the following Excel spreadsheet helpful... http://www.backpackinglight.com/backpackinglight/images/bpl-gear-list-spreadsheet-contest-meir-gottleib.xls

It was the 2005 BPL winner in a contest for planning spreadsheets. It is loaded with fun information including menus and help planning them.

Having said that, I'll be the first to admit I use to eat terribly on the trail. I'm a type 2 diabetic and last summer I kept hitting the wall badly on long days. It was all due to eating poorly. My solution was to purchase a dehydrator and start experimenting. I personally enjoy the Freezerbag Style of cooking and you can find some helpful info on getting started at www.freezerbagcooking.com -- No, I don't own the cookbook she sells there.

It should be noted though that a great deal of your favorite home recipes can be dehydrated into great trail meals.

As an example if on a multiday hike, I usually have oatmeal in the morning with either Clif bar or a Snickers, snack on trail mix, have light noodles like Ramen which are high calorie for a lunch, an afternoon snack of a Clif bar or Snickers and then top it off with one of my own meals for dinner such as Chili Mac, Burritos (easy to do on trail) or Spaghetti with garlic toast. Usually my evening meal has a good mixture of fat, protein and calories.

If I am doing a less strenuous day, then I adjust my calorie intake down.

The last thing I find helpful on reducing weight is carefully planning what it is I will eat each day and take only that food. In the past I always came home with extra food and that translates to extra useless weight.

Hope some small amount of this info helped you.

Best,

--Joe
www.bozemanstoveworks.com

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Need menu help on 07/07/2008 06:52:08 MDT Print View

Don't.

Here is my view:

Take the foods you like and that work best for you. Don't just take a food becuase it is high fat/high calorie if you can't stand it.

There is no reason to suffer out there :-)

And hey, food weight goes down daily.

Of course, picking the lightest version of the foods you like is the best choice (ie...dried vegetables, fruits, dried meat, etc).

Just don't cut on food weight to save pack weight - if you don't have enough food you will hate yourself ;-)

Laurie Ann March
(Laurie_Ann) - F

Locale: Ontario, Canada
Re: Need menu help on 07/07/2008 18:18:31 MDT Print View

Alvie,

Joe mentioned dehydrating your own foods and that is definitely the way to go as far as the balance between delicious foods and weight reduction is concerned.

Don't choose your menu just on foods that you like. One must also consider nutritional needs, carbs, proteins and fibre. You'll need a decent caloric intake to meet your energy needs.

For freeze-dried ingredients check out places such as...

www.justtomatoes.com
www.harmonyhousefoods.com
www.waltonfeed.com
www.beprepared.com

Hope that helps.

Alvie Morton
(rootball) - F

Locale: West Port
Thanks on 07/12/2008 06:15:03 MDT Print View

Thank you for the input. I am still searching and making good headway. I hike a lot. Cost is as important to me as all other factors. My current plan is to use my oven and dehydrator more, make my own jerky, make my own performance bars, and try to come up with a medium between the commercial offerings and home made foods. I like Sarah's suggestion- fresh foods are good- and with some work on my part I think I can use fresh ingredients and lower the weight while lowering costs as well.