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How to cook fish above 10K ft without fire?
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christopher smead
(hamsterfish) - MLife

Locale: hamsterfish
How to cook fish above 10K ft without fire? on 03/09/2012 01:35:53 MST Print View

Hi. Fishing newby here with a dumb question. I want to fish in Kings Canyon this summer and eat my catches. Yet in places like Rae lakes you aren't allowed to have fires because it's over 10K ft. How do I cook them?

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
"How to cook fish above 10K ft without fire?" on 03/09/2012 02:57:36 MST Print View

I assume you mean no wood fires. Cooking on a grill is probably out.

Poached trout is good. You can simply cut the fins and head off and drop a fish in boiling water with a goodly amount of salt.

Baking in a ti pot is possible. Add a few stones on the bottom. and insure you have a tight titting lid. Try draping aluminum foil around the pot down to the burner. Different recipies for the fish.

Frying in a small frying pan always works. Worst case is splitting the fish in half to make it fit. Lots of ways to prepare trout in a fry pan.

I *is* possible to keep trout for up to 24 hours. Keep a cleaned fish in a ziplock, submerged in water. Change the water four or five times during this period to wash any bacteria off. Also good for freezing them. (Back about 30 years ago I used to catch fish for the whole family, aunts, uncles, cousins, and inlaws.)

Wild fish can generally can carry tape worm eggs, make sure it is cooked well.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Poached! on 03/09/2012 09:06:35 MST Print View

Poaching works very well, and can be done on a stove quite easily. Basically you simmer the fish lightly in salted or otherwise flavored water. Time in the boiling water should equal or be slightly less than frying or baking - for most smallish Sierra trout I poach 3-5 minutes. You may need to turn the fish over if the fish isn't entirely covered with water; traditional methods for kitchen poaching include wrapping the fish in cheesecloth to facilitate the turn-over.

I often carry a small jar of chicken bouillon powder combined with a bit of powdered garlic, cayenne, lemon, etc. A teaspoon or two makes a nice liquid for poaching trout.

Hobbes W
(Hobbesatronic) - F

Locale: SoCal
How to cook fish above 10k on 03/09/2012 09:34:20 MST Print View

My advice is - don't:

* Sure, you could pouch, but that means you need a stove that puts out more BTUs and has some kind of simmer control, both not really available with a simple alcohol burner.
* However, perhaps more significant is the clean up - cleaning the fish, cleaning your hands, and washing your cookware.

When you come back from a (regular) fishing trip, you probably don't really consider the amount of water & soap you use (especially if cleaning over a sink). Now, consider both carrying sufficient cleanser, and where to dispose the suds, etc. Basically, it's a big mess best kept away from bear country like Rae Lakes.

Over the years, the more I've fished, the less I even want to eat all the fish. If you're really determined to eat your catch, you could keep some the last day you hike out. I'll do that now and then, especially if I'm only a few hours out. Either grill @ the car/TH over a fire, or drive down to town (easier to do on the east side) and put it on ice.

Edited by Hobbesatronic on 03/09/2012 09:40:03 MST.

Francis DeRoos

Locale: Mid Atlantic
re; how to cook fish about 10k ft w/o fire? on 03/09/2012 19:49:19 MST Print View

I ate fish every day on the JMT this past September. Clean and cut head/tail and place into pot. I used 0.9 Ti pot with caldera cone.
fish in pot

Then boiled into a soup either seaweed or other asian dried soup. sometimes with rice noodles. Not huge calories by any stretch of the imagination but nothing better than a warm bowl of fresh trout and salty soup out on the trail.trout seaweed soup

Edited by on 03/09/2012 19:50:17 MST.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: How to cook fish above 10K ft without fire? on 03/09/2012 21:25:30 MST Print View

Get a light fry pan, it's worth the weight.

Scott Truong

Locale: Vancouver, BC
RE: How to cook fish above 10K ft without fire on 03/11/2012 21:57:23 MDT Print View

That trout soup looks pretty good Francis. I may have to do the same. Looks like Miso soup with trout.

I can't remember what the contraption is called, but it's basically a water/heat exchanger to "bake" the fish. I believe you can make one with a aluminum pie tin. Cut two 1" strips of aluminum, fashion it into a "Z" shape to fit bottom of your pot, then cut a round piece of aluminum, with a bunch of holes punched in it, the diameter of pot.

Put strips in bottom of pot, fill with water up to top of strips, place hole punched piece on top of strips, place fish in a bag (ziplock loosely rolled but not sealed, or I'm thinking reynolds oven pouches), and steam/bake.

Never tried it, but there was another thread discussing this technique. Not sure if I have it right. I'm going to try the next time I get a chance.

Mark Ries
(mtmnmark) - M

Locale: IOWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
Smoke it on 03/12/2012 20:33:34 MDT Print View

There was a thread recently from someone who had hot smoked fish in a Ti mug by putting wood chips and water in the bottom and green branches over that then the fish on top Im gonna give that a shot sometime soon. IT MIGHT WORK!!!!! BTW I found the thread on the food, hydration and nutrition forum titled smoking fish on the trail

Edited by mtmnmark on 03/12/2012 20:50:03 MDT.

Paul Johnson
(johncooper) - F

Locale: SoCal
Fish Fry Pan on 03/13/2012 10:42:17 MDT Print View

I either fry in a pan or cook in aluminum foil. The pan is the best, but Aluminum foil works with some effort over a stove. The biggest issue with the aluminum foil is that it creates rather large trash.

Kai Larson
(KaiLarson) - F
Fry them on 03/24/2012 20:52:28 MDT Print View

Fry them. A little butter, corn meal, lemon, salt and pepper. MMMMMMM

Fried Fish

Edited by KaiLarson on 03/24/2012 20:53:03 MDT.

Joseph Raymundo
(jlrray) - F

Locale: Pacific Southwest
You could go the fireless route... on 04/18/2012 00:47:35 MDT Print View

When I travel internationally, I always end up making some form of ceviche. I've never done it with Trout, but I have done with numerous and various other fish. Just use plenty of Lime juice and make sure that all of the fish has been in contact with the citrus. Keep it in a ziplock and make sure it all cooks through before eating. Should be done while fish is fresh :)


stephen jennings
(obi96) - F

Locale: Deep in the Green Mountains
Cooking fish on 05/27/2012 19:19:23 MDT Print View

An idea I got from the forum, (sorry I can't remember who,) that worked on my last trip was to get a SS splatter screen at a dollar store, cut it a little oversized for you pot, press it in to a depth of about 1" to hold the fish and place the cover back on. Fill with an inch of water and presto! steamed fish in about 3 minutes

Richard Lyon
(richardglyon) - MLife

Locale: Bridger Mountains
An easier way on 05/27/2012 21:54:33 MDT Print View

Get a Jetboil and the Fry Pan attachment. A little olive oil, salt and pepper, maybe some lemon, mint or sorrel from the wetlands near the river. Doesn't get much better.

Mike Garcia
(mountainfly) - F

Locale: Aurora, Co
Re: You could go the fireless route... on 05/29/2012 10:09:50 MDT Print View

I've done it with trout several times, and it works well with lemon or lime juice. I like to add soy sauce into the citrus juice as well. I've also eaten trout raw. It taste the same as when it's cooked. Another thing that works well is to fillet the trout, and then cut it into thin strips or cubes, and add it raw into your rice just after your rice is almost done. Give it a quick mix, and let it sit. The rice will cook the fish.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: You could go the fireless route... on 06/10/2012 00:48:43 MDT Print View

Joseph: I was thinking ceviche also. Concentrated orange juice is easy to find and cheap, but is there concentrated lemon or lime juice?

One option would be to mix dry citric acid into a small container of lime juice for a more acidic, faster-acting, lighter solution.

Science note: fish is cooked thermally when you see it transition from tranlucent to opaque. This is due to the proteins changing shape as they are denatured by the heat. Ceviche is "cooked" when the fish goes opaque for the same reason - the proteins are denatured but by the acid.

I make pretty small cubes so they are done sooner. It can still take an hour or two.

Willie Evenstop
(redmonk) - F

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Dioctophyme renale on 06/10/2012 01:51:16 MDT Print View

Fresh water fish are carriers of all sorts of neat parasites.

Kerry Wilson

Locale: North of Eugene, South of Portland
Concentrated Lemon or Lime juice on 07/16/2014 00:16:09 MDT Print View

Is available in the grocery store. Here it comes in little plastic squeeze jars that look either like a lemon or a lime. Highly'll make ya pucker up.....

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
Re: Dioctophyme renale on 07/16/2014 01:37:02 MDT Print View

"Fresh water fish are carriers of all sorts of neat parasites."


Might I add that these parasites are not destroyed by stomach acid, so presumably lemon juice might not destroy them either. I don't know if studies have been done to test that, but I do know I was taught in parasitology courses not to eat uncooked freshwater fish.

Jim H
(jraiderguy) - M

Locale: Puget Sound
re:fish soup on 07/16/2014 19:15:22 MDT Print View

Are the bones tough to deal with in the soup example above? Or are you guys butterfly-ing the fish prior to cooking?

Adam Klagsbrun
(klags) - MLife

Locale: Northeast US
bad answer on 07/30/2014 12:57:47 MDT Print View

"My advice is - don't"

My advice - don't listen to this poster. Be safe, be responsible, and do just what you're doing now - educate yourself. Asking the community is a good idea. Some people like to rain on our parades so to speak. This person's fears and situations are personal, and won't apply to everyone. Be careful because you're in bear country. Be responsible by using biodegradable soap, washing your hands away from the stream so you don't contaminate it with suds, and dig a little ditch for your waste water and washing water, that you can then fill in after use. Do all these things far from where you're sleeping and you'll have no issues with bears, and you'll have done it in a responsible way. Most others give good advice here. Personally I'm a fan of the fish "soup" idea - if you can filet them to remove bones, this is the best method. If not, you can just cook them in the soup, take them out when done to separate the meat from the bone, then either put the meat back in the soup or eat it. Good luck with your fishing!