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Thread: Appalachian Trail adventure planned. What to eat?

  1. #1
    TheCasualWarrior's Avatar
    TheCasualWarrior Guest


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    Hey folks -

    Me and my Grokette and 3 of our friends are planning a 4 day hike along the AT this summer. One of the guys going is an AT veteran. Unfortunately, he doesn't think we can hike without consuming massive loads of Carbohydrates. He said that the last time he hiked his typical diet consisted of:

    Breakfast - a huge bag of cereal w/ powdered milk.

    Lunch - 2 packs of Ramen noodles.

    Dinner - Powdered Lipton noodle soup.

    Freakin' nasty crap, hey?!

    Soooo.. I was thinking of going with some pemmican, dehydrated fruit and dehydrated vegetables, some nuts. . .any other suggestions? Stuff that's lightweight, preferrably.

    Thanks, guys and gals.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010


    Protein pudding would serve you well if you permit whey.

    Whey protein powder

    Flaxseed or chia

    Raw Pumpkin seeds

    Shredded coconut

    Raw eggs

    Psyllium husk

    Coconut milk or almond milk

    Cinnamon, cocoa, stevia, xylitol, etc for flavor if you want

    Mix and go! You can make as much of it as you want and it fits in a small container.

    Stabbing conventional wisdom in its face.

    Anyone who wants to talk nutrition should PM me!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009


    Definitely tons of beef jerky!!!

    Maybe some primal protein bars?

    Canned fish, or those pouches of tuna maybe? I like smoked oysters!

    My husband (avid outdoorsman, fisherman type) likes to dehydrate ground beef. He cooks the beef and then lets it cool to room temp, then dehydrates (takes about 24 hours) until dry and crumbly. Rehydrate by adding small amounts of water (remember you can always add more!) and allow it to boil a bit then cover and let reconstitute. He's done spaghetti type mixtures, taco beef, spicy, and plain.

    He also makes dehydrated stew. Make your stew as you would (but make sure your beef cubes are no bigger than a 1/2 inch), then once it's cooled dehydrate. Add small amounts of water and allow to cook slowly over the fire or campstove, driving your ramen scarfing friends nuts! lol

    The more I see the less I know for sure.
    -John Lennon

  4. #4


    Pemmican, buy it at US Wellness Meats, or make your own:

    Canned fish (anchovy, herring, salmon, sardines), and you can get dried/smoked fish, too.

    4 days of Pemmican will give you the best nutrition per ounce, so it would indeed be your lightest option. Mix with hot water for a soup, or eat it straight up.

    Experiment with the foods you are taking, so you get no gastro-intestinal surprise!

  5. #5
    Prowler's Avatar
    Prowler Guest


    Acmebike beat me to it. Without a doubt, the #1 primal trail food would be pemmican, both for nutrition, and for primal authenticity.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Southeastern Missouri


    I would have to also agree with pemmican as well as home-dried jerky. You could also do some due dilligence and find out what sort of natural foods are available in the Appalachians where you are going. What you find out that is edible might just surprise you.

    Ism's in my opinion are not good. A person should not believe in an -ism, he should believe in himself. I quote John Lennon, "I don't believe in Beatles, I just believe in me."--Ferris Bueller, 1986
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  7. #7
    TheCasualWarrior's Avatar
    TheCasualWarrior Guest


    OMG - Such great Ideas! I didn't even THINK about jerky!! Duh! ::slapping forehead:: Of course! Thanks, Lil'Earthmomm. The dried fish/ pouches of tuna/salmon's a wonderful idea, too. LOL! DEFINATELY gonna do the dehydrated stew.

    Stabby! Those will seve me very well. I don't permit whey - but the seeds, coconut and spices along w/ the coconut milk - awesome!

    Acme - thanks for the gastro-intest. advice, too! That'd make for a LONG hike. LOL!

    Would you guys hike the AT in your VFF's? If it were just a regular hike - there'd be no question - but I'm concerrned about the terrain and carrying a weighted pack...I snapped a tendon that runs along my left ankle several years back and it never healed properly. I'm concerned about it twisting on a rock or something.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009


    My brother just got the VFF Treks and loves them, maybe a new pair is in order?? They have thicker soles and actual traction, along with a leather upper. I'm always looking for a reason to buy new VFFs anyway...

    Would you be able to do a few "training" hikes in a similar setting to see how your ankle feels in VFFs after a couple of hours? I know my ankles are much stronger/more stable now than when I hiked in "ankle supporting" boots (which I always hated anyway), but I've never snapped a tendon either.

    You are what you eat,
    and what you eat eats too - Michael Pollan

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Berkley (Metro Detroit) Michigan


    Powdered eggs! I gave them a whirl 2 weekends ago -- got the big bag from REI. While the texture leaves something to be desired, the flavor is good and overall they're now a must for my backpacking trips. Premix powder with some small jerky pieces and dried veggies and reconstitute your eggs and veggies in one bag as soon as you wake up so they'll be ready to cook in 15-20 mins.

    Also, my experience, if you take any pouches or cans of fish or meat and you have to pack out all your trash, plan it into meals near the end of your trip. No matter how well you wash that package, or anything else you use during that meal, it will hold the smell, which will develop into a stench, which will not be very appetizing. It could also enhance your scent to bears since you will be in bear country!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010


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    Ugh - even for carbs he's eating crap hiking food. When I was doing outward bound we ate a lot of rice and beans, noodles, peanut butter, and oatmeal. None of this is primal but it's better than four days of cereal, ramen and lipton's powdered soup.

    Hard cheese (if that's part of your diet) will keep without refrigeration for four days.

    Fresh veggies won't last long but they might be a good part of the meal for the first night.

    Summer sausage

    Chicken comes in a pouch

    Oranges keep well, have minimal trash to pack out, and are a nice treat.(You can also use the peels to filter out the taste of chemicals in treated water. Just make sure the water's disinfected before you add the peel)

    And don't forget to make yourself some trail mixes.

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