Food for thought

Never work before breakfast; if you have to work before breakfast, eat your breakfast first.  ~Josh Billings
Nobody ever said eating on the trail was gourmet.  But in all honesty, these Mountain House dehydrated meals aren’t that bad.  The image above is almost my entire meal plan for my trip.  It’s missing some trail mix and granola.  Some pita, some apples and oranges.  But for the most part, that’s it.  In my water proof knapsack, it weighs almost next to nothing. In total I’m looking at:

  • 11 tuna foil packs
  • 8 assorted Cup o’ Soup packs
  • 9 hot chocolate packs
  • 30 Gatorade propel packs
  • 18 assorted Mountain House meals (each pack feeds two – or 1 of me)
  • 10 assorted oatmeal packs
  • 1 dozen apples (not pictured)
  • 1/2 dozen oranges (not pictured)
  • 3 packs of beef jerky (not pictured)
  • 5 packs of trail mix
  • 16 granola energy bars

And just when you might think I got off cheap by not having to eat out while on the road, keep in mind those dehydrated meals are about twice of cost of a fast food value meal.  The key was to purchase them slowly over the past year to avoid the huge upfront cost.  Amazon had some sales that I took advantage of as well.  The plan is to use this as a store and take food from it in to my pack on a daily basis based on how long I’ll be out each day- with a little extra for emergencies.  With all this dehydrated food, comes the need for water.  Excluding my personal  travel bottles, the goal is to have 9 gallons in transit, refilling and topping off whenever possible.  4 of these gallons will be strapped to my roof in the Rotopax containers locked down next to my reserve gas.    Adding in my portable water bottles, I’m rounding out at just over 10 gallons.  You can never have too much water.  Ever.

Now that the threat of a National Park closure is behind us, I am more confident than ever in wrapping up my preparations.  Little details continue to surface, like a roll of quarters for laundry, buying stamps to mail postcards, checking my siphon and air compressor to make sure they function.  In fact, when I opened my Jetboil stove this morning to check it, I found it wouldn’t lite.  That could be disastrous.  I may actually have to use a match.  🙂  These last minute surprises are what I’m working to eliminate for the next 30 days.  I’ve also been walking briskly on the treadmill with a loaded pack and boots just to get myself attuned to doing it again.

It’s funny how one of the reasons I’m taking this trip is to get away from technology and the modern world for a while, yet it’s technology that allows me to travel so far yet retain the security of knowing that I can be quite comfortable in the middle of nowhere.

The very thing I’m getting away from is the very thing that allows me to get away from it with peace of mind.  Simmer on that for a while.

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