Gut Rumbles

June 02, 2008

backpacking food

Originally PUBLISHED September 4, 2005

We didn't have a lid for the pot, nor did we have time to soak the barley before we ate it that night. It was damn nearly dark when we camped.

But over the years, I learned some really good stuff to take backpacking. Here's what I recommend:

*Salt cured country ham. You can toast that stuff on a stick over a fire and it's good to eat all by itself. It makes excellent seasoning in anything you want to cook. And it requires NO refrigeration.

*Lipton "Cup-O-Soup" with some rice and country ham. Pour the Cup-O-Soup mix into the water when you're making the rice and throw some country ham in the mixture. That's a meal fit for a king in the woods. And it's all very light to carry.

*Little Debbie "Star Crunches." Just DAMN! That's the best snack food in the world when you're walking a trail all day.

*Snicker's candy bars. Yes. They are good on the trail.

*Bring a steak. Freeze it solid as a rock and stick it in the top of your backpack. It'll thaw out on the first day of hiking and be ready to cook that night. Hang it on a forked stick over the fire, cook the sumbitch, and then eat it while holding it with your bare hands. Nothing EVER tasted better.

*MREs. They came along late in my backpacking career, but some of 'em ain't half-bad. They are light to tote and the ones with chicken or ham in them taste pretty good. I tried a "beef stroganov" once that tasted like dog shit, but the others weren't bad. Plus, some of them come in self-heating bags. You don't even need a fire for a hot meal.

*Some freeze-dried food. Cop 3 always used to experiment with something he bought from Wilderness Outfitters when we went hiking. Some of it was horrible, but some of it was good. Kinda like MREs. All you have to do with that stuff is pour hot water into a bag and let it soak for a while. Presto! You've got food. Cop 3 bought a bag of dehydrated strawberrys once and they came out tasting as good as the real thing.

*Trail Mix. ALWAYS carry a bag of that stuff with you. The nuts, raisins and assorted protein in there is good for you. Tastes pretty good, too.

*Whiskey. Carry TWO canteens. One full of water and one full of bourbon. Drink the water when you're thirsty and sip the bourbon around the campfire at night.

That's MY humble advice about backpacking.

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