View topic - What food do you take on a backcountry canoe trip?

It is currently July 21st, 2019, 1:45 am

All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: October 4th, 2017, 5:44 pm 
Offline

Joined: April 7th, 2010, 9:25 am
Posts: 66
So far I've always been well-fed on my trips, which has involved doing two round trips for each portage (and on occasion, three). Usually it's actually been the other people in my group who have insisted on steaks, kebabs, etc. But after the last trip where we actually had to portage a fu***ing heavy cooler and metal skewers for the meat, I'm done with that. For my next trip, I want to do something else.

I took a course with the great Mors Kochanski a while ago and on that trip, all I had on me where nuts, bars, and some veggies. But I don't want that. I'd like to enjoy my meals and have something warm. In my last trip, the best thing i had was a can of chilli soup that I brought in case of emergency. And damn, it was good!

I see at MEC there's a lot of dehydrated meals, some of them stuff you can find in restaurants (butter chicken, for example!). Are those any good? What do you guys think is best for someone who doesn't want to eat just bars and nuts but also doesn't want to carry a ton of frozen food in a cooler?

Oh, and fishing is out of the question as I'm not good at it :) That's my goal for 2018, to learn fishing.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 4th, 2017, 6:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: August 5th, 2013, 6:48 am
Posts: 161
You are going to hear this a lot: Get a dehydrator!
I happen to have a lot of ground venison which is perfect for having dried burger. Dried chicken breasts which has been shredded is my other meat. Dry or purchase an assortment of dried vegetables and fruits. When meal time comes these can be added to Hamburger Helpers or any rice dish. In the afternoon I often start rehydrating everything I plan to use in the evening meal. I like one pot meals so a liter bottle is all I need to put things in.

_________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/TheNorthwoodsman1


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 4th, 2017, 6:56 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: June 20th, 2001, 7:00 pm
Posts: 3449
Location: Toronto, Ontario Canada
sepandee wrote:
I see at MEC there's a lot of dehydrated meals, some of them stuff you can find in restaurants (butter chicken, for example!). Are those any good? What do you guys think is best for someone who doesn't want to eat just bars and nuts but also doesn't want to carry a ton of frozen food in a cooler?



If you want easy but reasonably tasty the current Meal In A Bag options are a good but somewhat expensive option. This summer I did a 46 day solo trip and had MIAB for 36 nights. Keep in mind that a "2 serving" MIAB really only feeds one hungry paddler and even with that you need to supplement with other stuff since these meals only run 500 - 700 calories per bag. Things like wraps/flatbreads are good as they keep well, don't weight too much and are high in calories. They are also multi-purpose, can be used with a dinner, or with cheese/sausage, jam or tinned fish/meat.

Backpackers Pantry, Mountain House and Alpine Aire are my preferred brands, the latter having improved quite a bit from the original versions of the 80's/90's. Personal opinion....avoid Harvest Foodworks, dehydrated not freeze-dried and thus require "cooking" rather than just boiling water.

The key to a good meal in a bag is timing, most should sit quite a bit longer than advertised, additional seasonings for some also improve the taste although in recent years manufacturers do a much better job in this area than back in the day when they were very bland with just a ton of added salt.

The other option are the myriad semi-prepared meals you can find in any grocery store.

I do enjoy cooking more complex meals when paddling, things that include some fresh and some packaged ingredients but I pretty much do this only for shorter trips with a (small) group where the effort is worthwhile.

_________________
"What else could I do? I had no trade so I became a peddler" - Lazarus Greenberg 1915


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 4th, 2017, 10:31 pm 
Offline

Joined: April 7th, 2010, 9:25 am
Posts: 66
Marten wrote:
You are going to hear this a lot: Get a dehydrator!
I happen to have a lot of ground venison which is perfect for having dried burger. Dried chicken breasts which has been shredded is my other meat. Dry or purchase an assortment of dried vegetables and fruits. When meal time comes these can be added to Hamburger Helpers or any rice dish. In the afternoon I often start rehydrating everything I plan to use in the evening meal. I like one pot meals so a liter bottle is all I need to put things in.

No, I'm not! I know people who use it, but it's not for me, especially if I'm going camping just once or twice a year. A friend of mine even uses it on a regular basis in his city life. But yeah, not for me.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 5th, 2017, 12:06 am 
Offline

Joined: March 23rd, 2006, 11:21 pm
Posts: 1076
Location: Burns Lake, BC
Resistance is futile.
Get a dehydrator and save yourself a lot of everything. (money, grief, time, weird stomach pains, toilet paper, I told ya so's, etc...)

Ready made meals are heavy and can be low in nutritional value. Nice and safe though because you know what you're getting.

Freeze dried is a different experience with every different meal. Certain foods and meals have their place here.
My favourites are precooked bacon and eggs for breakfast, grilled chicken or turkey and mashed potatoes for dinner, and chicken all by itself to supplement meals.

I'll never chance a new freeze dried meal on a big calorie day. I always go to my happy foods.

So back to the dehydrator... most of our backcountry dinners are the exact same things we're eating at home.
We know exactly what we're getting for taste and nutrition, save time and money because we make and eat this stuff anyway, and your body will thank you for maintaining your regular diet.

Exception to this rule is our first night's dinner which usually is steak and caesars salad.
This works for us.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 5th, 2017, 12:13 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: May 5th, 2015, 2:14 pm
Posts: 65
Location: London, ON
You should get a dehydrator
M


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 5th, 2017, 7:27 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: August 8th, 2017, 9:14 am
Posts: 774
How long do your trips tend to be? And are you able to select trips with less portaging?

I'll dig out some menus for our 5 day , 4 night trips. There are quite a few options for that sort of thing since things like cheese and dried salami keep fine over that period of time even in a hot canoe barrel in July. The 3 pack of Freybe brand salami from Costco is a staple, for example.

One of the things I like about canoeing is that I can bring a lot of luxuries that I cannot bring on a self-contained backpacking trip. As long as you keep the portaging to a minimum this is not a problem. For a 5 day, 4 night trip I have lots of routes that are deep in the backwoods and less than 1km total portaging.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 6th, 2017, 7:36 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: August 5th, 2013, 6:48 am
Posts: 161
OK, no desire to dehydrate. An alternative is to get out the credit card and go on-line. You can get your ingredients there if you choose. As has been pointed out the easy packages you just dump boiling water into do not have enough calories to sustain you on canoe trip. That is why I prefer to put together my own one pot meals and end up with a very wholesome meal. An extra for me is to add a pan of camp bread cooked in a covered fry pan with lid. If I want more calories at the end of a hard day it is time to use NIDI powdered milk and make up a pudding.

_________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/TheNorthwoodsman1


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 6th, 2017, 1:42 pm 
Offline

Joined: June 23rd, 2001, 7:00 pm
Posts: 3174
Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
As said before, walk the aisles of your Bulk Barn, Costc0 and local Metro etc. Lots of great food out there already prepared. Full drop in water curry meals, dehydrated veggies and fruites, TVP (textured Veg. Protein as a meat subsitute (takes on flavour of what is cooked with, and had the texture of ground beef, so throw in a a pck of knorr beef flavour and guess what you have?), dehydrated eggs, precooked bacon, prestuffed and dehydrated tortellin and ravioli, sauce mixes (their is a great alfredo sauce in a little package, just add water I think) etc.

_________________

Present: Slip, Slap and Slop, hide from the sun! Past: Get some colour in those cheeks! Paddle Naked!



Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 6th, 2017, 4:09 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: August 11th, 2002, 7:00 pm
Posts: 5491
Location: Sunny Wasaga Beach
You should get a dehydrator :D :thumbup:

_________________

Old canoeists never die---they just smell that way.



Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 7th, 2017, 9:31 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: April 22nd, 2003, 8:57 pm
Posts: 156
Location: Ottawa
I also use my dehydrator to make yogurt, dry herbs, tomatoes and other excess produce from our garden. It's not just for tripping food, ya know.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group