How to Eat Like a Week-Long Hiker

I saw this picture pop up on my Google + feed this morning (whoa, you use Google +? Yup. Still not entirely sure why). You can click through for a larger size of the image, and be sure to visit the EMS website.

How-to-Eat-Like-A-Through-HikerThis is a great diagram for sure, and pretty much everything in it is spot on. Most people are probably not thru-hiking, so I’m going to suggest some changes for anything from a weekend getaway to a week on the trail.

Chocolate Bar
The chocolate bar, while great for an emergency sure, would fit better where the energy bar is. The reason why I say this is because if you get a Snickers (being the optimal chocolate bar of choice), just the regular Snickers bar, it gives you as much energy as an energy bar and usually costs less. What I do is get a bag of the half size Snickers and eat those for my snacks instead of energy bars. And, of course, Snickers just usually taste a lot better than most energy bars.

Trail Mix & Dried Fruit
There’s nothing wrong with having trail mix on there, but rather than keeping it separate from the dried fruit why not mix those together? And to cut down on waste, especially for shorter hikes, consider putting your trail mix into an extra Nalgene or the like.

Peanut Butter and Bagels
This is something that I would definitely add to the list. Buy your peanut butter at whatever grocer you choose, then take some of it out and put it into a smaller tupperware container. Then get some whole wheat bagels and spread on for a good refueling lunch. It might seem basic, but when you’ve been hiking for several miles already during the day you’ll thank yourself for the simple option.

Breaking your fast is important to be sure, but they suggest some fairly elaborate options. For those like myself, I’m usually anxious to hit the trail in the morning. I would take the trail mix and dried fruit in my nalgene and hit the path as soon as possible. If you do want something a little more to eat, I’d go with oatmeal and mix in some dried fruit.

I can’t think of anything that I’d change to dinner honestly. Pasta and mac & cheese are both great options. A tip I would say for your evening is to bring an empty Platypus bladder in your pack so that when you roll into camp and you want to get some drinking water and cooking water that you’ll only need to take one trip – cooking water in your Platypus and drinking in your Nalgene. Works great, and cuts down on needless walking after you’ve hiked ten miles that day.

By James Kennedy

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