6 responses

  1. eddie s
    March 17, 2014

    I went this route back in about 1980 along with many others, so it is nothing new. With leaving the Pots, Pans, Fuel, Fuel Canister, Funnel, Matches and Stove at home you do save a couple of pounds. And if you prepare your meals right you can eat with your fingers leaving spoons and sporks and what have you at home too again saving a couple of ounces. You have to be careful like a prior Phil Werner question about explosive reactions to foods last week. It was a good idea on nice warm spring and summer trips. But once it got cold or I was above 10,000 feet I wanted something warm. Your body wasted calories heating up a cold meal to digest it, which often led to some chills, that is why Ice Cream does not really cool you down, what it does is causes your body to heat up the ice cream to boy temperature in order to digest it, causing you to perspire a bit thereby feeling cooler with the moisture on your skin being air cooled. So I stopped eating cold meals above 8000 feet. We always found ourselves thinking about something warm and comforting for miles on some windy rainy days. My group of three would have killed for some Hot Chicken Noodle Soup at one camp. We tried to talk our “trail runner” into running the ten miles back to town and back again with some Instant soup, he declined. We voted him out of the group immediatly for not being a team player..Lols! Cold food in cold weather just did not fill the Bill for us or me. So since that time as most of my hiking was above 8,000 feet and even in the dead heat of summer a Hot meal was what I wanted before bed and in the Morning. Cold chow just did not work, not even in the Marine Corps, want a bunch of unhappy troops out in the field,,give them cold cereal or cold C-Rats or today MRE’s ( that why they developed heaters) Even the native Americans of Upper New York State and of the Mojave Desert of California understood the need for warm food. I do pick up Salad ingredients from wild plants along the way and make a Olive oil and Apple Cider Vinegar Salad sometimes but the main meal needs to be hot unless it is 70 and above, no rain, no snow, and no evening chill. I do dehydrate a lot of my veggies at home and create some interesting concoctions. You can even dehydrate hamburger to make a veggie and hamburger stew preparing the meal at home. In the “Old” days Moutain House even Dehydrated Pork Chops and some other meat slabs that they no longer do. I miss Kendall Mint Cakes. My favorite is deyhdrated Tomatoes which I dry to a crisp then run through a food chopper to make a powder so when I need some tomato, I just open up the jar and take out a few teaspoons and mix with a bit of water or olive oil. So for a spaghetti dinner on the trail I mix Tomato sauce, Hamburger and broken up pieces of Pasta with some dehydraded veggies in a freezer bag and pour into a pot with a bit of water and I have spaghetti for dinner.And as always it is nice to read something different and I may try one or two of the receipes provided but I’ll keep my Snowpeak Canister stove and Ti. pot with me for some warm food.

    • Kim Safdy
      March 17, 2014

      I agree that nothing beats eating a hot meal at higher elevations where it is often cold! Cooking at higher elevations does require more time to reconstitute hot meals, and with experience you just get used to waiting longer. Not everyone has the patience though, and when you need something quick, it is always good to have a few quick or cold water meals handy.

  2. Kevin O
    March 17, 2014

    Good Article Kim! I’ve gone stoveless for a long time and I’m actually surpised more people don’t do it!

    When the days are long my goal has always been to put in miles! Taking the time to cook, let alone adding the weight doesn’t appeal to me. Not to mention warm meals on days in the 90’s make me feel sick.

    This year I have introduced an esbit stove to my kit for cold months! I like hot tea in the morning and Mac & Cheese at night. With the longer nights, I don’t mind taking the time to cook.

    I checked out your site and I promise I’ll be making some purchases throughout the summer!

    • Kim Safdy
      March 17, 2014

      Glad you enjoyed the article, Kevin! The cold meals are especially refreshing when it is hot and humid outside.

  3. happy hiker
    March 17, 2014

    I usually prepare my backpacking foods using a dehydrator – longer shelf life and lighter in weight.

  4. John
    March 17, 2014

    I have let go do the idea of a hot breakfast over the years after getting tired of waking in the cool dawn and sitting around waiting for the hot meal while shivering. I now prefer to get moving immediately and stop for a uncooked breakfast when I am warmed up from hiking.

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