[pct-l] freeze-dried foods

David Thibault dthibaul07 at gmail.com
Fri Jan 1 11:07:59 CST 2010

I did maybe 1/2 my meals last year ahead of time.  Dehydrated them at home
and made them from ingredients I could find at local stores.  I never really
calculated how long it took but I did it over about a two month period.  I
actually found the sorting and divvying up of the food into resupply boxes
was the hard part.  It was tough to make the decisions on where to send a
package or not.  I think this would be easier now that I have done the
trail. I found packaging X number of Breakfasts, X number of dinners, X
number of lunches, X number of snacks, plus all the consumables into mail
drop packages was the real pain.

One thing I liked about Dicentra's site (www.onepanwonders.com) was a lot of
the meals she has require no dehydrator - just buying stuff and packaging it
up.  This is much easier that running the dehydrator for weeks at a time,
although I did that too.  I was able to get a nice variety in my meals using
this method as I made sure to never package more than 6 of any one meal.
This worked out well as I tired everything before going and only found one
meal I didn't like on the trail.  Weirdly, every time I had it I liked it
less than the time before -going from okay, to nothing special, to yuck, to
can I choke this down).

I found my local health food stores and Asian markets also had lots of great
items for prepackaged backpacking food.  I still like this method of doing
1/2 my resupply by mail but am thinking of modifying it to make my resupply
boxes much smaller and only sending myself an assortment of base ingredients
such as dried veggies, spice and sauce mixes, Nido, etc.  I am thinking of
just special stuff that is almost impossible to find in trail towns but I
have access to via stores at home or the web.  Then I would get the pastas,
rice, etc. as I go as I like being able to support the local stores along
the way.


> Subject: Re: [pct-l] freeze-dried foods
> To: nosirreeb <nosirreeb at yahoo.com>
> Cc: pct-l at mailman.backcountry.net
> Message-ID: <841110.62272.qm at web56701.mail.re3.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=iso-8859-1
> Doable, but a TON of freaking work indeed.? I did 60 (about 1/2 of the
> total number needed) dinners last year and it?quickly became apparent to me
> why thrus ressuply as they go. It took me about 3 full weekends, not
> including actually running the dehydrator and shopping (and I had a lot of
> stuff on hand as well) to put everything together.
> Maybe it might be better to do *some* home-made meals and intersperse it
> with the store-bought stuff?
> Another option is to do HUGE batches of things like stews etc and run them
> through the dehydrator... You can get 6-12 meals out of each run. Then mix
> them with instant rice, pasta, couscous etc...? I've done several different
> stews in the crock pot this winter, then dried them for next season's hikes
> (and trail angeling).
> Hope that helps!
> .
> "I dry my own vegetables at home AFTER cooking and chopping into small
> pieces with a food processor. - nosirreeb"
> "Have you done this for a thru-hike's worth of food & how much of a time
> commitment was that before the trail? - Paul"

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