[pct-l] Bear Canisters & Weight Loss

Reinhold Metzger reinholdmetzger at cox.net
Wed Aug 13 04:16:29 CDT 2014

Lord, enlighten the masses for they know not what they are talking about.

Gaining or loosing weight while hiking has nothing to do with canisters.
It is plain and simple a matter of calories "IN" vs "CALORIES BURNED".
Come on guys, try to understand this....it ain't Rocket Science".

In other words, simplified so everybody can understand it,...more
calories in than burned, you gain weigh...more calories burned than in,
you loose weigh....that is it, nothing more, nothing less.

Therefore, whether you start loosing or gaining  weight on day one or
day ten is simply a matter of when you start burning more or less
calories than you are taking in.

The average, ordinary, daily diet delivers roughly 2,000 calories.
However, a backpacker hauling A$$$ 8-10 hours a day will burn
considerably more calories, more likely around 4,000+- calories.
So, unless his menu delivers the calories burned, he will loose weight.

For instance, on my JMT speed hikes I burn about 7,000-8,000 calories
per day but, to keep my pack weight to a minimum, my menu weighs only
about 2 lb per day and delivers only about 4,00-4,500 calories per day.
As a result I loose about 2 lb per day, starting day 1, or approximately
10 lb over the 5 days.

In thru-hiking, most hiker's heavy emphasis on UL results in menus that
do not deliver calories equal to calories burned.

One way to solve that problem, without increasing the food weight is
to incorporate more fat in your menu.
I know you vegetarians are giving me that "EVIL" look.

I know, fruits and veggies are good for you, but they are heavy and
low on calories per ounce.

In my opinion,..."FAT" is a thru-hikers best friend.
I know, I'm getting that "EVIL" look again from our Vegetarians.

But hey, do the math, protein and carbohydrates deliver about 110
calories/oz while fat delivers about 250 calories/oz.
That is why many long distance hikers, especially speed hikers like
Scott Williamson, usually carry some oil to add to their meals and beef
up the calories without beefing up the weight.
Besides, you will burn all that fat anyhow in addition to your own
body fat.

Macadamia nuts are a great way to incorporate fat into your menu.
I rely heavy on Macadamia nuts on my JMT speed hikes to beef up the
calories without beefing up the weight.
At 200 calories/oz you have to go to straight oil to beat that.
Another good thing about Macadamia nuts, they are not dry tasting like
most nuts therefore you don't need to drink a gallon of water when you
eat them.
Also, Macadamia nuts are high in Monounsaturated fat which is on of the
most benign fats and does not effect your cholesterol.

Some folks say that's the problem with JMT Reinhold...."TO MANY

JMT Reinhold
Your Macadamia nuts loving trail companion

Yogi wrote:
Katy is absolutely correct.

And............although it is fun to load up on calories in town, your body
cannot use all those calories, and you end up pooping it all out.  I had a
long conversation with Brenda Braaten about this.  Brenda is the Belden
Trail Angel, and she is a Registered Dietitian, has a Doctorate in
Nutrition, did her sabbatical research on thru-hiker food.  She convinced
me that when I get to town, I should have the giant burger, go back several
hours later for the fries and milkshake because the body cannot process it
all at once.  You'll just end up carrying 5 extra pounds out of
town..........inside your stomach.


  On Tue, Aug 12, 2014 at 6:55 PM, goslowgofar <goslowgofar at yahoo.com  <http://mailman.backcountry.net/mailman/listinfo/pct-l>> wrote:

>/  So, are you saying that PCT hikers don't lose any weight until after they
/>/  pick up the bear canisters at KM?  Hmmm.  Don't think that's accurate.  I
/>/  know that on the AT, where bear canisters aren't used, and food resupply
/>/  options are plentiful, hikers still lose weight.  That was definitely true
/>/  when I hiked it in '85...
/>/  I'd rather use a bear canister and protect the bears.  It's part of the
/>/  experience!
/>/  Katy
/>/  Ned said:
/>/  ________________________________
/>/  A little reflection on the use of Bear Canisters (BCs) by JMT vs. PCT thru
/>/  hikers and weight loss... I was wondering, with the requirement of BCs thru
/>/  some of the roughest sections of the Pacific Crest Trail (basically all of
/>/  the JMT), could it be so simple a statement as to say their food-space
/>/  limitations are the reason why PCT thru hikers lose so much weight? The JMT
/>/  thru hiker starts out with a BC, but they aren't that hungry at first, so
/>/  the BC works for them (at least for a while). The PCT thru hiker starts
/>/  using a BC after their first 30 or so days on-trail, certainly at the point
/>/  already where they are really hungry, then are limited with the volume of
/>/  food they can carry and must start a long-term food depreciation phase over
/>/  the toughest trail and snow of their trip! Is there any sense to this? BCs
/>/  are good for the bear, but not so good for the food-starving, long-distance
/>/  hiker!  So, I guess for the areas where BCs are required, it is best
/>/   to major carbo-load before going in or do these sections after several
/>/  weeks of packing in town food reserves, otherwise you're going to lose
/>/  weight!  For some, this could be a good thing (to lose weight), but for the
/>/  skinny people like me, I "bonk" pretty early without eating a ton of food
/>/  (after being on the trail for at least a week). So, a Bear Canister can be
/>/  a real food volume limiter and we can't do anything about it except bring
/>/  two canisters (which my son did when he flip-flopped the JMT a few years
/>/  ago)... Food for thought. (Hey, just sayin'!) Ned Tibbits, Director
/>/  Mountain Education, Inc.

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