Are you planning on going on a hike or a camping trip? It's essential to have a plan for your food intake when out in the wilderness: Aside from picking up an energy snack or a bottle of water, there is a lot to consider. Make sure to follow these guidelines to guarantee a safe and healthy meal experience on your next outdoor expedition.
1. Be Prepared Before You Go Outdoors
Any time you're going to be out in the wilderness, you have to expect the unexpected. If you're going camping overnight, bring at least two days worth of food if you're unsure what will be available in a given area. Bring a compass and a map of the place to know where you are and how to get back. You should also bring a first aid kit and wear appropriate clothing.
2. Learn about the Area before You Go Backpacking
Learn about where you're going. If you're hiking or camping in an area that you’re not familiar with, do some research before you go. Look up information on peaks and valleys to plan your trip, and bring along a map. Know how to find food if you need it while you're hiking, camping or backpacking. Keep in mind that many edible plants and berries are poisonous when eaten in excess. Only forage for food if you know what you're doing.
3. Pack Light
When planning your trip, you should decide what you need to survive and pack accordingly. You should still bring as little as you need. Don't bring too much food, or you'll wind up carrying it along on your trip. Pack light, and be sure to balance your food with the rest of your gear.
4. Bring Food That Keeps Well
If you're going to be hiking, camping or backpacking in an area with many wild animals, your food can be in danger of being stolen or damaged. Fruits and vegetables will attract animals and shouldn't be your only option, but they can be a good choice if need be. You should never leave food out in the open and should protect it as much as possible.
5. Plan Your Meals
Use your map to plan a route that takes you past food sources. You can always set up camp, cook dinner, eat and then pack up and move on. Many hikers and backpackers bring a can opener to open canned goods without a fire.
6. Bring Seasonings
In addition to bringing food that tastes good, you should also get seasonings to enhance your meals. It's important not to eat the same things every day, and you can spice up your meals with salt, pepper, hot sauce or anything else you enjoy.
7. Bring a Water Filter
Water is an essential part of any camping trip, so make sure to bring a water filter along with you. You can also bring water purification tablets if you come across a source of water that can't be filtered.
8. Pack a Cooler
Whether you're going camping overnight or taking a few hours to go hiking, you should bring a cooler. You can use it to keep your food cool, and it can double as a seat when the terrain makes it impossible to sit down.
9. Pack a Spork
A spork is a necessity when you're out in the wilderness. You can use it to eat and scoop things out of a pot or pan. Bring as many sporks on your trip so that everyone can have their utensils and a backup.
10. Pack a Water Container
Bring a water container with you. This can be a canteen or a water bottle, depending on your preferences. Make sure to pack enough water for everyone on your trip. If you plan to freeze your water bottle, bring enough for everyone's bottles, as you may need more than you would think.
Preparation is the best way to ensure a successful camping or hiking trip. If you pack light and follow the above guidelines, you'll be sure to have a great getaway.
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