Tag Archives: Backpacking Food

Walking today – Craigellachie Aviemore

With the weather forecast for the day being reasonably good, I decided not to waste any time driving but set off to Craigellachie National Nature Reserve – with a plan to go up onto the ridge and walk along the top.

The weather was great and relatively warm (for January in the Cairngorms), I did not need my gloves, hat or jumper nor did I need to zip my coat up until I got out into the wind on the exposed ridge and summits. One thing I did have on though was the new Helly Hansen Lifa Dry base layer Diana bought me – and it was excellent, it kept me warm, was comfortable to wear and did not absorb any sweat when I was warm so when I did need the insulation on the top, it worked.



Have you ever wondered who puts the rock steps in the footpaths? Well I met two of them today.



Rather than get my stove out to make a coffee, I took hot water in a thermal mug, for the first stop. I had a number Octagon Technology emails and texts to deal with – if there is one problem with the titanium mug I normally use is that on a longer break, like this one, the drink would get cold too quickly. But not when using a thermal mug. I had packed it for this trip having recently read a blog of a backpacker who used one to keep water hot for his late night hot chocolate. He boiled the water when he made his evening meal so it meant he could pack his stove and pots away for the night and still have a hot drink later. I bought my thermal mug a number of years ago but it has had little use but I am going to try it out on this trip and if it works out I may pack it for subsequent trips.




Lunch was soup and crackers. I really like the “Squeeze and Stir” tomato soup but I have found it difficult to stir in and dissolve all the paste when I have been making it for lunch when walking and backpacking. I tend to use cup-a-soups which are really easy to make on the trail. But today I had a thermal mug. I put the paste in the mug and half filled it with boiling water. Then making sure the lid was on firmly I vigorously shook it. After about a minute I topped the mug up with more boiling water and I had perfect tomato soup – and once I was finished no messy mug to clean up, I just put the lid back on and packed it away.

click on the above image for a larger version

Walking and Camping Photos The Viking Way

It has been an great weekend for the weather, I was sitting by the lake at the campsite until late last night and only needed to use my down sleeping bag as a quilt overnight a big difference from the Peak District trip last weekend.




I carried a tin of food rather than a dehydrated meal – the extra weight was worth it – tasty “Lamb Big Soup “




Backpacking Food – Old Man of Coniston

Lightweight Backpacking Food

Jeremy and I are planning to join some friends to wild camp in the Lake District this weekend. This is lightweight backpacking food for an overnight trip, going up at lunch time on Saturday and getting back to the car at about midday on Sunday. It is a 24 hour summer hike, in hopefully good weather and the menu reflects this.



Lunch – at Low Water Lake on the way up
Pasty (not shown as I will buy it in Coniston, before setting off)

Evening Meal
Tomato and Basil Soup
Mackerel in teriyaki sauce
3x crackers
2x Chinese puddings
Mint chocolate
Fresh coffee
Single Malt Whisky

2in1 coffee
Jaffa Cakes
Single Malt Whisky


Early morning tea and Jaffa Cakes – whilst still in my sleeping bag

Breakfast biscuits – with marmalade
Dried fruit
Cereal bar
Fresh coffee

We are planning to stop and brew tea on the walk down

Italian seeds
Dried cranberries – (not shown) – Jeremy and I are going to split a bag between us before we set off
Ginger oat cakes
Mints and boiled sweets
Glucose tablets

2x cereal bars (not shown) – these will go in my walking jacket pocket

Tea bags
Instant coffee
30ml dried milk
2in1 coffee
Fruit tea
50ml instant peach tea granules – dissolves in both hot and cold water

Salt and pepper
BBQ sauce (Jeremy is taking smoked sausage and he has promised me some of it)
3x Sugar (for energy if I need it, I do not usually take sugar in my drinks)
2x KFC hand wipes
3x tissues
Plastic bags to pack out the rubbish


the food packed ready for the hike.

Extra Food


Here is the extras I carried up, photographed at lunch time. The cranberries are in the plastic bag.

Camping in the Peak District pt2

I had just finished eating my dinner, whilst sitting outside, when there were a few raindrops. By the time I had got my gear inside the tent and had the door closed it was hailing hard.


I had per-packed food this evening, Salmon Moroccan style, with crackers and custard for dessert.


with a mug of tea as well – of course

The food was very good and I will be using these John West lunches on future backpacking trips. They weigh more than noodles but on wild camping trips I will not need to carry any water to rehydrate the meal so saving weight there.


the view from my tent after the hail

Backpacking food for a weekend

Although my plans for this weekend have been changed by the weather – I had already packed my backpacking food for the trip.

The original plan was to have lunch in Coniston and then walk up the Old Man of Coniston and find somewhere to camp out for the night. We would be back in Coniston for lunch on Sunday.

Backpacking food for a weekend - packed

Backpacking Food

This menu is for a short weekend and suits my appetite – you should consider your food needs and the terrain you are travelling through when planning your menus.

Trail snacks
Food for during the day. We were planning to stop and make a hot drink on the way up at Low Water.

  • Dried cranberries
  • High cocoa chocolate
  • Boiled sweets
  • 2 in 1 coffee sachet

Evening meal
It takes just over a litre of water to make up all the components of the backpacking food in the evening meal.

  • Cup a soup with crackers
  • Tin of tuna with tomato sauce and crackers (if I was hungry I can eat these on the trail)
  • Mug noodles with spiced seed sprinkles
  • Chinese hot sesame dessert
  • Cappuccino

Tea and biscuits in bed first.

  • Breakfast biscuits and jam
  • Crackers and marmalade
  • Dried fruit
  • Fresh ground coffee (this is not shown in the photo – I carry it in a small Nalgene pot)


  • Black coffee sachet
  • Hot chocolate sachet
  • Sugar packets
  • Chrysanthemum honey tea – can be drunk hot or cold
  • Packet of tissue, hand wipe and rubbish bag
  • Backpacking brew kit – tea for the weekend

Backpacking food for a weekend - packed

backpacking food packed – the brew kit is not in this bag – the cranberries go in my pocket

I was planning to carry my Travel Tap bottle and a 1l roll up Platypus bottle. At the start of the walk I would have about 300ml in the Platypus – and the plan was to fill all my bottles using the Travel Tap at Low Water before continuing up to the summit. This should be enough water for the wild camp. On the way down I would collect some more water if required.

Wild camping water

Annotated Kit Photograph


1 Aluminium foil wind shield – wraps in close around the stove for really windy weather
2 Stove board/stand – it protects the grass and makes a stable base for the stove.
3 Half aluminium wind shield – I bought a wind shield, cut it in half and removed a panel to make it fit better around this stove and mug
4 Vargo Triad XE Alcohol / Fuel Tab Titanium Stove with a copper mug support
5 MSR Titanium mug – mug and cooking pot
6 Aluminium lid for the mug
7 & 8 Small Beaker with lid – second mug when the titanium mug is being used as a pot. The lid makes it a useful storage jar and it is just big enough to rehydrate a 65g pack of noodles in.
9 Small Brew Kit
10 Army style tin opener
11 25ml bottle of dried milk
12 Refillable gas lighter – it has a stronger flame than a disposable lighter
13 2x fuel tablets – emergency fuel
14 Methylated spirits- in a clearly marked bottle – packed in a ziplock bag to protect the other equipment from leaks.
15 Washing up and Hygiene
- Alcohol hand cleaner – hygiene is essential when camp cooking
- 20ml Multi-purpose bio-degradable soap – for washing up, cleaning clothes or person. I decant some into a shampoo bottle that I got from a hotel
- 1/4 Pot sponge
- Hi absorbent cloth – for drying up
- Kitchen cloth
16 Plastic Cutting board – this is made from a plastic wall tile cut in half – 5cms x 12cms. Some kind of chopping board is often overlooked, having something to cut on saves other bits of kit, lids or plates getting damaged. I have several of these tiles in my camp box when one gets too badly scratched up I will replace it.
17 Victorinox Camper SAK – cooking knife, tin and bottle opener as well as an all round camp tool.
18 Paper towels in a small ziplock bag
19 Small LMF spork – this is a double ended utensil with a real fork at one end and a real spoon at the other. A true spork is not very good at getting the last drops of gravy out of a bowl or for hooking up a forkful of noodles.
20 Camp folding spoon and knife
21 Three section spice pot/shaker
22 GSI pot lifter
23 LMF ferro rod and striker
24 Spare gas lighter
25 1oz Single Malt Whisky
26 Stuff sack that holds most of this equipment
27 1l roll up water bottle with sports top for easy pouring
28 Selection of small pots and bottles to carry, dried milk, peanut butter etc
29 Coffee maker/tea strainer
30 Air tight canister for fresh coffee
31 600ml bowl with a clip on lid – this is large enough for the meals I make, but it also serves as a container for transporting more fragile food whilst walking.
32 1m square lightweight tarp – for putting on the ground and making a clean cooking area

Not shown in the photograph

  • Tea bags and sugar packets in the brew kit
  • 58 Pattern British Army water bottle
  • Plastic food bags with wire ties used both for food storage and for packing rubbish out

Be Prepared!

I want to get plenty of overnight backpacking trips in the year, as practice for some future longer trips – The Speyside Way this summer and the Southern Upland Way summer 2013.

So whilst I have been sorting out the food this week for a trip with Jeremy next weekend I have put together a pack of food for a short solo overnighter, so if I decide to go at the last minute the food will be ready.

As I think the food pack will spend several weeks on the shelf the food had to have a good storage life – so no sausage or salami and the crackers have been double wrapped in cling film.


Trail Food
Spice and fruit oat cakes, white coffee and dried fruit and nuts

Tuna in tomato and onion sauce, crackers, packet of noodles, tomato soup, sesame dessert, apple flakes, tea.

Hot Chocolate and biscuits

Tea and biscuits
Breakfast biscuits and portion of jam, 2x cereal bars, tea

Trail Food
Honey Chrysanthemum Tea and oat cakes and jam

Bag of Aldi chocolate buttons

The individual meals are packed in small ziplock bags and then these are packed in a larger ziplock bag.

The only things I need to add to this will be the tea bags and dried milk in my small brewkit – and it is ready to go.


  • 1x Indian spiced tea bag
  • 5x tea bags
  • 3x sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 20ml dried milk
  • 1x 500mg paracetamol tablet
  • 1x indigestion tablet
  • small refillable gas lighter - it gives a stronger flame compared to a disposable lighter

The case is an mp3 case bought at a pound shop.

I have added an “army style” can opener to this pouch – as I have removed the Bantam SAK from my backpacking kitchen, so there is no longer a tin opener in the stuff sack.

I have been finishing this post, whilst waiting to go to a supplier to look at their Cloud Computing solutions, and looking out of the window here the weather is grey, wet and overcast so the above image may well be today’s “Photo of the Day”!

Trying new backpacking food

Richard bought some different backpacking food to try out – we did not take it with us this weekend, just in case we didn’t like it. So I tried it for tea this evening.


The food comes in a sturdy pouch, that will stand up and has notches for easy opening. You can cook it in a pot or in the bag and, if you pack a microwave you could use that.

I cooked mine in the microwave. Both Jeremy and I liked it. It was a good taste without being spicy.


There was a good balance of lentils and beans to sauce. The 300g portion is a good size serving after a day’s walking, some crackers would soak up the sauce, or depending on your appetite noodles or rice.

Following this test we are planing to use these in future.



Backpacking Food

I am backpacking this weekend with two friends – it is a try out hike before we go on a planned wild camp trip to the Lake District next month. It is only a short walk with an overnight stay so we need an evening meal and breakfast.

So it is noodles with smoked sausage and chocolate chip cake and custard for dinner, cereal bars, crackers and jam with fresh brewed coffee for breakfast.