Backpacking Skills, Planning and Food Prep

Indian Bar camp, Wonderland Trail, Mount Rainier National Park, Washington

Backpacking the High Divide, Olympic National Park, Washington

At the base of Forester Pass, John Muir Trail, California









I have been backpacking for three decades, and still on a rapid learning curve.  I’m lucky enough to live in a place where it’s possible to take a backpack to a remote high lake on the side of a 14,010-foot volcano or next to a glacier on a 7000-foot ridge without travelling more than 2 hours from my house.  In this amazing situation I am actively practicing my skills as much as my other responsibilities allow!

Recently I’ve had the opportunity to participate in the Mountaineers Club community, leading hikes and backpacks as well as sharing my passion for teaching and for backpacking by putting on classes for the club.  One of my classes, now in its second year, is Light and Healthy Backpack Food Made Simple, which focuses on trail food planning and prep approaches for the busy and cost-health conscious backpacker.    This class has challenged me to steadily develop my own skills and trail-food repertoire (right now I have mashed Red Garnet yams humming away in the dehydrator).

So on this page I will share tips, recipes, tools and other skills that I hope will be helpful to you as you progress along your own lifetime backpack skills journey.  Eat well and prosper!

5 comments on “Backpacking Skills, Planning and Food Prep

  1. Hello, I had question about dehydrating chicken and if you had a preference or favorite way of doing it? Thanks for any help….Archer

    • Hi Archer! My favorite method for dehydrating chicken is to purchase a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken (usually in or near the deli section of your grocery store), skin the chicken and rinse it with hot water, then pull it off the bones, shred and chop it into small pieces. These small pieces I then spread out onto the mesh tray of my Nesco dehydrator, and I dry it at 165 degrees overnight. The meat needs to be crispy dry before you package it up. Put a date on the package – you may not want to keep it longer than 6 months or so – the freezer allows you to keep it longer. I find that the rotisserie chickens from the deli (or other well seasoned pressure cooked chicken) retains an excellent flavor through the rehydration process.

      I hope this helps!

  2. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, another good option is canned light chicken. Canned chicken IS pressure cooked right in the can. I have pressure cooked chicken, dehydrated it and rehydrated it with good results.

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