Old 09-02-20, 11:06 AM
Tourist in MSN
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madison, WI
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Bikes: 1961 Ideor, 1966 Perfekt 3 Speed AB Hub, 1994 Bridgestone MB-6, 2006 Airnimal Joey, 2009 Thorn Sherpa, 2013 Thorn Nomad MkII, 2015 VO Pass Hunter, 2017 Lynskey Backroad, 2017 Raleigh Gran Prix, 1980s Bianchi Mixte on a trainer. Others are now gone.

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Originally Posted by boomhauer
Sorry to be off-topic.....but I'm impressed as hell that you packed 2 weeks worth of food. Can you briefly explain what you ate for two weeks? I'd like to remotely camp for a couple weeks on my bike but I can't seem to figure out how to pack enough food.
Photo of my bike was from a trip in Iceland, but I carried a lot of food from USA to Iceland since I did not know what I could buy there. I think they had a 3kg limit on importing duty free food plus a few other restrictions that I complied with. If I recall correctly, they had a no egg product rule, I did not bring powdered eggs on that trip.

The photo of the bike showed a full Ortlieb 31 liter Rack Pack on top of the rear panniers and a blue dry bag strapped on between that Rack Pack and the seatpost. The food pretty much filled both of those bags. When the photo was taken, that was four days after I left Reykjavik, thus I had already eaten three to four days of food.

I included photos from some other trips here too.

Almost every breakfast is the same, I have trouble with high carb diets and the standard camping fare for camping breakfasts is hot cereal, which is too carb heavy for me. Mountain House makes a breakfast called Breakfast Skillet, available in 1 or 2 serving packets and also available in 10 serving cans (EDIT: see note below, these cans are no longer sold in 10 serving cans) . It is very low carb. I buy the cans and before I get on the bike, I separate that can into 10 ziplocks. It is hard to pack separate servings, you have to work at it a bit because there are large light density clumps that rise to the top in the can, smaller denser bits are lower in the can, you have to spend several minutes if you want to get each baggie more uniform. For more calories, I also add one packet of instant hot cereal. Once the can is opened, not sure how long it lasts, but I do not save part of a can for a future trip so sometimes I need some other meals. Those other meals are hot cereal packets to have as a breakfast with some dried fruit.

And a couple cups of instant coffee.

The Breakfast Skillet with one instant hot cereal packet mixed into it is in the photo below.

Since Covid, the cans of Breakfast Skillet have been unavailable from Amazon, but pre-Covid it usually cost somewhere between $25 and $35 per can of 10 servings. With a 30 year shelf life I buy only when on sale and then stock up.

EDIT - DEC 2020, Mountain House cans of Breakfast Skillet used to contain about 25 ounces of dry weight food, but now are 15 oz at the same or higher price, I do not plan to buy any more of this.

The hot cereal I usually buy to mix in the above is the unflavored variety of this:

The flavored varieties like Maple have a lot of sugars that I try to avoid, I have trouble with too much sugar.

If I bring hot cereal to eat with dried fruit, I bring this.


Usually some form of meat and cheese on flat bread or tortilla or some heavy dense sort of bread that does not collapse if you pack it in a bag. When I eat fast food near home, I often ask for extra packets of mayo and accumulate that in the fridge until I have a trip. Usually have one mayo packet per day with my meat and cheese sandwiches. On average I budget 4 oz meat and 2 oz cheese for a lunch if I have hard salami or summer sausage.

Foreign countries it is very hard to buy something like Summer Sausage, but Summer Sausage is readily available in USA. Needs no refrigeration until opened, and I usually avoid camping in hot weather so I will use summer sausage for a few days after opening.

Last summer in Canada, I had difficulty finding anything like Summer Sausage, when I finally found some it was quite expensive.

Cans of ham or chicken were much cheaper and I occasionally had a can of ham for my lunch sandwiches. Photo was from one of my eggs and ham breakfasts, but I also had this ham for lunch occasionally.

I made the mistake of buying lunch size packet of sliced ham to carry, that was a mistake, a lot of liquid dripped out of the ham packet and made a mess of things, I no longer buy packets of sliced lunch meat ham.

With 4 oz meat, 2 oz cheese, add in several oz of snacks and some bread or tortillas and lunches can be heavier and more volume than the suppers plus breakfasts.

When traveling near home I get something like this and split it up into smaller zip lock bags, one per day. I might throw some extra M&Ms into that too, 2 to 3 oz per day.

I usually try to carry one protein bar per day, athletic trainers will tell you to have some protein within 45 minutes after your workout for faster muscle recovery. I often forget to have my protein bar after a hard ride, but I still bring enough for one a day.

Foreign countries, try to figure out what to bring, I always want something to nibble on during the day. But generally rely on what I can buy local after I arrive for snack foods.

Rather dull. Almost always one pot meals, but pasta is often a two pot meal. Generally one out of three meals is a pasta meal, the others are also one pot meals and almost always based on Bear Creek soup packets.

Pasta and spaghetti sauce. The sauce is McCormick brand powdered mix, add tomato paste or sauce and water. Usually bring 4.5 to 5.5 oz dry weight per meal for pasta noodles, mix up one half of the McCormick sauce packet for a meal. And usually add some form of meat for protein, 5 oz can of chicken, 2 oz Spam packet, or something like that.

Sometimes I get lazy, make the noodles and then heat the sauce, but sometimes I move the two pots back and forth to the stove to keep them both hot while the noodles are cooking like in the photo.

I also carry a 3 oz bottle of olive oil, seasoning, etc. The little red bottle above is hot sauce. And sometimes carry a few bricks of Ramen. If I feel that I need more calories, I can throw a half brick into my one pot meal and get some extra calories.

Bear Creek makes these soup packets that are supposed to be added to 8 cups of water. I only use 6 cups of water per packet, not the full 8 cups they specify. Some meals get a bit thick and require care to avoid burning on the pot when I make them thicker, for those I might add a bit of water while cooking. Some also require something else, like their chili also needs tomato paste.

I usually split Bear Creek packets into thirds (make three meals out of it) but sometimes I might split them into halves instead of thirds if I had a tough day. These meals are a little too heavy in sodium in my opinion, but I just avoid adding salt to my other meals to compensate.

Note the chili also needs tomato paste, or in the case of Iceland where they had little cans of Tomato Puree.

And of course, when carrying your supplies for weeks, you buy the dehydrated stuff.

This is a lot of volume and a lot of weight to carry. So, if you plan a long trip where you can't re-supply, it might be a good idea to estimate your food weight before you get too deep into your trip planning, just in case you find you needed more volume than you had available. In the photo of my bike, I brought the blue dry bag just in case I might need more volume since I was buying my food in Iceland and I had no idea what would be available. I did not plan to carry extra food in that dry bag, but after the trip to the grocery store and then re-organizing all my food at the Hostel kitchen, I realized that I had a lot more volume than I had anticipated.

If you have a calorie deficit during a couple weeks, it won't kill you. But on a longer trip it might be a good idea to count up your calories to make sure you bring enough.

And when your trip is over, ... this photo was from a kayaking trip, not a cycling trip.

I hope you put this to use, I spent a lot of time writing this up so I hope the time was not wasted.

Last edited by Tourist in MSN; 05-28-22 at 07:07 AM.
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