Nutrition

If you’re out adventuring in cold weather, you need extra calories to feed the internal furnace of body heat production. To help  you meet this need—and find the most calories contained in a single energy bar wrapper—here are three high-calorie energy bars to add to the list I first put together back in 2010. First,…

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You know how, when you hear people talk about food, you get hungry? You start to salivate, maybe your stomach begins to growl, and your attention wanders from whatever you’re doing to your next fantasy meal. That’s exactly what happened to this magazine’s editorial team when we dug into the pages of Real Trail Meals,…

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Part of an ongoing series on Northeast-based gear companies. I first profiled Good To-Go last February, back when the small, Maine-based producer of dehydrated meals offered just four options, including one of the best-tasting dehydrated meal options (Thai Curry) I have ever tried. Now the company has expanded its offerings to include six new dishes, each of which hews closely to…

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Few things pack as much nutritional and go-power punch as seeds. Loaded with fat, carbs, and protein, they provide sustained energy for minimal weight and should be considered any time you’re looking for maximum calories per ounce of food. But many popular seeds (chia, poppy, hemp, etc.) are also tiny and hard to eat on the trail, which…

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Hold a fresh apple in one hand and a dehydrated version in the other, and you won’t need long to decide which you’d rather carry in your pack. Dehydrating your own food is a lightweight, inexpensive, and easy way to prepare a varied menu, from snacks to full meals, for your next backpacking trip. You…

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If Willy Wonka were a hiker, imagine what kind of backcountry food he might dream up. Self-contained meals in edible packages? Dissolvable, single-serve coffee balls? Those fantastical-sounding products soon could be a reality. Several companies are developing packaging that eliminates waste—a possible boon for backpackers seeking lightweight, eco-conscious products. “Sustainable design that is both smart…

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Yuck. One bad ingredient can ruin the mix. Something happens to high-calorie trail snacks when you mix them all together. More often than not, the result is far less appetizing than the sum of its flavors. “Trail mix” is a description given to a broad collection of hiking snack mixtures. They typically include some combination…

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Think you know which foods give you the most calories per ounce? So did I. Turns out I was wrong. Sort of. I’m talking about nuts, which provide an exceptional number of calories per ounce. As I’ve written about before, pecans and macadamia nuts contain the most energy per ounce (200 calories), followed by Brazil…

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Coffee is good. Brain-splitting headaches are bad. If you’re a backpacking caffeine addict like me—or you simply enjoy the occasional backcountry brew—you’ll need the tools to produce a cup or three of this headache-staving, performance-enhancing, deliciously stimulating beverage. Here are your backcountry coffee options, rated for weight, quality of brew, and convenience. Instant opportunities It’s…

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Astronauts select specially formulated foods that meet their nutritional needs and hold up to the rigors of space travel. Their food is nutritionally balanced and easy to store, consume, and digest. Energy bars also come in specialized formulas, giving hikers—and other athletes—access to their own version of space food. Energy bars are portable, easily digestible,…

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