Camp Kitchen

Photograph by Jerry and Marcy Monkman. A few simple tricks can eliminate many small inconveniences of winter hiking. Designate specific jacket pockets for your hat and gloves so you can easily keep track of them. Keep an energy bar in a pocket close to your body to avoid breaking your teeth on a frozen, rock-hard…

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Winter camping has long enticed me into the frosty backcountry. The landscape is beautiful, a world at rest beneath a glittering blanket of snow. Plus, two major hassles of summer—crowds and blood-sucking insects—are nowhere to be found. But for me, the greatest reward of winter camping transcends these things. It’s the deep satisfaction of taking…

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It’s hard to sleep well when you’re cold. A few simple techniques can make all the difference. You need fuel to keep your furnace burning all night. In case you wake up chilled, have a quick energy, high-calorie snack at the ready for a middle-of-the-night refuel.  Use a thick, full-length sleeping pad; what works in…

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My canister stove is simple and convenient to operate, and has long been my go-to three-season option. But it sucks in the winter or any time temperatures start dropping below freezing, when they work poorly to not at all. Why? Why, stove, why??? Photo: Michael R Perry/Flickr Commons It boils down to some basic chemistry…

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Two companies now offer energy bars that feature a chirpy and unusual ingredient: crickets. Two small start-ups—Utah-based Chapul and Brooklyn-based Exo—both seek to capitalize on the health and environmental benefits of cricket power. Specifically, crickets (and insects in general) are an exceptionally rich source of protein. Per the Exo web site, dried crickets are 69…

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Two years ago I highlighted Pat’s Backcountry Beverages, which at the time was developing the Holy Grail for backcountry beer enthusiasts. Now you can hold it in your hand. Two versions of beer concentrate are now available: 1919 Pale Rail, an amber brew featuring “a delicate blend of aromatic malts and Cascade hops” that “delivers…

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Three large black walnut trees stand in a perfect line, parallel to the side of a home in Wenham, Mass. An old rope swing dangles from a lofty branch. The owner says her kids sometimes bounce on the swing to dislodge walnuts from high above. Hundreds of the nuts litter the lawn. Russ Cohen kicks…

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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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When it comes to camp cooking, there are some camp cookware items and accessories you need—and plenty you don’t. The Essentials Pot lifter (if your pots don’t have handles) Cup or other drinking vessel (potentially your pot or water bottle) Lightweight eating utensil (fork, spoon, spork, chopsticks) Small knife Very useful, not absolutely necessary Small…

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When it comes to cooking in the backcountry, canister stoves—those that run on a compressed propane-butane blend—have been my go-to backpacking option for years. For me, their convenience and ease-of-use—attach stove, ignite, boil, simmer, done—more than outweighs the minor drawbacks of the canisters’ small additional weight and expense. These stoves do create one significant hassle, however….

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