State: New Hampshire
Fan Topic by Brandon Holdren
One of the biggest questions I’ve been getting about my trip is:
“What do you eat on the road?”
Well, when I started this journey I had this idea in my head that I was only going to eat super healthy and no fast food or soda…
That idea quickly went out the window for two reasons:
- On the road you eat anything and everything you can get your hands on to keep that constant intake of energy coming in to keep yourself moving. To elaborate further, no matter how healthy you eat on the road, you will get certain cravings. For me my top cravings tend to be pizza, lemonade, Chinese, and a big nasty greasy burger from anywhere.
- People’s kindness often comes in the form of food which is not typically of the organic variety.
We are a human engine and food is our fuel, but the type of fuel can significantly impact the life of the engine, correct?
Yes! And this is why I stop at grocery stores and load up on good healthy foods. Specifically, high protein foods to keep my muscles going for 10-20 miles a day. So here is a rundown of all of my road food that I typically carry with me on the road.
Tuna packs – one of the two meats I carry with me. High in protein. Not in a can, so less weight. Great because it’s a meat I can carry with me and I know it won’t spoil. They come in different flavors too: Lemon Spice, Classic, Bacon Ranch, Buffalo, ect. You can do a lot with tuna on the road. You can add it to pasta, make sandwiches, or just eat it by itself. More often than not I make tuna rolls in a flour tortilla with some mayo packets from fast food restaurants (kinda boring I know, but after hiking all day and with the soreness seeping in, cooking doesn’t always happen).
Jerky – if I need to explain this, you might be a vegan. I now consider myself a Jerky connoisseur. Any brand I haven’t heard of, goes in the shopping cart. Currently, my two favorite brands are Vermont Beef Jerky Company’s Hickory Smoked, Jack Link’s (not just because I’m part Sasquatch) and Sweet Baby Ray’s. High in protein and delicious!
Nuts – another protein staple. Almonds, peanuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, ect. There is a reason they are in trail mixes. It’s because nuts cause you to be satiated (feel full) and provide a good amount of energy. My favorite are cashews and honey roasted peanuts.
Nature Valley Grain and Nut Bars – ya get yer grain and more nuts! These are great for the way you eat on the road, which is like a Hobbit. You snack throughout the day to keep a constant supply of energy coming into power your legs, especially when you’re walking 10-20 miles per day!
Fruits and Veggies – a necessity for a healthy diet. On the topic of cravings you get on the road, you also get ones for healthy food as well. For me, there’s nothing like a big juicy granny smith apple. Now of course, you can get dried fruit which is less weight, but the trade-off is the extra water you get from the juice. Therefore, I’m a nut for farmers markets. You get cheap fruit and veggies that you know exactly where they came from…locally. Food weight is one thing I never mind because it gets lighter over time…usually pretty fast when you eat like I do.
Flour Tortillas – great for wraps! They are the perfect for making sandwich wraps. They’re already flat so you can easily pack them in your backpack and they don’t squish. They also don’t mold easily, like most breads on the road. Keep’em sealed and dry and you can keep them for a couple of months. I know this because I have done so. Little stale, but still good. I typically make tuna and peanut butter wraps and no, not together.
Along with my road food, I also supplement my diet with anything edible I find in the wild!
So far I’ve got to eat fresh blueberries and raspberries. I’ve learned to identify Chaga – a parasitic birch fungus that is a super antioxidant and great in teas. I learned about the Fiddleheads (young ferns collected before they unroll and cooked like asparagus) in Maine.
A few fun and simple edible plants that you can try on your next camping trip:
Pine needle tea: take some pine needles or inner pine bark, throw it into some water, simmer rather than boil, and you’ve got a great tea that is super high in vitamin C. This can also be done with spruce, fir, and hemlock (the tree, not the deadly deadly poisonous flower).
Cattails – often referred to as the ‘supermarket of the swamp’, you can eat nearly every part of a cattail. Here is a link to on how you can prepare and eat cattails in multiple ways: http://tacticalintelligence.net/blog/how-to-eat-cattail.htm
Anyways, that’s what I’ve been eating on the road. If you have any road food suggestions or on the road recipes comment below or shoot me an email! 😀
Forever your friend,