Exercising 10+ hours a day burns a lot of calories. Hiking the John Muir Trail, I lost about 2/3 pounds of body weight per day. I lost 15 lbs over 21 days. This was while eating 2000-2500 calories per day.
I need to replace this energy, and food weighs 1.5 to 2 lbs per day. Needing to maximize calories per ounce of food, I eat mostly dehydrated / freeze-dried food.
Standard fare is two instant oatmeal packets with freeze dried fruit added. Alternate breakfasts include options like milk powder Carnation Instant Breakfast with cold cereal added. Always with (instant) coffee.
I don’t eat a proper lunch. I graze on snacks from breakfast until dinner.
Typically dehydrated food in a bag. This won’t be available everywhere, and I will switch to pasta, instant mashed potatoes, etc, depending on availability. I often fortify the meal by adding freeze dried veggies for nutrients as well as olive oil for fat/calories.
Some wilderness areas require bear canister use. My Bearikade canister can hold about 6 days of food.
In places without canister requirements there is still the threat of rodents, raccoons, and bears. This is how I carry food without a canister:
Food Resupply is a combination of store shopping and mailing ahead. Yogi’s Pacific Crest Trail Handbook includes a comprehensive list of PCT resupply options.
Photo is my resupply at Muir Trail Ranch, 2017.
Nobody wants to have a nice, cool refreshing drink of water, and then pay for it with weeks of projectile diarrhea. People can get giardia and other diseases from drinking unfiltered water. I treat my water unless I can see it bubbling straight out of the earth i.e. dirt+rock filtered from a spring. I typically use chemical treatment.
On the PCT there are some nasty water sources including horse troughs and water tanks that have dead chipmunks/squirrels floating around that got trapped trying to get a drink. So I want more than just chemical treatment.
I’m going with the Sawyer Squeeze. Squeeze dirty water through one end, and clean water shoots out the other.
The Zpacks Duplex is the best shelter for me. I’ve slept at least 40 nights in it. It is lightweight, roomy, enclosed for bug protection, and is robust against the wind. It accepts my hiking stick as one support, and I carry a collapsable tent pole for the other side. I also carry stakes and a sheet of Tvvek to serve as a ground cloth. The Duplex weighs just 19 oz on its own. With stakes, pole, and groundcloth, the total shelter weighs 28 oz.
The iPhone has a great camera, but the sensor won’t do well in lower light conditions. I want a bigger sensor for lower light. I’ll be carrying the Sony A6300 with Zeiss 16-70mm lens. For wide open spaces I also have a 10-18mm wide angle lens, which makes sense in Sierras and other expansive landscapes.
Electronics and Communication
Wool top, Arc’teryx Lefroy pants (best pants ever), Salomon Ultra 3 shoes, Dirty Girl gaiters to keep rocks and grit out of my shoes
Katabatic 30 degrees Palisade quilt, Thermarest XTherm sleeping pad, and Sea to Summit inflatable pillow (luxury item).
While most sleeping bags ratings are the minimal survival rating, the Katabatic quilt is true to its rating. It is comfortable to its rated 30 degrees. I’ve also taken things below 30 with extra measures, such as sleeping in my jacket.
I carry everything in an Zpacks Arc Haul. It carries comfortably up to 35 lbs, and weighs only 25 oz!