Packing light back in the day

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balzaccom

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For our trip to Africa, we tried to find a few books to read. There were a couple that were really good, including "A Primate's Memoir" by Robert Sapolsky, and "Affluence without Abundance" by James Suzman. Both excellent.

But we also read that classic African adventure novel of the late 1800's, "King Solomon's Mines" by Rider Haggard. It was not excellent, but it did capture some of the colonial perceptions of the British Empire back then. It wasn't a pretty picture. But in the middle of the book, the heroes undertake a long cross-country hike that made us think of backpacking. Except they had a slightly different take on ultralight. In the book, five men start out on the journey cross the desert, each one carrying a load of forty pounds.

Here's the packing list for the group--described as traveling light!

3 express rifles and 200 rounds of ammunition.

2 Winchester rifles and 200 rounds

3 colt revolvers and 60 rounds

5 one gallon water bottles

5 blankets

25 pounds of Biltong (like jerky)

10 pounds mixed beads for trade a selection of medicines and surgical instruments

Knives, compass, matches, pocket filter, tobacco, a trowel and a bottle of brandy

Times have changed...
 

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Jackson

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I can't imagine how not great I'd feel after consuming nothing but jerky, brandy, and water on a multi-day backpacking trip!
 

Jackson

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I mean, I pretty much do that on every backpacking trip :)
Given your recent accomplishments on the CDT and the RIB, maybe I should make some changes to my on-trail nutrition plan.
 

LarryBoy

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Given your recent accomplishments on the CDT and the RIB, maybe I should make some changes to my on-trail nutrition plan.
Au contraire, I eat like garbage on-trail and absolutely nobody should emulate me. However, I discovered on the RIB that the key to avoid massive weight loss (I ended up chugging straight olive oil by the end of the CDT because I was so starved for calories) is peanut butter. I ate about half a pound a day on the RIB and that really helped abate the hiker hunger.
 

CodyL

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@LarryBoy I agree completely about Peanut Butter and Junk food. I remember reading an article a while back that Snickers are the best food to consume. Although I don't eat much junk food at home, on backpacking trips I will eat at least 3 Snickers and 3 bags of Peanut M&Ms per day. They are light and they have around 250 calories each with a good balance of high carb and high fat for fast energy. I'll add the link if I can find it.
 

Jackson

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Au contraire, I eat like garbage on-trail and absolutely nobody should emulate me. However, I discovered on the RIB that the key to avoid massive weight loss (I ended up chugging straight olive oil by the end of the CDT because I was so starved for calories) is peanut butter. I ate about half a pound a day on the RIB and that really helped abate the hiker hunger.
I usually just nail the Pop-Tarts and Clif bars until night when I eat the big multi-serving Mountain House. Maybe a pouches of apple sauce to keep my insides working. Doing olive oil shots sounds like fun though. Haha.
 

LarryBoy

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@LarryBoy I agree completely about Peanut Butter and Junk food. I remember reading an article a while back that Snickers are the best food to consume. Although I don't eat much junk food at home, on backpacking trips I will eat at least 3 Snickers and 3 bags of Peanut M&Ms per day. They are light and they have around 250 calories each with a good balance of high carb and high fat for fast energy. I'll add the link if I can find it.
You know what sucks though? Snickers used to be 280 calories until 2014, when they downsized the bars. Of course, that downsizing was not accompanied by a price reduction :( Completely screwed with my calorie math.
 

LarryBoy

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I usually just nail the Pop-Tarts and Clif bars until night when I eat the big multi-serving Mountain House. Maybe a pouches of apple sauce to keep my insides working. Doing olive oil shots sounds like fun though. Haha.
My last pop tart was July 6, 2013. My last day on the AT. I ate 2 packets of pop tarts every day for 4 months straight on trail. I never liked them to begin with, but by the end, I despised them. Halfway through my last packet of pop-tarts, I puked, and have never eaten one since.
 

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b.stark

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I really enjoy reading journals or at least good books about adventurers/explorers of times past. Their gear lists are often very fascinating. For some reason I really enjoy reading of Arctic and Antarctic expeditions, and their gear lists are pretty crazy to read. Their journeys were in no way easy. Since I live along their route, I've read plenty about the Lewis and Clark expedition also (occasionally peck away at their journals, which are quite hard to read) and that's a pretty interesting one too (Stephen Ambrose's book on the expedition is a good read). And on a lot of these journeys of old, it's interesting to read what they started out with vs what they kept/had at the end.
 

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