Backpacking isn't really my gig, but I was giving it a try as we received some great REI gear for wedding presents. We did a quick trip to the Hoist Lakes Trail in the Huron-Manistee National Forest in Alcona County. We went up on a beautiful warm sunny Friday afternoon.
I ended up packing 2 kinds of oatmeal - one with cinnamon, raisins, and a tiny bit of brown sugar and another with some PB2 defatted peanut butter powder that I had in the cupboard. I also packed some spicy bird seed snack mix which is a recipe from my favorite Protective Diet website, this is a mixture of puffed whole grains and oats baked crisp in a spicy coating, very filling and delicious.
My 85 year old friend Barb who I meditate with every Wednesday gave me some of her daughter's homemade granola which had oats, seeds, raisins, pistachios, and other assorted goodness in it. To that I added a box of raw cacao bits that I bought from Nature's Gift Organic Market in town. It is a new product of theirs, made by a Michigan company. You get a decent sized box of chunks of 100% pure raw organic cacao. I bought the 'trail mix' flavor which had some added raw sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Mixed that all up with Barb's daughter's granola.
Finally, I put together a dinner mixture from a bag of Harvest Grain blend from Trader Joe's which had couscous, lentils, orzo, and baby garbanzo beans. To that I added chopped up bits of dried mushrooms and sun dried tomatoes and a spice mixture of nutritional yeast, garlic powder, salt & pepper.
Oh, and the WINE, let's not forget the WINE! Sorry I don't have a picture, but my friend Lesley-Ann told me they make baby boxes of wine that I could sneak into the backpack. I picked up one Pinot Grigio and one Chardonnay. I am not a liquor drinker at all and Simon usually brings some single malt Scotch in a flask. Beer is pretty impractical, so I had my baby boxes of wine, they were perfect.
We arrived before our friends on Friday, so we hiked around a bit with our dog, Riley. Then we suited up to hike in to the campsite, which was about a mile and a half hike. We have a doggy backpack for Riley, so he had to pack in his own dog food, dish, and extra lead. So cute!!! We hiked in, found a nice site overlooking a little lake and set up camp. Our friends joined us a bit later and we built a nice big campfire and relaxed by the lake. I didn't even whine too much from the hiking with a fairly big pack, it felt good to get the exercise.
Stephen brought a little gas stove and pot, so we boiled water and heated our seasoned grain mixture with mushrooms and tomato. It was really tasty, but didn't really cook long enough so the garbanzos and lentils were a bit crunchy. But the baby boxes of wine made it all good!
The next morning we woke up to the sound of light rain, which quickly intensified. We sat in the tent with the dog hoping it would pass over, but after 2 hours of steady rain, we knew we would have to pack up in the rain and hike out in the rain (see drowned rat picture #3). We never did make our nice hearty oatmeal for breakfast. We had Barb's granola mix for breakfast as we had snacked on the spicy bird seed the day before. Oh well, I cooked up the oatmeal mixtures for breakfast during the week.
There you have it, a recap of my little backpacking adventure and the types of foods we packed to keep us fueled for the adventure. I enjoyed it, even with the rain, and will be happy to do it again in the future. I could possibly even do 2 nights without feeling too mucky. More than that would be pushing it!
See, it's easy to eat healthy plant based foods no matter where you are. It can be done my friends.