Unlikely but Amazing Backpacking Foods

My new favorite is the cold hot chocolate protein shake. I mix a scoop of protein, a packet of hot chocolate mix and a tablespoon of Nido with a cup of cold water and some snow and shake it until its frothy. Its delicious, especially at the end of a long day!
Smores are easier than you think and a great source of calories, just don’t smash the ingredients; squashed marshmallows don’t roast well.
Rice pudding is easy to make from dry ingredients that pack well. It doesn’t take much cooking either. See the recipe at the end of this post.
Cereal and Milk: duh, all you need is water, powdered milk and your favorite cereal.
Fresh golden grahams cereal bars are next on my list. I haven’t tried this yet but why not? You just need marshmallows, Golden Grahams and butter. Heat it, mix in the cereal, and dump it into a ziplock to cool, voila! Now if only I could devise a way to make on-trail brownies…..

Start: Kennedy Hot Spring*
Camp: White Pass
Distance: 10.5 miles

I climbed all day today, slowly gaining 3,400′ over seven miles. It was hot and sunny for the first half as I walked up the White Chuck River valley, then it was rainy and cold as I climbed the snowy bowl to Red Pass. It was the first day I’d had to hike in the rain, and thankfully only about half the day was on snow. It felt longer and taller than the numbers show.
I began to see people for the first time in three days as I crested Red Pass. A friendly woman offered me a Snickers, which I promptly accepted, but besides that I was not thrilled to see any of the twenty or so people I passed. I was upset by the way they treated each other. I knew from half a mile away that they were city folks by the way they rushed, by the way they’d never be looking at you when you looked at them but you knew they’d seen you. By the way they’d meant to keep walking back to their car and to their city life without ever acknowledging your presence, just as much a surprise, just as much out of place there, deep in the wilderness where only bird and marmot congregate, as theirs. And although I would be okay with being ignored, it was the way that they talked down to and ignored each other that really got to me. “Haven’t you ever give backpacking by yourself?” a man said to a woman derisively while he looked at me. “How long has it been?” a girl my age asked a guy in her group, referring to the avalanche that wiped out the Kennedy Hot Spring camp and ranger station. He did not know. “Ten years? Five? Just two?” She goaded him, but he just shook his head.

On-Trail Rice Pudding Recipe
Ingredients:
1.5 cups milk (From powder)
.5 cup Minute® White Rice, uncooked
1/8 cup sugar
1/8 cup raisins

1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large eggs (From powder)
.5 teaspoon vanilla
ground cinnamon (optional)
Directions:
1. Prepare milk and eggs from powder. Combine the milk, rice, sugar, raisins and salt in your pot. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Beat eggs and vanilla lightly in a ziplock. Stir small amount of hot mixture into eggs. Stirring constantly, slowly pour egg mixture back into hot mixture. Stirring constantly, cook on low heat 1 minute until thickened. DO NOT BOIL.
3. Remove from heat. Let stand 30 minutes. If desired, sprinkle with cinnamon. Serve warm.

*The camp, toilet and bridge at Kennedy Hot Spring has been decimated. I was told today that it was wiped out by an avalanche. Additionally, the hot spring is small, mucky, and just lukewarm (maybe 90°F) so in essence it is unsoakable. Don’t go down here for a soak. The White Chuck Road is the better of the two routes of you do go, although the switchbacks at the bottom have fallen into the river. Look for the new route marked with pink flagging tape. The Kennedy Ridge Trail, north of here, also leads down to the Spring, but it’s rife with down trees.

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