Forum Index > Food & Grub > How many liters does a days worth of food take up?
Previous :: Next Topic  
Author Message
WannabeBackPacker
Member
Member


Joined: 24 Jul 2015
Posts: 11 | TRs

WannabeBackPacker
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 9:13 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
I'll be getting a pack in the near future after I get all my gear, but I was wondering, how do you account for your food? I've heard that you should at have at most 1.5 liters of space for 1 day (which would be around 1-1.5 lbs). Is this a good rule to go by?

Also, what's the max amount of days you should carry food for? Not really worded correctly, but was wondering if 5 days is the max you should carry or 7 (or 6)?

Last thing! lol. But do you just carry nalgene bottles/water bottles or also a water bladder? I was thinking about carrying two 1 liter bottles, would this be fine or would you carry the bladder as well?

thanks!
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
graffiti
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Oct 2011
Posts: 262 | TRs
Location: Olympia, WA
graffiti
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 9:48 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Quote:
I've heard that you should at have at most 1.5 liters of space for 1 day (which would be around 1-1.5 lbs). Is this a good rule to go by?

That depends on you, the type of food and how much you need to keep going while on the trail. While that's not a bad amount, you may need more. On average, I use way less. I suggest a couple of overnighters to start. Take extra food and see how much you go through when you exert yourself for a day.

Water is another variable. I take one liter and a filter (sawyer Squeeze) and in most places, that suffices. If you are going on a dry hike (no water available), obviously you'll take more. I seldom carry a bladder with me but there's almost always water where I end up. A lightweight bladder might be nice if you have to walk a ways to get water from your campsite.

--------------
And the meek shall inherit the Earth...um...if that's ok with you.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker
Member
Member


Joined: 24 Jul 2015
Posts: 11 | TRs

WannabeBackPacker
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 10:00 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
graffiti wrote:


That depends on you, the type of food and how much you need to keep going while on the trail. While that's not a bad amount, you may need more. On average, I use way less. I suggest a couple of overnighters to start. Take extra food and see how much you go through when you exert yourself for a day.

Water is another variable. I take one liter and a filter (sawyer Squeeze) and in most places, that suffices. If you are going on a dry hike (no water available), obviously you'll take more. I seldom carry a bladder with me but there's almost always water where I end up. A lightweight bladder might be nice if you have to walk a ways to get water from your campsite.

Thanks for the reply!

I'll try doing that! What's the max amount of food you should take? I know that carrying an extra days worth of food is the way to go, but normally do you only carry 5 days worth + an extra day?

Gotcha, thanks!
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker
Member
Member


Joined: 24 Jul 2015
Posts: 11 | TRs

WannabeBackPacker
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 11:10 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
And I know I asked this before, but wasn't really given an answer, but is this how you measure your hiking gear?:
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
graffiti
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Oct 2011
Posts: 262 | TRs
Location: Olympia, WA
graffiti
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 1:25 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker wrote:
What's the max amount of food you should take?

I normally take a couple of extra meals if I'm going to be out a while. For the most part, I take too much already so I generally will have plenty left over on a trip.

And by "extra meals" that could mean a couple of decent dehydrated meals or simply a half of a ziplock baggy of rice and some dried beef.

--------------
And the meek shall inherit the Earth...um...if that's ok with you.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
graffiti
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Oct 2011
Posts: 262 | TRs
Location: Olympia, WA
graffiti
  Top

Member
PostSat Jul 25, 2015 1:30 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker wrote:
but is this how you measure your hiking gear?

Sure. I suppose that would work. I guess I've never really "measured" anything. I've weighed it all about 500 times though.  hockeygrin.gif

I started with a 50 Liter pack which I still use when I have to carry winter gear but I'm down to a 25 Liter pack for spring/summer use. I can go 4 days with that easy enough. I like the smaller size because it makes me really think about and prioritize what I'm taking along.

I noticed in another thread you mentioned getting a 70 Liter. That would be fine but keep in mind you may tend to over-pack and end up with a very heavy pack. A pack that size could get to 50lbs real quick.

--------------
And the meek shall inherit the Earth...um...if that's ok with you.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
joker
seeker



Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 7465 | TRs
Location: state of confusion
joker
  Top

seeker
PostSun Jul 26, 2015 10:31 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker wrote:
Also, what's the max amount of days you should carry food for? Not really worded correctly, but was wondering if 5 days is the max you should carry or 7 (or 6)?

Not quite sure I'm following this question. If you're going out for 8 days, you'd want 8 days' worth, ideally plus a bit of extra as a buffer against being lost or stuck in one spot by injury toward the end of the trip (e.g. maybe some spare high-protein energy bars or some such). How long a trip one is willing and able to carry for varies by individual of course.

I have no idea on volume, but do have a take on how much weight of dry food per day tends to work for my wife and me (depending on exertion level and expected temperatures, 1.75 or so pounds/day ish not counting packaging; we don't lose much if any body fat on trips but we don't tend to have long hungry stretches either  smile.gif ).

As to your water question, I don't carry Nalgene bottles any more. I carry platypus bottles (bags? not sure what even to call them). I tend to use one 2 liter platy, which holds somewhat over 2 liters fully filled, though I don't always fully fill it (e.g. if I expect to have reliable water en route and don't mind stopping to filter to refill). The platy weighs something north of a half pound less than two one liter Nalgene bottles, and as it empties it takes up less space in the pack. I also have a "dirty water" container for my Sawyer squeeze filter, and depending on how far from water I expect to camp I may also carry a larger dirty water container (I bring an REI water sack but alas they don't make/sell those any more - they have a great weight/carrying-volume ratio!).
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
AlpineRose
Member
Member


Joined: 08 May 2012
Posts: 1954 | TRs

AlpineRose
  Top

Member
PostSun Jul 26, 2015 1:17 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Unless there's a high probability of being out an extra day, I don't bring extra meals for an additional day.  Instead I bring two or three extra Clif bars or the equivalent calorie dense nutrition (100+ cal/oz).

My backpacking food normally weighs 1.5 - 1.75 lbs daily.  Getting a postal scale will really help in precisely measuring all your food and gear.  Like how much does this cup weigh vs that cup?  Think of it this way, if you shave one ounce off of sixteen items, that's a pound.  Concentrate on the ounces, and the pounds will take care of themselves.

To measure volume, get a stuff sack with a known volume.  Put some stuff in it until it's full.  Empty it.  Keep putting more stuff in and emptying it until you have all your stuff measured.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
RandyHiker
Snarky Member



Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 6022 | TRs
Location: Mobile
RandyHiker
  Top

Snarky Member
PostSun Jul 26, 2015 6:21 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
I wouldn't think too much about trips longer than three days until you've done at least a few overnighters and a couple of two night trips.   Rent or borrow gear for the first trips and see how much you enjoy the experience before dropping a few kilobucks on a fancy setup.  There are many little details to learn and food is also and extremely personal choice.   Some people eat less in the mountains than in the city and others more.  It's also hard to predict what's going to taste good and what is going to settle and digest well for you.   I Nknow some people that get extremely constipated by freeze dried food and others the opposite.   

Attempting al multiweek or multi-month trip as a first experience could certainly be epic, but I think very few people have the determination of Cheryl.Strayed.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
Voxxjin
made of hamburger



Joined: 05 Sep 2013
Posts: 650 | TRs
Location: Dupont
Voxxjin
  Top

made of hamburger
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 9:42 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Concerning water, for me it depends on how available water is along the way. I tend to drink a lot so I am usually refilling at every opportunity. Plus if it is hot I drink even more. Granted I usually end up taking more water than I usually need but you can live a lot longer without food than you can without water.

As for food, I usually plan out what I will eat each day and then add a few Pay Days, energy bars and such in case I get hungrier or things take longer. I usually end up with left over food at the end of the trip.

Also if you take prepackaged food like Mountain House, I recommend pouring the food into a ziplock bag and maybe cutting out the directions and putting it in there as well. Saves a lot of room. Put don't forget to take one Mountain house package with you to 'cook' your food in. Just rinse it out and reuse.

--------------
Cry 'Havoc!' and let slip the dogs of war
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker
Member
Member


Joined: 24 Jul 2015
Posts: 11 | TRs

WannabeBackPacker
  Top

Member
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 10:54 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Thanks for the replies! Sorry, I was a bit vague and not detailed in my first post.

@joker I mean I always hear about people getting mail drops and people (on Youtube and some threads) don't really carry more than 4-5 daysí worth of food. I was just wondering if anyone does it differently and all.

As for the caloric value of the food, Iím actually looking to lean up too, not saying that Iím overweight or anything (just gained a few pounds over the semester) that Iíd like to take care of on some trips. I keep on hearing that people donít start losing weight until the 5th-7th day so Iím going to adjust my caloric intake. I figured I'd eat around 2600 cals - 3100 cals for the days depending on how hard I worked. This is an example of one:

Meal Plan Ounce Calories Cal/Oz
Breakfast
2x Maple Oatmeal 3 320 107
Larabar CCP 1.7 210 123
Total: 4.7 530 112
Snack
Peanut M&M 1.7 250 147
Snack 2
Sun maid Raisin 0.5 45 90
Lunch
2 Cracker Barrel Cheese Stick 2 180 90
2 Medium Flour Tortillas 3.4 300 88
2 oz Salami 2 220 110
Total: 7.4 700 94
Snack 3
Snickers 1.8 250 139
Dinner
1 Pouch Starkist Tuna in Olive Oil 2.6 190 73
2 Ramen 4.4 580 131
Cocoa Classics Rich Chocolate 0.98 120 122
Total: 7.98 890 111
Total All together: 24.08 2665 110

And again, all my meals range from 2600 cals to 3100 cals (also in the 24 ounce to 27 ounce range). Does this sound good at all?

Also, I expect my pack to be anywhere from 25-26 lbs w/o food and just 1 full liter of water to 32 pounds w/ 4 (+1 extra) days of food and another liter of water. I'm not trying to be ultralight by any means, but I figured this would be the best place to start.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
joker
seeker



Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 7465 | TRs
Location: state of confusion
joker
  Top

seeker
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 1:17 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
I've done many 8 day/7night trips and have never used a food drop - just carried it all from day one, enjoying the fact that the pack just gets lighter and lighter throughout the trip (expect when having to pack a wet tent!). I'm quite sure I'm not alone in this regard. There are many great weeklong routes for which no food drop is practical short of having someone come out and meet you mid-route.

As Randy suggests, probably best to focus on shorter trips for getting started, other than that you may want to buy a big enough pack for longer ventures if this is an aspiration for you.

As I noted above I go by weight but tend to carry fairly calorie-dense food (and dry food - including weight of fresh fruit would blow this strategy for instance). Your weight total is cutting it a little lean for my preferences; I'd rather have the option of having at least the option of eating a little more, particularly at breakfast. But some folks seem to do quite well on just barely 1.5 pounds/day. I know that for breakfast in particular 2 oatmeal packets won't cut it for me for a day of backpacking (and not sure the larabar would fill the gap). If you do a few 1-3 nighters you can weigh beforehand, take some presumed surplus food, and then weigh what you carry out to get a better feel for your own wants and needs.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Navy salad
Member
Member


Joined: 09 Sep 2008
Posts: 1515 | TRs
Location: Woodinville
Navy salad
  Top

Member
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 2:11 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
WannabeBackPacker wrote:
how do you account for your food? I've heard that you should at have at most 1.5 liters of space for 1 day (which would be around 1-1.5 lbs). Is this a good rule to go by?

I generally take a smidge over 1.5 lbs of food/day, but this doesn't take up anything close to 1.5 liters of space -- at least the way I do meals, which is mostly dehydrated dinners, oatmeal kind of breakfasts, and trail bars/mix/jerky/fruit leather kind of stuff for lunch. Not exciting food, but 1.5 lbs for me probably only takes up 3/4th of a liter (guessing).
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
tigermn
Member
Member


Joined: 10 Jul 2007
Posts: 9248 | TRs
Location: There...
tigermn
  Top

Member
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 7:27 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
graffiti wrote:
I started with a 50 Liter pack which I still use when I have to carry winter gear but I'm down to a 25 Liter pack for spring/summer use. I can go 4 days with that easy enough.

I can't even do a long day hike with a 25L pack. Well my day hike pack is 32L anyway...

--------------
My flickr photo site.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
contour5
Member
Member


Joined: 16 Jul 2003
Posts: 2713 | TRs

contour5
  Top

Member
PostMon Jul 27, 2015 10:25 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
For an 8 or 10 day trip I usually start off with two medium stuff sacks full of food. So- something like 16 to 20 liters of food, depending on the exact dimensions of the stuff sacks, which I forget, and which also vary in size from trip to trip. Also, the bags get compressed somewhat in the pack, so the actual volume of  food probably ends up being less than the combined manufacturers' rated volume of the stuff sacks.

I've never really given much consideration to the volume of my food. I just bag up meals in ziplocks, count out the number of breakfasts, lunches and dinners I think I'll need, add snacks and coffee, a few emergency meals, a couple of extra breakfasts, some more candy bars, another package of instant bacon, bonus cheese, a carton of smokes and I'm good to go. It weighs whatever it weighs, and the volume becomes whatever it gets squished down to inside my pack.

Pack volume is tricky. I just switched from using an 85/95 liter (5.5 lb) pack to a 70/77 liter (3.5 lb) pack. Had to ditch my 20 liter (3.7 lb) sleeping bag in favor of a 12 liter (2.2 lb)model unit device thing. The tent underwent a similar revision along with the clothing. Bought myself a scale and now I know what my socks weigh. But I'm not sure I can get 10 days worth of food in to my 70 liter pack. Perhaps with the inclusion of a couple of ridiculously expensive new articles of clothing...

Currently fiddling with accessory pouches, which is sort of a stupid thing to do to a hyper-streamlined titanium-framed kevlar cordura expedition grade climbing rucksack. Found a neon pink Girl Scouts labeled water bottle holster, a scotch plaid corporate schwag cooler bag, a 12"x16" mesh bag and a couple of insulated pharmaceutical convention meal pouches at Value Village. I've got Mom's good scissors out- the really bigass sheffield stainless steel weapons grade ones... and I'm snippin' and cuttin'.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
  Display:     All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Forum Index > Food & Grub > How many liters does a days worth of food take up?
  Happy Birthday Ice Girl, Laural!
Jump to:   
Search this topic:

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum
   Use Disclaimer Powered by phpBB Privacy Policy