An honorably retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral (RADM), David F. Baucom served in a variety of posts throughout his career, including as a military aide to President and Mrs. Ronald Reagan. Outside of his military career, David Baucom enjoys outdoor activities such as hiking.
When heading out on a hike, bringing the proper foods is just as vital as having the right equipment. It’s equally important to maintain proper hydration. A good practice is to drink around four cups of water to hydrate before a hike, and then plan to bring along at least two cups of water to drink for every hour you plan to be on the hiking trail, with some additional water in case something comes up.
For shorter hikes that last a day or less, it’s okay to bring perishable items to eat as long as you have a way to keep them cool. An ice pack is most commonly used for this, but bringing these types of things along adds to the weight of one’s pack. That’s why it’s usually best to pack less-perishable foods such as trail mix, granola bars, or jerky.
For longer trips that will stretch out over days and include camping, one obviously has to bring along items that won’t spoil. Many of the same non-perishable items listed above are great to pack, but you will probably want to bring along more substantial foods such as canned meat and/or poultry. If you’re bringing along a pot for boiling water, then pasta, rice, and soup are also foods you can safely pack, and as these items are dehydrated, they add less weight that must be carried.