Everyone on the Appalachian Trail has a food bag and keeps a careful watch on their food supply. It’s just as critical as your water supply but not as easily replenished.
It’s important to carry enough food to get you from one resupply point to the next, but no more because then you’re just carrying extra weight. Extra weight is a no-no because “ounces make pounds and pounds make pain.” (I didn’t make that up.)
Here’s a photo of Roughneck and his food bag that is going to get him 26 miles, to Hampton, TN. Roughneck is a young Army veteran who recently completed his service and is taking time to hike the AT while he figures out what to do next.
The second photo shows my most recent resupply for the three day hike from Roan Mountain, TN to Damascus, VA. For breakfast I have Pop Tarts (which I never get tired of). I really don’t have a lunch, rather I snack throughout the day on Craisins, energy bars, Snickers, chocolate bars, Cosmic Brownies (thanks to Dave Hansen’s recommendation), Fritos, peanut butter, Nutella, and sandwich thins. For dinner I have several options – one option is to eat specially designed hiker meals such as the one in the photo Hungry Hikers. Another option is to eat supermarket foods that just require adding water such as Idahoan Potatoes with tuna added. Other options include mac and cheese, soups, chili mixes, and Tuna Helper. There are many other possibilities and more experienced hikers are a good source for learning new menu items.
On the right side of the photo is my food bag, a Sea-to-Summet eVent bag which is very sturdy and waterproof. I have written my name on the bottom of the bag so it doesn’t get mixed – a lot of hikers use these bags for food bags.