One of the things that separates kayak trips from other backcountry adventures is you can bring more fresh food and wine! Avoid breakable bottles – use wineskins or boxed wines (discard box and bring only bladder). Think about the flavours, taste and texture of food to pair with the wind.
Match high-acid food (goat cheese, oranges, lemons, tomatoes, vinegar) with high-acid wine: Sauvignon Blanc, some styles of Chardonnay, Gewürtztraminer, Pinot Noir, Riesling and Zinfandel.
Contrast spicy, salty/smoked and heavily seasoned dishes (curries and Mexican) with lighter, fruity wines: Gamay Beaujolais, Gewürztraminer, Johannesburg Riesling, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and lighter types of Zinfandel.
a. Malibu Rum Caribbean Cosmo
2 liters of mixed-drink goodness in an aluminum lined plastic bag with push top dispenser is bombproof. it’s delicious. bright pink and limey.
Total Weight: 3.85 lbs. Total Volume: 1.75L Alc/Vol: 15%
b. Pat’s Backcountry Beverages’ 1919 Pale Rail Pale Ale
Too heavy, too much material to pack out, too breakable, too warm after days in a backpack – these have been the sad epitaphs of any beer lover before a beerless hike. The wizards at Pat’s Backcountry Beverages have brought this struggle to its end. You need a carbonator bottle, an activator packet, a source of water and one of their brew concentrates (so far, they have a Pale Rail Pale Ale and a Black Hops Black IPA). For just 12.3oz of weight in your pack, you’ll have a pint of beer – each brew concentrate packet only weights 2.1oz and each activator packet only weights .4oz – those together equal another full pint of beer. Carbonating the beer in the backcountry your first time around can be a bit challenging, so I would definitely recommend practicing at home a of couple times first. It is a taste that’s a bit different from your local bar’s pint.
Totally packable, nearly zero waste, this lightweight backpacking beer is one small step for mankind and one giant leap for backpacking beer lovers.
Total Weight: 12.3oz (Carbonator bottle + one packet brew concentrate + one activator packet). Total Volume: 16oz. Alc/Vol: 5.2%
c. Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
This one is a classic. This is the camping drink your dad is thinking about when he reminisces about his “fishing trips with the boys.” This is the drink that your The plastic design makes it both lighter and more durable. The fifth size is reasonable for a group without getting too crazy. The screw top is a necessity for multi-day trips. I would recommend taking powdered apple cider mix.
Total Weight: 1.65 lbs. Total Volume: 750ml. Alc/Vol: 40%
d. Two Beers Brewing Company – Aluminum six pack of Evo IPA
Beer can be a difficult proposition for backpackers. Still, there’s nothing quite like your favorite ale in the backcountry. Yes, you’re still humping a six pack while you hike, but the aluminum cans cut weight, are easier to pack out and chill easily in water. Two Beers also utilizes a plastic pop off ring system. Two Beers also makes “Day Hike Summer Session Ale” and “High Divide Double Blonde”.
Total Weight: 4.68 lbs. Total Volume: 72oz. Alc/Vol: 6.2%
e. Bandit Wine – Chardonnay or Merlot
If you’re feeling classy, this is packaged like a giant juice-box with a screw top – making it durable, packable and relatively light. Because of its shape, it fits well in the outside water bottle pocket of your pack. It’s also a decently good tasting wine. The chardonnay is your better bet out of the two. Let the wine breath before you drink it.
Total Weight: 2.2 lbs. Total Volume: 1L. Alc/Vol: 13.6%
3. THE LUKE – One 16 oz Nalgene
2-3 tbsp hot chocolate mix
1 tbsp butter
¼ tsp cinnamon
1 ½ tbsp powdered milk
2 cup boiling water
4. VASQUEZ TEA MIX
At home: mix 1 cup Nestea (with sugar), 2 cups powdered Tang, 1/2 cup powdered lemonade mix, 1 . cups sugar, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. ground cloves, 1 cup water per serving
In camp: To make one serving, bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Add 1 tbsp. of mix to a mug and pour in water. Stir well. Makes 70 servings.
5. S’MORES COCKTAIL Serves 1
Before turning in, a s’mores cocktail is a delicious drink. Adding a little whiskey doesn’t hurt either when relaxing and keeping warm by the campfire before bed –
1 tbsp Cocoa or carob powder. A packet of hot cocoa mix can be substituted for cocoa/carob and milk powders
3 tbsp Dry milk
1⁄2 tsp Ground cinnamon
1 oz Chocolate liqueur, Kahlua® or Amaretto liqueur
2 tbso Mini marshmallows
Pack the mini marshmallows in a small bag. In another small bag, add in the cocoa and dry milk, seal tightly. Take the liquor in a small bottle.
Add 1 cup hot water to the cocoa mix, stir in the liquor and top with marshmallows.
6. S’MORE SHOOTERS for 4
3 ½ cups milk
½ cup heavy or whipping cream
1½ cups milk chocolate cut into shards in a large measuring cup or bowl
¼ cup graham wafer crumbs in a bowl
4-8 jumbo marshmallows
Mix the milk and cream in a saucepan. Dip the rims of 4 mugs into the milky mixture ¼” deep. Plunge the rims into the crumb mixture. Keep the other campers busy toasting the marshmallows. Heat the milk mixture until it starts to steam. Pour enough milk/cream over the chocolate to swirl around and melt it while stirring the mixture. Add the chocolate sludge back into the cooking pot. Heat through and pour into mugs with the ‘mallows. Add a splash of liqueur. Grown-up s’mores!
(Have the milk and cream been in a cooler or barely thawed from frozen, or did you use powdered or UHT milk and canned cream? Heating the milk and adding alcohol are both good!)
7. TROPICAL FRUIT SMOOTHIES serves 4
Combine in blender and whiz until smooth:
1 papaya—peeled, seeded and chopped into 1” squares
1 cup pineapple cubes—or half cup pineapple and half cup
2 oranges, peeled and seeded, or 1 cup orange juice
1 cup yogurt
1 tbsp honey
squeeze of lime juice
8. MANGO LASSIE
Here is a smoothie type drink that can accompany a curry dinner. This Indonesian drink is usually served with spicy meals, but it can be a great and healthy dessert served in cups. If you have a hand crank blender, try spinning this up into a refreshing extra treat.
4 ripe mangos
1 cup real mango juice
1 cup yogurt
3 tbsp. sugar
Peel the mangos and dice as small as possible. Add the yogurt, mango juice and sugar then stir together in a big pot or bowl. Ladle out into cups and drink this fruity and delicious dessert.
For breakfast the next day, leftover coconut milk can be substituted for water in your oatmeal, try adding mango and raisins as well. Oatmeal will never be the same!