Taking Your Veggies Hiking

Taking Your Veggies Hiking

When most people think of hiking food, they imagine trail mix, energy bars, and PBJ sandwiches. I’d like to suggest that veggies can also make excellent trail food.

Hiking is a thirsty endeavor, and sometimes plain old water doesn’t quite quench the thirst of someone who’s been active in the sun for hours. But there’s nothing more refreshing than a crisp cucumber after a good sweat: not only are cucumbers 95% water, they also offer a host of vitamins and minerals to reintroduce the pep to your step. Red and yellow peppers offer similar benefits of hydration and nutrition, plus a hint of sweetness.

For a picnic on top of your favorite mountain, overlooking your favorite vista, or alongside your favorite creek, I can certainly recommend bringing a ripe tomato along with a handful of basil, plus some good salami, hard cheese or mozzarella balls, and nuts. You can pack the tomato by nesting it in a plastic container surrounded by paper towels or a clean dishcloth. The basil can go in another plastic container. Don’t forget a knife to slice the tomato.

I’ve even been known to include a kohlrabi or a hakurei turnip in my bear can when heading into the wilderness overnight. It may seem silly to haul such a heavy, low-calorie item into the backcountry, but to me, the little extra effort is worth the refreshing benefits.

Do you have a favorite picnic menu for al fresco lunches on a mountain saddle or under a comfy tree? What are your thoughts on fresh vegetables on the trail?