Climbing meal planning tools?

  • Creator
  • #54559

    Does anyone have good tools (spreadsheets, rules of thumb, etc.?) for meal planning over for extended climbing expeditions? On a big day or weekend trip being a little light or heavy on food isn’t a big deal. But over a long trip it could mean carrying several extra pounds vs being a few days short on food. I’m sure guide services have this pretty dialed in. TNFA has a great section on nutrition but I’m having a tough time extrapolating it onto a ‘macro’ level.

    I remember reading a blog from an Alaskan adventure racer that said with careful planning he would budget 3,500 cals in 2 lb (1kg) of food per person per day. I used that as a guideline for planning a Denali trip a few years ago and found we really brought too much food. I’d say that over the course of 1-3 week trips into the mountains, on average one-third are big strenuous days (fueled by Gu, drink mixes, etc.), one third are rest/weather days, and one-third are moderate exertion days like approaching, moving camp, shorter climbing days, etc.

Posted In: Nutrition

  • Participant
    TerryLui on #54863

    Depending on the style of the climb, ultimately I’d prefer to err on the conservative side and have more food than less.

    For winter trips, I’ve used the 1kg/person/day (dehydrated weight) formula and everyone ate nearly everything (group of 16).

    Although if you’re going for an alpine style climb and are willing to risk insufficient calories and the results of that, I imagine it’ll be pretty individual specific (aka bring more food, see how much is left, do another trip and bring less food, see how much is left, etc).

    Although just because one is doing an alpine style climbing doesn’t mean one can’t be successful and have a full belly –

    I finished with four days of extra food, 250ml of olive oil, but only one leaf of toilet paper. It was a very close call on the toilet paper and I was happy to make it down before I ran out!

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