Planning food for winter trips must take into account the demands the cold weather and physical activity place
on the body along with the difficulty of preparation
(it takes more time and fuel)

Activity                                                                                        Caloric Requirement (Kg-Calorie/day)

Base Metabolism                                                                            1,500 calories
Sedentary lifestyle                                                                           2,500 - 3,000 calories
Three season backpacking                                                          3,500 - 4,000 calories
Winter backpacking                                                                        4,500 - 5,000 calories

Foods come from animal and vegetable sources and serve three functions in the body

· Fuel - to provide heat energy or calories
· Building - repairing, or maintaining body tissues
· Help Regulate - the body processes

Food Types

1. Carbohydrates - (50%) the main source of energy. They are grouped together as starches, sugars, and
(dietary fiber). Starches and sugars are quick-energy foods. Candy, cereal, bread, rice,
macaroni, dried fruit, and vegetables.

2. Fats  - (30%) the highest energy food. Gives a diet its "staying" qualities helping to satisfy your appetite.
Margarine, nuts, cheese, eggs, and fats from pepperoni, salami.

3. Protein  - (20%) the most common substance, other than water, in your body. Its main function is the
growth and maintenance of body structures. Meat, fish, cheese, milk, eggs, nuts, and grains.


· Breakfast - should be a good mix of all three major food types, quick, simple and complete, (foundation for
a full day's work)
Hot cereals, Granola bars, Fruit, Fruit juice, Hot Drink. The sugars will get you started and
the proteins and fats will keep you going.

· Lunch - should provide high-carbohydrate energy with minimum preparation. You should include all the
food groups by having some of the following items: meats, cheeses, nuts, dried fruits, raisins, cookies,
candy, and granola bars. Drinks should be hot.

· Dinner - the most complicated meal of the day, should provide adequate calories and the highest amount of
protein for the day. This provides warmth and promotes tissue repair during the night's rest. A hot main dish,
preferably a one-pot meal which includes a starch, vegetables, and protein. High nutritional crackers, fruit
drink, hot drink, and dessert.

Food Preparation Tips

· Use insulated - plastic cups, bowls, and utensils
· Rice - one of the best items in your food list, very versatile easy to pack and prepare
· Fats - are important in the winter to release heat and energy slowly
· High quality proteins - milk, meat, and eggs; should be half of your protein intake
· Caffeine - can accelerate dehydration, use substitute caffeine free products
· Whole wheat - flour provides more protein nutrients, and fiber than white flour
· Peanut butter - and honey make a very good spread
· Main Dishes - can be prepared at home, frozen and sealed in a storage bag that can withstand being
                   reheated in boiling water, thereby minimizing cleanup
· Food packing - minimize trash accumulation and preparation time by combining, premixing, and packing
                     individual meals into separate stuff sacks
· Stove fuel - your fuel of choice may not be appropriate for certain cold weather camping. It is important to
               research the facts and train accordingly
(on safety and winter usage)


· Do not eat snow - takes too much energy to transfer water from one state to another
· Snow can be melted - heat water in bottom of pot and add snow slowly (more efficient)
· Other water sources - "winter solar water collector",  "water machine" or  "the Finnish marshmallow"
· Personal water - use wide neck container, carry next to body, if possible upside down, take to bed at night
· Water purification - best to boil, filtration pumps can crack as water expands from freeze, chemical
                              treatments become ineffective at low temperatures
Archery, Indoor Range
Winter Camping
Bird Identification
Planning Your Winter Trip
Camping Trip Checklist
Your Body and the Cold
Fire Building Checklist
Personal Equipment
Sleeping Systems
Map Symbols
Orienteering Club Links
Orienteering Event
Camp Sanitation
Orienteering Training Outline
Safe Hiking
Tree Identification
Aquehonga Tree Trail
Snow Blindness
Back To Skills and Training Aids
Trench Foot

Boy Scout Handbook Copyright 1998 by the Boy Scouts of America
Field Book Copyright 1967, 1984 by the Boy Scouts of America
Okpik: Cold-Weather Camping Copyright 1990 by the Boy Scouts of America
OA Guide to Winter Camping Copyright 1995 Rick Curtis, Outdoor Action Program, Princeton University