Packing some mail drops

Guilderland Travel Blog

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I have to say it - today was a very productive day. I am pretty excited, because I got the biggest piece of outstanding preparation done, which was creating the mail drops or care packages that are going to be sent to us while we are on the trial. This was a little intimidating, because deciding what you might want to eat three months from now is a little risky. What if I develop an aversion to nacho cheese or become allergic to clam juice? That would not be a good sitation for anyone involved... So I took the easy way out. I broke the trip up into 3 phases and decided to buy food to send to myself for the first phase of the trip: Harpers Ferry, WV to Bear Mountain, NY. This should take about a month to complete, and we will get the opportunity to be in the safe harbor of my parents domicile for as long as we want to hammer out the details of the next phase. We can then learn from our experience: what worked, what didn't, what food we are sick of and what we really want more of. It gives us an opportunity to be more dynamic and change direction on the go. Plus, buying 60 dollars worth of potato flakes is a big investment if you aren't going to eat them.

Step 1 - Deciding where to send the food.

I decided that it would be sensible to do 5 mail drops during phase 1 of the trip. Each would contain about 3 or 4 days worth of food and we could resupply as necessary. The part of the trail in which we are starting is very close to a number of towns, so the likelihood that we will actually starve to death is low. Like a midget doing the limbo... Without further adeu, the list of mail drops:
  • Blue Ridge Summit, PA
  • Duncannon, PA
  • Port Clinton, PA
  • Palmerton, PA
  • Delaware Water Gap, PA
Cool, now we know where we need to send the food and how much we are going to send (about 18 days worth)

Step 2 - Buying the food

This also wasn't such a big deal, just a little time consuming. I went to BJ's (the wholesale club, you dirty minded twit) and bought huge packages of just about everything that was cheap, dry, and had a lot of calories. I also stopped at EMS for some dehydrated backpacker meals and the local Hanny for some odds and ends that I wasn't able to grab at the Club. This took about 3 hours all told and I was pretty confident that enough food was purchased to cover the period in question.

Step 3 - Packing

What is in each mail drop? Well they all vary a little bit, but to give you an overall sense of the type of things that are being sent, I will give you a list. This is not an exhaustive list, but I didn't promise you an exhaustive list, did I? Ok, then. Moving on.
  1. angel hair pasta
  2. ramen noodles
  3. minute rice
  4. Lipton dinner mixes
  5. granola bars
  6. tail mix
  7. dried fruit
  8. oatmeal
  9. backpacker meals (from EMS)
  10. tortilla wraps
  11. peanut butter
  12. tuna fish or salmon or chicken in a pouch, hopefully not a kangaroo pouch
  13. pretzels
  14. bagel chips
  15. cous cous
  16. fruit roll ups
  17. cream of wheat
  18. Carnation instant breakfast
  19. beef jerky / pepperoni
I also included some non-edible things. I know, its disappointing, but sometimes you gotta do it:
  1. toilet paper
  2. extra plastic bags [small (mini me), medium (gilligan), medium large (the professor), large (Mrs Howell), extra large (the skipper), extra extra large (Godzilla)]
  3. batteries for my digital camera
  4. applicable maps and guides
  5. paper for taking notes, journal entries / letterz
So, thats that. I feel much better about the state of my planning, and I am much more confident that we are going to be fine out there. I mean we are Baldaufs, which is indian for "can't starve."

I also can't forget to give a shout out to the Kippopotomous for assisting me in my packaging frenzy. If it wasn't for her, I wouldn't have humerous sayings written on every bag of food, or sharpie clearly identifying the "gronla bar" as a "granola bar". Thanks a lot. I'll send you a porcupine from the road as a reward.

These boxes are sitting in my dining room, just waiting for more stuff to be put inside of them, as I think of it. I am sure I am going to wig out at the last second and throw like 3 pounds of random food and / or rocks into the box, but that probably won't serve me all that well, since I will just have to carry it and we shouldn't have a problem getting enough calories. If anything goes wrong, I'll just send up a flare. Keep your eyes to the sky...
David says:
woot, fruit roll ups!
Posted on: Apr 25, 2006
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