Aug 18, 2010 at 3:13 pm #1262375
Hi all, I'm planning a JMT thru-hike later this month and I have a bear canister question. I have a BearVault BV500 and am planning on 7 days from Muir Trail Ranch to Whitney Portal. I just tried to fit 6 days of food in the canister (my first day of food I can keep in my pack since it will be gone before going to sleep) but I'm unable to fit everything in the canister.
I assume other people have had this problem before – what should I do? Thanks!Aug 18, 2010 at 3:20 pm #1638507
Bob BankheadBPL Member
@wandering_bobLocale: Oregon, USA
In order of increasing cost……..
alternate 1: re-do your menu to reduce the bulk so it does fit.
alternate 2: carry a 2nd smaller Beavault for the excess
alternate 3: buy a larger canister (i.e. Bearikade Expedition = 9 days capacity) and sell the Bearvault.Aug 18, 2010 at 3:28 pm #1638510
Option 4: (althought probably cheaper than option 2) Rent a Bearikade for that section of your trip. The rental rates are pretty good ($3 a day for the first couple of days, $2.50 a day afterwards).
Also, look at the packaging on your food. If you are using prepackaged freeze-dried food, a lot of space can be saved by repacking into ziplock bags or something similar.Aug 18, 2010 at 4:03 pm #1638521
Mary DBPL Member
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Yes, definitely look at your food packaging and eliminate bulky items. For example, the packaging for commercial freeze-dried meals is very bulky–repackage them in quart ziplock freezer bags. Consider taking couscous (a more compact and quicker cooking form of pasta) to replace noodles. Or take a rolling pin to your noodles to break them up into very small pieces.
I have easily put 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners for 4 people in a BV500, so it is quite possible to squeeze a week's food in the thing.Aug 18, 2010 at 4:15 pm #1638526
I don't know if I am alone here, but I was able to fit 4 1/2 days food in the small bearvault for my upcomoing jmt.Aug 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm #1638558
Hiking MaltoBPL Member
If you can't get more efficient then hang the excess the first night. I bet at least half the JMT hiker do that after resupply and it is perfectly legal. I have done this on most of my longer trips.Aug 18, 2010 at 7:22 pm #1638559
Charles GrierBPL Member
@rinconLocale: Desert Southwest
You can get ten days of food into a BV-500 if you pack for minimum volume per calorie rather than just trying to stuff a bunch of freeze dried stuff into the can. I am an old, slow hiker and spent ten days going from resupply at MTR to Whitey Portal. I was able to fit all of my food at 2800 cal per day into my BV-500. All it takes is a bit of planning and starting the trail with a bit of a reserve tank (eg pot belly).
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