Podcast Episode November 30, 2019

Podcast 021 | Backcountry Coffee




Coffee. What makes a good cup, what makes a bad cup, and what are the best ways to java yourself in the backcountry? All these questions and more are the subject of this episode of the Backpacking Light Podcast.

To shed some light on this issue, Andrew turned to two experts. The first is Emylene VanderVelden. Emylene is a longtime-author at Backpacking Light – she partnered with BPL publisher Ryan Jordan to write an article on coffee that we published recently – and she is a self-described caffeine enthusiast and former barista. Emylene is from Alberta, Canada, where she enjoys backpacking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, canoeing, kayaking, and horseback riding.

Today’s other guest is Jono Ramey. Jono is the owner and head roaster at Savage Boys Coffee Roasters in Newnan, GA. Savage Boys only purchases fair-trade and direct trade beans and are committed to roasting organic beans whenever possible.

So brew yourself a cup and settle in – your backcountry coffee skills are about to level up.


  • Guest introduction
  • Bean origin
    • Flavor profiles by region
  • Roasting method
  • Compensating for altitude (water temperature)
  • Flow rate
    • Oils!
  • Pressure
    • Crema
    • How to avoid dead shots
  • Backcountry Coffee Preparation Methods
  • Grinding your own coffee in the backcountry
  • Chocolate covered espresso beans – and other direct methods!
  • Final thoughts


Feedback, Questions, Tips?


  • Backpacking Light – Executive Producer
  • Ryan Jordan – Director and Host
  • Andrew Marshall – Producer, Host, and Editor
  • Look for Me in the Mountains – Music

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Updated November 7, 2019

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Home Forums Podcast 021 | Backcountry Coffee

Viewing 3 posts - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)
  • Author
  • #3620957
    Backpacking Light


    Locale: Rocky Mountains

    Companion forum thread to: Podcast 021 | Backcountry Coffee

    Coffee. What makes a good cup, what makes a bad cup, and what are the best ways to java yourself in the backcountry? All these questions and more are the subject of this episode of the Backpacking Light Podcast.

    James Marco
    BPL Member


    Locale: Finger Lakes

    Thanks, Guys! A good overview of coffee making.

    Eric Blumensaadt
    BPL Member


    Locale: Mojave Desert

    for high altitudes backpacking I’m not wanting the vasoconstriction, especially in my alveoli capillaries, that caffeine brings. That said I do enjoy a cup of Starbucks VIA Decaf at dinner time.

    Via is easy to carry and “good enough” ’til I get home to my coffee grinder and drip coffee maker.

    But food ia another matter. Like the French I “live to eat” and not the other way around. Thus I’ll make Pad Thai from supermarket noodles and retort pouch shrimp plus some chopped scallion greens and extra crushed peanuts that I brin in a snack bag. The taste and aroma is SO much better than freeze-dried Pad Thai.

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