If you are hiking in South Africa, no matter what time of year, you will need to take food provisions with you. Not all trails are close to towns, as a matter of fact most of them, by their very nature are off the beaten track far away from shops. Long hikes should be done with groups so that you can share the load of food, cooking utensils and stoves.

Dried food

Dried food is essential, it can last for a s long as the hike takes. You can enjoy delicious things such as dried fruits, sun dried tomatoes, dried meats such as mince or jerky. If you do decide to take fresh meats these need to be eaten within the first night or two, after that they will be no longer edible and will have taken up space and added unnecessary weight with no ultimate gain. Dried sauces and spices will make any meal much more appetising. Sachets of salt and pepper, sauces and vinegar can all be picked up in cafes or fast food restaurants and can help to make a meal Other items such as cous cous give you the much needed carb load to keep your energy up during the long hikes, snack bars, protein bars and powered custard can all go a long way.

Drinks

Water is essential, take several bottles. You can use a portable water filter (like a straw) to drink water from streams if you do run out. For hot drinks, powdered coffee sachets such as cappuccinos, hot chocolate will help to keep everyone’s spirits up, especially on cold nights. Take a few tea bags and some powdered milk too. Little sugar packets that can be picked up at most cafes will take up very little space in the back pack but can make a big difference to a cuppa!