In my usual last-minute style, I was up until 4am deciding how many resupply boxes to post down the trail from San Diego and how many breakfasts, lunches and dinners this meant I had to buy.
To be honest, I found it really difficult and overwhelming to sit down and try to figure out a resupply strategy for a 2,650 mile hike so I put it off and off for as long as I possibly could! (It’s not procrastination, some people are just more productive working under pressure!) 😉
At least I’ve got about 200 protein & energy bars packed in my suitcase – thanks Nick at Unnu for helping me out with these. As well as ALOT of mini Nutella packets care of Amazon 🙂
I’ve decided to send myself 12 boxes for California only and will buy more food to send along the trail for Oregon & Washington as I go. The 12 boxes I’m sending won’t be enough to get me all the way through California so I will resupply at local supermarkets in towns along the way.
There are definitely pros and cons of posting food versus buying as you go.
- You can buy the food in bulk (saving money) and send yourself food you know you like.
- You’re paying for postage and if you’re posting the box to a post office then you need to arrive at that town during post office hours and many post offices along the trail are Monday to Friday only with very limited hours on these days.
- You don’t know how much you’re going to need (depending on weather, altitude etc), so you might not send enough or you might send too much and be carrying extra weight.
- After the first 2 months you might not want to see another energy or protein bar and you’ve packed yourself another 60 of them!
- Supporting the local community
- You’ll probably pay a higher price in trail towns than buying in bulk (but then you’re not paying postage).
- There might be a very limited choice of food available or not enough to get you to the next town.
- Extra tips for my hiking poles
- Extra clothes: fleece, T-shirt, trousers, shorts, waterproof pants, socks, shoes
- Bug headnet, deet and Microspikes for the sierras
- Plasters, vitamins etc
- Food that doesn’t fit in my original 12 resupply boxes
- and probably more stuff!
Many people choose not to use a bounce box and instead have friends or family post them food and gear but I don’t know anyone on the west coast of America (near where I’m flying into) well enough that I could dump all my extra gear on and ask them to forward it to me 😉