Preparing supplies for an expedition is crucial to making it safe and successful. It’s important to not just pack the right supplies, but also the right amount, considering what’s priority, what isn’t, and what you might need more of.

From considering what’s necessary for your destination to labelling your supply of water, we explain how to prepare supplies for an expedition.

Where are you going and when?

The first factor to consider when knowing how to prepare your supplies is to think about where you’re actually going. You should research your destination and, depending on the scale of your expedition, the countries or places you’ll be travelling through. You should look into things like expected weather, temperature and climate for that time of the year, as well as harmful things you might encounter along the way. This can help you prepare the right supplies. You can figure out what to prioritise, what’s necessary and what you might need plenty of, from protective weather-resistant clothing through to insect repellent and first aid essentials.

What route are you taking?

It’s not just important to research your destination, but to observe the route you plan to take and check where it will take you. You might be trekking near to public camping sites that you’re unaware of, or you could pass through built-up areas with access to food shops, cafes, post offices and public phones. Alternatively, your route might see you spending days hiking through isolated environments, or difficult terrain.

Understanding your route can help you prepare the right amount of supplies for your expedition and think about the weight you’ll need to carry and for how long. You can also work out if you’ll be able to replenish some supplies, like food and water, along the way, or if you’ll need to be dependent on them for a set period of time. If you’re passing through towns and villages, or have arranged to stay in overnight accommodation, you could even post some of your supplies to those stopping points. You can then arrange to collect those supplies along the way to save weight and space in your rucksack during the initial stages of your expedition.

Preparing equipment

Knowing where you’re going and understanding your route can help you to decide which equipment is going to be necessary for your trip. The specifics of your expedition such as temperatures, location and the conditions you are likely to face can influence everything from the choices of types of rope for climbing to the camping equipment you choose to take.

It’s often worthwhile to field test equipment beforehand. For example, you might opt for a camping stove that uses a specific type of fuel, but the way this is stored or transported might be impractical. Meaning that you need to find an alternative better suited to your needs. It’s much better to figure this out before you get started.

Field testing also helps you get used to the way you pack and utilise equipment. Taking steps to do this and build your understanding and skills beforehand can be invaluable in ensuring you travel and function in the most efficient way possible when actually on your expedition.

Preparing food

Food is vital on an expedition to keep up your strength and energy levels, especially when sticking to a gruelling and physically demanding schedule. So you should prepare the right food supplies and make them easily accessible, ready for when you need them. Things to consider include:

  • Preparing enough food for each day so you can eat regularly
  • Bagging packaged foods to reduce weight, save space in your rucksack and prevent littering
  • Labelling food to be eaten at certain times – porridge oats to give energy at breakfast and nuts to boost energy levels throughout the day, for instance
  • Packing food in the order you plan to eat it to save you having to constantly shuffle through your rucksack
  • Packing nutritious foods that require little preparation. This includes tinned fish that can be eaten without cooking. Or freeze-dried foods that are light weight, you just add water to eat them, and they don’t require plates for eating

Preparing water

When it comes to your water supplies, your expedition route can help you determine how much to prepare. If you’re passing through villages and nearby lakes, for instance, you should only need to take a few litres of water, along with pumps and purifiers. You can pour water into large water bottles, designed for hiking. It’s worth also labelling bottles, so you know what it’s for, like drinking water or water for cooking. It’s important though to be prepared for the unexpected. In the lead up to your expedition keep a close eye on any news coming out of the area you’re travelling through. Particularly anything that might restrict your access to additional supplies and water. If you find that being able to restock your water supply might be more difficult or the opportunity to do so is less frequent, potentially due to a drought for example, then you need to adjust your inventory and ensure you bring additional fluids with you.

Helping you prepare for your expedition

Preparing the right supplies, from food to equipment, can ensure you’re fully prepared for your expedition. This can allow you to focus on the challenge ahead, enjoy all it has to offer, and make it an experience to remember.

At Summit to Eat, we provide a range of freeze-dried foods ideal for your expedition supplies, whether you’re trekking for days on homeland or completing challenging hikes overseas. Our range of foods are low weight, and you only need to add water. There are products and kits that can be eaten as snacks or nutritious meals, with ingredients cooked before it’s freeze-dried to help enhance flavour and taste.

If you’d like to find out more about the meals we can provide to fully prepare you for your next exciting expedition, take a look at our freeze-dried meals page. Alternatively, contact us to speak to a member of our experienced team.