Many of us are dependent on caffeine to perform at our normal level—whether that’s in the office, on the road, or out on trail. In the regular routine of home, work, and play, it’s easy to get that caffeine boost whenever we need it. But when the routine varies, and adventures happen, sometimes we have to get creative about getting caffeine.
So what do you do when your adventure takes you far from the coffee pot? Fear not, here at the Catamount Trail Association we have some expert insight into getting your caffeine when you want it—no matter how snowy, awesome, and wild your settings might be.
Tip #1: Pack a hot thermos
This is the easiest way to make it happen, as most thermoses will keep drinks hot for several hours. Pro Tip: Pre-warm your thermos with hot water to minimize heat loss.
Here’s my favorite thermos:
Contigo Travel Mug
This thermos never leaks on me!
It keeps drinks hot and slides into a corner of my ski pack.
Tip #2: Make it on trail
With the right tools, you can prepare a hot drink on trail in just a few minutes. Several companies, such as JetBoil and MSR, make stove systems that are lightweight, pack up nicely, and boil water very fast. Another benefit of these stove systems is that the vessel in which you boil water also serves as an insulated mug. Coffee drinkers, you’ll want to pack either instant coffee or a way to strain out some grounds. Some models come with a built-in French press.
Here’s the stove system I like best:
Tip #3: Eat it
For the ultralight option, you can get your caffeine in foods. Gummy blocks, energy bars, oatmeal, jerky, chocolate–there are lots of caffeinated foods on the market. It’s not a hot drink, but works in pinch to get through the last few miles.
Here’s my favorite caffeinated food on trail:
Tip #4: Re-route the adventure
With a little creativity, adventures can be planned to include a stop along the way for caffeine. Pull out a map and get creative!
Here’s a an ski-coffee adventure I’m looking forward to this winter:
Klinger’s/East Woods Morning Ski
Start: Burlington Country Club Golf Course.
First, I’ll ski around the golf course until I feel awesome. Next, I’ll ski along the edge of the bike path down to Farrell Street to get some coffee at Klinger’s Bread Company. From Klinger’s, I’ll hop into the UVM East Woods Natural Area. From there….well, anything could happen!
Also, check out these sweet CTA winter adventures with built-in caffeination stations:
Pemi Overnight Traverse Tour
The Pemigewasset Wilderness is a gem tucked into a fold of the White Mountains. This CTA tour overnights at the AMC’s Zealand Falls Hut, which provides rustic accommodations in beautiful Zealand Notch. Morning coffee by the waterfall? You bet.
Full Service Inn-to-Inn Tour
Ski from inn to inn without having to deal with the logistics of shuttles and luggage. Each inn is bound to have a superb caffeination station.
Maine Huts & Trails 4 Day Tour
Ready to check out some new terrain outside of Vermont? Come ski 45 miles of trail and pop into one of the awesome Maine Huts for lunch and a hot cup of whatever you like!
Have a Great Adventure!