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The DAILY DIRT - The nitty and the gritty of outdoor news

Trail Chef: Top 10 Backpacker Cocktails

Light that fire and kick back with a signature camping drink.

Some food items are just too heavy to justify schlepping them around in your pack. (When's the last time you saw somebody whip out a watermelon at camp?) But liquor, my friends, is not one of those items. Yeah, the ingredients can be heavy, but a perfectly blended, snowbank-chilled cocktail can be the difference between an excellent day on the trail and a transcendent day on the trail. In that spirit, here are 10 of our favorite concoctions. Cheers.
1. Mountain Margarita
Lemon-Lime Gatorade + tequila + fresh snow

2. Watermelon Snowfield
Fruit punch sports drink + Bacardi 51 rum + snow + maraschino cherry

3. Bikini Sunburn
Vodka + light rum + cherry sours + juice of half a fresh lemon + sugar

4. Mountain Storm Cosmo
Lime juice + cranberry juice concentrate + triple sec + vodka + lime Kool-Aid powder + hailstones

5. Snake in the Grass
Lemon-Lime Gatorade + vodka + green creme de menthe

6. Blackberry Margarita
Fresh-picked berries + snow + tequila

7. Backcountry Mai Tai
Tang + snow + dark rum

8. Goodnight Kiss
Good Earth tea + scotch

9. Wilderness White Russian
Kahlua + vodka + milk (use dry whole milk powder)

10. Under the Sleeping Bag
Light rum + triple sec + brandy + lemon juice

With thanks to editors Jon Dorn, Shannon Davis, Steve Howe, & Kristin Hostetter; realcampingworld.co.uk. Image credit: GSI Outdoors

—Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan

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Stook
Mar 30, 2011

A better Warm Apple Pie recipe would be:

1 gal Apple Cider
1 gal Apple Juice
1 ltr Everclear
3 Cinnamon Sticks
6 c Sugar (+/- to taste, may start with less [or more] if you like)

Combine cider, juice, everclear and cinnamon sticks in large pot. Place over medium heat and bring to boil. Remove from heat. Add sugar. Stir thoroughly, until sugar is completely dissolved. Allow to cool. Pour back into gallon containers. You will need one extra, as the yield is over two gallons. Serve warm. And you may think this is alot... You would be correct, however it goes quite fast. Served warm, it tastes exactly like warm apple pie, hence the name.

Now that's a little slice of heaven on the trail.

Dane
Dec 30, 2010

You should try Apple Pie: 1 bottle ever clear, 1/2 gallon of apple cider, 1 bag of red hots, and 2 Cinnamon sticks.....Boil all in pot until melted. Chill and take some on a weekend getaway (goodness in a cup)

Anonymous
Dec 30, 2010

You should try Apple Pie: 1 bottle ever clear, 1/2 gallon of apple cider, 1 bag of red hots, and 2 Cinnamon sticks.....Boil all in pot until melted. Chill and take some on a weekend getaway (goodness in a cup)

Tyson
Mar 30, 2010

Maker's with a dash of water. Sweet nectar!!!

Stickman
Jan 14, 2010

Don't forget Jello shots. Add jello to vodka in a ziplock bag and bury in the snow overnight. Delicious!

D
Jan 03, 2010

I thought that tang+vodka was called a cosmonaut

Eric
Jan 02, 2010

Ultimate trail screwdriver is Tang and Schmirnoff (carry in a leftover plastic pint bottle); if on a long hike and need more for variety, pack a couple plastic 1/2 pint bottles with your favorite liqueuer flavor. For brandy drinkers, mix 50/50 your favorite flavored brandy with a plain brandy, like E&J, P.Masson, C.Bros. or Courvasior (sp?)--the mix will give you a higher-quality flavored brandy since they alone are only about 5% actual brandy (grape) product; be sure to have a soda or juice chaser with it, preferably matching the chaser with the brandy as you would food with wine. Of course, you could mix up your favorite shooter recipes at home before you leave and pack them ready-to-drink in plastic 1/2-pint and pint bottles...hey...come on, print off a nice label for them to give them some dignity!

Philip E. Ankrom
Dec 31, 2009

I am a single malt scotch and Jack Daniel's fan and have carried a flask on most trips. We even had a liter of Jack shipped to us in a re-supply bucket while on the JMT. However, my son turned me on to a great hot drink. Strong Earl Grey tea and add a shot each of Grand Marnier and Amaretto. Great evening drink with snow all around.

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