"Good food - better adventure"
Provisioning for an adventure on the Lake has two significant problems.
- How do you carry the vast amount of water required?
- How do you cater for emergency food supplies?
The best solution for the small craft owner is to tow an inflatable dingy. A nine foot dinghy can hold one hundred litres of water, a weeks supply of food and still draw under 100mm. While a dinghy does slow the craft somewhat it must be remembered that you are adventure cruising - not racing. For day sails from remote bases the dinghy can be left on the beach allowing the main craft to travel lighter (thus shallower) and quicker.
For safety sake always carry three days food and water on the main craft. Circumstances may prevent return to the dinghy. In extreme weather you may have to cut the dinghy free! Three days should see you back at home base from anywhere on the Lake.
Provisioning for adventures is an artform that the Commodore leaves to the First Mate. The basic principals of a good provisioner involve techniques for making varied but nutritional meals from basic ingredients that can be stored in a less than ideal environment.
- Frozen meat, if wrapped in insulating paper and cloth, can keep for two days to make a feast out of these first meals. This is much appreciated by those exhausted by the launching process.
- Bread can be kept a week providing it is kept out of the sun but allowed to breath. Sealed in a canoe container it will quickly go mouldy. Towards the end of the week it may be a little dry - but so are Saladas & Rye biscuits and they're the next alternative.
- UHT milk and juice boxes are easily carried as ballast at the bottom of the storage compartment and provide a change to water with more nourishment.
- Potatoes, carrots, tomatoes are the best vegetables and should be kept in cloth bags to prevent mould.
- Oranges keep well and apples last for 3 or four days before the inevitable bruises destroy them. Fruit and vegies are not always obtainable locally and the Leigh Creek supermarket is worth visiting on the way up.
- Eggs are essential for pancakes and omelettes. They last provided they are kept in the cooler parts of the craft.
- Pasta and rice are part of every meal, supplying essential carbohydrate. Flour for damper and rolly pollies.
- Can food is generally selected (always pre-tested) based on it being part of a meal rather than the entire meal. A mixture of tinned and fresh food is much more satisfying than pre-packaged food alone. Fortunately tinned food contains more than just pepper these days. Some of it is quite edible.
- Canned fruit is chosen as a mix of plain fruit, to which long life custard may be added, and the smaller snack packs to provide variety.
- Tea, coffee and cuppa soup take up little room.
- The last item on the list is mandatory - the home made fruit cake!