Car Camping Paleo


Screen-Shot-2012-07-04-at-2.41.48-PM-300x198.pngTo soothe our nerves after the last few frenzied months of wedding planning and then wedding doing, Seth and I decided we’d spend the month of July in my favorite rock climbing area, Rifle Mountain Park near Rifle, Colorado. That means we are eating (Paleo), sleeping, climbing, and working out of our car for the next month. Well, to be exact, we have a huge tent this year – we’re not actually sleeping IN the car, but you get the point. We’ve been here a week and I’m not ready to go home yet, so I guess we’re doing something right.

Why are we doing this to ourselves, you ask? Because Rifle has some spectacular rock climbing and it’s a 3.5 hour drive from our house. Doing that drive every weekend to go climbing sucks. So we packed up our stove, our big cooler, tent, giant blow-up mattresses, bins full of kitchen tools, books, computers, and dog and headed out.

So. If you’ve wondered 1) what rock climbing is all about and/or 2) how you can eat Paleo out of your car, this post is for you. First, here’s a video of an example of what we do every day. This is my last “project” – a 70-ish foot tall 5.13b called Vision Thing that I finally just did the other day. My aunt took this video recently…

Anyway, the eating part goes like this.

First, we wake up and drive away from the campsite to a picnic table in the canyon where the biting flies from hell aren’t so bad.


Then take out our bins and stove and cooler and cook our breakfast. This particular morning in the picture it was pastured eggs and bacon with watermelon and strawberries. Sometimes we’ll put veggies in there, sub out the bacon for ground beef or beef sausage, or add avocado, but the eggs are standard every morning.


Lunch is leftovers from dinner or turkey and salami with veggies. Or sometimes it’s a banana tapioca crepe, depending on how hungry I am and how much I want carbs. The  banana tapioca crepes are not an exact science. I pour tapioca flour, canned coconut milk, lots of eggs, and some bananas in a bowl and mash it all up. Then I pour the runny batter into a pan and make a few large crepes – more like pancakes – and save them for lunches later. I did it this morning and it took about 30 minutes, but it was well worth it. I highly recommend these for athletes of all kinds trying to eat Paleo.

Dinner is always meat and veggies. We keep cabbage, celery, onions, peppers, carrots, and greens on hand and just chop them up and put them in a pan with whatever meat we have plus some seasonings. We shop at Vitamin Cottage in Glenwood Springs – about 40 minutes away – or City Market, which is closer, where you can get a lot of organic/natural products. We usually end up with some beef steaks and mostly ground meats because they’re easier to handle. We haven’t done anything with sweet potatoes this trip, except that Seth eats the sweet potato chips you can buy in bags. If we were to cook them, we’d just chop them up and boil them. Maybe we’ll do that tonight…

Snacks are fruits – plums, pears, peaches, bananas, watermelon, and dried fruits like figs and dates or whatever leftovers we have lying around.

Water – We’re always near a stream, which is convenient for dishwashing. As long as we let the dishes and silverware dry out before we use them again, we’re good as far as giardia goes. We pack our drinking water in a big 5 gallon jug and refill it at the grocery store.

Cooler – It’s been so hot that we have to refill the ice bins in our cooler about every 2 to 3 days and make sure to keep the cooler in the shade at all times. We bought a cooler large enough that we can put two large flat tupperwares full of ice in there so everything doesn’t get wet. One on the bottom and one on the top. We’re trying to invent a better cooler since the ones available now are clearly only designed for storing beer for an afternoon…

So it’s kind of a pain in the butt – all this moving around, sleeping in a stinky tent, competing with flies for our food, and constant caretaking of our food storage. And our organization skills are a little lacking most of the time, as you can see…


But it’s totally worth it for the following reasons.

When we’re not climbing, we’re actually relaxing, with no cell or internet service for miles.


We get to hang out with all kinds of awesome(ly ridiculous) people every day.


I get tired when it gets dark and I sleep better…


And we get to sleep under the moon and stars…