Road Trip Essentials
By Leici Hendrix
1. What is your longest road-trip and where?
My longest road trip was to Hueco Tanks in El Paso, TX. I used to spend a month or two every season there. I would drive down and camp out of my car at the Rock Ranch the first few years, and then I started staying at the Hacienda, so it was less of a road trip and more luxury-style dirtbagging. I’ve never lived out of my car travelling place to place, but I have car camped for long periods of time in other locations too– Ten Sleep and Lander, WY, City of Rocks, Shelf Road in Colorado, the Red River Gorge, the New River Gorge, Yosemite, Bishop, Joes Valley, Moab, etc… We also go to Burning Man pretty regularly and have a pretty advanced camping set up there.
2. What do you drive?
Honda Element! Or as I like to call it, the Hotelement. It’s an awesome car for roadtripping and car camping. It’s got a skylight in the back that I love to pop open so I can get some fresh air while sleeping and look at the stars at night.
3. What are your three go-to meals for camping/climbing?
My go-to camping meal in the evenings is almost always some version of sweet potatoes, kale, black beans, tomatoes, and any other veggies I have with quinoa or brown rice. Sometimes I throw in eggs or veggie/chicken sausage. Anything that keeps well for long periods of time is key.
I also make a lot of chickpea salad wraps or tuna salad wraps to take out climbing with me. Hardboiled eggs and avocado make a really regular appearance in my climbing food too. I’m a huge salsa person. I put it on everything. Nut butters and dates too. So many dates. It’s out of control sometimes.
I’m a big believer in real food at the crag or while camping and do as much as possible to eat well and take care of myself when I’m on the road. It keeps me sane. I also bring a bottle of whiskey with me on every trip and that helps a lot too 🙂
I’m an obsessive coffee drinker too and I have a serious addition to a specific brand of soy creamer. So I always have my french press, lots of coffee, and my soy creamer. I’m such a weirdo about it because I am a terrible, horrible person without coffee.
If I had to put my meals in order I would say:
1. Egg/Avocado Toast
2. Sweet Potato and Veggie stir-fry
3. Tuna Salad sandwiches
4. Dates. Dates covered in almond butter. or peanut butter. or cashew butter. and more dates.
4. If you could live off of any food, what would it be?
Eggs, avocado, kale and salsa on sourdough. I could basically eat this for every meal and be happy.
5. Your top must-haves for road tripping (aside from climbing gear) (i.e. specific cooler? “kitchen” item?)
Top must haves are:
McKenzi Taylor founded Rock Climbing Women in 2013 after moving to a new city as a new climber and looking for more climbing partners.
“I got my first taste of climbing with a friend in Spearfish Canyon, SD…5 years later got a consistent partner and have been climbing ever since, even going so far as to move to a climbing destination – Red Rock Canyon! I started out all trad, all the way – with trad there is always an adventure to be had! But long moderate routes weren’t always a realistic option depending on schedules and partners, so I’ve become a lot more open to sport climbing and bouldering as well. I now spend time just getting out when I can, no matter what style of climbing it is!”