No Coffee

We all have our routines. Some consider those routines to be vices. Either way they are important. I’m a coffee drinker – not occasionally, not when I can get my hands on a cup, not if you happen to have it. Rather an every day, first thing in the morning coffee drinker. The black gold gets me going every day… usually

Upon going to bed though, it became apparent that there would be no coffee in the morning. I was on the road. I’d been graciously given a place to crash along the banks of the Henry’s Fork. A place with no store nearby and a tea drinker for a host. I was out of luck. I couldn’t recall the last time I woke up without coffee close at hand. Ultimately it was a minor emergency. A 30 minute drive to a truck stop in Ashton had me holding a steaming cup of joe.

Mistakes happen. Surely I was starting another several year streak of mornings with coffee. Then it happened again. Only days later, I found myself planing a 5am start for a big day, and realized there would be no hope of getting a hot cup of coffee on the way to the trailhead. By way of diving catch I added a couple Starbucks double shots to the Safeway shopping cart, before heading to our remote rental cabin. Cold coffee is not the same as hot coffee. But it’s better than no coffee at all. My adaptability shone through my frustrated scowl, and I made the most of it.

All seemed in order days later when I was camped with friends along the banks of a high mountain stream. We had coffee, a stove and other coffee drinkers to help shoulder the morning brewing load. Sometimes, however,  bad breaks come in threes. My mug was handed to me and my first sip caused my head to jerk back. Prepared with kindness, my coffee was laced with peppermint schnapps. It was more that I could handle that morning. I fished all morning with a half a bagel in my stomach and a raging headache, .

The moral to this story has mostly eluded me. On one hand I survived not one, but three serious incidents in a ten day time frame. I might be tougher than I thought. But I’m not in it to be tough. I need coffee. I was traveling without my own camping gear, with uncertain accommodations. In the future I need to make sure I have my own coffee set up with me at all times.



9 Comments on “No Coffee

  1. Totally feel your pain. Try an Aeropress. Cheap system, perfect for one person, and goes straight into the cup. Still need boiling water, but that’s pretty much it.

  2. I always travel with a small stove and Starbucks via, just in case. It’s certainly not as good as the real thing but will do in a pinch (and travels well).

  3. REI has a travel mug press that actually stows ground coffee in the removable base. Now that sounds like insurance I can use!

  4. I was getting the headaches so bad that I gave it up cold turkey. Switched to tea about 4 years ago. And I’ve missed my coffee every day since…

    • I am sensitive to caffeine but enjoy a little caffeine with my must-have morning coffee. What I do is custom mix high quality decaf and full caf beans from the bulk bins then grind them together in the grocery store grinder. The flavor is great and is preserved by putting the grinds in an opaque container in the fridge. I think one or two cups of 1/4 caf brew shouldn’t cause caffeine dependency or the jitters. Cheers!

  5. Starbucks Via is head and shoulders above other types of instant coffee. The flavor is very good (and I’m notably choosy about coffee) but a really important feature is that it’s so fine you can even shake it up in day-old bottled water and get reasonable coffee. Luke-warm Via is waayyy better than no coffee at all. Oh, and need I mention, no coffee at all is not a viable option?

  6. Alternative to coffee grounds is Mt. Hagen instant from Germany found at health food stores. Come Red or Green top caffeinated or not. Surprisingly good, always ready to play and affordable. To make it iced. Add boiling water to 1 teaspoon Mt. Hagen fill glass 1/3 full add cream to taste and fill the rest of the glass with ice cubes, wait a little while for the ice to melt and the liquid to chill😊.

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