_Something Soft For Dinner

Serves: 5



If you like to eat, taking off on a back country trip with someone you don't know well who says he will do the cooking, presents the same chance for success as going on a blind date arranged by your sister. But…as an old boss of mine used to say, "Life is nothing but a series of missed opportunities!" You have to take the chance, but it's unwise to let your expectations get too high. Anyway…

In late August, 1983, my boss passed some information on to me about two fellas who had drawn permits to hunt bighorn sheep along Idaho's Middle Fork of Salmon River and were allowing two other guys to go hunting in their place. Such a transfer is, of course, contrary to Idaho Code. Al told me to put together an operation which if successful might educate these guys and generate a little income for the state judicial system at the same time. I enlisted Russ Kozacek and Paul Valcarce to help with the operation. The plan went something like this. Paul and I would fly a float boat into Indian Creek and float down to the mouth of Loon Creek and meet Russ with his pack string. Russ and Paul would head up toward Norton Ridge where our informant said these guys planned to hunt. I would set up surveillance on a trail junction should they miss the guys up on the mountain. Russ and I split picking up the camp groceries and cooking duties. I would take care of everything along the river, and Russ would provide for Paul and him while on horseback. No problem!?!?!

Russ readily admits that he and I come from different camp cooking schools. Russ graduated with honors from the school that teaches folks to fix the simplest, quickest recipes that result in the fewest dirty dishes. The ability to boil water is high on the list of criteria required to graduate from this particular school that shall remain un-named here! The grub in his camp isn't fancy but there is always enough. That is, until this trip.

At the appointed time we met at the US Forest Service tent frame located about a half mile below the confluence of the Big Loon Creek with Middle Fork.
Let me digress here and tell you a little more about where we met. At this time the USFS stationed a person at the tent frame during the summer float season. The fireguard had pulled out just a week before we arrived. Among other duties, this person kept the one-hole outhouses located at float camps supplied with toilet paper. More than once I'd stopped to re-supply when my own stocks of this vital commodity ran low.

While Paul and I sorted his stuff, Russ started putting things in two different piles. One pile they would take with them on the trail, and another pile to leave with me at our base camp. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Russ pick up some of the "Woodsy Owl" drawstring garbage bags to stow stuff in out of the tent frame. Coincidentally, the fireguard kept his extra TP in the same bags hung on a nail next to the door. With all three of us working, it didn't take long to get the pack stock loaded. After agreeing on radio codes and check-in times, Russ and Paul pulled out.

I squared my gear around after they left, then pulled a paperback book out of my duffel and began the surveillance. I fixed a chicken and pasta dish in my 10" aluminum DO and sat on the porch maintaining surveillance as long as I had reading light. Then it came time to light a lantern and move inside. I reached into the "Woodsy Owl" bag for a roll of TP prior to taking a stroll up the hill to the privy. Only when we compared notes several days later did we determine that we'd made simultaneous discoveries! I reached in expecting to grab a soft round roll, not a foil wrapped package containing freeze-dried beef stroganoff! Meanwhile, up on Norton Ridge, Russ ended up being the one to grasp what I was looking for! Later, there was considerable confusion over WHO was responsible for the switch! In my case I substituted a copy of the previous year's fishing regulations for what I needed, while Russ and Paul split a can of kipper snacks and a couple of granola bars found at the bottom of a saddle bag.

If there is a moral to this story it's this. Even if you're not the cook, at least check to make sure the cook packs the grub!

Spiced with More Tall Tales - Meats

This _Something Soft For Dinner recipe is from the Cee Dub's Dutch Oven and Other Camp Cookin' Cookbook. Download this Cookbook today.

More Recipes from the Cee Dub's Dutch Oven and Other Camp Cookin' Cookbook:
_A Lasting Gift
_About The Cooks!
_About the Author
_As Close To Heaven As One Can Get
_Barbeque Texas Style
_Bread And Horse Wrecks
_Brother-In-Law Duck
_Camp Creations
_Camp Crock Pot
_Camp Kitchens
_Camp Robbers
_Campfire Cash
_Chicken ala S*#T
_Chili, The Controversy And The Recipes
_Common Sense And Cards
_Cookin' With Kraut
_Cooking From Cans - Menu For Day 16
_Culinary Bombs
_Don't Critize The Cook...
_Dry Camps
_Fanny Pack Snacks
_Game Meat
_Game Warden Dog
_Game Warden Scramble
_Garlic & Her Poor Cousin "Onion"
_Getting Bread In Camp
_Good Cooks / Bad Cooks!
_Good Humored Cook
_Hank's Spaghetti Sauce
_Hank, Jack And Me
_How To Cook A Coot
_Hungry Ridge Chicken
_Jerky And Smoked Fish
_Las Piedras
_Making Do
_Middle Fork Spareribs
_Modern Day Pilgrims
_No Name Creek Baked Beans
_Pitch In And Pitch Out
_Potatoes aka Taters, Spuds
_Redhot Rhubarb Upside Down Cake - The Story
_Religious Bedroll
_Roast Coot
_Rubs For Meat, Not Backs
_Shoestring Bull
_Something Soft For Dinner
_Sugar And Spice And Other Things Nice
_The Adventures of 'Two-Story Tom'
_Things I Don't Care To Eat
_Twas The Week Before Elk Season
_Two Reluctant Cooks
_Veggies For Camp
_Warden Stew
_Where Do You Buy Scratch

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