Everything Fit Within the Airlines Weight Limits!


Laying it all out in a hotel in Mexico city

Laying it all out in a hotel in Mexico city

This is how I packed all my whitewater catarafting equipment for a month long expedition on the Rio Marañon in Peru. I did this excursion in 2013. It was really surprising to me how well the packing and transportation of all this equipment onto an airplane went! It was a lot of work to package everything perfectly, but very doable. The photo above is EVERYTHING!! Everything as I am getting organized and laying it all out in preparation for packing it up in a few boxes and specialized NRS bags for easier airline travel.


I took everything I needed to run one of my boats while down there. A 15´NRS Cool Cat cataraft,  breakdown frame, all my PG (life jacket, helmet, splash jacket, multiple throw bags, first aid kit) boat repair kit, sleeping bag, tent, clothing, etc.

Wow! 3 breakdown oars fit in the kayak paddle bag!

Wow! 3 breakdown oars fit in the kayak paddle bag!

There were a couple of NRS carrying pieces that helped tremendously: 3 breakdown oars fit very nicely in a single NRS kayak paddle bag and the NRS boat bag made my cataraft easy to carry. The airlines did not even double check these two items!

I even flew with some of the group food! I had the responsibility of meals for about 9 days for 18 people. Obviously I used my “No Coolers” techniques.

Some of the "No Coolers" food packets.

Some of the “No Coolers” food packets.

The photo above is some of the food I packaged up in the USA and then transported via airlines to Peru.

Note: I had to make some modifications to the menu once I was in Peru and doing the food buy because there are different products available in the supermarkets and local mercados. We had some great Peruvian dishes on the river though – CauCau, Locro, Lomo Saltado, Vegetarian Lentils, Sardine Stew. Lots and lots of french fries and potato dishes. One has to keep an open mind about food and use the food products that are available. For me that is one of the joys of traveling!

This was my part of the 29 day menu:

BREAKFAST (Every Day – fruit – cut up, set out first thing in morning as coffee/tea is being prepared & Café de Mexico, Coffee, Tea, sugar, cream & possible the rice pudding drink)

Orange Julius (or other juicy fruit) Parfait, Scrambled Eggs, Pan

Vegetarian Breakfast Potato Hash w/Eggs & meat on the side

Fried Egg Sandwiches – served with Canadian Bacon or similar meat

Fruity Breakfast Rice

Granola, Assorted Cold Cereal, Yogurt, Milk

Vegetarian Breakfast Potato Hash w/Eggs & meat on the side

Granola, Assorted Cold Cereal, Yogurt, Milk

Oatmeal, Raisins, Milk

LUNCH (Every Day – PB & J option)

Taco Salad

Served with: Flour Tortillas

Romaine Lettuce

Salsa & Rajas

Asian Couscous salad

Served with: GORP

Fresh Fruit (Apples & Cheese)

Chinese Chicken Salad (vegetarian option as well)

Served with: Deviled Eggs

Gazpacho con Oyster Crackers

Served with: French rounds topped with cheese

Trail Lunch (crackers, cheese, GORP, salami, nuts, dried & fresh fruit, cookies, etc….)

Pasta Salad

Served with: Salami & Rajas

Celery/Apples (jicama,etc) with Peanut Butter

Asian Couscous salad

Served with: GORP

Apples/Celery Peanut Butter or Dried Fruit


Happy Hour

Pina colada mix in a can  —  Powdered margarita or homemade margarita  —  Rum and pina juice  —  Good sipping tequila  —  Red Wine



Appetizer: Sardines / Oysters / Cheese & Crackers

Main Course: Spaghetti con Marinara Sauce

Add fresh onions, garlic to sauce

Veggies in Spaghetti

Fried Salami or Chorizo on side

Served with: Green salad & Dressing

Garlic Bread

Dessert: Chocolate and Red Wine


Appetizer:  Guacamole & Chips (if no chips look at crackers or even dry breads [sliced thin]) & Jicama con lemon and chili powder

Main Course: Vegetarian Burritos (potatoes, onion, carrots, basil)

Served with: FD Ground Beef or/& TVP



Spanish Rice

Creamy fruit salad

Dessert: Sweet Peach Buns

 American Mexican Fusion

Appetizer: Pringle / Chips and Dip

Main Course: Sonoran Hot Dogs (Bolillos [Mexican Roll] wrap hot dog in bacon before grilling, grilled onions & peppers, tomatoes, salsa, pinto beans, guacamole, cheese)

Served with: Veggie Lentils or Pinto Beans

Green Salad & Dressing

Dessert: Cookies

American Mexican fusion

Appetizer: Sardines/oysters/cheese & crackers

Main Course: Hearty Vegetable Chowder (Clam Chowder Option)

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Served with: Canned Baby Clams

Crema Carrot Slaw

Dessert: Veracruz Key Lime Dessert


Appetizer: Soup (dry package)

Main Course: Late Trip Stir Fry (if canned veggies not available, use fresh)

Served with: Instant Rice

Dessert: Nilla Vanilla Fruit Pie


Appetizer: Greek Platter (salami, cheese rolls, olives, Dolmas, etc) or Soup

Main Course: Gyro (thinly sliced fatty meat [spices: salt, paprika, pepper, garlic, oregano] – fried, tomato, onion placed inside Pita or rolled in Flatbread. Really good with some fried potato in gyro)

Served with Lime Slaw

Fried Potatoes

Veggie Lentils

Dessert: Cookies


Appetizer: Pringle Chips and Dip

Main Course: BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches (or any other kind of BBQ easy meat) or Sausages con Sautéed Onions on Rolls & spicy mustard

Served with: Fried Potatoes

Coleslaw (Chinese sauce [white wine vinegar, olive oil])

Dessert: No-Bake Cheesecake or Peruvian similar

American Mexican fusion

Appetizer: Cracker, Tomato Rounds topped with Mozzarella and Basil

Main Course: Minestrone con FD Pollo & Papas (vegetarian & pollo op.)

Quesadillas (vegetarian op. & Peruvian sausage, con cheese)

OR Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Served with: Sweet & Sour Salad

Dessert: Platanos (rum, sugar, crema)


Appetizer: Tom Soup

Main Course: Linguine with Sun-dried Tomato Cream Sauce & Salmon

Served with: Caesar Salad

Dessert: Creamy Fruit Salad, Sweet Bread, Sweetened Condensed Milk

I also discovered and made a really yummy Peruvian dish while on the river – Chicken (and vegetarian) CauCau.

The transport of equipment, to Peru and back home to the USA went very smooth.

No Problemas – Nada!





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