You can buy a square Nesco dehydrator from Amazon from @ 60 bucks... i have one and love it.. i buy potatoes on sale, slice or dice, blanch and dry them. Also big bags of frozen vegetables... just spread them on the racks and turn it on at the mfr recommended settings.. same with fruits.. you may need to dip them in lemon juice to prevent browning, but no trouble to do so. i have not yet tried jerky, but will before my first AT attempt..
I will, some point in the future buy a freeze dryer and then can bring complete meals on the trail
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