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Old 04-18-2014   #1
WhitefishBrandon's Avatar
Whitefish, Montana
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 24
Any ideas out there for keeping beer cold for 6 days

Hey everyone, our crew pulled a Main Salmon permit this year for the end of July and this will be the first trip we have all done for longer than 4 days. An item that we haven't quite figured out is how to keep our beer cold for 5.5 days on the river in July. We ran the Smith May/June last year and we had no problem with cold beer but that was only 4 days on the river.

Couple of ideas we have been told are to take all of your beer out of the boxes before leaving for the river and duct tape 6 or 12packs together vertically and horizontally as the box the beer is being stored in will get wet at some point and most likely will lose a beer or two.

The first day on the river you will have cold beer, but to plan ahead and throw X amount of beer into a drag bag behind the boat to cool for the next day.

If we camp by a stream to put our beer in the stream once we get to camp. Not sure where we are camping yet and doubt we will have access to a cold creek each night. So this may or may not apply to us.

We should each have enough room on our boats for an extra beer cooler. Has anyone used dry ice? Positives and negatives on using dry ice would be appreciated.

Block ice and ice milk jugs have been brought up as well for coolers. Does anyone know if you can buy beer and ice at Buckskin Bill's?

Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks!

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Old 04-18-2014   #2
cataraftgirl's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,121
Frozen milk jugs of ice at Buckskin Bills. Pretty sure they have beer, but variety and quantity is a question??? We used to get cube ice and beverages at Mackey Bar, but I heard a rumor that they don't cater to rafters anymore? If true, that's a shame, as we always stopped there to eat our lunch on their deck, accompanied by one of their milkshakes, followed by shopping for t-shirts. A couple times we did layovers up the Southfork, and took duckies over in the afternoon to Mackey Bar for hamburgers, beers, and more milkshakes.

"We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love....and then we return home."
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Old 04-18-2014   #3
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pinemnky13's Avatar
Colotucky, USA
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,054
I wrap the insides of my coolers on longer trips with HVAC silver BubbleWrap. Sometimes on a long trip 1'll do it to a smaller cooler, toss in some ice blocks, beer and duct tape shut and only open it on the last 2 days of the trip
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Old 04-18-2014   #4
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 69
Freeze it. Freeze a couple 12 packs before the trip. Assume about 1 in 12 are gonna explode then just put those in the cooler with the rest (pre-cooled) beer. You don't waste space on ice and worst case scenario you have beer slushies at the end of the trip.
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Old 04-18-2014   #5's Avatar
lafayette, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1961
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 498
cold beer

The bigger the cooler the better. Store bought ice is crap. Freeze a 5 -7 gallon water jug over for a couple of weeks that fits in your cooler in a freezer set to max cold, pre chill cooler and pack the day you are hitting the road and pack your cooler as tight as possible with cold beer . You sound like a big beer drinker so one cooler full probably wont do it for you. Pre chill in the river all the beer you have before adding more to cooler, never add warm beer. I have had the 5 gallon jug stay semi frozen for 3 weeks on the GC. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2014   #6
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David Miller's Avatar
Gypsum, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 458
It's amazing how fast a warm beer cools off in a cold river. I don't drink on the river and by the time I've made camp the beer is cold!
Why does Pluto walk on all fours, drink from a dog bowl, and get treated like...a dog, while Goofy drives a car, wears clothing, and speaks in English?
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Old 04-18-2014   #7
Sembob's Avatar
Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 485
Lot of camps on the Main have streams in them that are much cooler than the river. Drag bags go in there as soon as you set up. After about the third day or so those are probably your coldest beers. Unless you do buy ice at Buckskins it is $5.00 for a gallon jug. I think that is a bargain. They too have milk shakes and porter floats. Another trick is fill one large cooler with block ice and don't open it until the beer coolers need some. Then dole it out. It is amazing how warm beer tastes pretty good on that river.

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Old 04-18-2014   #8
Stiff N' Wett's Avatar
Evergreen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 446
Its good to have a few coolers full of block ice and rotate those blocks into the food cooler as needed. Then have a mini cooler that you can rotate blocks of ice into with your beers.... Don't drain the beer cooler
Pool and a pond... Pond be good for you.
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Old 04-18-2014   #9
Idahomewater8's Avatar
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 19
I agree, freeze it! You don't want to waste space in your cooler for Ice. What I have done is, Line my big cooler with sheets of dry ice wrapped in paper and then sealed in a ziploc bag (that way water from melted "wet" ice wont degrade the dry stuff) Then I freeze about 1/3 of what I am bringing. Different beers freeze better than others, in my experience about 2 or 3 cans per case of PBR, or Coors might explode, oh well. Then I added cold beer and "wet ice" until it was full. Three days into the trip I still had to use an extra oarlock to chip away beers from the ice chuck that had formed in my cooler. By the time we reached Riggins I remember enjoying a welcomed slushy cold beer at the bottom of my cooler.
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Old 04-19-2014   #10
k2andcannoli's Avatar
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 657
Fill your cooler with beer. Then fill with water and use a industrial freezer (any friends that run restaurants?) Its the only way to maximize the space between the can. Drink everybody elses beer till it runs out then crack yours open.

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