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View Poll Results: How would you drink heavily in the Adirondacks?
Just bottle it Nancy-Boy!!! 6 27.27%
can we build it? yes we can! 8 36.36%
little men riding big horses in a circle... I mean in a box 5 22.73%
I've got a better idea! 1 4.55%
First world problems do not interest me 2 9.09%
Voters: 22. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:41 PM   #1
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Default bringing beer with me to the cabin

Alright guys and gals, next summer I've got a trip coming up, it's a week in the Adirondacks, in a cabin, on a lake; Away from civilization, cell towers, AND electricity. I'm obviously bringing beer, but want some opinions of how I should go about it. Last year we brought a butt-load of beer in long necks, and went through all of it, took the loooong ride into town to restock, and went through that too; we fished a lot, hence going through so much beer. There will be three heavy vacation drinkers; I estimate we will go through approximately 9 gallons of beer based on the last time.

As mentioned, there is no power; there is a fridge that runs on propane (but I can't stuff my kegs into it cause food has to go somewhere), a gas stove, a gravity fed shower, and some gas lamps in the cabin.

Option #1. - Bottle and transport two batches.
I keg now, but could always bottle a couple batches specifically for the vacation, probably the cheapest option, but I gave away most of my bottles so I'll have to make sure I have enough by the time the trip comes along.

Option #2 - Build a portable 2-tap kegerator.
This would involve building a kegerator out of either a brute barrel or a cooler with wheels (and a collar); bring two kegs and my 5lb CO2 tank. We would probably have to restock the ice at some point? not sure how long it would stay cold.

Option #3 - Build a jockey box.
Either with one or two taps, again two kegs, and my 5lb CO2 tank. I've never done this before, kinda worried about the lines in the jockey box freezing overnight with the ice and what-not, I'm sure we could figure something out.

Option #4 - Other.
Another solution I haven't thought about.

I think option #1 is the best option, but I really wanted to roll out some sort of portable draft system, because I'm a bit of a geek, and hate bottling .

Thoughts and opinions please, I've got eleven months to figure this out, so BIG RUSH!!!

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:47 PM   #2
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I have done a couple of different things. One is my portable "trashcan kegerator" which is big but awesome. We've lined it at times with foam insulation, but it does use more ice so you'd have to resupply frozen water bottles/ice- especially if it's really hot.

You can also do a cooler, with the keg sitting in it and picnic taps. Insulate it with whatever you can, and it will stay colder than the "trashcan" type kegerator.

Take a look at this thread: for some cool ideas! Some are cheap, some are not- but all are creative!

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:55 PM   #3
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Not sure how much money you want to spend but my pelican jockey box held ice for 5 days at the beach with temperatures around 90 degrees out of direct sunlight. I went through 6 corny kegs. Two taps 120ft ss coils in a 95 qt cooler.
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:56 PM   #4
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How about a few of those party pig things or a Tap-a-Draft?

If you get the Tap-a-draft tap thingy, from what I understand, they fit well to a 3 liter bottle.
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:57 PM   #5
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Personally, I'd bottle it.

The noisy and smelly option would be a chest freezer and a generator for your keg.

The expensive but quiet way would be an Engel 12v fridge with bottles. You'd still need to charge the 12v batteries unless you had a half dozen or so to last.

How's the water temp in the lake? That would be my plan, bottles stored in the water, fridge gets used as the on deck circle for final chilling.
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:59 PM   #6
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oh and as long as there is beer in the lines it shouldn't freeze overnight.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:04 PM   #7
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Jockey box is the answer IMO.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:10 PM   #8
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I think a Jockey box is the best answer. It doesn't need electricity and relatively easy to move around. You can get 2 corny kegs and have plenty of cold beer with a small footprint, unlike having 100+ bottles laying around. Then with bottles you have to keep up with them because they are too expensive just to throw away.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:27 PM   #9
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Well the easiest way would probably be to just bottle it all, but what is the fun in that, right?

About 8 years ago my we held my brother-in-law's bachelor party at a family friend's hunting camp about 30 miles into the woods--no electricity and all that. The guy who coordinated it got 2 commercial kegs with hand pumps and we stored them in garbage cans full of ice. Granted we were only there for 3 days, but the beer remained nice and cold, and this was in our hottest part of the summer, late August. We kept the garbage cans on the porch which happened to be on the shady side of the camp, so it didn't get too hot even during the day.

Take it up another step by insulating the garbage cans like Yooper said, and I think you will have a good option of bringing up kegs instead of bottles.

Also, if I were you, plan for consuming more than you think. At least in my experience with parties at my house from when I bottled and now with kegging...kegs seem to drain a lot quicker than the same amount of beer in bottles.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:32 PM   #10
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Here are some random thoughts I had:
-bottles are portable; moving around a lake and take your beer with you
-bottling sucks and you need to make sure carbed before you go; cloudy beers from sediment
-bottles need to be cooled but can go in a cooler with ice to keep cool
-portable kegerator is large and unwieldy; needs ice; potential pouring issues
-jockeybox is smaller that portable kegerator; needs cooling/ice; potential pouring issues

I don't see anything as a perfect solution, but I did think of this one...

Bottle in growlers from your kegerator (drilled rubber stopper on perlick with growler pushed against stopper allowing slow release of gas while filling - counter pressure filling). The downside to this is the cost of that many growlers (10 gallons about 20 growlers at $4/each is ~$80). I do this frequently and have stored the full growlers for weeks without carbonation loss (as long as you have a good lid seal on your growler). Growlers are typically 1/2 gallon (about 5-6 beers) which should be easy for 3 people to polish, and as long as the growler is left more than 1/2 full at the end of the night it should have no problem surviving to the next day with good carbonation. They are small-ish and portable; can be chilled on an "as-needed" basis in the propane fridge and then put in a cooler to transport. Since you'll fill from a carbed keg you can have sediment-free, clear beer. To me, the downside would be the cost and storing the empty growlers when not in use. Again, not a perfect idea but an idea nonetheless.

Sounds like a fun vacation and you certainly are planning ahead

Edit: Damn people reply fast ... when I was typing only Yooper had replied

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