Friday, August 14, 2009

C&O Canal and GAP Ride - Day 3 - Keeping Beer Cold

I like to think that this blog is, at times, informational as well as inspirational and entertaining. To that end, I want to make sure I share precious nuggets of knowledge that will be lifesavers for future bicycle tourists. When touring, there are a handful of essentials:
- a bicycle that is in good working order
- some way to carry your gear (panniers, trailer, backpack, whatever)
- food
- water
- and most importantly of all - a way to keep your beer cold.

Over the last 3 days of touring, Bob and I had experimented successfully with various ways of doing just that, keeping that wonderful beverage called beer nice and chilly!

On our first night, the campground staff were kind enough to dig in their trash and find a beat up, broken, filthy styrofoam cooler. It wasn't the most aesthetically pleasing apparatus you've ever set your eyes on, but it was functional. Functional = contains and insulates ice = keeps beer cold. A formula for success.

On our second night, since were staying in a cabin, we simply lined the trash can with a clean trash bag, placed the beers in the bottom and dumped the ice on top. Once again - we enjoyed cold beer throughout the evening.

On our third night, we hit on a method that I think is a jewel for bicycle tourers. Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to present to you the ultimate bicycle tourist beer cooler. Let's affectionately call "Paul's Gift to Mankind".

Step 1: Empty all the stuff from your pannier.Step 2: Line the pannier with a large ziploc bagStep 3: Lovingly place beer in bottom of bag.Step 4: Dump ice on top.Step 5: Close the ziploc bag and zip the pannier shut.Step 6 - 11: Drink ice cold beer at your leisure.

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