While living through a real disaster would be no walk in the park, practicing those survival skills doesn't have to be a total drag. In normal circumstances, it can be a lot of fun to gather some friends and head out into the woods to practice fire-starting or shelter-building. A crackling campfire, hot meal, and some cold beers make the experience all the more enjoyable.
Unfortunately, transporting beer to remote locations isn't exactly a simple task. You can lug around a heavy cooler full of ice, but that's no fun, and it's certainly impractical to transport a full-size beer keg in a wheelbarrow or cart to your off-grid campsite. Bottles break and cans get crushed, both take up lots of pack space, and neither keeps the liquid inside cold for very long.
ManCan is a Denver, Colorado-based start-up that has developed a compact and portable beer keg for use in the outdoors. The ManCan design retains the advantages of a full-size beer keg—substantial capacity, maximum freshness, and easy dispensing—without the tremendous size and weight. It's also said to be extremely durable, and fits in a refrigerator door so you can chill it before your adventure.
The ManCan is powered by standard CO2 canisters and a built-in pressure regulator, and dispenses beer (or any other cold beverage) through the flexible tap hose and nozzle. It's certainly not what we'd call light, weighing in at about 6 pounds dry, but it's a heck of a lot lighter than the 29.7-pound dry weight of a standard empty beer keg. When filled to the brim with 128 ounces (one gallon) of beer, it should tip the scales at about 14 pounds, which is relatively manageable for hiking and backpacking. A regular keg would weigh over 150 pounds—good luck carrying that on your back.
The 128-ounce ManCan seen here is available for $199 with flex dispensing kit and CO2 cartidges. You can also order it without the dispenser for $70, or get a smaller 64-ounce ManCan for $40. To learn more about the ManCan line of portable kegs, go to ManCan.beer (yes, that's the real web address).