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Apr 23, 2014 01:12 AM

powdered alcohol?

can anyone think of a good reason for this except on a long back-country hike?

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  1. That wikipedia entry, and the entire concept is just silly.

    Take a liquid and absorb it into a solid (cyclodetrin). Then when you want it in liquid form again mix it with water.

    Very dilute alcohol, 3% in the wikipedia entry, in slightly sweet water. And tell me, why would you want this?

    Oh, and as for backpacking, it would actually weigh less to just bring along some grain alcohol and a little cool aid to get the same effect.

    23 Replies
    1. re: StriperGuy

      see that was my reaction, except packing liquid is a lot heavier than powder.

      as far as travel - heck I can fly to a strict Muslim country and most all will still allow drinks in a hotel bar to foreigners, so what's the point?

      1. re: hill food

        "packing liquid is a lot heavier than powder"

        That statement is not true. Liquid is not inherently heavier than powder. Mass is mass regardless. I have a ton of powdered lead in the parking lot for you and I assure you it is every bit as heavy as a ton of water, a ton of alcohol, or a ton of saw dust.

        When you have a liquid absorbed by a powder, the weight of the alcohol doesn't go away. In fact, you are making the perfectly useful alcohol more heavy per unit of alcohol by mixing it with essentially useless cyclodextrin.

        1. re: StriperGuy

          I'm guessing hill food was referring to the ease/weight of common packaging of a liquid for a hike, like in a heavy Nalgene bottle, rather than a Ziploc bag.

          Digression aside, I'm with StriperGuy -- all silly.

          1. re: StriperGuy

            But which weighs more - a pound of gold or a pound of feathers?

            1. re: ncyankee101

              Feathers. Gold sucks and can't use the same pound as everything else.

            2. re: StriperGuy

              true a kilo is a kilo and I don't know how much liquid it takes to reconstitute this, but I would imagine it requires more water than powder. I can always sterilize found water in camp and even if the result tastes like crap, my betting money is it's going to taste like crap anyway.

              just weird.

          2. re: StriperGuy

            grain alcohol is smelly, isn't it? And liquids are much more prone to stinky leakage than powders.

            Bears are fond of smelly things.

              1. re: Chowrin

                Bears have no interest at all in distilled spirits.

                1. re: TVHilton

                  They prefer to get drunk off fermented fruit lying on the ground - or road, if an orange truck happens to overturn. (This happened a while back,)

                  1. re: ncyankee101

                    Yes, I've heard of that happening as well.

                    I also have a friend whose beer was stolen. Guess there's enough caloric value in beer to make it seem worth their while.

                    1. re: TVHilton

                      alcohol has plenty of calories.
                      Bears break into cars to get at gum wrappers inside.

                      1. re: Chowrin

                        Are you aware of any instance in which bears have gone after distilled spirits? Or are you speaking theoretically?

                        Because it has never happened to me or to anyone I know--and between us, we have hundreds of years of backpacking experience in the Sierra.

                        1. re: TVHilton

                          I'll take your judgement as authoritative on the subject. And thank you for providing it.

                            1. re: JMF

                              Bears being forced to drink vodka: not really relevant.

                              Both of the other pieces are frustratingly uninformative because they conflate beer, wine, and distilled spirits. I can well believe that bears would be attracted to a recycling facility with a lot of beer and wine bottles, but that doesn't mean that they're specifically attracted to distilled spirits.

                              1. re: TVHilton

                                if they eat fermented berries, hound out beer, and can sniff out alcohol with enough acuity that guides specifically steer people away from it, then it certainly sounds possible that they just might go for anything.

                                I've seen more than one program and article that says that basically every species out there will seek intoxicants whenever they can be found.

                                (personally, I'm really not interested in being close to a bear who's drunk off his ass....)

                                1. re: sunshine842

                                  There are actually lots of cases of bears going for beer or wine.

                                  I'm not aware of (and nobody has yet offered any examples of) bears going after distilled spirits, which are fundamentally different from beer and wine. I am aware of a tremendous amount of evidence to the contrary: people, myself included, carrying distilled spirits in bear country (the Sierra) over the course of decades without a single attempt by any bear to get at the liquor.

                  2. re: Chowrin

                    Maybe we should feed the bears Jack Daniels...I wonder if they will know its not bourbon?

                    1. re: quazi

                      bears respond nicely to anything with a high sugar content. once I didn't get something that was empty, yet had held kool-aid, up in the tree-bag and it was ripped to shreds (thankfully NOT in the tent)

                      I bet they'd prefer beer or wine, but wouldn't dismiss anything in the Bourbon/Rum spectrum..

                        1. re: hill food

                          Yup, bears love their sugar. And of course wine and beer have residual sugar (and beer has a lot of carbs).

                          But in distilled beverages, the sugar has all been converted to alcohol.

                          (Liqueurs, of course, have sugar added back in, so that may be another story altogether as far as bears are concerned.)

                    2. There's no way this doesn't end up just being snorted to disastrous effect no matter what is written on the labels.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: cresyd

                        Hasn't so far, and it's been patented for years.

                        1. re: Chowrin

                          But I don't think it has been commonly available during those years, or even known about. Aside from the unknown quantity of powder to get an alcohol high by snorting it, the other ingredients can't be helpful to nasal passages and lungs. Gong!

                            1. re: Chowrin

                              I had never heard of it until recently. Other than back packers who are concerned about the weight of everything they carry, I can't think of any legitimate purpose for powdered alcohol. I expect it would be used mostly to sneak alcohol into places where it is not allowed.

                      2. along with all the other very valid reasons posted here...

                        ...I would like to think that I have reached a stage in my life where I can afford at least decent alcohol (No more Boone's Farm, thankfully)....and so have no reason to drink shitty-tasting booze with the sole intent to get all messed up.

                        Drinking crappy booze just to get drunk usually results in a pretty hardcore hangover, anyway.

                        1. Hey, now I have something to mix with my powdered water.

                          1. Don't think I'll ever try the product, but it's going to put A LOT of coins in someones piggy bank.

                            Every concert, sports game, and other event where outside alcohol is banned, is now that much easier to sneak a buzz into.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Jigsaw

                              That would seem to be the only reason I can think of anyone ever wanting this.