Here in Canada these barrels are sold in canoe shops, in 30 or 60 litre sizes. With or without harnesses for backpacking them over portages.
Quarter inch thick heavy plastic, and quite tough.They are used for shipping bulk goods, and lots of industries get a surplus they have to dispose of. Try looking for pharmaceutical companies, veterinary suppliers, animal feed stores,bee keeping suppliers, and bulk food places. Sometimes your local grocery store-you can often get them cheap or free. I like the version with the metal ring clamp to hold on the lid-much more bear proof than screw on lids, and lockable with a small padlock. And, bomb proof,floatable, and with the kind with the handles on the side , easy to load in the 30 litre size. This size will fit on the back of a bike, although it is big. About 20 inches or so tall, and 11 inches diameter at the mouth, fatter in the middle.
Try your local Greek or middle eastern restaurants for empty olive jars. These come in smaller sizes, made of less heavy plastic than the big barrels, but still quite tough and light, with screw on lids, attachment points on the lids, and a groove in the middle that allows lashing them down. These are usually free, as restaurants build up piles of empties. I use one as a camera container when I am serious about being dry and floating. I have even seen square shaped olive jars, which would be more efficient. Be sure to clean them well with soap and bleach, to remove food smells if you will be where bears live.
Last edited by 78Suz; 19 Jan 2012 at 01:04.