Are We Not Men? We are ManPlow!

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Super Bowl Sunday, 2015. Some will remember it as the day that the Seattle Seahawks snatched defeat from the jaws of victory with a bum pass in the final seconds of the game. For those of us in the midwest, it was also the day of the mighty Super Bowl Sunday blizzard, that dumped a foot of snow across the heartland. A blizzard on the manliest of days requires the manliest snow shovel. And that shovel is MANPLOW!

To be honest, I had eyeballed the Manplow in the local Ace Hardware a couple of years ago, but the $59 price tag scared me off. But last summer, during a big moving clearance sale, I grabbed on for ½ price. I was a little skeptical about this aluminum tube push handle and the plastic blade- I’ve always been a Yo-ho steel shovel man myself. But what the heck- how far wrong could I go for 30 clams?

I sort of forgot about it until our first good snow. I decided to get it out to clear snow outside my shop. Holy Cow! This thing is AWESOME! In my opinion, it is faster, and in some ways better, than a snow blower. Full disclosure: I’m not a fan of snow blowers in general (that’s just me) and I don’t mind a good aerobic workout moving snow in the winter. In the words of my favorite writer, Robert Anton Wilson- “Of course I’m crazy! But that doesn’t mean I’m wrong!”

8" of new snow outside the shop.
8″ of new snow outside the shop.

The thing is designed to PUSH snow, so you never pick the snow up to throw it. This is a huge back-saver. According to their website:”MANPLOW’s utilize your body’s strongest muscles to do the work. Your leg and abdominal muscles generate the power while the MANPLOW’s EZ Glide Edge transfers all that power to the business of pushing snow. There is no lifting, so there is no strain on your back…

MANPLOW PRO’s strong, lightweight, snow shovel blade is capable of moving loads greater then 300 lbs; MANPLOW Metro 150 lbs. They are both corrosive resistant and can be angled right or left without any time consuming adjustments. Just angle the blade while walking and your MANPLOW will slide the snow in either direction.

For big open areas like driveways, it is truly amazing. Of course, you have to push the snow somewhere, so there may be some shoveling at some point, but I cleared my big parking area in about 15 minutes. The heavier the snow the harder the workout, and you have to do smaller areas if the snow is wet and sticky. But still, I would definitely pay full price for one of these now that I know what it can do.

15 minutes with the MANPLOW!!
15 minutes with the MANPLOW!!

There are so many things to love about this tool- invented by Marc Goldman in Kalamazoo, Michigan and made in the good ol’ US of A. Manplow snow pushers come in a variety of widths and styles. Mine is a “Metro,” meant for residential use, but the HDPE plastic blade is tough and the EZ glide edge allows it to skim over my gravel driveway! Mine is 30 inches wide, but they are available from 24-44 inches wide, made of plastic or aluminum. Pricing starts at around $60 and goes up from there depending on the size/model you go with. What a great, simple invention!

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About Rich

Rich Dana loves to build things, to tinker on things, and to grow things. After more than a decade as a historic building remodeler in Brooklyn, New York, he and his wife Ericka moved to their back-to-the-land dream home (and fixer-uper nightmare), an 1870s farmhouse on 15 acres in eastern Iowa that they call “Catnip Farm.” For the last 18 years, Rich has specialized in super-efficient historical renovations and solar PV installation. He is working to convert much of the farm into perennial food crops like nut trees and berries, and he helps Ericka out with her heirloom seed project. His latest passion is learning to sew.

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