*Ozark Trail Cooler Review*
Picnics and backyard parties are incomplete without popping a few cold ones. Nothing beats the heat like a few chilled beers with your friends in the wonderful outdoors. Whether you’re at the beach, or a park, tailgating with your friends or hunting big game, having something to keep your drinks perfectly chilled just takes the whole experience to another level, especially in the summer heat. Besides drinks, you can use a cooler to keep a number of things fresh and cold when you’re outside, such as salads, fruits, and even meat.
Though you will find a wide range of brilliant coolers on the market, there are a few things you should keep in mind before investing in one. It’s not every day that you buy a trail cooler, so the one you do buy should be durable enough to last for years to come. Our recommendation lies with Ozark trail coolers, one of the best ranges of coolers by Walmart. However, before we begin to explain to you why these coolers are worth investing in, let us first take a look at some features that a good cooler must contain.
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Rotational Molding or Rotomolded Coolers
Most new coolers are manufactured and insulated by a process known as Rotomolding, or Rotational Molding. This makes the coolers more robust, more durable and helps them keep internal temperatures stable for days.
When a cooler is rotomolded, a unique mold for it is constructed, which is then filled with a special powdered-plastic material. This mold is rotated on a double axis until the plastic melt completely fills all the crevices of the hollow cavity. The mold is continuously rotated so that the plastic resin material can spread out evenly through it.
The end result is a simple yet astounding single-piece plastic cast that has the desired shape of the cooler and is free of any imperfections. Rotomolding gives new coolers a substantial edge over old fashioned traditional ones, especially in terms of durability, quality, and the ability to retain ice for days on end.
Toughness and durability are two of the most essential elements of a cooler. You have no real control over the conditions of the outdoors, and accidents are likely to happen. If your ice cooler can get damaged easily, even on the slightest impact, then you won’t be able to take it for long treks without continually worrying about it.
If the cooler does get damaged while you’re on a trail, your trip can also get ruined since you can’t keep going back and forth to get ice. Fortunately, most modern Rotomolded coolers are very durable and resistant to impacts and damage thanks to their superior construction.
A cooler needs to be as portable as possible, especially when you’re going on long treks. If your cooler is unnecessarily heavy and bulky and lacks proper attachments for someone to hold on to, lugging it around with you will quickly turn into a nightmare.
Retains ice for a few days
The most crucial feature of an ice cooler is its ability to hold ice for a long time. The more insulated it is, the longer the internal temperatures can be maintained. Even if the cooler is small, you would still want it to be able to keep ice for a few days when you take it on overnight trips.
How To Prep Your Ice Cooler For Optimal Performance
To ensure that your ice cooler performs to its best capabilities, you must bring its internal temperatures down at least 24 hours before packing it for your final trip. The best way to pre-chill your ice cooler is by filling it with plain ice at least a day before the trip and keeping it tightly packed aside. This will cause the internal temperature of the cooler to drop significantly and will also get rid of any residual heat trapped inside the cooler.
The next day, dump out all the ice that you used for prechilling, add a fresh batch, and layer your food and drinks accordingly to ensure that they stay colder for longer. Not only will your cooler be able to keep the ice for a longer time, but your drinks will be chilled much more quickly and for a longer period as well.
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How To Layer The Contents Of The Cooler Correctly (Ozark Trail Cooler Review)
Although these coolers are designed to keep your food and drink cold no matter how you pack them, in order to get the best results, we still recommend layering everything to ensure it all stays fresh and chilled for a longer time.
1.) Put a layer of fresh ice in first
Always start by putting a layer of ice in your cooler first. Lining the bottom part with ice will ensure that your cooler stays as cold as possible for long.
2.)Use larger solid blocks of ice instead of small crushed ice
Larger ice blocks can maintain low temperatures well, and they melt at a much slower rate compared to soft or smaller pieces of ice. However, you will need a wide variety of sizes in order to fill the cooler properly.
3.) Put your food in the middle
Put your food on top of the bottom layer of ice and keep adding smaller ice pieces in between food items to ensure the food stays cold from all over. Don’t toss everything in senselessly. Lay out all your edibles in a manner that makes taking them out much more straightforward.
If you have pre-planned and packed meals, then keep them on one side and keep your other snacks on the other side, so you don’t have to rummage through the ice cooler looking for things.
Also, keep your smaller water bottles, drinks, and any items that you think you will take out first on top to ensure you keep the lid off for as little time as possible. Keep the lid tightly closed and only open it only when absolutely necessary to retain the temperatures for as long as possible.
4.) Pour Ice on top
Layer different sizes of ice cubes on top of all your food and drinks and fill the ice cooler to the brim this way. Ensure that there is a variety of sizes on top so that the smaller sized ice particles can flow into all the small spaces and crevices while the bigger sizes fill up the bulk of the ice cooler. Close the lid tightly to ensure that low-temperatures are maintained in the ice-cooler.
Ozark Ice Coolers
Now that you have a better idea about what a good ice cooler should look like, you’ll be able to choose one wisely and will be able to make the most of it once you purchase one. To make a choice easier for you, we’ve reviewed one of the best Ice Cooler ranges currently in the market.
The Ozark Ice cooler range by Walmart is by far the best cooler range for modern ice coolers. The range contains a set of 5 coolers;
- The Ozark Trail 73-Quart High-Performance Cooler,
- The Ozark Trail 52-Quart High-Performance Cooler,
- The Ozark Trail 26-Quart High-Performance Cooler,
- The Ozark Trail Premium 36-Can Jumbo Cooler,
- And the Ozark Trail Premium Backpack Cooler.
Ozark Trail 73-Quart, 52-Quart, and 26-Quart High-Performance Coolers
The Ozark series of coolers is an excellent yet affordable set of coolers that have all the qualities of high-end, expensive coolers, at a much more affordable price tag. The three hard-sided coolers differ only in size, as they are built in exactly the same way and hence carry all the same properties.
The coolers have excellent insulation that can give any high-end coolers a run for their money. The coolers are rotomolded, contain strong T-latches, and a freezer-grade gasket. The ice retention capability is, of course, the most important quality of any ice cooler, and these hard-sided coolers exceed all expectations in terms of performance. The larger sized ice coolers can store ice for up to 5 days while the smaller sized ones keep ice for 2-3 days.
Although you will find coolers that keep ice for longer, their prices are all sky high, for what they’re worth these Ozark coolers do the job brilliantly. Most people need ice coolers for a maximum of 3 days, usually in which case these coolers are perfect.
As far as durability and portability are concerned, the Ozark ice coolers genuinely take the cake. Packed with a bunch of brilliant features, these ice coolers are made from the best materials and manufacturing processes to give you tenacious cooler models fit for any occasion and terrain.
Some of the unique features of these ice coolers include an internal wire basket, non-skid feed, comfort-grip handles, and fish ruler. They are also rotomolded like all high-end coolers and have stainless steel hardware. All Ozark coolers are IGBC certified, which means that these coolers are proven to be as tough and durable as they claim to be.
The coolers lack some visual appeal since there’s a limited number of colors they’re available in. However, their design is attractive and simple. Overall the coolers look modern and classy.
The best part about these coolers has to be their price tag. Ozark has managed to put all the features present in high-end coolers into their ice cooler range and still maintained their low price. These coolers also have an astounding 5-year warranty, which is more than what most products offer.
Ozark Trail Soft Cooler
The Ozark Trail soft coolers offer much more variety in terms of size compared to their hard-sided counterparts, while still adhering to Ozark’s affordability first philosophy. They come in 6, 12, 24, 36, and 42 can totes and cooler backpacks. The smaller sizes are priced very reasonably, while the premium models fall into the intermediate price bracket.
The smaller models are built to retain ice for only a few hours and are perfect for smaller picnics and outings, the maximum they can hold ice is for around half a day. The premium models, though, are much better in their ice retention capabilities because of their hard, insulating outer shell and keep ice for around a day and a half.
The softer shelled ice coolers by Ozark have excellent portability and are designed to give you optimal storage capacity. All models come with separate zipped pocket and mesh side pockets, the number of which varies with ice cooler size. These ice coolers are also quite easy to take around and feature a variety of carrying options, including padded shoulder straps, optional wheels, and much more.
Ozark really brings in their A-game with their premium models, which have numerous features and better build quality. The coolers also come with some very handy features such as built-in compression straps, bottle openers, and daisy chain attachment points. The premium models are made with top quality and wash-friendly 600D outer coating.
Ice coolers can be extremely useful when it comes to storage and keeping things chilled. If you have an adventurous streak in you and are fond of the outdoors, then investing in a good ice cooler is essential. It’ll allow you to prepare for your trips thoroughly and can save you from buying unreasonably marked up drinks at popular tourist spots!
However, getting a good quality ice cooler doesn’t necessarily mean you have to break your bank for it. There are excellent ice coolers available in the market, such as the Ozark ice cooler range, which delivers on performance, quality, and durability while maintaining a reasonable price tag. Whether you’re looking for large coolers for tailgating and hunting or smaller ones for outdoor picnic or a school trip, Ozark has something for everyone.