Summer is coming soon enough and whether you're going to be heading out to the beach or in the car for a nice long road trip, one thing you'll want to have on hand is a nice cooler. Today we'll be taking a look at the 24 pack soft cooler from Polar Bear. In the past I've had some soft coolers that just didn't measure up; let's see how this one does.
Out of the box
Made with a heavy duty nylon outer shell with a leak proof and sweat proof Dura-Temp liner, this cooler will hold up well. Even the zipper is heavy duty, rubber coated, and won't leak. You can hold the cooler with two Velcro handles, or attach the padded shoulder strap. As for as additional storage, there is an extra side pocket that has a zipper. Luckily you won't need to worry about a bottle opener, since that's included on the strap of all of their coolers. This cooler will not mold or mildew, and is washable with soap and water.
The first hand experience
This cooler will definitely hold up. Like I said, I've had some soft coolers before, but the material was flimsy, and never held up too long on the inside or out. This stuff is extremely thick on the outside and could take some real abuse. On the inside, everything is sealed tight. Even with standing water, it holds up well. The material is very thick, but still flexible. It'll hold its form for the most part, but if you needed to stuff it down, you'd still be able to do that.
It states that it can keep ice for 24 hours, so we decided to test it. First we threw in a 12 pack of soda, and poured in the ice. Everything fit extremely well. Even if we did use a full 24 pack, there's still room on the sides for a layer of ice. After 24 hours, we checked back, everything was still cold, and the ice was still surviving just fine. There was a noticeable amount of water after 24 hours, but going that long without any new sources to keep it cold, it wasn't much to complain about. It comfortable held it's cold longer it would typically be necessary.
The additional benefit to this cooler over the hard outer shell coolers is that this one stores much easier. With the softer material, you can condense it down and stash it just about anywhere.
The Polar Bear cooler is a quality product. It holds up to the heat and will hold up to some real life abuse. This cooler will be perfect for any trip we can think of and when you're back home, it'll pack up nicely.