As the world of outdoor sports becomes increasingly more popular and accessible to a wide range of people, the old notions of what camp gear should look like or do are evolving into multi-functional, sophisticated versions of their former selves. Nowadays, factors that figure into anyone’s hobbies include cost efficiency, longevity, and function. We love the amount of soft-sided gear that’s been hitting the market in the last several years because it just makes so much sense. Using fabric and other malleable materials so that the object can be compressed down for convenient storage, while still performing to the level of their plastic-molded counterparts is a great key to encouraging people to make more sustainable choices without sacrificing on convenience. Here are just a few of our favorite soft-sided coolers from SunnySports.
The cooler is a piece of outdoor gear that virtually everyone owns, and they come in a variety of sizes to suit individual needs. We love this folding cooler from Kelty because you don’t have to sacrifice on size just to save a little space. If space is at a premium where you live, consider a cooler that holds the volume of a traditional cooler, but only takes up about one quarter of the storage space. The waterproof outer shell keeps your cooled goods safe from dirt and weather, while the PVC-free molded top offers a surface to set things on, as well as four cup holders. A zippered closure, sturdy nylon carrying handles, and an adjustable shoulder strap (small size only) make this cooler a great long-lived choice. Available in 3 sizes.
This is the ultimate cooler for short day hikes, or an afternoon at the park or beach. Split into two sections, the bottom half is lined with waterproof cooler fabric to keep your beverages and perishables at a desirable temperature, while the top half is roomy enough for snacks, sunscreen, books, or any other personals you want to bring along. It even has two internal mesh pockets designed specifically to hold to wine bottles, which reminds us that “movies in the park” is beginning soon…but if wine isn’t your thing, the 12 in the name of the Kelty Duo Pack alludes to the fact that it can hold up to 12 cans of beer or soda, elevating its value immensely. Two external mesh pockets keep your keys or cell phone contained, and in addition to being totally collapsible and space-saving, this clever cooler tote has carrying handles on the top, as well as integrated and stuffable backpack straps. We can’t imagine packing and lugging a cooler could be any easier than it is with the Chili.
And finally, for those who are interested in a sustainable lunch box for hitting the trail, we have the Takeout Cube from Mountainsmith. This sturdy little cooler is constructed from waterproof materials both outside and within, with a wide zippered closure and included bottle opener! The front features a bungee and cincher for securing items to the outside of the cube, and the size will accommodate many ice packs on the market today, if you want to keep that 6-pack cold and refreshing.