When it comes to fishing, there are few necessities that come to mind instantly: a rod, tackle box, bait, and a cold drink. What probably doesn’t come to mind right away is a fishing cooler, but you are doing yourself a huge disfavor by not considering this a must-have for fishing trips.
While many people enjoy the catch and release aspect of fishing, a fishing cooler is a requirement for those who are looking to bring back something to grill . Not only does it provide an easy method for both storing and transporting the fish, but the cooler keeps the fish cold so you don’t have to worry about your catch spoiling before you can get home.
It also pays to mention that the coolers will keep your vehicle from smelling like a pond full of fish for weeks by trapping and confining the smell to the inside of the cooler. The fishing cooler can also double as a drink cooler, keeping your beverages nice and cold until you need them while giving you the option to store fish, shrimp, crabs, and more when needed.
What to Know Before Purchasing
While fishing coolers may look the same at first glance, there are several things to consider when purchasing a cooler.
You should first think about how long you intend to be outside fishing. If you’re planning on being on the water for several hours then you’ll want something that is heavily insulated and larger. If you were planning on staying just an hour or so then you should go for a smaller model. The temperature, how many fish you hope to catch, and portability are also determining factors in which cooler is right for you.
If you’re making a significant hike through the woods to get to your favorite spot, you probably want to pick up a lightweight and easy to carry cooler. If the weather is incredibly hot, you will want to get a heavily insulated cooler so you don’t have to worry about the ice melting before you leave.
Below we have compiled a list of two of the best fishing coolers for sale in order to help you select the one that’s right for you.
Igloo Marine Ultra Cooler
The Igloo Marine Ultra Cooler comes highly recommended for numerous reasons. For starters, there are nine different sizes to choose from so you have plenty of options depending on your fishing needs and budget. For those with boats, the wheels are coated so they won’t scratch or scuff your boat’s surface.
The cooler features a push button and locking handle that means you can drag the cooler behind you on its two wheels instead of carrying it around all day. Obviously, this is a must have feature if you have a long way to travel or have a lot to carry in the cooler.
This model also features UV protection which promises to keep your fish cold and preserve your ice for extended amounts of time so you can focus less on trips to the gas station to restock on ice and more time enjoying your day.
Engel Live Bait Cooler with Battery Powered Air Pump
While this cooler is certainly more expensive than some of the others found online, it’s definitely worth the extra money. You can purchase the cooler in a 13, 19, or 30-quart size, which is great for people who are looking for a cooler that isn’t bulky or heavy.
Since the cooler features a battery-powered air pump, there’s no need to worry about anything inside melting or getting too hot. The air pump circulates cold air throughout the cooler, which means fewer bags of ice needed.
Rest assured, the batteries last for days so don’t worry about blowing through a ton of them. Even avid fishermen say they rarely have to buy batteries to keep the air pump running. If you’re close to a power outlet, then you can also plug the cooler in to preserve battery life and run the pump on electricity. This is great if you don’t feel like cleaning the cooler out immediately when you get home but still want the contents to stay fresh and cold.
While the cooler is lightweight, smaller than most, and easily portable, it’s by no means constructed from low quality materials. The cooler itself is made of heavy-duty material and can take quite a beating. Also, don’t let the small size deceive you, since it’s perfectly capable of holding a lot. The Engel Live Bait Cooler is more expensive than the previous model.