DIY Cooler Hacks to Survive the Wild

If there's one thing we've learned from years of braving the wilderness, it's the importance of adaptability. Out there, it's not just about surviving - it's about thriving. One item that often accompanies us on our adventures, particularly in warmer climates, is a cooler. But this isn't your average picnic accessory. With a few tweaks and tricks, you can transform it into a multipurpose tool that aids your survival. Here are some DIY cooler hacks straight from our survival handbook.

For the ultimate comfort while traveling look for a portable camping kitchen.

1. Create an Ice Block Fortress. Сooler hacks to keep ice longer.

Instead of filling your cooler with ice cubes, freeze water in large containers like milk jugs or Tupperware. Larger ice blocks last significantly longer than their cubed counterparts, keeping your perishables cool for an extended period. Remember to leave some room in the container for the water to expand as it freezes.

2. Line it with Reflectix

Reflectix, a reflective insulation material, can significantly increase your cooler's efficiency. Cut and fit a piece to the inside of your cooler - the reflective surface will bounce the cold back into the cooler, keeping your items cooler for longer. This is particularly useful in hot climates where every degree makes a difference.

3. Pre-Chill Your Cooler

Before packing your cooler, fill it with ice to get the interior temperature down. This pre-chilling technique will help your ice last longer once you replace it with your food and drinks.

4. Strategic Packing

Think of packing your cooler like a game of Tetris. Cold air sinks, so put your ice blocks at the bottom and layer your perishables on top. Fill in the gaps with additional ice cubes or pack towels to insulate and prevent items from shifting.

5. DIY Cooler Divider

A cooler can quickly become chaotic if not managed properly. Create a DIY divider using a thin plastic cutting board. This way, you can separate food from drinks or raw from cooked items to avoid cross-contamination.

6. Waterproofing Trick

Avoid a soggy sandwich situation by using sealed containers or zip-lock bags for your food. As the ice melts, it can seep into packaging and ruin your food. Keeping everything sealed ensures your food stays dry and safe to eat.

7. Use Your Cooler as a Washing Station

Once the ice has melted, don't let that water go to waste. Use it to rinse off dishes, utensils, or even yourself. In the wilderness, every resource counts.


In the wild, staying adaptable and making the most of your gear can mean the difference between a miserable experience and a thrilling adventure. With these DIY cooler hacks, you're one step closer to conquering the wilderness like a true survivalist. Until our next adventure, stay wild and always be prepared.

If you're planning your next trip read our articles about National Parks




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Cooler hacks
Cooler hacks
When embarking on a camping adventure, there's an unsung hero that keeps your drinks frosty and your perishables fresh – the trusty cooler. Get cooler hacks that will maximize your cooler's efficiency!

Goods to use on your next road trip