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Schenk
Off Leash Man



Joined: 16 Apr 2012
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Location: Traveling, with the bear, to the other side of the Mountain
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Off Leash Man
PostWed Oct 16, 2019 8:12 am 
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On the topic of alternate ice packs; light corn syrup makes an excellent ice pack for injuries. Sugar content keeps freezing point down and most freezers will not freeze it solid, so it is flexible like the blue ice packs for injuries.
Zip lock, or vacuum seal it.

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Nature exists with a stark indifference to humans' situation.
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Luc
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Joined: 05 Jul 2003
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Location: accepting wise-cracks like no other
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PostTue Nov 05, 2019 9:38 pm 
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I take my daughter on long road trips every summer (more economical and way more fun than day camps).

I've always borrowed my folk's Yeti Tundra 65 but I'm getting tired of that so I took my giant igloo marine cooler. It's not ancient or a POS, but it's no roto.

Before I left I got WAY nerdy online looking at different rotos, ways to augment existing coolers, but found a pretty comprehensive vid on which ice methods work best, and lasts the longest. I learned that dry-ice will break stuff, and block ice doesn't last as long as simply using ice cubes (from the sto') - big chunks being okay, and to not simply relying on a few grocery store blocks.

The science seemed to come down to how the temperature equalizes in the ice+ice water combination. The main takeaway was to let the ice melt but don't drain the water. The water will be near freezing temps (maybe below in some circumstances?) until the last bit of ice is melted, then the warm-up begins. The only bummer(s) around this is that the cooler stays way heavy the whole time, and you're rooting around in ice water the whole time, too.

So last summer I tried this on a 40 day road trip through the west including extended time in southern Utah, temps in the low 100's. My daughter being just under 7yo, I was getting in and out of the cooler constantly, but the method returned great results, and there are no "warm spots" when using it. I vacuum sealed as much stuff as I could, divvying up items and vacuum sealing them to compartmentalize the loot. Like instead of having 2# of cheese in one package, I'd break it out into packages that might last 3-4 days and vacuum seal each one separately. That allowed me to keep almost all the food submerged the whole time, and keeping what was open in a "waterproof" snapware type container, which floated around. Below the surface of the ice(water) was like a super stocked fridge.

I probably re-iced maybe 5 times. Hot temps outside, but cold goodness inside. Near the end of the trip I was still finding vacuum sealed gold nuggets of Stewart's Beef Jerky, homemade meatballs, pesto chix pasta, and of course cold ones. Reallllly cold ones.

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