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Saturday, 15 November 2014 20:53

The Best Kayak Fishing Cooler?

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Since starting kayak fishing a couple years ago, I have been in search for a quality cooler that was light, compact and efficient enough to withstand the heat in my southern homes of Texas and Florida. Fellow Yakangler.com Pro-Staffer Chris Payne wrote some fantastic reviews on a few top name brand coolers that are well suited for kayak fishing (http://www.yakangler.com/blogs/on-the-line/item/3221-the-search-for-the-best-kayak-fishing-cooler-brute-vs-yeti). My only issue with the coolers he reviewed was the price. At around $200, I just couldn’t justify the price within my budget. So, I continued to search for a cheaper alternative and I settled on the Engel Coolers UC 30 RH (http://www.engel-usa.com/products/cooler-dry-box/uc30t-rh).

What I like about this Cooler:

-       4x Rod Holders: completely obvious, but a great alternative to installing more Rod holders and spending more money.

-       Lightweight: at an advertised weight of only 8 lbs, it is approximately half the weight of a Yeti Roadie.

-       Stainless Steel Hardware: built with the salt water angler in mind, a simple upgrade that should enable years of use.

-       Dry Shelf: Another simple upgrade that allows you to store small items above the waterline; great place for wallet and keys.

-       Price: can’t argue with $80. Yeti, Brute or Pelican will cost you around $200 for a similar size.


What I don’t like about this Cooler:

-       No Drain Plug: not a deal breaker, but it would make things easier at the end of the day.

-       Foam Gasket: I would like to see a rubber gasket, I am not sold that theinstalled foam material will hold up as well.

-       Plastic Latches on the back of the lid: Again, I would like to see something of better quality, not so sure on how well these will hold up from abuse.

-       No rubber installed on Coolers feet: Only hard plastic there. It would be a simple thing for Engel to do and would ensure that the cooler wouldn’t slide around on a slick surface. 


Overall, this is a solid cooler at a great price. I have used it for the past four months to include the sweltering Texas summer where temps were up to 105 F. While it won’t keep ice as well as the higher priced models, this little beast has given me a solid 4-5 hours of cool drinks and food at the temps discussed above. The Engel UC 30 RH is a fantastic kayak fishing cooler.


Check out my video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6IVolqEeM6s&feature=youtu.be

Read 13746 times Last modified on Monday, 17 November 2014 09:08
Greg Sterley

Greg is an active duty Army Officer and AH-64D Apache Pilot. He started kayak fishing in the summer of 2011 with his father at his home away from home in Destin, Florida as a cheap way to get on the bay and out into the gulf of mexico. Greg loved kayak fishing so much that he soon forgot about buying a boat and has since owned four kayaks. Whenever he is not out fishing at his current duty station you can catch him working on his cars, shooting guns or enjoying the outdoors with his wife and two dogs.  

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