I think most of us can agree that one of the best times on a camping trip is sitting back, kicking your feet up and knocking back a couple of cold beers. however, it can be a little challenging to keep your beer your beer cold while camping, but it can be done using numerous methods, through the use of both purchased apparel as well as natural methods, now if you ask me what is the best way to keep your beer cold while camping I would say:
The most effective way to keep your beer cold while camping is by using portable solar coolers, they are able to cool up to a dozen beers at once by harnessing energy from sunlight and by storing it. You can also keep your beer cold by covering it in a plastic bag and submerging it in a water body.
As a frequent camper and lover of beer let me give you a couple of pointers:
- First, if you are not using cans I suggest you make the switch immediately because cans get cold faster than bottles.
- use a beverage sleeve/koozie to further extend the coolness of your beer, by insulating it from the surrounding.
- plan ahead and pack what is necessary
For those of you already at your campsites without a cooler, I suggest skipping to the 6th option and onward listed below to cool your beers, however if you are in the planning stage let us start by:
how to keep your beer cold while camping:
1. Use Solar-Powered Coolers
Solar powered coolers are a revolutionizing technology that are considered new in the industry, they use solar power to get their energy and lithium-ion batteries to store it, they can also be charged using a 110v outlet. They can be used on camping trips, fishing, and in RVs.
The way they are used is pretty straightforward, you plug them on a normal 110v electric outlet, they take a couple of hours to get charged up. Once they are full they can be used for more than 10 hours straight, not considering they can be charged off-grid with sunlight.
I didn’t even know they were a thing until a friend turned me on to them. And boy was I missing out; I can’t even begin to list the benefits I have gained from my switch over from a regular cooler.
the first and the obvious one is they can keep your food and drinks cold for hours minimum they can go days or even weeks depending on how you use them
Besides keeping your drinks and food cold you can use them to charge your phone while you are off-grid, you can even control the temperature on your phone, how wild is that.
The second thing I want to bring up is, unlike traditional coolers, you don’t need ice with solar-powered coolers, which means more space not to forget they are less messy.
The upsides of owning a solar-powered cooler:
- Allows you to set the temperature precisely, some even by using an app on your phone.
- Dramatically shortens the time to cool your beers down to about 15-30 mins
- Have USB ports and 12V outlets on the sides of the cooler so you can recharge your phone or even laptop.
- The biggest upside is that they can be charged off-grid in only a few hours.
the one and the only downside of solar-powered coolers is their price, they are expensive. I bought a solar-powered cooler about a year ago it is called GoSun Chill Solar Cooler on Amazon and I really like it, it is a piece of tech I admired
2. Wrap Your Beer in Wet Cloth/the Scotsman Method
If your campsite happens to be particularly windy. Take a t-shirt, soak it in water and wrap it around your beers. Then hang the shirt on a branch for better wind access. Then sit back and let mother nature handle the rest.
The efficiency of this method may vary depending on the weather conditions at your camping site. So, if you aren’t camping somewhere where the air is particularly cool and windy, I suggest you try one of the following alternatives.
I once used this method when my camping trip ran a bit long, and my camping site was particularly windly. I was surprised at how efficient this method of cooling was.
3. Use Traditional Coolers
If you are unable to splurge on even the cheapest solar-powered cooler, the next best option at your disposal is buying a run of the mill cooler.
Even though I find regular coolers obsolete at this point, I will still give you some tips so you can best utilize them.
I have used my fair share of coolers over the years and my advice to you would be to not cheap out. The better the cooler, the more insulation it has, the longer it will keep the ice from melting and your drinks cold.
When packing your cooler, I recommend you fill it up to the brim because any empty space in your cooler creates hot pockets, rapidly heating up your cooler.
If you’re like me and bring along something to grill while camping, I suggest using ice packs instead of traditional ice in your cooler, so that your food isn’t spoiled by the melting ice.
To extend the length of time your cooler stays cold I would recommend pre-chilling your beers and cooler, organizing its contents as well as adding some extra insulation. You can insulate the outside by covering it up in wet towels and the inside using reusable ice mats or reflective foil.
Once at the campsite keep your cooler in the shade away from direct sunlight, if necessary, move the cooler throughout the day.
In my experience, it is better to have two coolers for a camping trip. One big and the other small, I personally used the smaller one for my drinks of the day and opened the big one only to stock up. This lets the bigger cooler stay cold a lot longer.
If you don’t have a cooler or are looking to buy a new one I recommend you checkout the Yeti Tundra 65 on Amazon, this is the model I previously used to own.
4. Bury Your Beer in the Ground
What you basically need to do is dig a small hole in the ground at a spot with soft dirt and some shade, preferably under a bush near your camping site, doubling as a marker. Then I would put the beers in a zip-lock bag, to not get them dirty, and bury them, I would suggest burying the beers overnight for optimum results.
If you happen to be camping during the winter season, it is easier to keep both your drinks and food cold, especially if it is a snowy day. You can cool your beer by simply placing your cans in the snow or filling a bucket with snow and putting your beers inside.
5. Submerge Your Beer in Water bodies
If you happen to be camping next to a stream or a small river then I suggest you put your beers in a zip-lock bag, make sure it is airtight then drop it in the water, tie a string to the bag so that it won’t be washed away.
From personal experience, if fully submerged the beer would take about half an hour for the beer to reach the temperature of the water.
Without a doubt, the best way to keep your beer cold is by using a solar-powered cooler, which allows you to stay off-grid while still affording you the privilege of charging your many devices. Traditional coolers come in as a relatively close second.
However, camping trips require planning & organizing even before leaving the house.
Pre-Chilling Your Drinks: If you’re planning a camping trip and plan I highly recommend you start the cooling process even before you leave your house. So I suggest you buy your beers the day before you plan on leaving and store them in the freezer.
Picking The Opportune Time To Leave: Picking the right time to hit the road is something that should be given due consideration since your drinks could get warm on the road if you’re driving in the scorching sun. So I suggest you pick a mild and temperate time to leave the house. Ideally in the morning or well into the afternoon after the sun has lost its zeal. so without further ado let us get straight to it