Submitted: 04-18-2012 by D Graham
My search for a cooler that we could carry on our kayaks led me to the Ice Mule in 2011. I ordered one, and I couldn't be happier with it! My love for this product has led me to order three additional coolers this year, and I can't wait for them to arrive! Sure, it's not made of a rip/tear resistant material, but those materials may not offer the thermal benefit of the material currently being used.
Not being in the manufacturing industry, I'll have to give Roam-It Gear the benefit of the doubt and assume that they did some testing and found the material they use offers the best compromise between insulation properties and durability.
Would I give this cooler to the Samsonite gorilla for testing? No, but I feel that this product will far exceed the durability needs for the majority of its users. I've loaded this thing to the hilt and have had no problems with the buckle or the strap as others have mentioned. Anyone with some common sense should realize that you canít stuff 40 pounds of gear into a 20 pound sack without experiencing problems.
In my opinion, this cooler is built for moderate recreational use; it's not built for rough handling. If you handle it carelessly, or stuff it with sharp cornered items thereís a possibility that it may tear. I donít remember seeing the manufacturer claim that it wouldn't tear or break, and they do seem to stand behind their product.
What they did claim was that it would keep your drinks/food as cold as a hard-side cooler, and that it does that without question! I've strapped this on top of our kayaks in direct sunlight and had the majority of my ice left after spending all day on the river.
Another thing to keep in mind is that people will usually only take the time to post a review or comment if theyíre unhappy. So, itís probably safe to assume that for every negative comment posted that there are several customers who are more than happy with their Ice Mule and the niche this product fills. I know I am!