Intro: The Ozark Trail
The Ozark Trail, which is manufactured and sold through a partnership with Wal-Mart, is a great cooler. Price-wise, it is pretty low on the spectrum. Results-wise, it is pretty good. This is a good-value cooler that performs well and can be bought at an affordable price. This is another high-performance roto-molded cooler, which means that it is considerably more sturdy than your average cooler, and will hold ice for a whole lot longer.
Like most high-end coolers, the Ozark Trail promises to hold ice for up to 7 days in ideal conditions. It does just that. I found that the ice retention on this cooler was just about as good as any other cooler that I have yet to come across. Not to mention, there are some great bonuses that come along with this cooler. The lid alone is full of handy features. The lid features 4 drink holders, which come in very handy for consuming the contents of the cooler when you are out in the wild. Also, the lid has a fish ruler for measuring the size of your catches. This might be a small detail, but I think it’s pretty resourceful and an intelligent use of space.
It isn’t as cheap as some other options, but it is definitely cheaper than the Yeti. In my eyes, it stacks up pretty good to the Yeti in terms of its features, performance, and build quality. Actually, I prefer the heavy duty design of this Ozark Trail to the Yeti Tundra’s slick and simplistic look, which is often perceived as being a bit pretentious. Unlike Yeti, though, the Ozark Trail is manufactured in China. A lot of other premium coolers are made in America, so this is a slight knock, but it definitely keeps the price down.
As far as warranties go, the Ozark Trail offers one of the better ones. Their 5-year warranty is near the top of the list as far as budget-priced roto-molded coolers go, and is substantially ahead of models like RTIC, which recently switched to just 30 days.
Hey, I like it. The Ozark Trail will never have the prestige of the Yeti. But is reputation really worth spending hundreds of dollars extra? Not for everybody. I think the Ozark Trail holds up as viable competition for the Yeti, and is yet another option for a more affordable cooler that is well-built and well-designed, and fully capable of providing awesome results.