We’ve already detailed exactly why we like HydroFlask, and their line of reliable, sturdy stainless steel water bottles. They’re expensive, but some of the best ones we’ve used, keeping your drinks cool for hours (even days) without the nasty side effects of plastic. Up until now, that was all they made, but it looks like they’ve decided to get in on the cooler game. The HydroFlask Unbound Series Soft Cooler is the Bend, Oregon-based company’s first foray into the world of coolers, and it’s just as good as we hoped.

The first offering in the Unbound Series is a 25-liter backpack designed to give a striking resemblance to a commuter pack, as opposed to a traditional cooler, a la Yeti. It’s sleek, slim and free of any superfluous moving parts. The back is made of a compression molded back panel for a seemingly custom fit, and the material is meant to be puncture-proof and abrasion resistant. (It made for going off-road, remember?)

The True Access hinged top unzips easily and folds entirely out of the way, and they complement it with welded seams and an AquaSeal zipper to ensure no moisture gets in or out.  It’s got the same Tempshield Technology that HydroFlask uses in their water bottles, but built into the cooler walls. Their new Advanced Thermal Mapping puts 20 millimeters of insulation on the top and bottom (a nice touch since hot air rises and cold air sinks) and promises to keep food and drink cold for 24 hours with adequate ice. A BPA-free, antimicrobial and mildew-resistant liner keeps the inside clean; BPA-free was our first reason for going to HydroFlask’s stainless bottles in the first place.

Price? $275. The Unbound Series will also feature a 24L Soft Cooler Tote. We far prefer the backpack version; it’s much more mobile and ready to go, and that’s what it’s all about, right? With one of these, you’re ready for getting off the beaten path and bringing all your drinks with you. Perfect for fishing, the beach, short hikes. It’s not out yet, but keep an eye out for more details.

HydroFlask Unbound Series Soft Cooler Pack

  • Tempshield Technology with Advanced Thermal Mapping keeps drinks cool for 24 hours
  • 25-liter capacity
  • Commuter Pack Design
  • Compression Molded Back Panel
  • Abrasion-Resistant Build
  • AquaSeal zippers, True Access top
  • BPA-Free, Anti-microbial and mildew-resistant liner

You know it is impressive since it has already won the coveted European OutDoor Industry Award. Look for these in the spring of 2018.

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