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Product Review: YETI’s Newest Hopper Cooler Fits the Formula

YETI released a new color of their popular Hopper cooler, and we got an early look.

A few months back, when YETI was busy expertly conducting a spot-on April Fool’s Day prank with their Melk campaign, we connected with the brand who had a cool opportunity for us. They sent one of the new coolers available on the Hopper line in Field Tan, a color scheme perfect for outdoorsmen and hunters and a good contrast to the first iteration of Fog Gray and Tahoe Blue.

The appeal of the soft sided, entirely portable ice chests is no secret, and at this point there isn’t a whole lot of need to shower the products with praise. They’re easily going to perform above your expectations, they’re nearly indestructible, and they’re primed to become the go-to cooler for folks on the move. YETI has truly over-engineered these things, and all our tests have been passed with ease.

The Field Tan coolers are accented by Blaze Orange stitching and include all the features that have put them on the map: tough handles and shoulder straps, a leak-proof construction wrapped in a DryHide shell, the HydroLock zipper, and the famous Coldcell insulation. Since the gray and blue colors always seemed to vibe more with the angling crowd, YETI has now given the hunters an equally relevant option. Like with all YETI products, the coolers are backed by a great guarantee.

And you know, companies are only able to provide guarantees like that when their gear is so unlikely to ever need it.

After some basic “to the park and back” trips with the Field Tan Hopper on my shoulder, it was time to really test it out on a camping trip to Garner State Park in mid-May. Over the course of three days and two nights, the ice used at the beginning of the trip stayed fresh enough, with a few draining processes and one refill, to handle all the food and drinks we could stuff inside.

Granted, there’s a sweet spot involved in the ice-to-items ratio when using any YETI cooler, and since the Hoppers are flexible, things tend to get jostled around. That’s really the only minor critique, because it stood up better than any cooler we’ve tried out of its kind.

Something I wasn’t expecting (but probably should have) was the amount of notice and acknowledgement the new Hopper color would get. Plenty of heads turned to our campsite when fellow outdoorsmen walked by, and it was pretty obvious what they were eyeing. I even got a few comments, “Hey that’s the new YETI color!”

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YETI has reached a level of status tough to obtain in this space, and have cemented themselves in the pantheon of outdoor recognition and hierarchy. They’re doing it by repeatedly coming out with items that garner a fair amount of buzz and attention, and deservedly so.

You know how when you buy a brand new piece of gear you know you’ll use outdoors, but still get a little bummed the first time you get a scuff or scratch on it? With a YETi cooler, it almost feels like a badge of honor when that happens, like that inevitability is slightly more meaningful because you know it won’t affect the performance.

And that, as far as we can tell, is at the heart of YETI’s success. They’re releasing things people will actually use, because they actually work. Go figure.

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NEXT: WHAT’S COOLER THAN A YETI RAMBLER? A CUSTOMIZED ONE FROM RAMBLER ON

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Product Review: YETI’s Newest Hopper Cooler Fits the Formula