Summer is a beautiful time for camping; it’s warm, pleasant, and trails and camping sites are open. When considering your list of outdoor equipment, a lesser-thought-of yet very useful tool is an ice maker for camping. Ice makers will give you immediate access to cool drinks, temperature control, and the ability to cool down quickly after a hot bike ride or hike.
What are the best ice makers for camping, and how should one evaluate their features? Let’s look at the benefits that these devices offer, and which ones to choose.
Benefits of Ice Makers
Staying cool when on the road or hiking and biking can be the difference between struggling with a heat-related illness and staying cool and safe. Ice makers can be taken anywhere, and can save campers time and money by eliminating the need to buy ice from a grocery store or gas station. The best ice makers for campers are going to be small, easy to use, and convenient to port around.
Let’s look at some of the most-loved brands and models and see which ones might serve you best.
Igloo ICEB26AQ Automatic Portable Ice Maker
Igloo has long been known as an established and well-loved brand when it comes to camping and outdoors equipment. Perhaps best known for their coolers, Igloo makes a variety of other products, including a portable ice maker for campers.
The Igloo ICEB26AQ is beautiful, compact, and easy to use. Ready with ice in only 7 minutes and holding three quarts of water, this remarkable little device will fit in any camper, RV, or even in the backseat of a truck or SUV. Keep the tank full and this machine can give you 26 pounds of ice in 24 hours; a remarkable amount of product using only clean tap water. With a variety of sizes to choose from, your ice cubes can be larger or smaller depending on preferences. And when your camping trip is over, this machine can sit easily on your countertop at home, and help you make smoothies, milkshakes, and more.
Another well-known name in cooling technology is Frigidaire. The Frigidaire Efic101, like the Igloo, can also make up to 26 lbs of ice in one day, and can have ice ready for a beverage in just 15 minutes. It’s a solid, basic, but well-made device which can store easily on countertops and inside of vehicles.
Frigidaire items are known for being well-made and high-quality, and you can count on this machine to get you through years of camping and traveling. The ice produced is solid and well-compacted, meaning that your drinks will stay colder for longer, and cool your drinks more effectively, too.
Ikich Portable Ice Maker
Weighing in at just 18 lbs, this lightweight little ice maker is perfect for small campers, and smaller spaces. Like the competition, the Ikich can deliver you 26 lbs of ice in just 24 hours, with a single serving of ice ready for you to enjoy in just 6 minutes.
It’s truly tiny and uniquely compact for such a powerful machine, and measures about 9x12x12.5 inches, yet is just as capable as larger models. The ice is small, chewable, and bullet-shaped, making it ideal for water bottles, and sports drink bottles.
Another offering from Igloo, this ice maker comes with a neat carrying handle, making it ideal for fishing trips, and another outdoor events where you may need to lug the ice maker around a bit. Need to take your ice maker camping, but can’t fit an ice maker into a back pack? Understandable.
Take the Igloo B26HNWHN with you, and simply carry your ice maker as you would any other portable piece of equipment. It creates both large and small sized ice cubes, has a self-cleaning feature, and like its competitors can also make a whopping 26 lbs of ice in 24 hours. The handle really makes this model stand out, though, and it’s perfect for off-site picnics, fishing trips, and long-range hikes where you need to replenish ice quickly.
Factors to Consider
What should you look for when considering an ice maker for camping? Well, how many people will the ice maker need to service, and how much space do you have? All leading models can make a single serving of ice in under 8 minutes, with more ice taking more time to form.
How will you transport the ice maker? Most can fit on countertops in RVs and in the back of SUVs. Keep in mind the ice maker’s need for clean water to function, and make sure that you have a source of clean, drinkable water nearby if you use the ice machine while camping. The ice machine can make ice, but the water used does need to be clean to be safe.
Make sure that you also have an electrical source to plug in the ice maker, as these machines do need electricity to function, and will require power. They will also need to be drained, so make sure that you have the ability to drain these devices as needed.
An ice-making can be a huge convenience when on the road, and if you’re planning on camping this summer, consider taking one with you. They’ll keep you cool, comfortable, and can help alleviate the effects of heat, making your entire family or hiking crew safer, as well. As summer temperatures continue to break records, and as heat-related illnesses concern many, there’s an even greater need to stay cool and safe when enjoying the outdoors.
Consider investing in an ice machine for your next camping trip. You’ll find that many of these models have superior capacity, are easy to use and understand, and with proper use can keep an entire company of people well-stocked with ice for a weekend, or for as long as you may need. Best of all, they can be used at home, as well, and keep you supplied with cold ice all Summer long, even after your camping trip is over.