I've been doing a lot of research on ice chests since their one of the critical pieces of equipment for camping that I will need for my mini vacations, and like everything else in life ice chests are a trade-off. You can buy very expensive ice chests that keep ice for a long time, the Yeti comes to mind, or you can buy cheap ice chests that will melt the ice pretty quick. And nowadays there's some intermediate ice chests that don't cost too much and do a pretty good job of holding the ice.
I decided on an intermediate ice chest because they lend themselves well to doing some modifications that will make them hold the ice for as long as an expensive ice chest.
Expensive ice chests keep ice longer for basically two reasons, the lid seals a lot tighter, and they have more insulation in them. It's as simple as that. Back in the day when I was using ice chests a lot I always modified my ice chest to hold ice longer by lining the inside of the ice chest with 1 1/2 inch thick Polyisocyanurate, better known as Polyiso. Which can be bought at Home Depot for Less than 20 bucks for a 4 x 8 sheet.
And to seal the lid better I would use some weatherstripping on the underside of the lid. And if the lid was a little warped from the sun I would hold it down with a couple of bungee cords or if I felt particularly ambitious I would put a couple of clasps on it to hold the lid down extra tight.
I found by doing this I could double or triple the time my ice would last especially if I threw a wet towel over the ice chest.
So I ended up buying a Coleman Xtreme 50 quart ice chest with wheels on it from Dick's Sporting Goods for about $35. I don't actually need one this big but by the time I finish re-insulating it it will be smaller inside.
This is the first ice chest with wheels I've ever owned, which could help explain why the old theboondork's back doesn't work as well as it used to. So wheeling it from the truck to the tent sounded better and better the more I thought about it.
the ice chest I finally chose. It's not perfect but then what is.