This image shows the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler near a lake.
Chris Maxcer

Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler Review

Man Makes Fire is reader-supported. When you buy gear using retail links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission that helps pay for our work. Learn more.

The Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler is an inexpensive cooler that performs surprisingly well. It’s relatively small and nimble but it includes two exterior mesh drink pockets, an exterior stash zippered pocket, and closed-cell foam for insulation.

It doesn’t compete with the best soft-sided coolers for multi-day ice retention, but it’s overall design landed it in our guide to the best backpack coolers.

We used it on a sunny 80-degree day on a 6-hour, 16-mile bike ride around a lake and it kept eight drinks cold with just a couple of reusable ice packs. That’s not exactly a scientific test, but I can tell you the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler worked better than expected.

Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler Review

This image shows the front of the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler.
The Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler is our favorite small, inexpensive backpack cooler.

The Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler uses a generous layer of closed-cell foam for its primary insulation. The sidewalls seem to be about 3/4 of an inch thick. The interior liner is FDA-compliant and prevents mold, mildew and odors.

The top lid zipper isn’t waterproof, but it’s smooth and works well. The interior of the lid has a small mesh slide pocket as well, good for plastic silverware or a small reusable ice pack for a bit of extra cooling.

The backpack straps are well-padded for the size, and the back wall of the cooler is also padded. The straps are widely adjustable — at least adjustable enough to fit a 220 lb guy with ease.

In terms of size, it’s one of the smallest backpack coolers, but it will hold up to 20 cans without ice. With ice, it’ll do pretty well for most of a day with 8-to-12 cans if you load up the remaining space with ice. Of course, every cooler works much better when you start with cold drinks.

This image shows the back of the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler.
The backpack straps are simple but cushy.

The overall construction is pretty solid — not throw it down a steep rocky bank solid, but it seems more durable than what are essentially generic department store-branded soft coolers. If you need a cooler for several weekends each summer and some light-duty use for picnics or camping trips where your treat the campground like a base camp, the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler should hold up well. If you abuse your gear, you should get one of the more durable coolers in our guide to the best backpack coolers.

Last of all, Coleman includes a bottle opener, which is sewn to a strap on the side so you won’t lose it.

And that’s about it. The Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler is a great backpack lunch cooler, shorter day-trip cooler and excellent all-around entry-level backpack cooler. It’s the best inexpensive backpack cooler at the lowest price point that’s still worth buying.

Get the Gear:

Need a Size Comparison? 

This image shows the Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler, ICEMULE Pro Backpack Cooler, YETI Hopper BackFlip 24 Backpack Cooler, and OtterBox Trooper LT 30 Backpack Cooler all in row.
From left to right: Coleman Maverick Ultra Backpack Cooler, ICEMULE Pro Backpack Cooler, YETI Hopper BackFlip 24 Backpack Cooler, OtterBox Trooper LT 30 Backpack Cooler. Read more in our guide to the best backpack coolers.
Disclosure: Reviews and Gear Links:

In addition to Man Makes Fire buying gear for reviews and guides, gear manufacturers occasionally ship review units to Man Makes Fire. If we like it, we spend some quality time with the gear and review it, noting if it was provided to Man Makes Fire. After the review, we return it, give it away, or work on longer-term review follow-ups when applicable to reader interest.

We do not accept any gear in exchange for coverage. If we do not truly appreciate the gear, we don't write about it at all -- bad gear will fade into obscurity on its own if everyone ignores it. In addition, we focus on gear from reputable companies, reputable brands, and reputable retailers that we trust.

The gear links on Man Makes Fire are focused on what we are willing to recommend to our own family and friends. Many of our specific gear links connect to industry-standard affiliate advertising programs. When you buy something using the retail links in our guides and reviews, we may earn a small affiliate commission that helps pay for our work.

Basically, we deliver the advice and insight you need, you get the gear you want, and then everyone wins. Pretty straightforward.

Complete Site Details & Disclosures Here


More Stories
Wild GoPro Video of Backflip Over 72ft Canyon in Red Bull Rampage 2013