This winter we have had a lot of very cold days out on the rivers. On these days I prefer a hot meal for lunch to warm you from the inside out. Usually this means taking a drive to the nearest place that serves food, which isn't always that quick or easy.
Over the years I have use a number of different products to carry a hot lunch. For the most part they have been pretty disappointing. At best I would be eating a luke warm meal. Ask a scientist "What is the difference between hot and cold?" and you will get an answer that might be very surprising. There is no such thing as cold, there is only the absence of heat. This is why it is much easier to keep something cold in the summer compared to keeping something hot in the winter.
In January a good freind came to visit and he loves to ice fish at Hyalite Reservoir. This would be a perfect time for me to test a new Yeti product. In the series of Ramblers there are 1/2 and 1 gallon sizes. After a little thought, about how big my appatite is most of the time, I decided to go with the large 1 gallon Rambler. The night before I whipped up a Crock-pot full of Pork Chili and let it slow cook all night. Usually manufacturers tell you to pre-heat your container with boiling water. This keeps the contents hot for a longer amount of time. I skipped this step to make it a harder test. Now the food would have the job of preheating the Rambler which could effect how long the chili would remain hot.
Once we had finished setting up on Hyalite I decided to leave the Rambler outside the shelter. For about 6 hours it sat, half stuck in the slushy snow covering the ice, battered by 20 mile an hour winds. I was keeping my fingers crossed but in my head I was expecting another luke warm lunch. When we unscrewed the lid we where blown away! The chili wasn't just still warm, it was piping hot! Steam pour out of the Rambler like a Yellowstone geyser was about to erupt. We served ourselves two Coleman cups full of scrumptious Pork Chili but there was no way we could eat it yet. We would have melted off the roofs of our mouths. We had to leave our cups on the ice to cool the food down enough to eat. That was a first.
This may be my new favorite from Yeti. I already know that I will be enjoying hot lunches on the river bank for years to come. This summer there will have to be a Bloody Mary test!
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