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Thread: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

  1. #1
    stepup2stepout
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    Default Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Last year I was shelling out about 15$ a day on ice just to keep meats and other perishables cold. This year I was considering using a mixture of dry ice and regular ice so I don't have to keep buying ice every day. Does anyone have any feedback if dry ice has worked in the past?
    Last edited by stepup2stepout; 03-23-2011 at 11:15 PM.

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    Member Inthecolumbiagorge's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by stepup2stepout View Post
    Last year I was shelling out about 15$ a day on ice just to keep meats and other perishables cold. This year I was considering using a mixture of dry ice and regular ice so I don't have to keep buying ice every day. Does anyone have any feedback if dry ice has worked in the past?
    Yes, this has been discussed the last few days in the thread found http://www.coachella.com/forum/showt...40#post2081440.

    We got a medium sized chunk last year wrapped it in foil and put it in a cooler and it froze solid everything that was near it! On Sunday morning it was still freezing everything close to it and I had to chip out the last of our beers that were encased with ice:-) We used it to make the regular ice last longer and stay colder. Then the dry ice just extends the regular ice but as I said, we had solid ice from the dry ice last year still on Sunday morning that we bought on Wed. in Lake Havasu, AZ. Some dry ice in the cooler with meat makes it last the whole fest but we always use a separate cooler for meat just in case anything does melt we don't want cross contamination with raw meat! Freeze all the meat before hand, even if you are marinating it and it will help quite a bit. The deal with dry ice is how you package it in the cooler. It it gets wet it freezes everything that touches it so you need to have it in a separate container that will not allow the water from any regular ice to leak in it otherwise the whole contents of the cooler will be frozen solid:-) You don't want however to have an air tight container for the dry ice though because the dry ice melts from a solid into a gas and the gas can build up and explode! Leave the little spigot for water to drain from the ice chest open.

  3. #3
    old school
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Dry Ice can't carried on flights and California does have some laws against having it in a sealed container. Something about being a bomb ingredient.

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    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Bumblebee View Post
    Dry Ice can't carried on flights and California does have some laws against having it in a sealed container. Something about being a bomb ingredient.
    it's really easy to make a dry ice bomb, so easy some people make them on accident.

    But you can pick dry ice up on the way to the festival.
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    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Personally, I haven't used dry ice, so I don't know how to handle it. I will be stopping by a local ice company in the San Jose area and picking up some 25lb ice blocks. Different from a regular ice block (which is normally just 10lbs of ice chips crushed together) the 25lb block really is one single chunk of ice cut. Fill the ice chest (LARGE) with a couple of those, freeze a couple 2 gallon jugs of water to put in there (and take out as needed) and then top off with a bag of ice on the way in. I think by keeping the ice chest full and not opening the main lid a lot (there is a small lid for taking out things on top, like beer) it will keep cold. This has worked on other camping trips over long weekends, but I haven't done Coachella, so we'll see.

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    Happy Feet Coachella Bound's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    i wouldnt suggest it... ^^^^

    just take the time now and familiarize urself w/ how dry ice works. i tried it for the first time last year and its a life saver. Not only did i save a shit ton on money not buying bags of ice on the daily but it honestly lasts all the way through the weekend. Measure your cooler and buy accordingly.
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    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Seems like a BIG ass block of dry ice, and some frozen things like water bottles and a bag of ice will keep you locked and loaded all weekend.

    Dry Ice normally comes in 10-inch squares, 2 inches thick weighing about 10 pounds each square. Plan to put one square per each 15 inches of ice chest length. This will work out to 2 squares (20 pounds) for an average 40-quart cooler.

    Most people wrap it in newspaper, and as previously stated you can wrap it in foil for better insulation.
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    Member Inthecolumbiagorge's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Dustin da DnB Soulja View Post
    Seems like a BIG ass block of dry ice, and some frozen things like water bottles and a bag of ice will keep you locked and loaded all weekend.

    Dry Ice normally comes in 10-inch squares, 2 inches thick weighing about 10 pounds each square. Plan to put one square per each 15 inches of ice chest length. This will work out to 2 squares (20 pounds) for an average 40-quart cooler.

    Most people wrap it in newspaper, and as previously stated you can wrap it in foil for better insulation.
    Everywhere I have seen it for sale they sell it by the pound.

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    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Inthecolumbiagorge View Post
    Everywhere I have seen it for sale they sell it by the pound.
    whoops forgot to put the link, but I took that info from, http://www.dryiceinfo.com/camping.htm
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Oh dry ice bombs and high school memories. . .

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    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Sounds like if I have a cooler with dry ice, EVERYTHING will be frozen (or at least crispy cold). We were only planning on taking one cooler and I really don't want things to be frozen (beer, wine, eggs, etc). Does it really keep everything so cold that it freezes as the article provided above says?
    Going to try it with just regular ice blocks this year and see how it goes. Has worked in the past and I think as long as I freeze everything that I want/can freeze before we go, should be alright. *shrugs* We shall see. Worst comes to worse, we by $15 of ice a coupel of days, which is a hell of a lot cheaper than everything else I'm paying for.

  12. #12
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by dcbell05 View Post
    Sounds like if I have a cooler with dry ice, EVERYTHING will be frozen (or at least crispy cold). We were only planning on taking one cooler and I really don't want things to be frozen (beer, wine, eggs, etc). Does it really keep everything so cold that it freezes as the article provided above says?
    Going to try it with just regular ice blocks this year and see how it goes. Has worked in the past and I think as long as I freeze everything that I want/can freeze before we go, should be alright. *shrugs* We shall see. Worst comes to worse, we by $15 of ice a coupel of days, which is a hell of a lot cheaper than everything else I'm paying for.
    Then just buy ice. We're using dry ice to A) not have to take constant trips to the farmers market or use the ralph's shuttle B) ultimately save a few bucks.
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    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    I will report back and let you know how much (if any) I have to spend on ice. I will call this trip to Coachella a research trip. Makes it sounds a lot more official when I tell people where I am going instead of "off to the desert to get drunk and listen to good music."

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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by dcbell05 View Post
    I will report back and let you know how much (if any) I have to spend on ice. I will call this trip to Coachella a research trip. Makes it sounds a lot more official when I tell people where I am going instead of "off to the desert to get drunk and listen to good music."
    Hahaha!! That is great:-)

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    Coachella Junkie GuyInTucson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    It doesn't matter how much regular ice you use, it will not hold up in the desert for three days. You will need to continuously buy more throughout the entire weekend. Dry Ice is the only real option and yes things will freeze, but it's the desert and things thaw quickly.
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Coachella Bound View Post
    i wouldnt suggest it... ^^^^

    just take the time now and familiarize urself w/ how dry ice works. i tried it for the first time last year and its a life saver. Not only did i save a shit ton on money not buying bags of ice on the daily but it honestly lasts all the way through the weekend. Measure your cooler and buy accordingly.
    do you remember how much dry ice you needed and how much it cost?

  17. #17
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by whatyouknow View Post
    do you remember how much dry ice you needed and how much it cost?
    like a $1 a lb or something
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    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Tucson, I have camped in the Death Valley before. Not totally new to the camping in the desert.
    I was a girl scout, we're good at this sh*t. lol.
    But, worst comes to worst, we'll spend some cash and buy ice everyday. Like I said, compared to how much I'm spending on evrything else, $15/day wouldn't be that bad.

  19. #19
    stepup2stepout
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by dcbell05 View Post
    But, worst comes to worst, we'll spend some cash and buy ice everyday. Like I said, compared to how much I'm spending on evrything else, $15/day wouldn't be that bad.
    It is that bad if your meat spoils and you end up with butt pee for days after. Even though I was buying ice every day, it doesn't keep meat cold enough to prevent bacteria. The met we bought was getting a little bit green and definitely gross after storing it in regular ice.

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    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Did you buy ice cubes, a normal block of ice, or, like I plan to do, get a 25 solid block of ice from an ice store? We well as freezing the water and storing it in the cooler?
    It might end up bad, but seeing as how we're only staking like pre-cooked sandwich type meats, I think we'll be good.

  21. #21
    stepup2stepout
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by dcbell05 View Post
    Did you buy ice cubes, a normal block of ice, or, like I plan to do, get a 25 solid block of ice from an ice store? We well as freezing the water and storing it in the cooler?
    It might end up bad, but seeing as how we're only staking like pre-cooked sandwich type meats, I think we'll be good.
    I was buying ice cubes from the campers market.

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    Coachella Junkie GuyInTucson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    I used both regular and dry ice last year and the dry ice was a much better value. Honestly, if I were camping this year, I wouldn't even bother with normal ice. You won't need all that much of it either.
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  23. #23
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by GuyInTucson View Post
    I used both regular and dry ice last year and the dry ice was a much better value. Honestly, if I were camping this year, I wouldn't even bother with normal ice. You won't need all that much of it either.
    Any idea how much dry ice you bought, and how big of a cooler you had?
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  24. #24

    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Last year we did dry ice in one cooler, regular ice in another. The food we kept in the dry ice cooler had a weird tingling taste to it, especially the fruit and the meat. We didn't get sick from it, but it wasn't exactly pleasant.

    This year we are doing 2 coolers again, one with dry ice and a really good cooler with regular ice. My current plan is to freeze a couple gallon sized water bottles full of drinkable water to use as ice blocks, then as water when it melts. I plan to rotate putting one of the ice blocks next to the dry ice to re-freeze it, while the other keeps stuff in the other cooler cold (along with regular ice). The drinks and water will go in the dry ice cooler, because they didn't get affected last year, and the other cooler will be for food.

    I don't know if the dry ice making food taste weird happened to anyone else, but it is just a warning. We live in LA and are driving, so I realize we can bring a lot of things that other people cant. Hope that helps a little bit

  25. #25

    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Edit: Just a couple minutes too late ^^ but take my post as a seconding of Visapets.

    Two coolers, one is your freezer w/ dry ice, the other your fridge. Use the freezer to freeze large water bottles solid (and to keep any must-freeze stuff, like popsicles, frozen), use those frozen bottles to keep the fridge cooler cold, and then when they melt you have nice cold water to dispense. No gross cooler meltwater to deal with (although you may want to use a little bit of regular ice to fill in areas). Key is you need to open your freezer as little as possible to keep the dry ice preserved (and it should be a pretty decent cooler). Worked at Burning Man.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Has anyone tried Techni ice?

    I read some info on it and this is what it states
    Features

    1.Can stay frozen for days up to 3 times longer the gel packs, and 5 times longer than regular ice.

    2.Doesn’t turn back to water,so no more soggy food.

    3.Can be cut to size, as small as 2-inch cubes.

    4.Re-usable many times.

    5.Better than Dry Ice(carbon Dioxide). Dry Ice evaporates in 18 hours or less, and you have to buy it over and over again.
    just wondering if any on has tried these before and if it is in fact better.

  27. #27
    Member Inthecolumbiagorge's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Zero Mistro View Post
    Has anyone tried Techni ice?

    I read some info on it and this is what it states


    just wondering if any on has tried these before and if it is in fact better.
    I haven't tried these yet but I am going to get some and check it out and will let you know!

  28. #28
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Visapet View Post
    Last year we did dry ice in one cooler, regular ice in another. The food we kept in the dry ice cooler had a weird tingling taste to it, especially the fruit and the meat. We didn't get sick from it, but it wasn't exactly pleasant.

    This year we are doing 2 coolers again, one with dry ice and a really good cooler with regular ice. My current plan is to freeze a couple gallon sized water bottles full of drinkable water to use as ice blocks, then as water when it melts. I plan to rotate putting one of the ice blocks next to the dry ice to re-freeze it, while the other keeps stuff in the other cooler cold (along with regular ice). The drinks and water will go in the dry ice cooler, because they didn't get affected last year, and the other cooler will be for food.

    I don't know if the dry ice making food taste weird happened to anyone else, but it is just a warning. We live in LA and are driving, so I realize we can bring a lot of things that other people cant. Hope that helps a little bit
    It can happen but how did you have everything sealed, you wanna put the food, etc. a good distance away from the dry ice.
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  29. #29

    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    http://www.desertusa.com/roadtripblog/?p=240


    This is a good article on keeping food fresh in the desert for extended periods of time. If you have the room, its wise to have a food cooler and a separate cooler where you keep dry ice and freeze water for the other coolers.

  30. #30

    Default Re: Keeping perishables cold for the entire weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Dustin da DnB Soulja View Post
    It can happen but how did you have everything sealed, you wanna put the food, etc. a good distance away from the dry ice.
    We might have not been that great at sealing stuff, but now I can't remember. I think that was part of the problem, stuff just put in ziplock bags weren't protected enough to keep the taste out. Stuff in cans or vacuum sealed would probably make it without the taste, but once something has been opened I would move it to the non-dry ice cooler.

    It was the first time I have ever used dry ice and I don't think we were too well prepared. At least we learned for this year!

    I think the 2 cooler system will work amazingly if we do it right this year. We just have to make sure to keep some cream fresh so we can make ice cream in the ice cream making ball again this year!

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