The biggest problem I encountered in my early surf fishing days was that I had to stand upright in the surf for hours on end. It was causing my legs quite a lot of pain, and it was making my surf fishing trips less enjoyable. I knew I had to do something about it.
After doing little a bit of research, I ended up solving this problem with the MUUL RuckBucket Insulated Backpack Cooler. It’s an excellent waterproof cooler that is sturdy enough to sit on while you’re waiting for a bite.
Reason Why I Bought Muul Ruckbucket Backpack Cooler
Some would argue that surf anglers in need of a place to sit could just buy a chair instead of an insulated backpack cooler. I don’t think that’s a smart idea, though.
For starters, you need a place to store the fish you catch. Sure, you could bring a simple bucket or some other kind of flimsy container ‒ but that comes with the chance of tipping over or floating away.
You’ll also need to carry it back to your car and secure it, so the fish don’t spill all over your trunk. An insulated backpack cooler also solves this problem.
You’ll also need some kind of carrier for some of the surf fishing essentials like food, water, tools, and accessories. While you’ll probably be using the main bucket to hold your fish. You can add an extra Pouch to the sides of the MUUL RuckBucket, that will keep these essentials tools for you.
Finally, you need something to sit on when you’re surf fishing. Many fishing trips can last the entire day, especially if you’re scouting locations and timing the tides correctly. Standing up for the entirety of that day is painful and takes away from the enjoyment of the trip.
If you bring along a waterproof backpack cooler sturdy enough to sit on, you won’t have to deal with the leg pain that standing for hours at a time can cause.
The MUUL RuckBucket Insulated Backpack Cooler: A Brief Overview
The MUUL RuckBucket Insulated Backpack Cooler is a soft vented cooler bag with 5 gallons of sturdy bucket storage space.
The MUUL promises a few things:
- It promises to be waterproof
- It promises to be sturdy enough to sit on.
- It promises to be rugged and crushproof.
- It promises to be completely insulated.
After years of owning a MUUL RuckBucket, I can comfortably say that it 100% lives up to all of these promises.
- I’ve spent countless time sitting on my MUUL RuckBucket – not once has water penetrated the inside.
- I’ve never managed to dent or damage it with my weight ‒ the build is excellent.
- I like to catch a lot of fish, so my RuckBucket can get a bit heavy to carry ‒ which inevitably results in some hard drops. It’s survived every one of those drops with no more than a scratch.
- The insulation is superb. I can keep a meal in one of the buckets under a hot sun for the entire day ‒ it will still be cool when I finally take it out to eat.
Features & Benefits
The waterproof casing is the biggest reason I recommend the MUUL Ruckbucket to other surf fishers. Seriously, this thing is 100% waterproof. If I left it in the surf for a week ‒ and it didn’t wash away ‒ I genuinely think the interior would be 100% dry when I came back.
While a waterproof exterior should be your primary concern, the design also prevents water inside the compartment from leaking out. This is useful if you’re using it to hold fish, as you don’t want the water from the fish to leak in your car.
The MUUL is also a terrific seat. The top is covered with high-quality fabric, which makes it quite comfortable to sit on. There’s no exposed metal or anything uncomfortable that you might get with other waterproof seating options.
I’m only half-kidding when I say I could bundle 20 of these together and replace my current mattress.
At a bit over 1 foot tall, the height is also pretty good for sitting in shallow surf areas.
The MUUL may not have a backrest like other seating options, but I’ve found this really isn’t much of an issue when I’m out fishing. I’m always seated with my shoulder forward intently looking at my pole or the water for any signs of fish.
Because surf fishing is often an all-day affair, you really need to invest in some kind of insulated container to keep your food in. You could buy a separate cooler, but most of these aren’t waterproof. So, you’d have to stop fishing and head out of the surf every time you want a bite to eat.
Now, there’s only one bucket, and you can’t really store the food you bring with the fish you catch. The solution to this is the optional 0.5-gallon side pack ‒ you can store a sizable meal in this while you use the main compartment to hold your fish.
The storage capacity of the MUUL RuckBucket is more than sufficient for surf fishing needs.
Depending on the day and fishing location, I sometimes use my MUUL RuckBucket to store fish, or I sometimes pack an extra-large collection of food and drinks.
Even on my best fishing days, I have never exceeded the 5-gallon capacity of the main compartment. Unless you have multiple people storing their catches in the MUUL RuckBucket, the 5-gallon bucket should be more than enough.
I’ve also never encountered an issue with storing meals or drinks in the insulated compartment. It’s always had enough space for even the longest of my surf fishing sessions.
And this includes family outings ‒ a 5-gallon bucket capacity is more than enough to supply 4 people with food for the entire day.
Although I’ve only had the MUUL RuckBucket for the better part of a year, I can already tell this backpack is going to withstand the test of time.
The stitching on the fabric has held up beautifully ‒ after a thorough examination, I can’t find a single loose strand or torn seam.
I attribute much of this to the abrasion-resistant 500 Denier fabric and military-grade webbing and sewing.
The fabric quality and build are honestly excellent, and more than durable enough for years of regular surf fishing use.
While the fabric is great, the real test lies in the metal shell’s ability to withstand hours of me sitting on it. And once again, the MUUL RuckBucket passes with flying colors.
I’ve probably sat on this thing longer than I’ve sat on my couch, and it’s just as sturdy and rigid as the day I bought it. There are no dents, bending, creaking, or any other signs that might indicate it’s giving way.
If this ever changes I will be sure to update this article. But, I feel fully confident in saying both the exterior and the structural components of the MUUL RuckBucket are built to last a lifetime.
Before we move on, I want to be clear about something: I’ve put this thing through some serious use. Other backpacks and coolers I’ve used are typically in much worse shape at this point.
The fabric is ripping, the straps are tearing, the structure begins to sag ‒ it’s not a pretty sight. Despite the heavy use I’ve put it through, the MUUL isn’t showing any of these problems.
On top of all the other features, the MUUL RuckBucket is pretty customizable. There are multiple modular attachments you can stick on the sides, including a drink holder and an extra 0.5-gallon compartment.
Whenever I use the cooler to store fish, I typically place my good for the day in the extra compartment. And if I’m storing food in the main compartment, I usually put my tools and accessories in the side pouch.
Surf fishing without a comfortable place to sit can be a real pain in the legs (among other places). Taking a waterproof MUUL RuckBucket Insulated Backpack Cooler with you on your surfing trips solves that problem. As the sturdy base and comfortable fabric make it a pleasure to rest on.
On top of this, it also provides a large, insulated space in which you can keep fish, food, beverages, or other essentials. And the waterproof exterior ensures liquids can’t get in ‒ or out ‒ of the MUUL’s main compartment.
So if you’re looking to up your surf fishing game with a piece of durable, useful equipment. I highly recommend checking out the MUUL Ruckbucket Insulated Backpack Cooler (available on Amazon).