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Right now, unless you’re a polar bear and built different, if you’re a bear in the Northern part of the Northern Hemisphere you have one goal: pack on the pounds before you head underground. Hibernation season is coming up fast and the only item on the agenda between now and that long winter’s nap is: EAT.

Bears are crafty, dexterous with those giant paws and claws, and wicked smart. They’re also not picky about where their calories come from. So, when in the backcountry, and traveling with provisions (which in a bear’s world includes you and yours), everything you have needs to be as bear resistant as possible. Like, CERTIFIED, bear resistant.

Yes, there is an organization that officially certifies products as being bear resistant. The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee, based in Bozeman, Montana, is the body responsible for testing and evaluating the survivability of anything that might go up against the Big Bears.

Cordova Outdoors’ Basecamp Class Coolers are ALL certified by the IGBC as “Bear Resistant”. Certification numbers are 5232, 5233, 5234, 5235 and 5273. Check out the full list of Bear proof coolers here.

How did we earn that bear-resistant cooler certification, you ask? Exactly as you imagine. Our coolers went into the arena with the bears. And how did it go? It was kind of like The Revenant but with a Cordova Cooler in place of Hugh Glass. Our cooler held up better than Hugh, and the bear left frustrated but alive and still hungry. So overall, a win-win.

Bear vs. Bear resistant cooler

Apart from the official certification process, we’ve heard anecdotes from our awesome customers who have ventured out and encountered hungry wildlife in the wild. When our bear locks are engaged, with a bolt, conventional lock, or these slicker-than-slick Bear Bolts our Basecamp Class Coolers are UNDEFEATED.

Apart from protecting your provisions, using an IGBC-certified bear resistant cooler protects the bear population. It’s tragic but a fact that Cocaine Bear film was based on the real-life death of an actual bear. And not a grizzly, but a black bear. Per the irrefutable source,, quoting the examiner who conducted the necropsy: "Its stomach was literally packed to the brim with cocaine. There isn't a mammal on the planet that could survive that. Cerebral hemorrhaging, respiratory failure, hyperthermia, renal failure, heart failure, stroke. You name it, that bear had it."

That’s an extreme and tragic example of a bear getting into something no one should, but the same thing happens with anything a bear is attracted to: they don’t practice consumption in moderation, especially before hibernation, and once they get a taste of something they’re less hesitant the next time. Food in coolers is NO exception to this rule.

Play it safe and smart when heading into Bear Country. Stash your calories in a Basecamp Class Cooler and USE the bear locks. We put them there for you. And for the bears.

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