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  1. #21
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    Gutless is the way to go. I've done 3 moose and and an elk so far gutless. If you need to quarter, there's no reason to gut. The moose hindquarters are heavy, so I always take one of those plastic snow sleds. If there is snow on the ground or fairly flat ground, strap in 2 elk quarters or one moose and away you go. Downhill is the best route if you can, even it it means twice the distance. Keep the skin on if it's dirty, otherwise use good game bags.

    Also, sometimes deboning helps with the weight if backpacking, but I like keeping the meat as whole as possible. When I hang up the meat, the hard film that develops and covers the meat keeps dirt, bugs and protects the meat. There's usually less trimming when with larger pieces than trying trim a bunch of smaller pieces. But what the heck, everyone figures out what works best for them.

    12 miles is a long way, arrange for horses beforehand.
    Last edited by meathunter; 05-01-2013 at 11:07 PM.

  2. #22
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    12 miles is long way... "can't cheat the mountain pilgrim." I agree with all that has been said here from twelve miles being too far to effectively pack out an elk without spoilage that early in the autumn to the "gutless" method. It is not about being a hero and muscling your way into trouble it is about the responsibility of the hunter to glean as much meat from an animal as possible and get it to the table so it is fit to consume and therefore not wasted. Get horses! Period! Or a host of buddies to help you. I am a school teacher and I've heard tell of a Biology teacher/football coach who arranged for his entire team to help him pack out an elk over Labor Day weekend if he was successful. He was hunting ten or twelve miles deep and knocked down a bull. He quartered it, hung it, loaded the "straps" in his pack and hoofed it down to town as fast as he could. He called up his team and all thirty of them hiked up the mountain and got that elk down the same day finishing just after dark! Now that is resourceful! Gonna keep that one in mind.

  3. #23
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    I have a buddy that claims his co-worked went to canada on a moose hunt. Claims the outfitter used a chain saw to break down the moose. Used vegetable oil as bar lube. I don't know if I buy the story completely. I'd think the saw would get gunked up, especially if you were trying to cut thru fur. Plus, I think you'd make a mess of the animal. Anyone hear of this?

  4. #24
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    Ive heard of it for chopping up beef cows and other large stuff. Moose are big critters, and I wouldnt put it past an outfitter that has been doing it for years to finding a way to make it go quicker, and Im sure with practice it could be a very effective method, user dependent. Id give it a shot without a doubt if i wasnt always in wilderness areas.

  5. #25
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    I have a friend who uses a portable, battery saws-all with a ss blade for cutting up elk. Works pretty good, but heavy and you can't use anything like it in a wilderness area.
    Colorado Cowboy
    Cowboy Action Shooter; Endowment Life Member-NRA
    The Original Rocket Scientist-Retired
    "My Father always considered a walk in the mountains as the equivalent of church going."
    Aldous Huxley

  6. #26
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    I have seen a crazy old man with the veg oil in a saw. I wouldn't have believed it either. This old guy was the coolest guy I have ever hunted with. He was 80 years old, and shot an auto-loader 338. He told stories about hunting out of model A cars.

    I thought the saw was a little weird myself. It still scattered all kinds of little white specs all over, so you were constantly wondering what they were. Boning is the only way to go for any real distance. My brother and I split a boned 5x6 bull last year. We were both a touch over 80lb. We covered about 4 miles of rough up and down country. We had already packed the head and our gear out the night before. We didn't even unload it. We packed up camp, and headed home. We couldn't hardly walk for 3 days after, and we are pretty conditioned.

  7. #27
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    totally on board for the gutless method. I don't take hearts and livers. I would assume if a guy wants the loins off an elk bad enough, he could turn him head down and let gravity help get the gut pile out of the way.

  8. #28
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    To not take the loins is absolutely illegal. . not to mention terrible on part of being a sportsman to the game. You can very easily pop out the back six ribs with the cavity "spine-up", and use your knife and hand to carefully take out the loins on each side without ever opening up the cavity while doing the gutless method. Just because you do not gut them does not mean every spec of meat shouldnt come out.

  9. #29
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    Don't know if this helps but my elk hunting area is 5 miles in, which I do solo without horses, and I have packed several elk out of this area by myself using game trails. Sometimes it is short sleeve weather during the day and spoilage is always a concern, but with around freezing temperatures at night and hanging the meat in the shade I have yet to lose any. It has always arrived at the truck still very cool. After I get an elk it is boned out using the gutless method and hung in game bags the same day. Don't like to waste any and I have been told that coyotes leave more meat than I do. As soon as there is enough light the next morning I start packing out the meat, the best stuff like loins first. I do two trips a day and each trip I carry any unneeded camp stuff to get my pack weight up to max doable. The first day is long. After getting the first load out I then run to town for ice, pack in salt for the hide, finish caping and salting the hide, remove the antlers, and then pack out the second load. I usually get back to the tent around 2:00 AM, get some sleep, and then go again as soon as it is light enough to see. By the end of the second day the fourth and last load of meat is out and on ice. The next day is the hide and antlers, and either that day or the next I take out the remainder of my camp which by now isn't much.

    I don't limit myself to 5 miles, but at that, two trips a day is 20 miles for me. I go through about 4L of water a day not counting what I have with meals, eat constantly on the trail, and still lose a lot of weight. I'm not sure it is possible to eat enough calories to take care of what you are burning but I keep trying. Going out is heavy but mostly downhill. Going back in is uphill but the pack is empty and you can fly after leaving all that weight at the truck. I find myself doing a lot of hiking in the dark. A better trail would make it a lot easier. High stepping over a lot of downed trees is a lot of work, but it does discourage company.

    I wouldn't say no to going 12 miles in solo, but the farther I go in the bigger that bull needs to be. If the temperature is cooperating you could do it but I would make arrangements with an outfitter to pack it out just in case. The meat that is required to be removed in Colorado I could do in two loads for what that is worth. At 12 miles you could do that in two days without much trouble, but you would be wasting a lot if thats all you took.

  10. #30
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    sure wish i was young again!
    Colorado Cowboy
    Cowboy Action Shooter; Endowment Life Member-NRA
    The Original Rocket Scientist-Retired
    "My Father always considered a walk in the mountains as the equivalent of church going."
    Aldous Huxley

 

 

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