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packing out elk w/o horses?

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packing out elk w/o horses?

Old 11-14-2008, 01:10 PM
  #11  
Nontypical Buck
 
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

I packed mine out last Tuesday morning on my back. Horses and ATVs can't go where I was.
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Old 11-14-2008, 02:24 PM
  #12  
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

My family has always been pretty careful of not hunting too far from the roads, or at least good trails. Furthest we've had to go has been a couple miles. That's where the Badlands 2200 really paid off. I packed out a rear quarter on it last year, the head (spike) and carried a front quarter for a little ways before I gave up the head and front quarter and hauled the rear the rest of the way to the ELK CART! If you don't have a cart, get one. A single wheel is harder to handle, but you can use it on a side hill trail, and most elk hunting involves some sort of side hill .

So, we usually pack out to where we can use the cart and use the cart from there. Never made more than one trip with more than 20 elk in the last 10 years. The worst so far was last year, 3 elk down opening day, 1 came out on horses but mine and another we had to skin/quarter and pack. We did leave the bones in as the packing was only about 1/2 mile to the cart. For long hauls boning would probably be the way to go, take only the rack and what you will eat. Most people leave the ribs and neck (boned out) if they do pack the quarters with bone in.

It's not a lot of fun but it's not horrible. Just take your time and try to think about the nice steaks you'll have all winter. I'm pretty stout (6', 250#'s) comparred to all my 150# in-laws I hunt with and I've packed a lot of elk off the mountain. So much they call me The Mule (although I tell the ladies its for other reasons).
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Old 11-14-2008, 06:27 PM
  #13  
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

Like most everyone else said it is back breaking work. I skin and debonebefore Ithrow it in the pack.
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Old 11-14-2008, 11:19 PM
  #14  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

"I did talk to a big dude who once hiked out of there with a quarter electrical-taped to the front and back of him. He did not highly recommend that method!"

I can't imagine how much electrical tape that took, nor why he happened to have it with him!



"So much they call me The Mule (although I tell the ladies its for other reasons)."

So the ladies think your a sterile hybrid? lol
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Old 11-15-2008, 03:11 AM
  #15  
 
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

i've humped out many elk over the years because i hunt in a wilderness area and don't own horses. i always bone the meat out at the kill site andplace the meat in the shade on a lightweight tarp i always have in my backpack.using cheapmesh meat bags, i load my self-modified alice pack (us army version) for the first trip out. i leave my bow/rifle back at camp after the first trip.time to get the animal out depends on animal size, distance away from camp, and how strong i feel that day. it usually takes me 3 trips for a cow and 4-5 for a bull. while it is brutal work, it is also very rewarding once that last load is back in camp. ymmv
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:51 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Western Montana
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

Looks like everyone here has it under control. I would suggest bringing pillow cases or game bags and duct tape to cover all of the exposed meat, especially if boning out. It can't be overstated how much of a challenge this all is if you shoot it later in the day when you are too tired to do anything else. The hunting can be very hard, but throw in having to bone-out (essentially butcher the whole damn thing) and pack it out and you may need a week's vacation after your hunting vacation!

Lately I've been doing close to a dozen miles a day in search of my wapitiand sometimes need to take stock before I chase elk over into the next drainage. I believe I've found the honey-hole, but most people would call it a hell hole. I'm sure there are elk in there, but as they say, "You better bring a lighter and a fork because you're going to have to cook and eat that SOB down there!" I'll let you know if it works out.
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Old 11-16-2008, 09:23 AM
  #17  
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

words of wisdom from many. greathelp. thanks.
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Old 11-16-2008, 11:37 AM
  #18  
Typical Buck
 
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

I believe I've found the honey-hole, but most people would call it a hell hole. I'm sure there are elk in there, but as they say, "You better bring a lighter and a fork because you're going to have to cook and eat that SOB down there!" I'll let you know if it works out.

Or.... take some seasoning in to put the beast into jerky. lol A lot less weight after its dried and the camp robbers and magpies will eat half of it before it can dry anyway.
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Old 11-20-2008, 06:10 AM
  #19  
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

MT MountainMan-- go get em. would like to hear how you do. best things in life are worth the sacrifice-- do you have a spike camp set up or hoofing a dozen miles each way? let us know...
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Old 11-22-2008, 04:16 PM
  #20  
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Default RE: packing out elk w/o horses?

When we have to carry a bull out on our packframes, if the walk is more than about 3/4 mile, we are not carrying any bone. We normally handle our elk by the gutless method anyway, so there is no hide or bone to deal with, other than the antlers.

One key for me is taking a bit lighter load, especially if the country is rough, and making one extra trip. Everyone wants to get it over with as fast as possible, but I've found it works better to carry a little less weight and make an extra trip if need be. You'll be in better shape for hunting after you're done, and less likely to suffer an injury if you trip or fall with a loaded pack on, when you have it a little lighter.
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