5 replies [Last post]
Location: bay area, ca
Joined: 11/06/2006
Posts: 35
novice, question about transporting game

I'm going on only my second deer/bear hunt next week and have a question about transporting game.

I'll be near Arnold, Ca, which is up around 7,000'. The 6-10 day weather forecast is predicting temperatures in the mid 70's. I'll be there 3 nights/4 days for deer/bear.

My question is, what's the best choice for treating any deer/bear I take? I've spoken to a few of the more experienced guys going on the trip, and they're saying that if they shoot a deer/bear, they're going to take it straight to the butcher, who is about 1.5 hours away.

My last hunt was in 30 degree weather at about 8,000', so we weren't terribly concerned about the meat getting too warm. But given the warmer weather for this trip, would you suggest skinning and quartering any game and putting it on ice prior to making the 1.5 hour drive to the butcher? Or do you think field dressing the deer/bear, throwing it in a game bag, and transporting it straight to the butcher would be ok?

I'm sure its a pretty basic question to a lot of you, but as I stated, this is only my second hunt. I read a lot of good advice and tips on here, so any to help me out would be greatly appreciated!

Location: Louisiana but hunting MS
Joined: 09/15/2009
Posts: 24
novice, question about transporting game

If you have the resources to quarter the animal before you bring it, do it. a flat tire traffic jam or even a really hot day whill make you regret not putting it on ice. besidse that's a short and easy task. now if you want to stuff the animal into a game bag with ice well that's your choice but i would at least gut it first. and hey, while you have it hanging, go ahead and skin and quarter it. an extera 5 min with an electric saws all. once again, this is just my opinion.

good luck to you and i hope you bring home an ice chest full Thumbs up

saskie's picture
Location: West Carleton, Ottawa, Canada
Joined: 12/23/2002
Posts: 1264
novice, question about transporting game

If its only 1.5 hr trip, I'd probably just field dress it and get it to the butcher, hide and all ASAP. Since you're talking what will probably end up being no more than 3hrs from kill to butcher I doubt there'd be any spoilage, and the hide will keep the meat clean in transit.

(would you really throw a T-bone away just because you forgot to put it in the fridge and it sat on the counter for 3 hours?)

If there's a delay due to wx or whatever and it looks like it will be 6 or more hours, then I'd probably skin it, let it crust up a bit and transport it.

In my experience the faster you get it to a butcher, the happier you'll be. They'll wash it, get it perfectly clean, trim away any damaged meat and let it hang in ideal conditions. Getting it into that "perfect environment" quickly trumps a lot of other things in the preparation process

Location: Summit, IL
Joined: 10/22/2006
Posts: 705
novice, question about transporting game

If its only gonna be 1.5 to 3 hours I agree with leaving the hide on. No need to quarter if you are taking it to the butcher. But a good idea would also be to grab a bag or 2 of ice and slip them into the chest and gut cavity. Field quartering can mess up some of the nicer cuts that a butcher would be able to produce. Ice in the cavity (still in the bags) will keep the meat nice and cool for several hours if need be. Good luck on your hunt.

Critter's picture
Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
Posts: 4422
novice, question about transporting game

I'm a little bit different. I would at least skin and cut the animal in half and bag it in good bags if you harvest the animal anytime after 12 pm. Then if you have to you can wait over night and get the meat to the butcher the next day and not worry about having to hurry the process or even miss the butcher after he has gone home.

Location: north idaho
Joined: 06/11/2004
Posts: 610
novice, question about transporting game

I shot a nice ram this summer up in bc. it was short sleeve weather. WE quartered it and boned it and than packed out. Even in short sleeve weather, i was amazed at how cool the meat was the next day when it was quartered and boned out. I butchered the ram about a week later. The ram hung for about 3 days and than was packed in ice for the next 4 days and than i butchered and got it into a freezer. My wife thinks the steaks are excellent.


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