Step #1 Skin and Quarter the Animal. You should have 5 bags. The fifth bag contains the tenderloins, backstraps, flank steaks, neck, rib meat and trimmings. If you get a bull and want to save the cape, then that's a sixth bag.
Step #2 Freeze the Meat Solid. If you're hunting in November and camping high, you can hang it in the shade and it will freeze solid overnight. Or you can take it into town and have a local butcher freeze it solid for you. If you are using an outfitter, he ought to freeze it for you.
Step #3 Place it in Coolers and ice it down. Big coolers cost about $30-$40 at Wal Mart. You will need two 60 quart coolers or one 100 quart cooler. Keep the ice in plastic bags because you don't want the meat sitting in liquid. Close the cooler(s) with duct tape.
This will last for about 30 hours. I've done this driving from Arkansas to Colorado and when I got to Colorado, some of the ice was still solid, the meat was cold on the outside and still frozen on the inside.
Buy a small freezer for under $200 brand new or take the one you got if its empty, put it in the back of your truck. Plug it in at the motel you stay at overnight while you celebrate getting the elk in town. We had some poeple come through here who decided to do that as they were on a big trip, hunting several places. They shot a hog or two near Houston, came 300 miles, shot a ram or two, then they headed further west. Everything was frozen in their freezer in the back of the truck and they plugged it in at the place in town while they hunted even. I remember stopping at a gas station in New Mexico before opening day in Colorado on the way there one time. It was 2 am and it was the only gas station open. Several hunters pulled in with freezers, etc. on their trailers while I was gassing up. We got rain yesterday, that's the sign dove season and more hunting is about to start here.
Good idea, Tom. You could even pack a lot of gear in there for a waterproof package on the way to the hunting grounds or if you don't get lucky. You might want to keep the keys handy so you can lock the freezer - keep kids out, keep someone from stealing either stuff out of the freezer or the whole thing.
the dry ice works really well.when we were in california i went and got some dry ice .i left the dry ice in the bag,taped up the cooler and shipped it ups overnight ( which is to expensivee, ill never do that again) by the time the pig got to my house the next morning it was frozen solid
Last year I packed chilled boned meat into a 100 qt ice chest, and covered it with snow.
24 hours later, I bought 20 lbs ice to top it with. There was still ice & snow on the meat the next night when I cut it up into steaks.
In my opinion, you're better off to drop some dry ice in your chest with the frozen meat. I've hauled elk meat three times from Colorado, and once from Wyoming, back to Los Angeles, and with the dry ice, it was still frozen hard as a brick.
That said, MAKE SURE you pay close attention to the regualtions both for Idaho, and Arizona, on hauling game meat. Tags attached, male or female evidence, etc. If not, you can get yourself into a heap of trouble when the F&G people check your meat.
Anyone know the regulation for dry ice on a plane? I'm hunting in AZ, and would like to haul plenty of meat back to Michigan assuming I bag an elk and am trying to figure ways to ship it. If it's not allowed would it survive 12 hours without dry ice assuming it was frozen solid, or am I pushing my luck trying to find the easy way out?
HEHE... I think TOM has a cool Idea.. Here's what I'd do. BUY a FREEZER at Walmat. Debone the meat, pack it, and Freeze it in the Freezer....
WHEN ya stay at a hotel or eat at a restaurant, PLUG it in . WHEN ya get home, Return it to WALMART telling them it wasn't what ya wanted
Seriously though, LEANWOLF is right about the the REGS.. Even if you bebone it, you need to leave evidence (NUTSACK AND JIMMY) attached to the largest part of the meat in the leg... I'd sugrest that you keep elk separate if you get more then one. Fish and GAME hear in Idaho are A$$-HOLES..... I hate to say it, Except it's true !!
LArge coolers are your best bet. KEEP the ice in the BAGS and don't l;et the meat sit in ANY water, It's actually better to have the meat a little wrmer then a little cooler sitting in water. It doesn't take much to keep meat at 40 DEG. Dry ice is a good way too....
DRYICE on planes is a NONO the last time I asked DGF. BUT, If you freeze yer meat solid, It can be shipped as luggage with NO prob. Meat even thawed out as long as not to warm up, CAN be refrozen... THe whole hype about not Refreezing meat is "BUNK" acording to what We've done. BUT hey, MAybe I've just been lucky all my life
Yes you can refreeze meat. You would not believe how much meat comes into the market frozen or partially frozen. From what I understand, you loose a little of the nutrtion when refreezing but that is all.
hntrlvr, when I make my Italian sauge, I take out the meat and let it thaw, grind it, mix it and stuff it in skins and then freeze it and have never had a problem. Most of the chicken that comes into the markets are frozen when they arrive and yet are thawed when you buy them and then you take them home and freeze them. The hamburg you buy in the market is made from frozen clod also.
I called an uncle that shoots a moose in Ak every year and drives to Wa...
He picks up sheets of styrofoam and makes a makeshift cooler in the back of a truck ...using duct tape will keep it from comming apart. Then he just uses ice to bring the animal back...He puts a peice of plastic over the top of the meat to keep it from getting the water on it. Just don't cover the meat all the way so it will breath. Then he places his canvas tent over the whole thing after setting a piece of styrofoam over the plastic to help keep the dirt out and help insulate from the sun on the trip. He said he has been doing this for about fifteen years with no spoilage and can leave the animal in quarters. He and another friend go up...He say's he has carried 2 moose back quite a few times....
hope that helps....