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Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: ledvm] #15606500 01/03/21
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T_Inman Offline
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Originally Posted by ledvm
Originally Posted by TheKid
Roger on the packing. I don’t like to bone anything aside from backstraps, have packed elk and other critters out of some serious hellholes over the years places like you say that a mule couldn’t go. I quarter everything and gutless 90 percent of the time. I just had never seen anyone split one before quartering.


Unless you got there with a repelling rope...there is no place you can go that a mule can’t...provided you have the right mule. wink


I grew up hunting mule deer and elk off of horses with oack mules, and was always told this.
I've seen a few die in places I sure didn't feel comfortable getting my stock into though...and I don't even care much about their welfare.

Deadfall hell holes come to mind, as does some of the Selway. How in the hell elk can live in some of those areas is beyond me.



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Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: huntsman22] #15658285 01/14/21
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Shag Offline OP
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This past fall a pard broke down a bull gutless with a hatchet. Once quartered backstraps, flank meat, neck meat removed, then gutted and tenderloins removed, rib meat removed, all with a hatchet. Just wondering how many others do the same. Thanks for the reply's . Especially from those whom use them.


Last edited by Shag; 01/14/21.

Your Every Liberal vote promotes Socialism and is an attack on the Second Amendment. Period. You will suffer the consequences.
Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: T_Inman] #15658399 01/15/21
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ledvm Offline
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Originally Posted by T_Inman
Originally Posted by ledvm
Originally Posted by TheKid
Roger on the packing. I don’t like to bone anything aside from backstraps, have packed elk and other critters out of some serious hellholes over the years places like you say that a mule couldn’t go. I quarter everything and gutless 90 percent of the time. I just had never seen anyone split one before quartering.


Unless you got there with a repelling rope...there is no place you can go that a mule can’t...provided you have the right mule. wink


I grew up hunting mule deer and elk off of horses with oack mules, and was always told this.
I've seen a few die in places I sure didn't feel comfortable getting my stock into though...and I don't even care much about their welfare.

Deadfall hell holes come to mind, as does some of the Selway. How in the hell elk can live in some of those areas is beyond me.


You just hit the nail on the head. The elk got there. Mules are pretty much elk like in their ability to negotiate terrain.

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15658594 01/15/21
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huntsman22 Online Content
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but pretty much NOT like elk in the downfalls.....

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15658969 01/15/21
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Originally Posted by Shag
Instead of a wyo/bone saw in the field?


Every guide in the north.

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Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15659525 01/15/21
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There are some good folding saws out there -- look at Coleman.

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: T_Inman] #15660253 01/15/21
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Originally Posted by T_Inman
Originally Posted by ledvm
Originally Posted by TheKid
Roger on the packing. I don’t like to bone anything aside from backstraps, have packed elk and other critters out of some serious hellholes over the years places like you say that a mule couldn’t go. I quarter everything and gutless 90 percent of the time. I just had never seen anyone split one before quartering.


Unless you got there with a repelling rope...there is no place you can go that a mule can’t...provided you have the right mule. wink


I grew up hunting mule deer and elk off of horses with oack mules, and was always told this.
I've seen a few die in places I sure didn't feel comfortable getting my stock into though...and I don't even care much about their welfare.

Deadfall hell holes come to mind, as does some of the Selway. How in the hell elk can live in some of those areas is beyond me.


I grew up babysitting cattle on our summer permit between 9500 and 11500 ft in altitude and pushed cowponies into places I would not do to a horse or myself today. Indeed, part of our old permit is now designated wilderness. Until I was a teenager my dad and his hunting pards used packstrings to get to elk country--I thought that was the only way to hunt elk until my mid-teens. Growing up and while guiding I've packed plenty of elk and deer out with horses and pack mules, and have been in on a couple lama packouts too.

This year I killed both my bulls in fir-spruce-quakie super dense forest. But beginning 20 yeas ago the sub-alpine fir beetle has come through and killed 80%+ of the sub-alpine firs, and resulted in lots of deadfall. As the forest was opened up to sunlight it resulted in an explosion of new growth (which is why the elk are in there). The forest is as thick as ever, but now there's all that deadfall. Trying to get horses, or mules, or lamas through there would be a waste of time. A horse or mule would be too wide with panniers to fit through the trees, a lama isn't tall enough to step over all the deadfall. Guaranteed wrecks galore. With two chainsaws, an extra chain, 5 ga of gas and a ga of bar oil, I'm sure a couple guys could cut their way in over the course of a day or two........

Instead, I grabbed my backpack and carried the elk out. It's been 10+ years since I had to carry an elk out on my back, and at 64 I was wondering how I was going to do, but it wasn't nearly as bad as I feared.......


Casey

Not being married to any particular political party sure makes it a lot easier to look at the world more objectively...
Having said that, MAGA.
Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15660386 01/15/21
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Learned from an outfitter clear back in the sixties how to split an elk from stem to stern right down the spine using a fairly large camp axe, separate the front from the rear behind the ribs. Then chronic wasting disease came along and made it undesirable to split the spine, so went to the gutless method. But I think the meat toughens when done that way.

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15662000 01/15/21
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ledvm Offline
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I reckon each to their own experience. Killed and been in on recovery of quite few elk in places like the Weminuche and South San Juan. It don’t get much rougher than the Weminuche. My mules went to every carcass and bought every one back to camp. I had to walk and lead’em to a few. They almost always amazed me at where they could go and come out with an elk. Once they were loaded in real steep or bad terrain...l would just pull their halters off and catch with them grazing by my saddle horse/mule.

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15662158 01/15/21
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Having a horse and pack train jump over deadfall constantly for a mile or two continuously slamming into each other as they land, twisting around in the tiny spots they can stick their feet in the deadfall jungles is something I just won't do anymore. Your loads get shook all to hell and your critters blow up almost continuously. I don't know anything about the Weminuche but it seems everyone thinks that nobody else's elk grounds are any rougher than their favorite area. I've extensively hunted the Selway, Frank Church, Bob Marshall and the Wind Rivers and I'll confidently say stock can't get into some areas that elk are, and doubly so if it is on slopes, though admittedly there's few.

I'll pack meat out on my back until I am to an area I feel more comfortable getting my stock. I've killed a couple stock animals over the years due to broken legs in the back country. It's not the funnest thing in the world.



IC-B

Re: Who here uses an axe/hatchet [Re: Shag] #15662514 01/15/21
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ledvm Offline
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Like I said I reckon each to their own. For the record though, I have never taken a pack-string into get an elk in bad dead-fall. If you know the country, there is almost always a way to ride reasonably close and then walk and lead a mule at a time to butcher site. Put the hindquarters and some boned meat on one mule...lead it back to better ground. Lead in another one...get the fores, some boned, the cape and head...lead it back to the others. Then string up and head for camp.

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