Best way to get pack to Montana for Sept Elk hunt?

jaypope

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2016
Messages
49
Location
Central NC
Hey guys. I live in North Carolina and I'm going on a solo (mostly) DIY late September elk hunt in SW Montana this fall. I've been reading LOTS of posts/threads on packs and the "ins & outs" of back country hunting. I'm planning to pull the trigger on a Kifaru pack in the near future and I'm wondering what the best route is to get it to Montana.

Would you recommend me to ship it ahead or just check it when I fly out?

I'm fortunate that I have a buddy that lives out there so I could ship to his house. He's going to pack me in and out with his pack string. I plan on carrying a small tent, tarp and sleeping bag/pad and will move around as I try to find the elk.

As you can imagine I'm clueless when it comes to elk hunting, back country hunting, etc. so if you have any suggestions/tips I would be MOST THANKFUL!
 

Tsnider

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2016
Messages
437
Location
Carbondale, CO
my fiance works for the airlines. if it were me id take it on the plane with me. the thing with the airlines from what i know is if it somehow gets delayed, when it shows up the next day it will be hand delivered a lot of time. then again it could get misplaced and be lost for quite some time. on the other hand shipping it would probably be a little more expensive, but if it gets lost its lost forever. i have never had issues with stuff showing up either way.

american airlines has a bag "valet" at the gate where you leave your larger than carry on bag at an elevator and they take it down immediately. that might be the way to go depending on which airline you use. since its on the ramp they rarely get put on the incorrect plane. i fly free and get free baggage so thats definitely the way id go!
 

Jordan Budd

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Aug 8, 2012
Messages
1,813
Location
NW Nebraska
Check it. We do it all the time. Either load it up and throw it in a duffel bag... or put everything you'll need gear wise in a duffel and carry the pack on with a few things in it. I usually just hit the 50lb mark and don't have to pay excess bag fee by carrying my pack on with some gear in it like extra clothing/layers, binoculars, spotter, camera, etc.

I use the Reckoning and carry it on a lot.. take the pockets and lid off and it'll fit in an overhead just fine. 24" frame. I just make sure I pack it low profile so it doesn't bulge too much.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

seldomseensmith

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
Messages
295
Location
New Mexico
What is your concern with checking it? I've checked a pack all over the world with very few issues. In Peru the baggage handlers swiped an empty fuel bottle and a pocket knife. Domestically never an issue. When I was young and broke I simply sinched down the straps and dealt with the abuse. Later I duct taped around a garbage bag cover a few times. Now that I'm in that elite crowd that can afford a duffle bag I go that route.
But hey ship it if you are concerned. Better to do whatever makes you comfortable.
 

Bl704

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2016
Messages
262
Location
Charlotte NC
Also from NC. I carried on my pack and day pack last year. Pack in the overhead, daypack under the seat. For a 10 day trip last year.

I checked the bow in a rifle case with some clothes and my trekking poles.
 

Stickinit

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2017
Messages
67
Location
Great Falls, MT
I flown all over the place with my backpack in the overhead, and a guide lid under the seat. I also check a double bow case, that has my bow and whatever else that won't overstuff my backpack.
 

MAVinWA

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Messages
49
Location
Based in WA, OTC archery public land in AZ, UT, so
Carry on or pack in separate duffel and baggage check. Due to TSA regs, you'll have to check some things anyways. Like knives, multi tool etc.

Suggestion; order your UDAP bear spray and have delivered to your buddie's house....
any stove fuel too. Cannot pack pressurized cannisters on airlines.
 

DWinVA

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 17, 2014
Messages
429
Location
SW Virginia
Flew out to CO last year for archery elk from VA. My EXO was packed to the brim with gear. I checked it in a large suitcase with no issues. Just make sure it's under the 50# weight limit.

Good luck and God Bless.
 

fatrascal

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2013
Messages
251
Location
Spring Creek, Nevada
Jay pope, you asked for any suggestions or tips about backpack hunting. Well here's a couple of things I learned the hard way.
No cotton clothing. Use only clothing that dries easily and quickly. Get a spot messenger, Delorme or satellite phone for safety. If you kill something and have to get it back to base camp don't try to carry the whole animal in one trip. You might be strong enough but that how you hurt your knees, feet back etc. Make multiple trips with less than 90 pounds in my opinion. If you are hunting and become exhausted take a break and get some sleep or rest. Hope this is helpful. Fatrascal
 

GKPrice

Banned
Joined
Sep 27, 2014
Messages
2,442
Location
Western Oregon
how are you planning to get your meat, cape and head/horns back to home after ?

I ship mine ahead, when was the last time you heard of UPS losing something if it's insured and requires a signature ? The added cost is minimal in the big picture - For me, flying is a much nicer experience with no baggage to screw with, the entire trip's a vacation right ?
 
OP
J

jaypope

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2016
Messages
49
Location
Central NC
Thanks for all the replies guys! Sure do appreciate all of them. Looks like I'll fly with all my gear.

@GKPrice if I'm lucky enough to actually kill one I'll ship it back. Honestly don't have any expectations of doing so but you never know.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

bojangles808

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2014
Messages
646
Location
hawai'i
i dont know if you golf or or have buddies that play golf and would let you borrow, but if i do a western hunt i would think a golf club travel bag would be perfect size. basically a giant duffle bag size. id load up all my gear in there and its the perfect size to take the horns back if you split the skull cap in half
 

MAVinWA

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Messages
49
Location
Based in WA, OTC archery public land in AZ, UT, so
i dont know if you golf or or have buddies that play golf and would let you borrow, but if i do a western hunt i would think a golf club travel bag would be perfect size. basically a giant duffle bag size. id load up all my gear in there and its the perfect size to take the horns back if you split the skull cap in half
Indeed, I did that one time. Make sure to wrap tines with foam pipe or bubble wrap. And golf cases have wheels (well both mine do), easier moving thru airport.
 
Top