Dumb question about syn game bags and meat care

Adam Gibbs

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Aug 28, 2017
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I've only used the cotton Alaska game bags that Cabela's sells. They work for what I use them for (aging meat in my shed until I get get each quarter processed). Heading out for antelope in a couple weeks. Because of our state's laws, I have to bring quarters back deboned, which means smaller pieces of meat. I'd like to keep the meat out of water in the cooler as best as possible. Are the synthetic game bags water proof or resistant enough to keep the meat from flooding out?

I know you can have meat in the water no problem. I've done it when I lived in the south. But I much prefer the meat when it's not all gray and lost a lot of it's blood. Frozen bottles and jugs aren't really an option due to taking 2 days to drive there, 3 days of hunting and 2 days to drive back. I don't think they'd even make it to the hunting days. Any other input would be welcome.
 

Brendan

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No, water will drain right out, and go right in.

I drip dry and dry out as much as I can in game bags, then double wrap the whole game bag in contractor bags, completely seal, then submerge in ice. When I get home, drain the blood and dry as much as I can before cutting, wrapping, freezing. I've had Elk in a trash bag in ice for two weeks this way and comes out great.
 

Billy Goat

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Both options presented will work, either wrap in trash bags after meat has been properly cooled, or frozen jugs will last a long time. If using jugs get the cooler cold before you ever leave, then put your jugs into it. If your lid isn't foam filled fill it with urethane foam. Get block ice to refresh your cooler before you leave if you are successful, pull the drain out so it can let the water out. Don't pull the drain however unless it's in the bed of a pickup. Had a bad experience with a suburban and a cooler that unknowns to us was missing the drain plug.

Meat bags aren't waterproof, that wouldn't allow the meat to breathe.

Also covering a cooler can make a huge difference. Old sleeping bag, blanket, even the silver bubble wrap. Something to keep the sun off of the actual cooler.
 

5MilesBack

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You need a better cooler if frozen jugs aren't lasting at least a week. After 10 days my milk jugs are still over 50% ice in my big cooler, and they'll easily last a week in even a Coleman Extreme 6 120qt cooler.
 
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204guy

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What I do... if its cool enough let the meat hang overnight to get it cooled, if not right to the cooler. I use frozen water/pop bottles on the bottom of the cooler to keep the meat up out of the water. Milk jugs take up too much cooler space. Get some tall 55 gal liner bags and double wrap game bags. The tall bags will let you keep the top of the bag opening up at the top of the cooler above the ice so water isn't working its way into the bag. You can then completely submerge meat with loose ice and keep it a long time draining off water and adding ice as needed. Pretty much same as wet aging.
 

Sobrbiker

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I’d vote frozen jugs. I use them in AZ-late season hunts they last as long in my Coleman extreme as my friends’ bagged ice does in roto coolers. Early season, inside my Jeep they lasted well enough to keep my meat to get home (3d but that was 100+ degrees full sun inside a Cherokee with the windows up at the trailhead).

I’d suggest if the cooler in question for the trip is just for meat, pre cool cooler, put in hard frozen gallons (I use salt water, but that’s another debate) and I would top cooler off with dry ice for the trip.
 

RamDreamer

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Montana
I've only used the cotton Alaska game bags that Cabela's sells. They work for what I use them for (aging meat in my shed until I get get each quarter processed). Heading out for antelope in a couple weeks. Because of our state's laws, I have to bring quarters back deboned, which means smaller pieces of meat. I'd like to keep the meat out of water in the cooler as best as possible. Are the synthetic game bags water proof or resistant enough to keep the meat from flooding out?

I know you can have meat in the water no problem. I've done it when I lived in the south. But I much prefer the meat when it's not all gray and lost a lot of it's blood. Frozen bottles and jugs aren't really an option due to taking 2 days to drive there, 3 days of hunting and 2 days to drive back. I don't think they'd even make it to the hunting days. Any other input would be welcome.
Curious what state requires you to bone out pronghorn quarters?
 
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Adam Gibbs

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Curious what state requires you to bone out pronghorn quarters?
Michigan is just starting to deal with CWD the last few years. One of the new rules is no bones coming in from out of state hunts unless the bone is clean and free of of. I doubt I'd get checked but you never know.

Thanks for all the advice. I just found out where we're going has a freezer on site so things just got a whole lot less complicated.
 

RamDreamer

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Michigan is just starting to deal with CWD the last few years. One of the new rules is no bones coming in from out of state hunts unless the bone is clean and free of of. I doubt I'd get checked but you never know.

Thanks for all the advice. I just found out where we're going has a freezer on site so things just got a whole lot less complicated.
It peaked my interest as I wondered if it was something CWD related statement. Pronghorn are not cervids and are not affected by CWD. From a quick search I see starting in late 2017 Michigan makes the statement about no whole carcasses or bones, spinal column, brain, etc from deer, elk, and moose nothing about pronghorn. Maybe I am missing something, but you should be fine with bring in quarters or the whole pronghorn if deboning them is a concern of yours.
 

Voyageur

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It peaked my interest as I wondered if it was something CWD related statement. Pronghorn are not cervids and are not affected by CWD. From a quick search I see starting in late 2017 Michigan makes the statement about no whole carcasses or bones, spinal column, brain, etc from deer, elk, and moose nothing about pronghorn. Maybe I am missing something, but you should be fine with bring in quarters or the whole pronghorn if deboning them is a concern of yours.
Good point. I learned something. I had always assumed antelope were included in SD CWD rules, but upon checking I see it is only deer and elk. Thank you.
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2020
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I've only used the cotton Alaska game bags that Cabela's sells. They work for what I use them for (aging meat in my shed until I get get each quarter processed). Heading out for antelope in a couple weeks. Because of our state's laws, I have to bring quarters back deboned, which means smaller pieces of meat. I'd like to keep the meat out of water in the cooler as best as possible. Are the synthetic game bags water proof or resistant enough to keep the meat from flooding out?

I know you can have meat in the water no problem. I've done it when I lived in the south. But I much prefer the meat when it's not all gray and lost a lot of it's blood. Frozen bottles and jugs aren't really an option due to taking 2 days to drive there, 3 days of hunting and 2 days to drive back. I don't think they'd even make it to the hunting days. Any other input would be welcome.

If you break down the meat into major groups, especially on a smaller animal like a lope, you can fit it in some 2 gall freezer bags then put in ice. Honestly, the only time I run game bags is when I'm packing meat out of the mountains. As soon as I get to civilization I'm breaking it down and cleaning it up. Lots of different strategies and preferences out there.
 

highcountrymuley

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Oct 10, 2018
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34
i have a wire rack that sits atop ice bags that keeps meat out of water. Everyone should also be aware that contractor/trash bags contain pesticides , not to mention the plastic the bag is made of , that is not food safe.
I use frozen jugs too. They stay mostly ice for several days in car while i'm out hunting. I cover coolers with extra sleeping bag i keep in car, too for insulation.
 
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