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Game cart vs backpack?
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
livz2hunt 24-Aug-11
Beendare 24-Aug-11
Bambam26 24-Aug-11
Elksnout 24-Aug-11
tradorion 24-Aug-11
bullelk 24-Aug-11
seaofglass 24-Aug-11
The Yode 24-Aug-11
huntingbob 24-Aug-11
wyobullshooter 25-Aug-11
GoneAgain 25-Aug-11
WapitiBob 25-Aug-11
BULELK1 25-Aug-11
HockeyDad 25-Aug-11
REX 25-Aug-11
Snakeeater 25-Aug-11
The Old Sarge 25-Aug-11
Ron Niziolek 25-Aug-11
Lost Arrow 25-Aug-11
Wild Bill 30-Jan-24
Scoot 30-Jan-24
Michael 30-Jan-24
Brotsky 30-Jan-24
Tracker 30-Jan-24
WYelkhunter 31-Jan-24
Michael 31-Jan-24
DonVathome 31-Jan-24
WV Mountaineer 31-Jan-24
bad karma 01-Feb-24
fuzzy 01-Feb-24
Insheart 01-Feb-24
Paul@thefort 01-Feb-24
Buglemaster 01-Feb-24
Buglemaster 01-Feb-24
elknailer 02-Feb-24
Nomad 06-Feb-24
WYelkhunter 11-Feb-24
From: livz2hunt
24-Aug-11
I'm thinking about taking the ole deer hauler to the Elk woods. It could be a big back saver if it would work. Hauling spike camp in, and meat out might be easier with it. Load up my backpack and throw it on the game cart. What do you think?

From: Beendare
24-Aug-11
Consider; places you cannot use a cart- like Wilderness areas

From: Bambam26
24-Aug-11
I tried this with my hunting partner one year and it was a disaster! We ended up doing extra work to get the elk out because the tire broke under the weight and the hills and rocks were just horrible on the cart. It worked fine for bringing out a deer but an elk it was a disaster. We now just pack in and out ...

From: Elksnout
24-Aug-11
Thats my plan, use the cart to haul in a spike camp.

From: tradorion
24-Aug-11
Paul Navarre does it... but i don't think he uses a plain jane deer cart...

http://forums.bowsite.com/TF/bgforums/thread.cfm?threadid=398987&forum=5#3239595

http://forums.bowsite.com/TF/bgforums/thread.cfm?threadid=398437&forum=5#3235377

From: bullelk
24-Aug-11
In the right situation, a cart is a blessing. If there is a decent trail or road near your kill, the cart will save your bacon. In steep rocky terrain, it is a nightmare! Pack to a trail and then use a cart, if the situation permits. I have used my cart to pack out elk, deer, and a bear, and it has hauled literally thousands of pounds of bear bait.

From: seaofglass
24-Aug-11
Backpack--NO

Game cart --NO

Mountain Bike--YES

You can push a bike places you cant a cart. 2 Quarters on a bike. You might even be able to ride the load down the trails if the grade is right. ;)

From: The Yode
24-Aug-11
I also tried a game cart and it was much more trouble than it was worth. HOWEVER, that probably depends on the type of cart. Some are easier to handle than others. This was a single wheel, wheelbarrow type. It was OK on a well used trail, but was a real pain in the woods with down timber and rocks. I probably put more on it than I should thinking I was saving myself trips. I may have made less trips, but they were WAY harder.

So with the right type of cart in the right type of area (and NOT a Wilderness areas as mentioned), it might be a help. Personally, the right weight on my back is the way to go.

From: huntingbob
24-Aug-11
Using a side by side wheeled version was just a nightmare as it got stuck crossing a wet area and too wide for the game trails. Not worth the metal it's made of in elk country where I hunt.( That was a long time ago) Backpack works just like you do. If you can get in and out so can you with a pack. It just takes more trips but I think with the gutless method and deboning it will make it alot easier. I too need to watch the gutless method before I go as this will be the first try at that. I really believe that the deboning will save alot of weight when you tally it all in the end. I've always done the regular pack out with alot of extra weigh carrying bone I cannot eat. If you still carry the same or a little less weight when deboning I think the trips back and forth will be reduced and the meat will cool quicker off the bone.I hope I can try all of this out on Saturday morning!Bob.

25-Aug-11
As others have said, a game cart makes things much easier if it can be used on a trail, road, meadow, etc. However, if there's much downfall or creeks to cross, a cart will absolutely wear you out.

If you do use a cart, make sure you have a pair of heavy leather gloves. Your hands will thank you very much!

From: GoneAgain
25-Aug-11

GoneAgain's embedded Photo
GoneAgain's embedded Photo
Took BOB to a place the manufacture never intended it to go last week. Came out with about 175lbs.

From: WapitiBob
25-Aug-11

WapitiBob's embedded Photo
WapitiBob's embedded Photo
I think you can do whatever floats your boat.

I wouldn't use a game cart for love or money.

From: BULELK1
25-Aug-11
I really enjoy my cart.

It is a single center frame wheel cart and for sure have a brake on it! for going down those steep rocky parts of your pack out.

It has the 26 inch wheel so I can cruise over the top of most sagebrush and the higher wheel helps balance and not have me semi bent over--killing my back!

Pretty much like anything else we use elk hunting---some benifits and some PIA stuff to...

Had mine for about 10-12 years now.

Good luck, Robb

From: HockeyDad
25-Aug-11
After lots of research this summer - I made up a cart similar to Pauls. Plan on using it to help with the trips from camp to trailhead.

Playing around with it at the house I have loaded it with my 200# neighbor and pulled it up/down stairs. Its tough with that much weight, but with 100# its is really manuverable and can actually be pulled across logs fairly well.

The plan is to have one quarter in the pack and one quarter in the cart - that way its 2 trips to get a elk from camp to truck. That trip is a 2 mile, slightly down trek utilizing a network of game trails. Also - during my scouting trips I did some trail maintenance and cut some of the logs out of the way.

I have a stream and pond near camp that I can use contractor bags to keep the elk cool.

I get to try it out tomorrow for the pack in!

From: REX
25-Aug-11

REX's embedded Photo
REX's embedded Photo
For the last couple of years we have used both backpacks and carts. That way, we can pack out with fewer trips and can each carry less and the cart is much easier to manuver because some of the weight that would otherwise be in it is on our backs.

The cart my buddy got is the big one that Cabela's sells. It sure would be nice to have a brake on it though.

From: Snakeeater
25-Aug-11
Rex,

Take it to a bicycle shop and see if they could rig up a hand break on it for you.

25-Aug-11
I'm with WapitiBob. I've don't hunt elk in places you could take a cart ... or a mountain bike.

From: Ron Niziolek
25-Aug-11
From my limited use of carts, way more work than just strapping a load on your back and walking. I've found that I'd much rather pack 3 loads on my back than to try to take a big load out on a cart. just my .02 worth :)

From: Lost Arrow
25-Aug-11
Ron, remember it well! Pack it out on your back, much easier!

From: Wild Bill
30-Jan-24
I have enjoyed my 4-wheel game cart. All the weight rests on 4-wheels. I easily wheel my drop camp into place and wheel out my game meat and drop campsite. Sure beats hiking back and fourth to the pickup! Yes! I make use of well traveled access roads, trails, etc. for travel with my game cart to my drop campsite, but I spot and stock hunt from from there. If you are a solo hunter, you can't beat using a game cart in all sorts of ways adding to your hunt.

From: Scoot
30-Jan-24
Depends a lot on where you're hunting. For me, backpack has been the best answer about 9/10 times. There have been a few times where a cart might have bee a little more efficient, but it's been pretty rare. I always figure that hauling in my pack works everywhere, the cart... not so much!

From: Michael
30-Jan-24
The first elk I ever shot was drug down hill about 50 yards and loaded into the back of my pick up. Interestingly the last elk I helped get out was with Justin and he drove his truck to it and we loaded it up and hauled it back to the road for the successful hunter.

Sure a cart could have been used for those instances as well as one other when Ike and I helped pack out a fellow hunters bull. The rest a back pack was the way to go.

From: Brotsky
30-Jan-24
Mike, if we hadn't come along there would have been one dead bull and two dudes dead from a heart attack! Ha!

From: Tracker
30-Jan-24
In the past I used a one wheel carts both one person and two person that work well in the west. But it really all depends on terrain. I do not find them useable if there are any deadfalls or heavy sage areas.

From: WYelkhunter
31-Jan-24
My brother and I have used a game cart man times in the past. Both to haul camp in and out and to haul boned elk quarters out. It just depends on your cart design and the the country you are wanting to use it in. Some of ours we packed the elk down to where there was a trail then brought camp and the elk out all at once. It is real handy if your card is sturdy enough and built for mountain trails.

From: Michael
31-Jan-24
Justin, Either that or they would have had to homestead the land the elk was laying on. Haha

From: DonVathome
31-Jan-24
good trail, no trees, not huge elevation gain/loss and not very steep areas. Get one with brakes. No question a cart is better. That said elk hunting most time it is not practical where I have hunted, but there have been a few good trails I could have used a cart on enough to make it worth it, but you can not count on that most places. I agree with the 90/10 comment, 10% of the time a cart would work better. I have hauled deer in flat terrain on carts man that was easy. I have sledded elk out in snow - easy. Most times elk was on my back, not awful most times but not a cart:)

31-Jan-24
If it’s not a good trail. And, it’s not a good cart. Keep it in the back pack.

When I say good I mean dry, wide, level in its width, and free from fallen trees bigger then a soft ball. That kinda good.

From: bad karma
01-Feb-24
Game carts can be good on level and downhill dry trails. Uphill, well, put 100 lbs in one and try pulling it up a paved street with a good slope. Downfall? Not so good either. Backpacks work well. I've got a torquey mtn bike but haven't had the opportunity to pull an elk quarter with it. Mine seem to die where backpacks are the only option.

From: fuzzy
01-Feb-24
I can't imagine using a cart around where I hunt. A lot of deer I killed when I could get around in the mountains you couldn't get a mule in to

From: Insheart
01-Feb-24
I tried a cart, but couldn't keep it strapped up on my back like could my my pack frame. :)

From: Paul@thefort
01-Feb-24

Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
works some places in Colorado elk hunting where there are trails. Harder with lots of blowdown trees and no trails. Have hauled out a few bagged and boned out elk this way. As stated, no use in Wilderness Areas.

From: Buglemaster
01-Feb-24
I built one off of Paul’s design. It works awesome , as long as there is a decent trail . Timber bashing is a nitemare. Backpack the meat to a trail, strap it on the cart & haul ass.

From: Buglemaster
01-Feb-24
I built one off of Paul’s design. It works awesome , as long as there is a decent trail . Timber bashing is a nitemare. Backpack the meat to a trail, strap it on the cart & haul ass.

From: elknailer
02-Feb-24
I use my cabela's super mag hauler in CO. on a decommissioned logging road. Have hauled boned out elk in one load one mile to the truck. Use it to haul camp in and elk out works great.

From: Nomad
06-Feb-24
Here ya go!

https://www.grainger.com/product/437J46?gucid=N%3AN%3ASM%3APaid%3AFB%3ACSM-190%3AD5UAHM%3A20500101&utm_medium=paid&utm_source=fb&utm_id=6562487282006&utm_content=6562487281606&utm_term=6562487281406&utm_campaign=6562487282006&fbclid=IwAR2VBXzKr63n69KtBYPMWOpHLfjH7F4w4013vLSfiPjVWlyrZbCS5UuawE0

From: WYelkhunter
11-Feb-24
I used an epackwheel this year to haul my elk out. There is almost no where you cant go with that. I was amazed. crawl over dead fall. very steep slopes. Battery will last as far as you want to walk.

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