Transporting Moose Meat
After harvesting your moose, how do you keep it chilled? Because you have an 8-9hr trip back home? That's after we are done cutting it up and wrapped, of course.
You ask a very good question Vern. Transporting moose meat on a long journey can have good or bad results.
First I have to make some assumptions regarding your question.
1) If you have cut and wrapped your meat I assume then you have taken your moose to a butcher, had it aged properly then cut and wrapped. If you are going this route, then the best thing you can do is to have the butcher flash freeze the meat as well.
Frozen meat will travel quite easily in cardboard boxes if you cover them with a good insulting layer. If you are driving back form a moose hunt you'll have lots of clothes, sleeping bags, etc. Just pile all this on top of your boxes, taking care to tuck the insulating stuff all around.
An 8-9 hour drive will be no problem.
2) If you have just shot your moose and plan to cut and wrap, you face many more challenges.
How cool is your meat? Was it hanging in a butchers cooler or just out in the bush? If the latter, what will the temperature be? Freezing?
In order to cut and wrap you meat it should hang a suitable duration in a temperature controlled climate and allowed to age. Once this step has been completed you cut and wrap.
If, at this point you plan to travel, I suggest you place your meat in coolers and layer some dry ice over top. Do not place the ice directly on your meat packages. Put some cloth or clothing as a buffer in between.
Again cover your meat with a good insulated layer.
When we hunt up north, we travel anywhere between 10
and 14 hours depending on the area we hunt. We always bring our moose meat home to cut and wrap. If it is not cool enough in the bush to chill the moose quarters sufficiently we take our moose to the nearest town and have the butcher hang the meat in his cooler.
Once the hunt is complete we stop at the butchers business on the way home and pick up or quarters of moose. We place the quarters in the center of a large tarp and wrap them up like a huge parcel. Then we take all our heavy clothing, sleeping bags etc and cover the moose as best we can.
There have been many times we arrive home late at night and have found the meat to be still adequately cold to wait until the following morning to take the moose meat down to our own butcher. Wit an elapsed time of around 24 hours the meat is still quite cold.
I have heard horror stories of shooting moose and after transporting moose meat home, hunters have had to discard entire moose. How sad this would be.
If you take some precautions to keep you meat cool you should have no problem in traveling 8-9 hours.
One more thing... If you are hunting in August when temperatures can easily reach 30 degrees Celsius, you better have a supply of dry ice available for all types of transporting moose meat. Another option that may be worth looking into would be to have your meat transported by a commercial transport with refrigeration. Just a thought.
I hope this helps. Good luck with your hunt this year, well... future years too! Come on back and share your story and pictures.
PS - If you have more information regarding your question you can use the comment form to submit. I'll answer as soon as I can.