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Old 12-11-2017, 07:33 PM
ljcygnet ljcygnet is offline
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Re: Food -- I would agree that the list I gave earlier is incomplete, just some suggestions.

Some thoughts, though --

If money was a concern but I also needed protein, fat and sheer calories for this kind of work, I would buy a TON of chicken thighs. Around here, you can get thighs on sale for less than a dollar a pound -- and thighs are the fattiest part of the bird, so most desirable from a survival standpoint.

They can be:

Pan fried (I recommend soy sauce, ginger, red pepper, and garlic, and olive oil)
Roasted in a dutch oven
Boiled into soup
Deboned (there's some bait for your traps right there in the form of the bones), and wrapped in tin foil and baked in the ashes of a fire with appropriate seasonings. Lemon pepper works well for this.

Etc. I would also suggest saving the drippings if you're cooking it in a way where there are drippings, mixing with a bit of corn starch or flour for gravy, and serving it over biscuits or rice as a side.

I would also have some fatty cuts of pork chops -- pork loins are cheapest, but may not be the best as they're lean and tend to be dry when cooked. I might get some fattier cuts which, if bought in bulk, are still pretty cheap. I might pick up a few shoulder roasts, too -- good for posole.

(Posole is a Mexican soup that is very filling. Posole recipe -- boil a pork shoulder until the meat falls off the bone with chili powder, garlic, and salt and pepper and a tiny pinch of cumin. Add hominy after the meat is well done. Serve with onions, lemon juice, and normally cilantro -- though in the middle of winter in the woods cilantro isn't happening.)

Bacon and salt pork add valuable calories to food. Salt pork is easy enough to make: Pack trimmed pork fat in salt.

You might consider buying some cheap cuts of beef, like chuck roast, and cubing the meat up ahead of time. Pack it in tin foil packets with carrots and potatoes and onions in a meal sized portion, and whatever spices you prefer, and freeze at home. In camp, all you have to do is throw a packet in the coals of a fire and cook until done. Super easy and cuts down on the dishes. (I have been known to do this for the first day of a backpacking trip.)

Oh, and raw eggs can be cracked out of the shell, scrambled, frozen and then later thawed for use. Much tastier than egg powder.
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Old 12-11-2017, 08:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Lugh MacArawn View Post
Call me paranoid, but I think your food list is grossly inadequate.

Walking everywhere in the winter burns through calories, fast.
I don't think you're paranoid as others have pointed out the same thing. Instead of spending the money on a tent, I'm going to make one out of tarps, which opens up room in the budget for additional food, supplies and equipment.

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Originally Posted by Lugh MacArawn View Post

Research what fish and game you anticipate catching. Are the fish fatty, bony, meaty? How about the the small game? Mostly rabbit?
I'm not going to want to spend too much time on the ice, so probably will just drill a couple holes for tip ups and do my best to keep them from freezing over. Hopefully, I'll be catching northern. The good thing about remote areas is the lakes aren't over fished, so I could get lucky with some decent sized pike. Otherwise I might try for some smaller fish, like crappie, or sunnies.

I don't expect much more than rabbits and squirrels for small game. I'll set some snares, shoot 'em if I see them while checking traps. I do have a hound I could probably get to flush out some rabbits from the brush if I see fresh tracks, but haven't tried that with him. Also I've found the 110 conibears work well for squirrels if you put them in the trees. Might bring along a bag of marshmallows for just that reason.
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Old 12-11-2017, 08:57 PM
a bear named smokey a bear named smokey is offline
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Not sure the ice thickness where you plan to fish but it takes a lot of energy to cut a hole in a foot of ice. Also if you are hiking 2 miles each way in a foot + of snow you will be extremely tired without snow shoes.
I'll definitely bring along snow shoes. I've used a hand auger before, and have to agree about the amount of work involved. Thinking though once I have the holes drilled it should be a lot easier to keep them from freezing over during the day, and drill through whatever ice has formed overnight. And the added fish I could catch doing so I think would make the initial calorie investment worth while, granted I catch something...
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:03 PM
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and drill through whatever ice has formed overnight.
If it get much below freezing it will be easier to drill a brand new hole than re drill the old holes. When it just gets to freezing the holes freeze from the top down. When it gets in the single digits they also freeze from the sides making it very hard to re drill it. You could cover the hole with pine boughs than cover it with snow for insulation.
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:18 PM
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Are planning on bringing your dog with you for the entire 30 days?

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Old 12-11-2017, 09:38 PM
a bear named smokey a bear named smokey is offline
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Originally Posted by Exarmyguy View Post
I think it would have been wise to scout out animal populations and set up a couple of camp areas in the summer or fall. Heading out in the winter might be an interesting adventure but its not related to good trapping practices .
I don't disagree. Honestly, if I wanted to maximize fur I'd probably be better off spending all of my money on more traps and trapping out of the trunk of my car, because on foot I won't be able to cover a lot of ground.

I have two reasons for making this trip:

1) I want to practice the ways of those that came before me, while living like they did. Everything from the steel traps I'm using to the wood stove I'll be relying on for warmth are almost the exact same as those that my ancestors used when they first came to these lands hundreds of years ago in search of furbearers. Of course, I'll have some modern comforts too But for me, this is all about fostering an understanding of where I came from.

2) I have a lot to learn about trapping, and the more time I spend in the woods the more I will learn. So, by dedicating an entire month to running a trap line I expect to learn a lot. Doesn't matter how many youtube videos I watch, or books I read about the subject - although both those things certainly help - at the end of the day experience is everything.

Next season I'll have more experience, preparedness and hopefully a snowmobile.
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:47 PM
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Are planning on bringing your dog with you for the entire 30 days?

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Yes. He's a bloodhound, about 18 months and 90-95 pounds. He's a big dog. This will be his first long trip. I worry about him getting cold though, since he's not really a cold weather breed (short coat,) so I was going to get him a full body winter jacket and some booties. I haven't purchased them yet (next week), so if you have any suggestions I'd definitely appreciate them.

Was looking at this one:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IYGE1CY

I always keep him on a lead, because if he gets off of it and catches a scent he could be long gone. I worry about that too, but he goes where I go and I tie him off to a tree when I'm setting traps.
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Old 12-11-2017, 11:15 PM
Lugh MacArawn Lugh MacArawn is offline
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90 lbs dog? You'll need more dog food and/or meat. your 35 lbs of dog food will only last you a couple of weeks without some serious supplemental feed, I think. Dry dog food averages 1200-1500 cal per lbs. Your dog is going to burn 3000+ each day just to stay warm. That is at least 2 lbs per day of dry dog food. Factor in loping through the snow and it'll likely double again. Better up that amount. Cook up and feed any catch you don't eat yourself and you might take some home. Mixing his dry food with a bit of hot water will help with water intact and keeping him warm as well.

I have a 55 lbs dog, shepard mix. She went through ten lbs in a week of high desert winter camping, along with soup and such from my pot. A couple of the nights got down to about 15-16*, the remainder were in the low 20s. The days were easily 40*. Snow? Okay, it was present, but not hindering in any way. She does like to run, though.

Booties and a coat should work out ok, I think. Just buy a couple sets so one can dry out over the fire while the other is worn. I can't recommend a brand as I have never used them. Carry a towel to dry him down on the trail and a blanket for him to curl up on during rests. At least you'll sleep warm. Hope your sleep kit is big enough for two
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Old 12-12-2017, 02:08 AM
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+1000 on the bear precautions. You may also want a can of bear spray. Check before you go on the legality/necessity in that area.

+1000 on the snowshoes. Spare bindings and tools for repairs. The round fat type are more stable/spread your weight out better, and the longer thinner type you can move faster, but you are more likely to fall.

A good multivitamin. Looks like limited fruits/veggies. Such a limited variety of foods will invariably short you on something(s) important. Also, that time of year that far north there is limited sunlight, plus you will likely be bundled up, so make sure there is a lot of Vitamin D in your multivitamin.

Hot Tang is nice when it's cold and the powder is easy to pack. Tea bags or loose tea are lighter, though.

Wild rice is a nutritious, low-glycemic, complex carb.

Even if you sleep on a cot, you want a good sleeping pad. Some people forego the cot in favor of 2 sleeping pads (oversized is best so you don't end up partially off). Make sure the two pads don't slip/slide apart, and your bag doesn't slip/slide off the pad(s), even if on a cot.

35 pounds of dog food isn't enough. My retired 70 lb GSD K9s eat more than that and they are not overweight. The active GSD K9s eat even more and they are not overweight. Depending on activity level and temperature, your dog will eat a lot more than usual... plan 3-4 times as much as usual if he's usually a house dog, especially since he has a short coat. Try to feed frequently instead of only 1-2 times a day so his system can absorb the calories/nutrients better (instead of it just passing through because his system isn't used to the greater food intake). Make sure you have necessities for your dog, including a copy of vet/shot records, photos with dog and you together (help prove ownership), spare leash, harness, collar, tags, muzzle, booties, paw/pad protector stuff, FAK, etc.) Bowls (stainless is better than plastic). Whatever else you normally have in dog BOB/EDC.

Do you have something for your dog to sleep on?

Teach your dog to leave the traps and pelts alone before you go. Also be prepared for your dog to react to strange/new noises and smells.

Do you anticipate having your dog pull the sled? If so, train before you go.

A cheap rubber bath mat to put your boots on so they don't absorb moisture/cold from the ground (floorless tent) or drip/make a mess on a tent floor.

If you have a floorless tent, pitch it on frozen ground (with or without snow), and then heat, you will have mud. Everywhere. And your dog will get it everywhere else. If you heat and allow everything to thaw and then dry before using, so long as you don't let it freeze again, it'll be OK. If not, even a tarp used as a floor will make a big difference. Canvas will suck up moisture and allow mud to bleed through unless it is treated. Check with an outfitter/tent maker for advice on what to treat with and how to do it if you go this route (or get pre-treated). If the tent has a floor (improvised or otherwise), a footprint or another layer under it will help insulate from moisture/clamminess and you'll be more comfortable. If you're not sleeping on a cot, pine boughs are nice insulation, but the branch part(s) can be uncomfortable until you get used to it.

After you get there, a pine bough to keep the floor clean.
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Old 12-12-2017, 06:34 AM
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Please allow me a few questions,
What state, what terrain, what time of year, how much snow?

What kind of trapping are you planning for?
Many states require a 24 hr check, which makes good sense for water trapping, but it limits the number of predator traps you can set, especially since you are running the line on foot. It also limits you if you are planning on trapping fisher, marten, or wolves in the deep snow.

How many traps will you be taking?
Water sets: If you were water trapping in open water, you could easily check 60-80 traps, especially if you had a canoe or Jon boat.
Trapping under ice: Some folks trap beaver under the ice, primarily using #330 conibears. This is very difficult for folks without a snow machine to carry the tools and frozen animals.
Dry sets: Once the shallow water freezes, most trappers pull the majority of their water sets and focus on fox, coyotes, or western bobcats (known as Lynx cat, if they are located in the Great Basin states). But most trappers set their dry land predator traps much further apart and you would be hard pressed to check 20 sets every day.

Have you asked for ideas at www.trapperman.com?
Their members are very knowledgeable and they love helping a new trapper.
You might even find someone with a used traps or an Outfitter tent.
The trapshed is a buy/sell digital flea market.
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Old 12-12-2017, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
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Does that work in a tent and allow you to keep the tent from filling with smoke?
You can use a lean-to with a reflector fire which has been around for maybe a thousand years or you can bring a small sheet metal stove for inside the tent. A stove requires more cutting of wood, but it is effecient as mentioned above.

Most places the bears are down for the winter.

I have lived in a wall tent with a stove for a month at a time. I was very poplular whenever there was snow.
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Old 12-12-2017, 10:11 AM
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I haven't read the entire thread, so not sure what state this is, but I don't think bears will be trouble, should be hole up for the winter.
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Old 12-12-2017, 10:18 AM
Limit Killer Limit Killer is offline
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Originally Posted by ppine View Post
You can use a lean-to with a reflector fire which has been around for maybe a thousand years or you can bring a small sheet metal stove for inside the tent. A stove requires more cutting of wood, but it is effecient as mentioned above.

Most places the bears are down for the winter.

I have lived in a wall tent with a stove for a month at a time. I was very poplular whenever there was snow.
So now your advocating not taking your own previous advise that a saw is not necessary in the winter?

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Old 12-12-2017, 10:39 AM
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A stove requires smaller pieces of wood. Dead wood is not that hard to break up without a saw or an axe. Some people are fastidious even in the bush. You can make a stronger case for a saw or an axe to run a stove.
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Old 12-12-2017, 11:02 AM
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Bring a large stockpot. great for melting ice/snow for water, making large batches of food, boiling carcasses to get all the meat off/ making stock, and you can pack it full with other kit that you don't want rough handled on the way in.
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Old 12-12-2017, 11:16 AM
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Bring some salt beef, tons of fat and meaty.
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Old 12-12-2017, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by ppine View Post
A stove requires smaller pieces of wood. Dead wood is not that hard to break up without a saw or an axe. Some people are fastidious even in the bush. You can make a stronger case for a saw or an axe to run a stove.
So you mean exactly like the OP stated. As in running a stove. And yet you advocated just dragging wood into his tent and burning it.

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Old 12-12-2017, 12:27 PM
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After reading a little more about your reasons, plans and experience - I'll recommend you scale back your excursion from 30 days to 10 days. That will allow you more than enough time to test-out your ideas. Take what you learn during that trip and extend your trip the following year.

I sure don't want to rain on your parade, but I'm thinking this 30-day venture could very well turn out to be 3 weeks of hell and then some, depending upon your location.

Having an axe in camp is never a bad idea but selecting the appropriate axe is the difficult part for the beginner. You can't go wrong with a Gršnsfors and it will be ready for duty anytime you are over the next 50+ years. The problem for most is the cost, but it's a one time life purchase. Myself, I've got the small forest axe but there have been times when a longer handled axe would have been better for my needs at the time.
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Old 12-12-2017, 12:27 PM
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You must be looking for coyotes,mink,bobcat, and marten if your going in the winter.

Food wise Iíd bring a few pounds of butter a few few dozen eggs bacon and salt pork are good ideas. Snap traps would be good to bring if your making fur then youíll have some weasels coming in to snack on the carcasses or trimmings.

Personally if you havenít scouted the area prior to the winter Iíd recommend doing the planning this winter then scout in the summer and fall Or late spring.

You can have all the traps in the world but if there ainít no fur there then youíll be wasting your time.

Advice on ice fishing, it might not be legal to leave your tip ups out if your not there. Donít forget you need bait like minnows for those tip ups for northern.


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Old 12-12-2017, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by coolhandluke View Post

Advice on ice fishing, it might not be legal to leave your tip ups out if your not there. Donít forget you need bait like minnows for those tip ups for northern.
You could set the tent up on the lake or on the shore of the lake within sight of the tip ups, that way you can have them out at night, keep an eye on them and be nice and warm.
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