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Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

 
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  #1  
Old 04-22-2014, 08:08 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Wyoming
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Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

I am curious as to what the rest of you backpack hunters are doing with your game head for the trip out. Do you cape your trophy or pack the whole head? Also if you do cape out the head and cut off the horns, what type of saw do you carry? Personally for me it depends on the amount of time I have and the distance I have to travel. I like to cape and remove the horns but I am now considering not carrying a saw to save some weight.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:12 AM
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

Well, there are a ton of variables. However, I usually cape and just pack out the horns. If I am backpacking, I try to be as light as I can and there are a ton of saws out there for around 6 to 8 ounces or so. If there is bad weather or you just want to beat feet outta someplace, you can just back the head and cape but man, the older I get, the less weight I want to carry so I mostly bone stuff out and just carry the meat, cape and horns. And I don't mount much stuff so most of the time, its just the horns.

Randy
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:09 PM
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

Up until now, I simply do a nice job of cutting the hide off the body/neck and then leave it attached to the head and carry it out in one heavy load. But my last nice bull with the head and hide together weighed about 100 lbs. When I get older that's not going to be very much fun.

But overall I just would be angry with myself if I screwed something up by caping the hide off the head in the field. It's a lot of work to just quarter a big bull, especially doing it alone, and it's easy to make mistakes when you get tired, knives get dull, etc. So for now I leave the delicate work to the taxidermist.
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Old 04-23-2014, 07:27 PM
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

Always cape in the field! If I don't have a saw I just remove the lower jaw to save weight. When they are fresh it's usually no more than a 15-20 minute job if you've done several of them. I will usually not take the time to do bears in the field and usually let the taxidermist do them.
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Old 04-23-2014, 10:05 PM
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

I have caped a bunch of animals but I need tools to do it Justice like a screw driver knife and a saw to cut off the horns and a tape to measure the cape. That adds up to weight I have to carry all day every day. Has anyone tried cutting off the antlers with one of those cable saws designed for splitting the pelvis?
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Old 05-02-2014, 07:03 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Black River Michigan
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

I always cape my animals in the field. You don't have to split the lips or turn the ears until you get back to the trailhead. Tell your taxidermist you need to learn how to cape your animals and to call you when he has a European mount for you to practice on. Buy a Forschner 5" Victorinox knife and a small scalpel with replaceable blades, a couple disposable rubber gloves and a Kevlar glove for the non cutting hand and you're good to go.
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Old 05-05-2014, 10:46 PM
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Re: Do you cape out your trophy or pack out the head?

6fatrat,

I cape somewhere between 20 and 50 animals a year. I stared the thread because I am interested in what the rest of you do and I am curious has to weather or not you cut off the antlers and if so what light weight saw or method do you use. I have not weighed an elk head with the bottom jaw removed so I don't know what the weight savings is to cut the horns off. That would be a good experiment to do this coming fall.
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